5 University budget hacks for saving money

5 money saving tips for university students

All A-level students have received their results and are excited about starting university in the Autumn. However, with this new stage in life, being smart with your money is essential; especially as your first student loan payments begin to appear. Here are five money-saving tips for university students.

Make a budget.

Making a budget is the best place to start. Then you can see if you’re overspending or have money to spare.

Begin by calculating your income: your loan, bursaries, grants, anything from Mum and Dad’s bank, and any part-time work you have.

Then make a list of all your regular expenses, such as rent, phone, broadband, and subscriptions. Don’t forget to budget for food and any unexpected expenses, such as course books and clothing.

You can spend whatever money is left over.

Download a finance app and save money.

The next step is to stick to that budget, which can be more difficult than it sounds.

The tried-and-true method is to only take cash with you when you go shopping or to the student bar. However, in an increasingly cashless society, this is not always feasible. Plus, with most of our purchases online and via a subscription you need a payment card and an app that has your back.

Using a good finance app has two advantages. To begin with, you have clear visibility of your expenses and you can budget properly from the get-go.

Second, even when you budget, extra protection is needed when you hand over card details to merchants. Unexpected charges and the stresses around this can affect any well-planned budget.

Subscribed to more than one streaming or cloud service and looking for a way to manage them without drowning in the stress of remembering payment dates, free trials etc? Check out our ScribePay app that helps you track and manage all your subscription payments, while Premium users can get an instant bank account (UK) and virtual prepaid card (UK) to approve/decline payments on the fly.

The ScribePay App and Virtual Prepaid Card
The ScribePay App and Virtual Prepaid Card

Make good use of your overdraft.

Banks understand that once you open an account with them, you’re likely to stay for good. That is why they go out of their way to attract students.

They’ll entice you with a large free overdraft. Accept it. However, it should only be used as a buffer. £0 is still £0; you just have some wiggle room when you need it.

The most common error is to regard it as free money. That may work while you’re studying, but it won’t appear as liberating once you’ve graduated.


Manage your subscriptions from one app.

Say goodbye to forgotten missed trials, missed payments and unwanted charges.

subscription management

Manage your subscriptions from one app.

Say goodbye to forgotten missed trials, missed payments and unwanted charges.

Look for student discounts.

Student discounts are available everywhere. Begin by obtaining a student card, which grants you access to thousands of discounts on everything from food and clothing to beauty products and college necessities.

When you get to the till, don’t be afraid to ask if a store offers a student discount. Even if it isn’t advertised, they frequently have a student discount policy. Often, you only need to show your regular student ID.

Don’t forget about your educational tools. Computers and software are frequently available at steep discounts for students. If you want to become a better photographer or musician, now is the time to invest in the latest software.

Purchase a 16-25 railcard to save money

UK Rail Cards
Uk Rail Cards

If you’re going home for the holidays or visiting friends at other universities, get a train pass.

Railcard 16-25. It costs £30 per year but saves you a third on most journeys. Purchase for 3 years at £70 and save (£20).

You can also take your friends and family with you and they also save. With your railcard you can take up to three adults with you and they save up to 1/3 off their rail ticket. Plus, Plus, you can take up to four children (aged 5 to 15) and save 60% on the child fare.

Help us save you hundreds of pounds every year in unwanted subscription payments

Download the ScribePay app on iOS or Android and join people from all over the UK that have taken control of their subscriptions.