Top tips on managing your money

Starting university’s an exciting part of your life, and you’ll probably be taking control of your money for the first time. Books, stationery, food and drink can all add up. So how do you make the most of student life, while also looking after your bank account? We asked our students for their best advice.

“Making a budget is great, but sitting down and thinking about what you want to spend money on is also important.”

Annabel Palmer Robinson, Social Policy

“I do one big food shop for about two weeks. And I plan my meals so I don’t have to buy food during the week, because that’s a very expensive habit. Be aware of where you’re spending your money – if you’re constantly buying coffees, that adds up. Try to get cheap clothes for socials from charity shops.”

Josie Kassapian, Architecture

“I always use a spreadsheet – to plan out everything and see where I’m spending the most money and where I can cut down. My mum taught me how to do that. When I’m shopping, if I’m looking at something, I always check student deal websites as well to see if they’ve got deals on it. Getting take-out every day is not going to work – that’s going to cost a load of money. So you need to learn to cook as well.”

Catriona Eade, Digital Arts

“Be environmentally conscious – use a reusable cup or flask from home to save money on buying coffee on campus.”

Ellie Barrett, Digital Arts with a Year in Industry

“See what your outgoings are, and budget. Work out your fixed outgoings – rent, phone bill and a rough estimate of what your food shop. Make sure that you leave money for treating yourself, for going out. I have a card that’s just for spending only – I transfer money to myself every week and that’s my money for the week. Some people take out a certain amount of cash every week and that’s all they allow themselves to spend. ”

Ayo Rajitola, Computer Systems Engineering