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There’s a lot to take into consideration when starting university and it may be the first time you’re living away from home. A big concern for many students is budgeting, which is why we’ve put together a few handy tips that can help you be financially prepared and enjoy your time at university without money worries getting in the way.

1. Use your NUS Extra Card

One of the biggest perks that comes with being a student is being able to get your hands on a NUS student card. Your student card will entitle you to discounts at a wide range of places including Superdrug, ASOS and a whole lot more. It’s also worth signing up for UNiDAYS for more great deals and even asking when you’re out and about if you can get student discount. You never know where you can make some savings!

2. Shop around

It’s worth exploring around Shrewsbury to see where you can get the best deals. A great place to start is the Market Hall. As well as being conveniently located right by our Mardol House accommodation, it also provides a wealth of local businesses selling delicious fresh food often at a fraction of the price of big supermarkets.

3. Don’t be fooled by big name brands

You may feel like you can’t live without Heinz baked beans, but in reality you often find very little difference between the big name brands and supermarket own brands. Own brands are usually significantly cheaper, so you can save a few pennies and your beans on toast won’t be any less enjoyable for it.

4. Don’t get too many takeaways

We realise that there are lots of great choices for food in Shrewsbury and while a takeaway as a treat every now and then isn’t going to hurt, eating out or getting takeaways too often can soon prove to be very expensive. Some alternative options can be partnering up with flatmates to cook dinner together, freezing leftovers for other days and ensuring you’ve got food at home after nights out so you’ve got a cheaper and healthier option to deal with those munchies than being tempted by the kebab shop!

5. Avoid credit cards

Credit cards may seem like a brilliant idea at first – being able to spend to your heart’s content and not having to worry about paying it off until later. However, you do have to pay it off at some stage and often minimum monthly payments barely cover the cost of interest, leaving you with a balance that is incredibly difficult to clear. A better option is speaking to your bank about what options you have available. They may be able to offer you a student account with benefits or an interest free overdraft to help in those times when money is a bit tight.

 

The important thing to remember is to just be careful and think about your spending. While you need to take money into account at university, it is soon something you’ll easily get to grips with. If you do have any concerns or run into any financial problems, you can always speak to Student Futures for guidance and advice.

If you’re interested in coming to study in Shrewsbury, we still have spaces on courses available through Clearing. Find out more and book onto a Campus Tour here.

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UCS University Centre Shrewsbury New Students Budgeting Money Student Support Student Futures