Money-saving tips when studying abroad
Financial management is a very important part of studying abroad. You need to know how you can save money and how you can spend it. There are many ways in which students get into debt while they’re studying, so knowing these tips will help you avoid unnecessary spending and bank account strain! As every student wants only the best for their money, here are some money-saving tips that might prove helpful:
Keep it fun and cheap!
There are more ways to keep fit than going for a run on the treadmill – there are more fun activities that can help you stay fit, too. Playing sports is the best way to get fit and have some fun at the same time! Always check what services are provided by your accommodation, as most universities provide either fully equipped gyms or groups of sports enthusiasts who meet regularly, so it’s always best to take advantage of this! You could also go running early in the morning or late at night when it’s cool outside; if you don’t like jogging (like me), try hiking in nature instead! It’s one of my favorite activities when I’m abroad: connecting with nature while taking a walk or going on a hike makes me feel relaxed and ready to face the day ahead!
Eating healthy the smart way!
Some of us might have a hard time eating healthy food on a student’s budget. Once again the solution is simple: cook at home whenever you can. Even if you prepare food for just one day, this will help you save money in the long run! Plus, preparing your own meals will give you enough time to come up with fun dishes – try thinking of recipes that are easy to cook. If you’re tired of cooking for yourself, it can be beneficial to join a student association (or even start one!) with like-minded people who share your interests. It’s always more fun when you eat with friends, but eating out everyday might prove too costly over time; that is why most universities offer services such as ‘Spoon’, where you can pay monthly in order to get food at reasonable prices (a lot of universities also provide students with canteens, which are usually cheaper than fast food places). but still healthy and tasty!
Keeping it streamlined
Being a student means learning, so we always have to buy books, notebooks, and pens from time to time. At first sight, these seem like small expenses, but what about six months from now? You’ll have to buy all of them again… To avoid repeating unnecessary expenses every semester/year, try sharing your books with friends or buying used ones, and only get the bare essentials for your classes… For example, if you don’t really need a laptop for your courses (as most of them can be completed using a textbook and pen/pencil), why pay extra?
Party on a budget
No matter how old we are, we all love to party. That means going out more than once a week might seem like an attractive idea at first. Although it is very fun, having a few events per week will help you save money in order to get by until the next paycheck – parties get expensive! Also, keep in mind that bars and clubs usually offer cheaper drinks during certain hours of the day; some even have happy hour specials! If you want to drink alcohol, try having a few drinks at home before you go to the bar/club.
Loans and other responsibilities
Got to pay the bills
Do not ignore your student loan! I know it might seem like an unlikely expanse for some students who hate debt more than anything, but if you were to apply for a student loan and wait five years till it’s paid off, wouldn’t you regret this decision? Although I didn’t have the privilege of getting a student loan, I know that financial support from government institutions can ease your position. At least try exploring all available opportunities – many people don’t even bother checking! Apart from the usual tuition and book expenses, there are other payments that students need to worry about while studying abroad. These include, but are not limited to, lodging, gas/electric bills, and other miscellaneous expenses. It’s important for students to create a budget and stick to it as best as possible, in order to make sure that they have enough money to cover all of their costs. There are many ways for students to save money, such as cooking for themselves, sharing books and other materials with friends, and looking for affordable accommodation. It is also helpful to travel during off-peak times, in order to save on transportation costs. And lastly, don’t forget to apply for scholarships and student loans! These financial aids can be a great help for students, who will soon realize that government support is extremely beneficial.
Work while studying
If you feel like building a career after college/university, ask your university about work-study programs. As someone who got involved in one last year, I found it very beneficial: not only did I get to learn new things while gaining work experience, which will be useful once I graduate, but also received a fixed amount as a monthly payment for my work! Sometimes the hours are a bit longer than in other jobs, but it’s worth it! If worse comes to worst and you really need extra money, there are always part-time jobs available, such as delivering food or groceries, working in retail stores, or selling handmade products on Etsy – just remember that uni life is supposed to be fun! Don’t let lack of money ruin your great experience: stay positive and enjoy yourself!
Credit card or sending/receiving money
Being smart with money
Last but certainly not least, when sending or receiving money from your parents/guardian overseas, keep in mind that there are many options online that could offer you cheaper and faster money transfer, and only spend what you have. As tempting as it may seem sometimes, don’t use credit cards or take out loans unless they are absolutely necessary – otherwise you’ll end up spending more.