For any student the topic of finances is always going to be a sticky issue, however for the international student, who travels to a previously unvisited land, the issue of money can become a whole lot more unpredictable. In a bid to take the guesswork out of budgeting and make the most of the international studying experience, here we’ve put together 10 tips for saving money whilst enjoying what London has to offer.
1. Be travel wise and invest in an Oyster card
London is home to one of the most sophisticated transportation networks in the world, and with more traffic than any other city within the UK the smart choice is to travel by bus, tram, tube and rail – all of which can be used when you purchase an Oyster travel card.
2. Look out for student discount deals
London is awash with student discount deals, from 10% off in your local deli, to cut price rates for clothes. Just look out for signs whilst shopping.
3. Make the most of Famers’ Markets
Farmers’ Markets provide for a true authentic English experience, as well as deals upon fruit, veg and meat that usually beat the local supermarket for both taste and price points.
4. Take a midnight trip to the local supermarket
Local supermarkets mark down the stock that’s approaching its sell by date each night, and taking a late night trip can pay serious dividends for discounted groceries.
5. Visit a charity shop or two
Charity shops are far from retail outlets full of outdated, moth eaten clothing, and England is experiencing a retro revolution in terms of fashion, so you can be both stylish and financially savvy in one swift move.
6. Forget about phone charges with Skype
Once upon a time the international student faced extortionate charges for touching base with home. Luckily services such as Skype mean that international calls are now completely free from charge.
7. Look forward to an entire year of seasonal sales
England is home to drastically differing seasons, and retailers have to discount heavily to shift on seasonal stock. Good news for the savvy shopper with an eye for a bargain.
8. Eat in every now and then
Despite London being home to almost every cuisine in the world, as well as more than a far share of Michelin starred restaurants, eating out or taking away can add up to some serious cash flow issues over time. So choose to eat in every now and then and save your wallet some cash (as well as your waistline an inch or two).
9. Get cashback on the purchases that you routinely make
Websites such as Top Cashback and QuidCo provide you with cashback upon the purchases that you’d make on a daily basis within leading shops that range from jewellers to sweet shops and even including entertainment venues such as restaurants and cinemas. Signing up is free, so you have nothing to lose and a whole host of savings to gain.
10. Consider taking up a job
International students within the UK are fortunate to be able to work whilst learning, and as an English student, there may be few as effective a way of learning a language than by working within an English business.