33 Creative Ways for Students to Save Money

March 14th, 2013 - Posted by in Blog, Saving Money

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Creative money saving ideas for students

Being a student usually means being broke. It’s no fun. But, the hard part isn’t not having money to do the things you want, it’s having the credit to do them – and avoid using it so you don’t pay more than you should in the end.

But you don’t have to rack up debt just because you’re a student. This is an excellent time in your life to put away cash for the things you’ll want later. And your spending habits now will help give you a good footing for later in life.

33 Creative Ways to Save Money as a Student

Split your housing with flatmates – Housing isn’t cheap, but if you can work out a plan with some friends, you can reduce the costs dramatically – putting more pounds where it counts. Try using Accommodations for Students to find housemates.

Cook at home – No, you didn’t want to hear that, I know. But it’s proven to be the best way to save on your food bill. Limit your grocery bill and buy nutrition dense foods that will keep you full and focused like lentils, eggs, and chicken and you’ll spend less on groceries than most.

Carry your NUS card  – Your NUS card is your best friend. Invest in it and carry it everywhere you go. You’ll reap discounts on purchases, food, and entertainment – meaning the card will more than pay for itself quickly.

Learn how to haggle – Haggling isn’t only for cars. If you’re a Happier consumer, you’ll know how to talk down your data and phone bills, too. And if you’re good at it, you can get prices dropped as much as 50% on many products and services you buy and use!

Take a job at the places you love to shop – Love the styles at H&M? Then work there! You’ll get discounts on new fashions and deeper discounts on sale items.

Load up before you go out – Sound boring? Play a few drinking games at home before you hit the pubs to continue your night of fun out.

Look for cheap entertainment – The UK is wrought with history and has loads of places for free entertainment like museums and galleries to save you money and get you out of your house.

Shop for the best bank rates on overdraft – The biggest banks don’t always have the cheapest overdraft rates. Shop around for 0% on your overdraft and you could literally save hundreds of pounds.

Don’t use your overdraft – After you’ve shopped for the best rates, don’t use your overdraft. Learn how to live with what you have. And ask yourself if what you’re about to use your overdraft is worth the debt you’ll rack.

Budget like a boss – Budgets are the best way to know what you have and what you need. Learn how to keep tabs of what monies you have and what you need to spend and have spent.

Use earn as you shop sites like TopCashback  – Cashback sites loads of ways to earn: from buying groceries to internet. Use it for everything you buy and rack up the pounds.

Limit your non-essential spending – Yes, that means booze, too. If you can live without it, don’t spend on it.

Shop thrift shops – Shop second hand, vintage, and thrift stores for finds that will help you look your best without breaking the bank.Check out these top flea market, antiques and thrift stores from Tripadvisor.

Use used textbooks – Textbooks are outrageous. It’s almost a crime how expensive they’ve gotten! But you’re savvier, so you’re going to hit these websites and get them cheaper – may be even free! (Talk about saving!) These three sites offer used textbooks: Abe Books, Js Campus, Sell Student Stuff. And these two offer free textbooks: Bookmooch or ReadItSwapIt.

Hook up with Freecycle  – If you don’t Freecycle, you’re filling the dumps with goods people can use plus you can find free things like laptops and more!

Drop the temperature – Sounds silly, right? But you can save as much as £40 per year or more on your power bill if you lower your temperature by one degree.

Take up insurance on the things your parents’ policy doesn’t cover – With the theft rate in University, you’ll save on replacing your expensive gear like your laptop or computer if you spend a little on insurance for the things your parents don’t cover. For example, instead of paying thousands of dollars for a replacement laptop, you could spend as little as  £200 – if you have the right policy in place.

Take a job that will cover your education or get an apprenticeship – Apply for positions within your field with companies that will cover the cost of your University studies or take a paid apprenticeship to help pay for them yourself.

Apply for a Maintenance Grant – For families with incomes under  £42,600 may be eligible – If your family qualifies, you could earn a Maintenance Grant to cover much of the costs of your education.

Get a National Rail card  – You’re a student; you’re going to want to travel. Invest in a travel card and you can save as much as 1/3 off of your train tickets to go see friends.

Search for other scholarships – Look for scholarships that will pay for all or part of your education for you.

Use coupons and vouchers  – Who can forget coupons and vouchers? You know you have a smartphone that you don’t yet need, so at least use it to hep you pay for it. Put voucher apps on there to help you save on the things you buy while you’re out and you don’t have to worry about keeping up with printed ones. Don’t have a smartphone? Then, use traditional coupons.

Forego the smartphone – Okay, you don’t have to have a smartphone for coupons and vouchers. You don’t technically have to have a smartphone at all. So if you can’t economically justify it, skip it in favor of saving for the future.

Invest in a good printer – In University, you’re going to spend wasted time and money having your own printer. But, you’ll still have to buy ink, so invest in a printer that is the cheapest, like a Kodak.

Get fit at home – Skip the gym…unless you’re going to the Uni gym for free. Otherwise, get fit at home and save the monthly membership, the expensive sneakers, and the special gym clothes. Zuzka Light is an inspiring trainer who will keep you motivated to get her workouts done at home…and they’re not just for girls!

Sooqini – A marriage of eBay and Gumtree, allowing you to sell your time and your services to earn money. Have time to walk pets and earn extra money? Who knows, you may even end running up a business that makes enough money to fund more than your weekend parties.

Turn your car in to an advert – Earn up to £60 per month by letting Uni Car place ads on and remove ads from your car to help you pay for things you have to have as a student or to help you stash more pounds for the future.

Become a Mystery Shopper  – If you love shopping, why not get paid to do it? Use the money you earn to pad your savings account or use the perks to help you get things you already need while you mystery shop.

Skip the TV – You’re a busy student, do you really need to foot the bill for TV, too? With the internet and sites like Hulu, you can save that extra bill every month, without missing out on the latest flicks.

Skip the branded grocery goods – Love the taste of Hovis’ Classic White bread? What about switching to Tesco’s brand? Dropping down from the branded items has been proven to save £1000s on your groceries each year.

Plan your meals before you shop – Yeah, yeah. I know you’re too buy for that! It’s okay! There’s an app for it. If you’re hopping on the No Smartphone bandwagon, there’s a website for it, too. These tools will help you plan your meals and shop for the ingredients so you buy what you need and no more – and that equals savings.

Split your train ticket  – You remember that travel card you invested in? Use it to buy split tickets to maximize your savings on your trips throughout UK.

Use the Wi-Fi at Uni or elsewhere – Why pay for your own Wi-Fi? Sip your favorite latte at your favorite cafe or sit in the student lounges and use the Wi-Fi at your Uni. If you’ve had to pay for data or an internet plan, you know how much this can save already!

There you go…take all these tips, put them into play as soon as possible and watch your bank account grow. But more importantly, set yourself up for a lifetime of success when establish these good saving habits now.

What are your best money saving tips for students?


  • http://www.clubthrifty.com Holly@ClubThrifty

    Lots of great tips~!

    • Julian Hearn

      Many thanks Holly.

      PS. Love your blog :)


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