When you think of being a student, you immediately imagine huge debts, eating cold beans out of a can and being freezing.
But this doesn’t have to be the case, if you’re smart with your money, budget and don’t splurge, then you can be a savvy student.
Take advantage of student discounts
From NUS discount cards to discounted cinema tickets, there are a whole host of benefits to being a student.
Now, you may have to pay upfront for any discount cards such as an NUS card or a yearlong railcard.
But other organisations such as UNIDAYS and overall student discount is free, you may just need to prove you’re in higher education.
Make the most of a student account
Student bank accounts come with a whole host of benefits, such as free overdrafts which increase over years 1-3 and insurance cover. Before you commit to anything have a look at what different banks are offering and check comparison sites for the best, up to date rates on offer.
Apply for Council Tax Exemption
Did you know that as a student, you’re exempt from paying council tax, this could save you around 100 a month and all you have to do is prove you’re in higher education.
This is a fantastic way to save money and can be used for the duration of your time studying, so well worth knowing.
Live on Budgets
Budgeting is vitally important when you’re a student, this not only helps with your current situation where money may be a little tight but also prepares you for the future and life after education.
The key to budgeting is working out all of your incomings including student loans, bursaries and any salaries and then working out your weekly or monthly outgoings. From this, you’ll be able to budget and give yourself X amount to live off each week.
You will need to take into account rent, bills and any budget for books or educational material.
See if You’re Eligible for a Bursary
Bursaries are available to anyone from the ages of 17-19 and are given by the government to help with education-related costs. Choose what you spend it on, clothes, books, transport, lunch or a new laptop.
Many people are eligible, they just don’t know so head to the government website to see if you meet the criteria and apply. It will take 10 minutes and may give you an extra 1200 a year!
Get a Part Time Job
Of course, the best way to keep on top of your finances is to get a part-time job to support your everyday life and help you out. You don’t need to get a full-time job, just what time you can afford without disrupting your studies. There are babysitter jobs that you could start with to make optimal use of your time. More often than not, you can take on the job in shifts, which can leave time for you to manage your own tasks and personal life.
Similarly, many students opt for restaurant, retail or bar work as these industries offer flexibility in hours including weekends and evenings. These profiles do not require too many skills to fulfill the job requirements and the pay is reasonable for the hours you put in. Some even enroll in au-pair agencies similar to Go Au Pair, to learn the language of the host families while earning some extra cash on the side by taking care of menial childcare duties at home.
So there you have a few ways you can become a student savvy student, are you a student? Let us know how you are managing your finances by getting in touch.