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August, 29, 2013

5 Ways To Save Money For Uni


Name: Sophie Bichener
Member of: Student Panellist
Joined: Dec 2010
Sophie's Full Profile

Going to university can be an expensive experience. However, there are (at least) five things you can do to help ease the pain and save money.

1. Don’t buy every book on the reading list.


Photo by Madolan Greene

In the first few months course fees can rack up. As a Fresher you feel buying the course text books is a compulsory part of your degree. However, with the right knowledge and understanding these large costs can definitely be avoided.

Although your course wants to provide a reading list with text books written even in the year you’re studying, this can be extremely expensive. However, they can be found in the library. They will be in high demand but as long as you’re smart and get in there quickly you wont have to buy a text book again.

In addition to this, many older text book readily available online; supplied by graduates who are desperate to make some of their money back from their old books. A brilliant website I was recommended was If the book you need isn’t on here it may be useful to look at your university or course groups through a Facebook search.

2. Don’t buy everything new!


Photo by André van Rooyen

Opening the brown envelope and finding out you have got the grades you need to secure your university place is hugely exciting. One of the first things I did was drive to Matalan and stock pile ironing boards, a 10 plate set, mugs, a kettle and all sorts of cleaning equipment. However, upon arriving at university we quickly discovered that we wouldn’t need 6 ironing boards, 30 plates or even 7 bottles of ketchup. If you wait until you arrive at university, not only will you find you probably have almost everything you need between you, you can club together to buy anything you need on top of this.

3. Stockpile food.


Photo by zenilorac

Over the summer, keeping an eye out for any deals in supermarkets will help with early costs. Unless you’re catered, having a stock of food such as soup, noodles, pasta and other ‘usually found in the cupboard’ goods, can be an effective money saving tool.

Learning to cook efficiently either alone or as a group with your new house mates is essential. There are lots of good student cook books and blogs around and if you pick one up you can learn how to eat on a budget whilst ensuring you’re getting your five a day! (and you’ll keep your beady eyed mother happy by showing you’re at least planning to “eat properly”).

4. Sign up to it all.


Photo by thebarrowboy

There are many companies out there who are willing to help students out in the money department. If you sign up for a student account with Natwest you not only receive an interest free overdraft of up to £2,000, but a 16-25 railcard which significantly decreases the price of rail fares: making the trip home at Christmas a lot cheaper. NUS also provide a card which allows students who sign up various discounts in certain clothes and food shops.

In addition to these well known companies there are other ways you can grab a bargain whilst at university. Most clothes shops allow you to get a discount online by registering with your university or through Unidays.

5. Know your stuff.


Photo by @Doug88888

Little tips and tricks about student living can help you save a lot of money. For example, finding the cheapest but most comprehensive insurance for all of your student essentials such as a laptop, TV or phone can save you buckets full. This means looking around and doing your research. It’s even worth getting you parent’s to check their home insurance policy as it may cover valuable items away from home. I’ve found the best website providing advice on financial tips for students is Money Saving Expert.


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  1. Anita Klich

    First of all: cook for yourself. I can spend a lot of money on Starbucks and restaurants… And it’s much cheaper and more healthy to cook something on my own.

  2. John Wadeson

    If it is food that can be stock piled jsut keep it in your room as it wont go out of date for a while so only you have access to it.

    Also if you are buying books look at second hand books on Amazon

  3. Saarah Ibrahim

    Excellent article! Martin Lewis Money Saving Guide is very useful ! Especially the one on student finance

  4. Charlotte Flanders

    Good article.
    I’d better hope no one nicks my food when I get some. If they do, I’m willing to take matters into my own hands. hehehe

  5. Anna Currington

    It’s all very well to stockpile food, but the real question is how to keep other people from eating it!

    Here’s a question, is it worth getting a mini fridge and keeping it in your room? and does uni campus accommodation even allow that?

  6. Jade Harvey

    Does anyone think it is outrageous that universities demand deposits of 100s of pounds with as little of 2 weeks notice. I have recently got my tenancy agreement, although I knew id have to pay a deposit. I am expected to pay £250 by the 19th of feb!!

  7. Charlotte Wilson

    This is amazing advice for people worried about the expenses of university!

  8. deonne kendall

    good advice! I was worried about the price of book’s so I will deffo note that website down thanks

  9. Jacob Brooks

    Taking as much advice as I can get at the moment :) thanks.

  10. Riana Juma

    I can’t wait to go to university. The tips are very helpful. Thanks

  11. Rebecca Jones

    Really looking forward to going to uni, but as I’m pretty poor already these tips will be a great help! Thanks

  12. Lena Adams

    Thanks a lot for the advice! will come in handy when I start in September :)

  13. Alyssa Dean

    Cheers, this will help.

  14. ANIEKA

    my sister an brother do the stockpile food….. where they are studying is really expensive so every time they come home they pile food up…. great way to save money and spend on other things and not go broke or go hungry

  15. Ruth Adu-Boahen

    This really helped me alot

  16. Zainab Zaim

    Great info (Y)