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Articles > Money July, 07, 2022

Tips for saving money as an international student

Krish Kedia
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5.40 / 10

In this article, I’m going to outline some things to think about as an international student coming to the UK. Based on experience, here are the things you should do and keep in mind. Let me know in the comments below if there are any more!

Make sure your finances are organised!

Coming over to the UK as a student, you will need to open a UK bank account. One thing I’ve learnt is that a normal savings bank account has a low interest pay out. On top of this, with all the money freely available to use, it can be very easy to overspend. I set a target of always having £35 each week left in my bank account at a minimum, adding up to £140 over the month. This is a good buffer should you ever need it on a rainy day. from the huge interests on your educational loans. The main point here is that you need the infrastructure in place to be able to save and spend.

Studying and sightseeing can be balanced!

It is easy to move to a different country and be overwhelmed with all the new things to see and do. Remember that a lot of things are going to cost money so be sure to not go too crazy with the spending in these aspects. In some bigger cities, things can be incredibly expensive, but a bit of research and you’ll find that so many fun things can be done on a budget too.

Get loyalty cards for stores you frequently go to

Maintaining a proper diet is one thing that most students sacrifice on because of other expenditures. Above a lot of things, you need food! With the cost of living increasing and other expenditures pulling on your student loan, saving money on food will always be helpful. Sign up to membership/loyalty cards of brands you use a lot, especially since the majority of them will be free to join. See this list for a good range of ones to try. At the moment the Tesco Clubcard is great and means you can access a lower price in store!

Keep an eye out for earning opportunities

Now what is better than earning some extra money with little effort? There are several survey sites and websites that offer you money for doing surveys and taking part in research, such as here on The OpinionPanel! Universities often have opportunities to take part in research such as focus groups, which can be a great little cash boost.

Another working opportunities is contract work

As an international student, you are eligible to work 20hrs/ week in your term period, so use it if you can! At a minimum wage rate of £10/ hour, you can make a great amount during your free time. As long as you are careful to balance work and social time and not get overwhelmed, working a small amount is perfect. The best places to apply would be fast food joints like McDonalds and supermarkets like Tesco. These places maintain a good and steady pay while providing you one of the best work environments and employee support.

Choosing the best accommodation is important

It’s a common myth that living with the most people is cheaper, more sociable, and overall better. While this may be the case in some instances, there are also some contradicting points. Maybe I’m a pessimist! It is important to remember that the bigger the flat, the higher the usage cost of amenities, and also more people to potentially clash with! You could find cheaper accommodation when you live in a smaller flat with lesser people. This is especially important for International Students as most of them find it tough to get the best prices on the accommodation.

I hope all these strategies help you in saving an adequate amount for all your spending and loan payments. Please remember, that most education loans have their repayments starting within 6 months of your graduation. Following these strategies ensures that you have enough in your bank. Therefore alleviating the burden of repayments from the first day of your job. As well as demands throughout your study.

If you are a student, tell us your tips for saving money! Share your ideas with other students in the comments section below 😀

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