Whilst at university you may find yourself tight on both money and time, so here are some tips I have picked up over the last 3 years.
Often, moving to university is the first time many students have the responsibility of paying bills and living independently, making budgeting very important. One technique I use is, when my student loan comes in, I make sure to pay my household bills for the month, then divide the remaining amount into the amount of weeks in the term giving me a weekly budget. This ensures that I don’t come to the end of the term without any money. To help your budget stretch further getting a part time job is the obvious choice if you want to stretch your budget a bit further.
Student banks accounts and Railcards
One thing I did when starting at university was set up a student bank account. Each bank gives different benefits so it’s worth comparing. However, the greatest benefit I found was getting a railcard whilst at university, which means getting a third off rail travel. The biggest advantage of which is that I was able to visit my university friends at home.
Exploring the local area will help to save money too, with the local market offering good deals on fruit, veg and meat. I found this with local butchers where you can bulk buy meat for a fair price and then freeze it in individual portions ready for when you need it. This works out much cheaper than buying per meal from a supermarket.
I don’t want to know how much I have spent on meal deals over my time at university. Recently, I have started to pack my own lunches up, which takes some forward planning and has helped me save lots of money.
Using a slow cooker
One pot meals are a saviour for a busy student, so a slow cooker is a useful investment. Getting up 10 minutes earlier is worth coming back to a good home cooked meal any-day. Here is one of my favourite recipes:
You will need:
- Pork or braising steak
- Tablespoon plain flour
- Salt and Pepper
- Worcestershire sauce
- Gravy granules
- New Potatoes
- Mixed Vegetables
- Coat the meat in flour and brown off on the hob in a drop of oil, seasoning with salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce for seasoning.
- Transfer meat to slow cooker, mix gravy granules and cover.
- Prepare potatoes and vegetables of choice and add to the slow cooker, cooking on low for around 8 hours.
Make the most of being a student by making sure to ask for student discount. Many high street shops, cinemas and restaurants offer student discount so it’s worth keeping student card handy to help your money stretch further.
I hope these few tips will be useful and make life that little bit easier.