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10 saving tips every student needs to know.

Student money saving tips – Being a student in a big city can be difficult, with High prices for food and accommodation, constantly busy streets making travel difficult and being so far away from family can take its toll.

But University is an opportunity that can’t be beaten – the friends you’ll make, the knowledge you’ll gain and the experiences you’ll learn – they’ll last a lifetime.

So make it less of a struggle by taking on board these simple 10 saving tips; from the importance of planning shopping trips to the advantages of sharing with fellow students.

1. Take advantage of exclusive apps and memberships.

If you’ve ever been on Instagram, you’ll have probably come across a targeted ad for UNiDAYS or Students Beans.

A free set of apps for college and university students – they offer anywhere from 10% to a massive 70% off popular brands like Nike and Xbox; as well as discounts off subscription services from Now TV to Apple music. 

If you just can’t get enough of the discounts, another popular paid option is TOTUM (originally NUS extra).

which for £14.99 a year offers exclusive deals on travel, tech, food and fashion. This small investment saves, on average, £500 per membership – great value indeed.

Take advantage of Liverpool’s vast art culture with a YEP membership.

As a student, you can sign up for the free membership scheme to get tickets from as little as £5 at Liverpool’s Playhouse and Everyman theatres.

2. Save on travel.

If moving to uni has meant a change of location, homesickness is a given. Returning home may only be achievable by train – which can be extremely pricey – so take advantage of the 16 to 25 railcard.

This student godsend saves ⅓ off of all travel. The final plus is its price, at only £30 a year, if travel is a weekly or monthly part of uni life.

Don’t miss out!.

If you want to keep your travel around the city quick and get a bit of quick exercise in then look no further than the City Bike student annual membership.

Retailing for £55 per year, many universities in Liverpool offer up to 50% off the bill; granting you access to 100 bike rental stations across Liverpool for just £25.

3. Take a part-time job.

This one should be obvious, student loans are always tight, and there are periods when all you have in your fridge and cupboards are bone dry.

Working part-time might not be very glamorous, but it allows you to take shifts at a time that suits you and your workload while filling out your dwindling cash-flow. 

Part-time jobs are plentiful in Liverpool city centre, with Liverpool one, especially offering quality retail jobs for a student in need

4. Alternatively…

You may not like the idea of serving customers all-day or cleaning toilets.

So, how about working for yourself?

Freelancing has become a viable option for many students, whether it be writing a blog or review for a local newspaper on your chosen subject – if the demand is there!

As well astutoring others over Skype, especially in languages and maths.

Surveys are also useful for a quick payday with minimal hassle and all from the comfort of your bed!

Websites such as Gumtree and Workup have specific Liverpool pages to make finding freelance work even easier!

5. Have an emergency fund for a rainy (or truly bad) day.

When your student loan comes through, and your part-time work has paid off, you may want to splash the cash a little…Don’t, or at least not all of it.

Get in the habit of putting some money aside (not much, maybe £40 or £50 to start) into a savers account.

As the months roll by, slowly add a £10 or £20 here and there.

You’ll soon have built up a safety net for any unexpected bills or last-minute nights out.

Just don’t spend it all at once!

6. Have a meal plan and STICK TO IT!

Liverpool has a wealth of companies that offer pre-planned meals, ranging from 1 to 4 meals a day for 7 days.

Bexley’s and Goodness Grill offer meal plans with health in mind for as little as £40 a week.

But this route can still be on the pricey side, so what should you do?

Grab yourself a little planner and write out every meal you plan to make from scratch or buy.

If you plan effectively, then breakfast, lunch and tea should be a doddle. Which leads us into…

7. Shop for a week, not for a day.

Your meal plan and shopping trip go hand in hand.

It may seem a little overkill to have a plan for something as simple as shopping, but seriously, if you go into a shop unprepared, you’ll buy everything you want, not what you need, and be placed back at square one again.

Enter with the “shop for a week, not for a day” mindset: one list, one trip and one happy wallet.

With the many supermarket options available in Liverpool, and in close to most student accommodation, late-night visits are a better source of reduced stock, better known as whoopies.

Fresh produce and pre-packaged meals will be up to 75% off retail price past 9 pm.

Jump on these prices for a seriously cheap tea or freeze food you don’t want for later.

8. Sharing is caring.

University is a shared experience.

Your flatmates are in the same cash-less situation as you, and as the old saying goes, “sharing is caring”.

Take advantage of your ‘communal’ kitchen and team up to create an evening meal for all. Take these cost-effective examples: 

  • ‘Build your own’ fajitas
  • Stuffed Jacket potatoes
  • Paella 
  • Lasagna

9. Brand new doesn't always mean best.

A majority of subjects require some sort of research in the form of a reading list; this can be very expensive and vast in the number of books expected.

Books are books at the end of the day, and the condition of the cover is frankly unimportant.

Scour the internet for pre-owned copies, Amazon’s used section is usually cheap, and the sellers are sometimes ex-students themselves.

Alternatively, you could visit a local pre-owned book shop in hopes of a deal.

The University of Liverpool’s ‘Pass the Book’ scheme grants new members access to a massive collection of previous student’s hand-ins or reserve copies of the more expensive and popular books at local or University libraries.

This doesn’t just apply to books for studying, look for refurbished or used items you want/need.

You’d be surprised what you can find online and in stores.

10. Reuse and reduce when you can.

Finally, reducing your spending comes from your ability to reuse.

Buy reusable water bottles to cut down on not only plastic waste but weekly costs.

Leftover meals from your communal cooking sessions are an excellent alternative to meal deals and dining out.

Share resources like books and stationery is another cost-effective trick.

It may be a uni staple, but cut down on nights out if you can help it, the money you can save from just one night off the booze is impressive. 

I hope these tips and tricks can prove useful to survive the often hectic, expensive but always fun life of a uni student. What did you think of the tips? Useful? Any tips of your own? Let me know in the comments.

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