How can I save money?

Being a student can be a bit expensive, we’ve got a few tips and tricks to help you look after your pounds. 

Discounts

  • Buy a NUS Totum Card; you can get over 200 UK discounts and up to 42,000 international discounts.

  • Sign up to the free discount sites, Unidays or Student Beans for more discounts. 

  • Shops often have student discounts available, so try using your student card at the till.

Food

  • Spending a couple of pounds here and there adds up, so why not try bringing your own food and hot drinks into Uni. 

  • Bring your own tea and coffee into university with you, with your own flask or reusable cup. You can also buy a KeepCup from all of the Uni cafes on campus, where you can save 20p off your hot drink every time you reuse it.

  • Write a list and do your food shop in big supermarkets like Morrisons or Aldi rather than your local shop, and buy own-brand products. 

  • Team up with the rest of your house to buy food and drink in bulk and cook together.

Bills

  • Check your internet service provider deal doesn't include bills for a landline, try to stick to a WiFi-only contract. Have a look on Money Saving Expert to see the latest WiFi-only deals available. 

  • For mobile contracts, contact your provider or have a look around at the cheapest contracts; Giffgaff, Carphone Warehouse or Money Saving Expert are good places to start.

  • Ringing someone abroad? Try using Whatsapp, Skype, Facetime or Facebook Messenger, which all let you ring using WiFi.

  • Phone or contents insurance can be a worry, but Money Saving Expert has got some great deals. Also check your housing contract as some include contents insurance for your home. Check out the free Immobilise property register website to register your belongings on a police database, helping to improve the chances of getting your items back if they are lost or stolen. 

  • Pick the cheapest gas and electricity provider, have a look here for some help. With gas and electricity bills, choose a fixed contract over a variable one as the prices are fixed for the duration of the contract, stopping any price increases by the companies.

  • Choose a tariff with a smart meter or opt-in for one with your energy provider, it allows you to monitor your usage and makes it easier to manage your finances.

  • To keep utility costs down, turn off lights when you leave rooms, put on a jumper and close the curtains rather than turning up the heating and don’t leave the fridge door open. If you are on a water meter, you can also get free water saving kits from Yorkshire Water to reduce your water usage.

Transport 

  • Instead of taking a taxi or bus, why not walk or cycle to Uni or town.

  • Show your student card to any First Bus driver to get to Uni for £1.20. Also consider downloading the First Bus app to get cheaper fares and check out their student bus passes here.

  • For trains, get yourself a 16-25 Railcard or 26-30 Railcard to save a third off your ticket.

Entertainment 

  • Try out some of the Give It A Go activities run by LUU. There are a wide variety of free events throughout the year, so check the calendar regularly to see what's going on.

  • Instead of going out, why not try having a night in? You could host a pot-luck dinner, where everyone brings a food dish to share, or watch a film or play a board game with some friends at home.

  • When going out, make sure to budget your night. Try not to overspend by buying other people drinks outside of your budget and make sure you have enough money for a taxi home. If you are going out in the Union, you can also take the LUU Nightbus from the Union to your door for only £1.  The service runs during term-time from 6pm every evening until late to make sure you get home safe.

Other tips

  • During your course, your lecturers may advise you to buy essential reading books. To save money from buying them new from bookshops, why not borrow them from the library or ask older students if they would be willing to lend their books out. If you need to buy the book, you can often find them secondhand online or why not ask a course mate to split the cost and share it. 

  • Are you an impulse buyer when it comes to clothes? Write yourself a list of items you want before you go and stick to it. Leeds is also great for charity shops, especially in areas like Headingley, so go and explore to find some bargains.

  • Finding furniture for your new house can be expensive, but LUU and local communities have partnered up to create Leeds Leave Tidy free shops, where you can get furniture for free. Check our website for when they are on throughout the year.

  • Choose a bank carefully, avoid credit cards and overdrafts with interest charges. Many banks provide student accounts, so search around for the best deals.



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