Money saving tips for students
We realise UWE students want to enjoy their student experience without breaking the bank balance, that's why we've put together a list of helpful tips to make your money go further.
- Make a shopping list and stick to it - don't forget to check online for the latest supermarket offers.
- Never shop when you’re hungry, research suggests you'll buy more than you need.
- Shop on a Sunday afternoon, or after 19:00 when there may be bargains on perishables like bread and vegetables.
- We all like special offers, but think before you buy - it may seem like a bargain, but will you use it?
- Drop one brand level in the supermarket and see if you can tell the difference.
- Look at price per 100g to compare different prices and save yourself some pennies.
- Buy unpacked fruit and vegetables, they're better for your bank balance and the environment.
- Buy in bulk with others to save costs - essentials like pasta often work out cheaper.
- If you're a novice in the kitchen, why not invest in a cook book, you'll often find good books in charity shops.
- Learning to cook will make you popular with your housemates and save you a fortune over the year, you could even hold your very own ’Come Dine with Me'.
- Make a sandwich instead of buying a ready-made one and you could save a pound or more a day - that's £260 a year.
- Use old bread bags and other food packaging for sandwiches.
- Save take-away containers to use for leftovers and freezing extra portions.
- Find out which vegetables are in season and grow your own – you only need a windowsill or a few garden pots.
- Buying a take-out coffee everyday for a week could cost as much as £40 a month. In one year you could save £480, now that's what we call making your money go further.
- Join your local library for CD and DVD rental.
- Set a reminder on your phone on the day library books are due back and return or renew them to avoid costly fines.
- Walking and cycling saves money and keeps you fit, why not invest in a second hand bike and save money on buses, taxis and petrol.
- Challenge yourself to spend-free days.
- Check newspapers and magazines for vouchers and discounts.
- Keep a written record of your spending.
- Once you arrive at university, join your local Freecycle or Freegle group. This is a mailing list where local people offer up items they no longer want, for free as long as you agree to collect them.
- Buy used textbooks and make use of the library.
- Make sure your washing machine is full every load so you save on energy bills.
- Invest in energy saving light bulbs.
- It’s often more cost effective to keep the heating on constant, but at a lower temperature.
- Take dated photos to accompany an inventory when you move in to new property.
- Invest in an NUS card and don't be afraid to ask for discounts. On average, students save £500 with the help of an NUS card.
- Use reward cards such as a Boots Advantage card or a Nectar card for those 'invisible' savings.
- Try own brand products such as Boots' paracetamol rather than costly brand names.
- Look for local deals on buses and trains - you might be able to purchase a termly pass.
- When buying train tickets, buy as far in advance as possible. Always check the cost of two single tickets compared to a return.
Banking and finances tips
- Are you claiming all the benefits you are eligible for? Contact our Funds and Finance Advisers to check if you can claim.
- Choose your bank account wisely. Beware of the gimmicks and freebies banks will use to entice students to take out an account with them.
- Check your bank statements regularly through online banking. This will help to track your spending and prevent you going over your limit.
- Try and stick to an agreed amount of cash to take out at the start of the week, and limit how often you use your card.
- If you have an outstanding balance on a credit card, regularly check the financial market to keep up-to-date with the best deals on balance transfers.
- If you withdraw £10 every weekday in term time, you will be withdrawing over £1500 a year. Visualise how that money could be better used to celebrate your achievements instead!