So it’s happened. You’re in university. All that hard work has paid off and you’re about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime. As great as all that sounds (and it is!), there are some things that need looking at.
Obviously, you need to make sure your rent is paid. Also, food, books, socialising, travel, clothes… it’s a lot. And if this is your first time managing your own money, it can be very tempting to drop it all in a month. However, if you do that, then for the remainder of the semester you’re a bit screwed. So why not take advantage of our best ways to save money? You’ve got nothing to lose.
Travel – Get A Stagecoach Bus Pass
When you get to uni, you’ll find that you’ll be travelling a lot. To lectures, to nights out… everywhere. It’s great to walk, but sometimes you really don’t fancy walking all the way to the big supermarket. As the term drags on, you’ll quickly realise that you’re running out of cash, and you don’t want to drop a fiver a time on taxis. So do yourself a favour, and get a Stagecoach bus pass at the start of term! Bear in mind, it’s discounted too.
You can pay right at the start of each semester, or even year, and never worry about travel again. Even getting the last bus home after a night out is covered, so you have more money for cheesy chips. If that’s not a win, then we don’t know what is.
Food – Check Out Freecycling Apps
As tempting as it is to go all out and buy all your food from the fanciest place you can think of when that loan drops in your account – don’t do it. Buy all of your essential bits and pieces from the cheapest supermarkets around. Then, if you want to splash out on some more premium brands of beans, shampoo, or anything else you’re picky about – you can do it all term.
Also, make sure you check out freecycling apps. Millions of people are signed up to one of these services. If you’ve never heard of it, basically people who are cleaning out their cupboards, or who have bought something by accident, will list their food online and offer it out for free.
All you have to do is reach out, and then pick it up. It’s become so popular that even big food chains are getting in on the trend, and offering out food at the end of the day that they’ve been unable to sell. It’s a great way to help reduce food waste, as well as lining your own pockets.
Books – Make Sure You Get Them Second-Hand
We get it. Everyone likes a nice, shiny, new textbook. However, within a few days we guarantee that £50 book will be covered in rainwater, scribbles, and probably some kind of food. Your best bet is to avoid the library shop, and buy second-hand books from Amazon.
If you click on the ‘used’ tab while searching for your books, you’ll see they’re significantly reduced.
Socialising – Become A Secret Shopper
It may not sound very glamorous, but being a secret shopper can really benefit your social life. Secret shoppers are people who go into different shops and restaurants, act like a normal customer, and then rate the service they received. The best part is that everything you buy is covered by the agency you work for, and it doesn’t cost you a penny!
So if you fancy going out for a nice meal, why not try and get it covered? There are lots of different places where you can sign up for this online, so give it a go.
Clothes – Check Out Swap Shops
Lots of different students’ unions now hold ‘swap shops’. The concept is simple, bring several items of clothing that you don’t want anymore, and swap them for clothes that you like.
For example, if you bring three items of clothing, you’ll be able to take three new ones home with you.
Anything that doesn’t get swapped is taken to a charity shop afterwards – so it’s really win-win for everyone.
Basically – Be Sensible
At the end of the day, your money will last as long as you look after it. Trust us, the wait for the next loan day can be excruciating. Make sure you’re open to getting part-time jobs while you’re in uni. The students’ unions generally have lots of roles on offer, whether that be in the nightclub, bar, kitchen, or shops.
Featured image credit: rawpixel
Part of a paid partnership with Stagecoach