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5 ways students can save money this semester

The term is about to start and so we start to feel the pinch to our wallets that is College. The average UK student spends £735 a month on living expenses and that goes up significantly in many cities such as Oxbridge and London. Plus there is the cost of tuition to factor in. I've previously written about not taking out more student loan than you need and one of the ways you can help this work is by using money saving techniques to allow the money you have borrowed to go further. 

Use free transport
Consider walking or cycling to class or if you live in a city with free pubic transport use it rather than driving. Driving to school, unless your commuting from home is usually unnecessary and costs you in both fuel and in parking (parking at my College is £400 a year!!). Plus the benefits of walking or cycling everyday to your health are great. If your going to use public transport you have to pay for try to buy a season ticket as this significantly reduces the price.

Get textbooks on the cheap
Consider buying your textbooks secondhand, often the best way to do this is if your faculty has an annual book sale. Other options are to look on amazon and eBay. Don't forget you can also use options to sell you text books. You may also want to consider renting your text books, Amazon Book Renting is a great option. Or consider working as a book reviewer for a large univeristy book press for the chance to get free textbooks that are new.

Keep the dorm low cost
There is the temptation to want to buy everything brand new for your dorm but there are a lot of thing you can cut back on. Firstly there are plenty of items that you probably already have i.e bedding and that you can bring with you. Keep an eye out at yard sales for cheap pots and pans and kitchen items as though used you can pick up higher quality items for a lower price than shops like WalMart.

Keep fitness free
We've already mentioned how great walking/cycling everyday is for fitness and there are lot of free or almost free fitness options at college that are so much cheaper than a gym membership. In Brighton it is only a £1 to swim as a student and so I love to use this option (plus I get a free shower after so I save on water at home). There are also a number of outdoor gyms which offer similar equipment for absolutely no cost. There are also lost of societies on campus for sports which offer free or very low cost training. One of the most popular at my college is the walking society where they organise regular walks and hikes in the surrounding area. There are also shops such as Sweatshop which organise free running classes. 

Skip the meal plan
It it generally cheap and healthier to cook your own food rather than living in catered halls. This way you only pay for food you eat not the meals you miss. This is especially the case if you eat out a lot as if your on a meal plan and you eat out you are essentially paying twice for one meal. Cooking your own gives you the opportunity to cook more budget friendly meals and if your looking for convenience then consider bulk cooking and taking advantage of your freezer.

How did you save money whilst in college?


  1. Brilliant tips! Text books cost a fortune (I spent $400+ in one semester last year!) and renting them can save so much money if you know you won't use them again. It really is much cheaper to cook at home too. It saves crazy amounts of money.

    Rachael at

  2. I definitely walked everywhere when I was in college. I specifically found a place to live so that I could. I'd also recommend checking to see if splitting an apartment is cheaper than living on campus.