The UK is quite expensive in terms of education, rent, and other essential amenities. So, while you are nose-deep in your books and preparing for your exams, something important awaits your attention.
As a student, your liabilities increase- like stationery, books, rent, food, and entertainment expenses. And management takes a back seat when on loans without a guarantor direct lender.
Although the situation may be challenging, you can still plan to minimize expenses and meet your unavoidable and important expenses.
How To Save On a Tight Budget and Meet Needs?
Studying at a university is expensive. There are many attractions on how to make one shell out pounds quickly. But when on budget, students need to maintain disciplined expenditures and prioritize savings. Here is how you can actualize it:
1) Analyze your expenses
It is natural to fall into temptation and spend money without tracking monthly expenses. But one can be mindful of so by having a tab on monthly expenses. Make a list of something you buy almost frequently in a month and other things as well.
Add it all up and note down the total expenditure in a month. Then, practice elimination analyze which of these items or subscriptions could be postponed or eliminated to save a sum. Here, one needs to be a critic for managing finance.
2) Make a list of the urgent needs
If you live abroad for studies or this rule works for everyone irrespectively. To avoid a nil balance at the end of the month, it is better to plan expenses. Yes, it is very much possible.
You can do so by making a list of the products based on your previous month’s usage. Analyze which thing you spend the most on. Concentrate on the utilities and how much you spend on them. Could you exercise any discount on these? Thinking that way will help lower your expenses.
3) Watch out for used books
Instead of draining your pocket money on stationary and buying new stuff, like books, you can check out whether you could buy second-hand books. It is because textbooks account for one of the biggest expenses in a student’s life, which could dis-balance the budget. Analyze whether you could borrow the one from the library. And thus, by renting books, you can save a fortune despite other unavoidable liabilities.
4) Save on fuel
Do you have a fancy bike to ride to the college campus? Well, it indeed seems cool, but is it so?
Fuel prices in the UK are all-time high and, on top of all, having a vehicle in a new country is no less than expenses that one would like to avoid at all costs. From maintenance to parking, it could exceed your monthly budget. Therefore, instead of using your vehicle to travel to the university, you can seek public transport.
5) Get a discount on software installation
Nearly every second student in the UK needs a laptop with an updated software version. It ensures a smooth experience and surfing with no technical glitches.
When buying a brand-new laptop, choose someone offering something additional with it–like a free software installation.
It will help you save on software installation costs later. Or if, you are just seeking a software update or new software, research well and choose a reliable vendor offering a student discount. As a matter of consideration, companies like Apple, Microsoft, and Adobe offer whopping discounts to students; you could be in a win-win situation by making a deal there.
6) Plan your meals
Skipping breakfast to grab a bite at the nearby burger joint is not a great idea. Though it is indeed tempting to eat cheesy food every day, it will only dig a hole in your pocket, and all the more can cost you your health.
It means if you aren’t eating your campus meal well, you can explore affordable corners nearby offering delicious yet healthy food. Keep fruit in your college bag to grab a bite if you feel hungry. It will help you remain in good form throughout the day.
Moving out makes it hard to control your cravings, but if you’re full, you won’t miss the pie at all!
7) Have a “no-day” spend day a week
It sounds interesting, right? Well, it is! Guess if you spent – £100 a week, missing a day spending a pound would mean- £80 (approx.) You could save £20 in a day, which means if you continue the same pattern, you could easily save up to £80 a week!
And it is just an example. If you spend over 100 pounds a day, you could indeed save well by the weekend. However, practising self-restraint for that one day will initially seem a task for many, but if you are determined to do so, you will eventually not think about it the whole day. You’ll need to practice resilience to save well and meet your needs hassle-free by the month-end. Isn’t that great?
8) Check out for unbelievable discounts
What if you could grab those packs of sports shoes worth £1500 for just £400?
Will you leave it intact on the shelf or grab it?
Grab it, right?
Yes, you can save well on whopping deals. You just need to search for the same online and in nearby stores. Check out the cheap flights if you plan a trip with your friends. Many travel booking sites are offering the same for some flights.
Check out for affordable accommodation, switch to more affordable broadband offering a whopping deal and package to first-time customers. As a student on a budget, if you practice this, you could save well on certain things that you believe are impossible initially.
9) Don’t pay tuition fees through credit cards
If you have been paying your school or tuition fee through credit cards all this time, it is time to switch to an economical way of doing so.
Instead, you can check out the student allowances you qualify for in the UK. Check how much you can save on school and tuition fees in the same case. You may qualify for the student’s grants, bursaries or funding as well.
Check for the eligibility criteria for the same and know whether your university provides the same. If you do so, you could receive up to 50% of the student allowance; regardless of your financial situation.
You could also consider paying the fee through a check or a bank transfer or contacting a private personal loan lender for the immediate funds with an affordable interest rate.
10) Use overdraft if you over-spend
An overdraft is indeed a life saviour when you hold little in your bank account. An overdraft allows you to withdraw a sum exceeding the total sum from the bank unrestrictedly. Overdraft fees are less likely to apply to student accounts.
A student overdraft can help you meet immediate expenses if you fall back on finances currently and can’t seek help from guardians as well. Apart from this, check out freebies, discounts, and other gift vouchers to limit the usage of overdrafts. As with an overdraft, repay what you borrow within time. You can analyze overdraft usage options and deals online.
So, these are some tips on how students can make the best use of managing expenses well while on a tight budget.
Spending beyond a certain limit can lead to financial difficulties down the road.