Studying abroad is expensive for most international students. Apart from the expected tuition fees combined with the average cost of living, an international student has other recurring expenses. Holding a U.K student visa stipulates that one should have over 1000 pounds in their bank account. This amount is for each month if you intend to stay in the U.K, anyplace outside
of London. When you combine all these costs, you will need to plan out a good budget with minimising your expenses in mind.
Saving every possible penny along the way can make your life less expensive. There are various ways that international students can use to save some money as they study abroad. As a student, you will need to look out for all sorts of student discounts and take maximum advantage. You will find that student discounts are available on almost all sorts of things, including bus fare and textbooks. Paying less on these recurring expenses leaves you with more to save.
When visiting the local stores for shopping, your student I.D card will come in handy in asking for reduced prices. Having the NUS Extra Card gives you the leeway to bigger and better discounts. Some student bank accounts give this card. It is prudent to check whether your bank provides these cards or look for one that does.
After paying the tuition fee, a huge chunk of your money will go into accommodation. You ought to familiarise yourself with the average rent rates offered within the area of your choice. After gathering enough information on the rates, you have gained some negotiating ground with your prospective landlord. Any cut you get saves you some money. But in case you don't, at least you are getting a fair price.
Instead of targeting apartments, be geared toward shared flats or in-house school accommodation at your chosen university. In-house accommodation is likely to be more affordable than living outside the school. After your first year, you will have figured out other affordable housing options that will fit your bill.
The location of your chosen college can also impact on your spending. Living in certain cities is more expensive than others. Researching the most affordable city and choosing the best colleges in that city is the best decision. Remember your goal is to save and get a good education so, always strive to strike this balance.
Textbooks are integral in your learning process. As much as these books can be pricey, there is a way around it. You can opt to buy used books as long it' legal. If the library allows photocopying the books, according to your need, then that can be another way to save an extra penny. Also, since some bookstores may offer an option of renting books, do not hesitate to grab the opportunity if it can save you some money.
Live within walking distance of your school
You will find that most student housing is in the proximity of the campus. Moving into such a housing unit will save your everyday bus fare. Some students incur a lot of money on transport. This spending occurs where one is living off campus and prefers to rush to their place for lunch. If you can easily move back and forth from your place to the campus while avoiding bus fare, then you can save a considerable amount of money on transport.
You want to keep in touch with people back at home, be it family or friends. Making international calls is expensive, especially if you do so regularly and for long periods. There is a way to save on this; you can either Skype or use other applications to contact your loved ones. The methods that rely on the internet will save you more money as they are cheaper than an actual call.
Living an affordable, fun life as an international student is possible. You will, however, have to implement these tips in your everyday life. Coming up with a budget and finding ways to sustain it through saving is the way to go. Look for flight alerts, on sites that provide this application.
For instance, some travel sites have such alerts that notify you whenever prices for specific destinations drop. You can always utilise this window of opportunity to pay a visit to your loved ones whenever convenient.