Magnificent Seven – Top Money Saving Tips for Students in October

Sep 24

Whether a Fresher or a returning veteran, saving money is vital to any student’s life while at university, and if you’re currently a student, the last thing you want to do is become one of those Freshers who spend their entire term’s loan in the first month!

We at Compare4Deals are committed to making those first few months back as easy on the wallet as possible. Here are some tips to save you money this term:

1. Set a weekly budget

Have a look at what’s in your account and plan accordingly – don’t plan monthly, as you’ll be tempted by the higher figures and spent too much, leaving very little in reserve for the run up to Christmas.

Try not to dip into any overdraft you might have either – even if it’s a free student overdraft, you’ll have to pay for it eventually!

2. Think DISCOUNT!

As a student, you’re the future of this country, a shining bastion of learning and wisdom… that is at least before 11pm on a club night!

As such, every Tom, Dick, Harry and Tarquin is going to be throwing discounts at you from all corners of retail-dom and this is where your NUS card will become your money saving rock. You’d be surprised at how many places accept it, and even some nightclubs will reduce the entry fee on seeing your NUS card.

Just have a look on the internet for a full list of places that accept NUS cards.

3. Fancy dress, plain economy

Although clubs and societies are a great way to make friends, it’s an unwritten rule that you aren’t a proper student until you’ve been to several fancy dress parties, especially with Halloween fast approaching.

However, it isn’t always necessary to splash out (excuse the pun!) on several quarts of blue body paint and become Papa Smurf every time a new party is announced on Facebook (about every five minutes if you’re a first year).

Be more imaginative! Use your creativity to make costumes out of discarded objects and any old, disused clothes – how about an Optimus Prime made out of cardboard boxes?

If you don’t want to sacrifice any of your existing attire, then the local charity shop will have something for you to modify as you see fit.

4. Home advantage

If you’re fortunate enough to live at a university near your home, then the next time you make that visit back home, have a good look around for any spare items that your folks don’t need – of course it’s only courteous to ask first!

This could be anything at all, such as toiletries and non-perishable food.

5. Take away the takeaway

Although takeaways are tempting when cooking seems like a chore too far, they will drain your bank account quicker than a drink-hazed session of online Poker – not to mention expand your waistline alarmingly if you have a slow metabolism!

A good way to sidestep this grisly (and gristly!) habit is to cook three sets of meals three days in advance, freeze them and microwave them whenever you need a ready meal.

Ready meals themselves can satisfy occasionally, but if you must buy them, buy them in bulk as quite a few will have something like “3 for 2” stamped on them. Whatever you do though, don’t live on them!

If all else fails and you must eat out, chain pubs such as Wetherspoons and Yates have a wide choice of options (with plenty of healthy/vegetarian options available) and no matter where you are in the country, the prices do not change! As little as £10 can get you three courses depending on what you choose (without dessert, that is).

6. Balancing the books

Obviously the university library is the first go-to place for all the books you need to pass every one of those all-important modules first time. However, to get those books you’ll need to start any essays in good time before they are all checked out!

If you really want to try a “play hard, work later” mentality though, there are several ways of getting the books you need.

Retail and auction sites (particularly eBay and Amazon) usually have what you are looking for, but if that doesn’t work then student notice boards around the union and halls of residence may be of help.

Occasionally, Google books will have previews which include the pages you need to succeed – but whether the details you need for proper referencing are there is a different matter, so use wisely!

7. Phone home without stratospheric costs

If you’re a first year (and more especially one who is far away from home), then your parents will be spending endless nights without sleep, imagining the sticky situations you are getting into – although the reality is probably much worse!

Even if you don’t miss them, the occasional call back is hugely welcome and your phone credit need not take a hammering.

Skype allows you to call people for free, so make sure your folks download it, invest in a microphone (most laptops have one in-built anyway) and have their minds put at ease!

At Compare4Deals we always have a range of student discounts from top retailers which is updated daily. If you’re a student, click here and see how you can save money with us today!