How To Save Money As A Student | Money Saving Hacks
We all know being a student can be financially hard. You hear horror stories about students not budgeting properly and having to survive on noodles for weeks. But don’t worry, this is avoidable!
Whether you’re a fresher or a student returning for another year, we’ve got some great money-saving hacks that will allow you to avoid cleaning your mate’s room in return for pocket money…
Invest in a railcard
This is probably one of the most popular tips you’ll receive from anyone who has survived attended uni. But it’s for good reason: buying a 16-25 railcard will save you 1/3 on all UK rail travel for a whole year.
Okay, it does cost £30 to buy, but if you do the maths you can work out that you’ll make that back within the first few trips. If £30 still seems too pricy, then you can open a student account with Santander and get one for free.
If you’ll be making regular journeys home or day trips along the coast, then a Railcard will be your best friend for savings.
Shop and cook with friends
It’s normal to become excitable and caught up in the first few weeks of uni- you’re so busy exploring with new friends and attending fresher’s events that it’s just easier to eat out, order takeaways or stick a meal for one in the microwave.
So, when it comes to your first big food shop, you splurge out on everything you’re used to back home and end up not only spending a fortune on mostly junk but also throwing half of it away.
The best way to save your cash is to prepare flat family meals together. Make a list of the types of meals you would all like to create, then follow that with a list of the ingredients (along with other communal items).
This way you will spilt the cost, avoid waste, and feed the 5000 well. Believe me, you might not think you could ever be sick of pizza, but it happens.
Become a night owl
Shopping at night can also save you some cash. Supermarkets tend to slash the prices of stock when it’s about to go out of date, so suggest an evening shopping trip and see how many baked goods you can get for 10p.
And of course… never shop when hungry! You’ll end up buying out the whole supermarket.
jisp is the official deals app of SUSU. It lets retailers know what you're into, so they can tailor their services to you.
In return, you'll receive exclusive promotions, discounts and sales from your favourite stores and restaurants.
jisp can be downloaded for free at the App Store or on Google Play, and don’t forget to use the referral code JISPSUSU when you join to start earning vouchers. After that, you will receive your own unique referral code to use with friends and start earning bonuses.
Don’t be a brand snob
Whether it’s cereal or clothes, we all have our favourite brands. However, purchasing products from the bigger names can be costly, and often unnecessary.
Supermarket-own brands are often cheaper, healthier AND more delicious than well-known names; you just have to shop around and be willing to experiment. Save your money for the branded items you might want to treat yourself with, such as a dress for big events.
Of course, there will be some products you know you can never substitute, so make changes and save money around your favourite items. Make sure to keep an eye out for the exclusive promotions and offers on jisp to save you money on the brands you can’t bear to part with!
Limit eating out
Eating out isn’t just about the incredible food, it’s also a social occasion to hang out with friends and not miss out on fun moments, so the thought of having to say “no” can cause serious FOMO.
By prioritising special events such as birthdays and Christmas, you can put aside money to ensure you can afford these things, and any extra cash left over can be used as a little indulgence when you’re out and about.
For those days that you need to treat yourself, jisp can help! Southampton currently has exclusives in Creams, Bubble Drop, Zizzi, Millie’s Cookies, Krispy Kreme, Snog and more.
Try to avoid weekends, especially Saturdays, when eating out. The best deals are often between Sunday-Friday, but of course retailers may have their own unique day for offers.
Don’t buy new textbooks
So, you’re new to uni and your course sends you a list of all the books you need. Naively, you purchase every book brand new for about £50 each… and then only flick through them twice throughout the whole duration of university.
Avoid spending all this money and either buy used textbooks (try eBay, Amazon or your local bookstores/charity stores), or visit the library when you are in need of course material- although be aware of limited books that may already be checked out by course mates.
You could also try Google Books or Google Scholar, as they feature lots of literature and research for free.
Remember when we said not to be a brand snob? Well, there’s a way you can get the gear without splashing the cash. Everything5pounds sells clothes, shoes, homeware and toys for – you guessed it – £5.
Many of the products come from high street stores including River Island and Zara. The price is so low because they’re end-of-line/returned/ex-display items- all in perfect condition! You could also try browsing eBay outlets that stock the same items as in-store, but for a much cheaper price.
Abandoning your basket online can also save you money. Certain websites including Boohoo will come chasing after you if you quit the website without completing an order. An email can come through somewhere between a few hours to a few days offering you discounts such as ‘10% off your basket if you complete your order’.
Not all retailers do this, but if you’re not in a rush then give it a go. This method can also prevent impulse purchases!
Start putting this advice into practice right away: don’t forget to download jisp for free and use the referral code ‘JISPSUSU’ to start earning vouchers and save your money.