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Top 10 Student Money Saving Tips

money saving aberystwythThose of you entering student life in Aberystwyth probably think it’s easy.

A student loan. Borrowed money on borrowed time to cover everything you need.

Well let me tell you, you couldn’t be more wrong! So here’s my money saving tips for Aberystwyth University students.

1. A Bit Of Late Night Shopping:

Whether your living on campus, or in Aberystwyth itself there is always a shop selling good food somewhere nearby. The only problem being, it can be a tad on the expensive side when you’ve got your rent to pay.

Now I knew plenty of people who lived on pot noodles and beans, but it’s not the best stomach liner is it? To be honest, not being a fan of pot noodles, I went for a different approach with regards to food.

Take a closer look at the opening hours at your local shop, and make sure you go there about an hour before they are due to close (unless its a 24 hour store, because you might die waiting!). Find the section which has all the knock down food with those bright yellow “reduced for quick sale” stickers and get as much decent stuff as you can for half the price.

This saved me tons of money so I could have an extra night out here and there, which is obviously worthwhile. I even ate steak and chips for 4 days in a row, at a grand total of £5.

Buy cheap, eat good!

2. Don’t Be A Food Snob:

There’s nothing wrong with liking good quality food.

But you should remember, there is nothing wrong with buying budget brands either. Budget juice, value fruit and veg. Its all good, and it still gets rid of your hunger.

Just it costs much much less!

Its a great way to get something to on the side with your knock down price food you picked up just before closing time!

And don’t be afraid to buy offers in bulk either. I bought 30 microwaveable spaghetti bolognese for £20 because they were 3 for 2, and that was me sorted for a month, discounting bread and milk!

3. Follow The Happy Hours:

The longer your in Aberystwyth, the more you get to know the pubs, clubs and more importantly the cheapest times to drink!

Most of the pubs in Aberystwyth have a happy hour, whether it be one day a week, or every night of the year.

Keep an eye out for details of them when you’re in and around Aberystwyth town centre, and plan your night out accordingly.

The only downside to this plan is when you get to pub number 8, and forget the rest of your route, but by then its probably time to grab a taxi back up the hill anyway.

4. Make Friends With A Car Owner:

Yes, we car owning students might drive some of the most unreliable cars on the planet, but it definately works out cheaper than a taxi when we give you a lift to the supermarket.

In my first 4 months at Aberystwyth, I spent a lot of money carting things up and down the hill like food.

I never had a friend with a car at university who was decent enough to give me a lift when I was in need of one, but a few people did latch on to me when I bought my battered blue punto (see if you can spot an aggrieved looking woman who bought it, struggling round town in the thing…. ). And it was a pretty clever idea that they had, because it saved them so much money on taxi fares and bus tickets!

One tip however. We car owners do not appreciate it when drunk friends ring up at 3am asking to be picked up, along with their ‘fresh’ kebab after a night on the Aberystwyth tiles. Even more so in winter!

5. Do You Really Need Your Whole Reading List:

I’ll be completely honest with you here, I came out of Aberystwyth University with a high 2:1, which I wroked hard for. In that time however, I bought absolutely no books, and made very few trips to the library.

I remember a guy who sat in one of my weekly lectures who spent £360 A TERM on books for his business studies degree. Now that is a huge chunk of money that you could do with just to survive, never mind enjoy yourself.

When doing coursework, I was able to get a sufficient number of references just by using the free university tools available, which give you access to online research papers. Then just use the Adobe PDF search function to find the argument you need! Its saves you time and money.

And if you really can’t find what you need, then there are plenty of books in the Aberystwyth University libraries for you to go through instead.

6.To Print Or Not To Print:

It might be convenient to print everything from your own printer, in your nice warm room in the middle of winter, but is it cost effective?

The printers are 5 pence a sheet at Aberystwyth University, which is pretty good value. Compared to the price of ink cartridges, and the number of pages they can print, it works out pretty expensive!

At the university you can print 100 pages for £5 (black and white).

And Lexmark cartridges always give you a bad quality print when they get down to the last 1/3 of ink.

7. TV Licence? No Thanks:

Like most people, I don’t mind a bit of television now and then.

But a television licence is an expense I could have done without. So to get round it, make use of online catch up services like 4OD and ITV Catch Up so that you can watch your favourite programmes for absolutely nothing.

The web is also a great place for watching thousands of films and television shows, using sites like this. And if you’re wondering about streaming speeds, the internet on campus is lightning fast so things load in minutes, not hours!

8. Give To Charity:

Not quite giving your money away for nothing. To be honest, that would leave you worse off wouldn’t it?

But when you need something, a shirt or some jeans, don’t forget to check out the Aberystwyth charity shops!

You can get some great things at a fraction of the price, and still look good in the process!

9. Phone Or Internet?

Mobile phones and broadband internet are expensive things to have.

But you’ll probably find that you need them both, to keep in touch with friends and family, and to keep you occupied in your private accommodation in the 2nd and 3rd years of university.

So why not slash your costs by getting a phone package with free unlimited internet included? I pay £15 a month for 300 minutes, 300 texts and unlimited internet with T-Mobile, and I can use the internet through my laptop!

The speed isn’t as good as a dedicated boradband service, but it saves me £20 a month (plus the extra £11.75 line rental) which works out pretty well for me!

10. Heating? Who Needs It:

Winter is cold wherever you go in the UK, and Aberystwyth is no exception to the rule.

But with heating bills going up and up, you can’t really afford to be turning your radiators on full blast (unless your parents are very nice people) can you?

So why not swap the radiator for the wardrobe and stick on a jumper? I used to wear two lots of socks (dirty ones on the outside – it saved on washing bills) and a hoodie in the winter, and keep my shoes on.

It might make me look like a tight arse, but that’d be the Yorkshire in me I suppose……

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