With university or college beckoning for a number of young people across the UK it is an exciting, but apprehensive time. It is a big step – not only in terms of education – but moving away from home, and the new responsibilities that come with it.
Students now have to be more self-dependent than ever- with the increase in fees due to cuts in student loans and bursaries. With that in mind it’s important to be spending savvy.
Student loans tend to come in at 3 monthly intervals-which may seem great the 1st month- but not so much towards the end of month 3! Creating an accurate weekly budget can be a simple, but effective way to keep you on track of your finances. (If you stick to it of course!) Try this budget calculator to get you going:
With Change Account Wallets you can actually put money aside- that you cant access with your Prepaid Debit MasterCard® – this could really assist you if you have a habit of ‘misspending’ See www.thechangeaccount.com/what-is-a-wallet
Many students take out a ‘student bank account’ offering interest free overdrafts. These can be useful, but remember to consider how much you have to pay back afterwards- along with a hefty student loan.
Another thing to consider with student accounts are that bounced payments or unauthorised overdrafts can actually damage your credit rating for the future. Always check the charges you may incur before applying for a bank account or credit card.
- Apply for a NUS card from £12 to get discounts on shops and entertainment https://cards.nusextra.co.uk
- Look for part time bar work, shop work or waitressing http://www.jobsite.co.uk or http://www.savethestudent.org/part-time-student-jobs
- Look for jobs within your university – from admin, to tour guide roles they can be great to fit around your studies.
- Remember to check if you can use your student card when making a purchase. Many high street shops, cinemas and even gyms offer substantial discount- just simply show your university or college card! Additionally check out https://www.studentbeans.com
- Making large quantities of meals and freezing them can be more cost effective when cooking for one. Check out http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/student for cheap recipe ideas
- Look into getting a rail card if you will be travelling back home by train. Save up to a third with a Young Persons rail card http://www.railcard.co.uk
- Buy tickets in advance for events and share taxi journeys with as many friends as possible to split the fare!
The most important thing of all is ENJOY every minute!
Stay safe and good luck.