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Jan 25

5 tips to save money as an international student

Reading Time: 4 mins

The start of student life can certainly be exciting, especially life as an international student. Travelling to a new country can be the start of a big adventure. Of course, there is the academic side of student life and there will be plenty of need to get your head down and work hard. Beyond this though, being a student is about getting to know yourself and racking up some great experiences.

While there are plenty of positives when it comes to being an international student, there are also some things to be wary of. Managing your finances is probably one of the most difficult tasks that international students face. There are many students who are concerned about saving money when they are living abroad, so they use money transfer services such as MoneyTransfers.com. This sees them being able to receive money from back home while avoiding high fees.

If you want to make the most of your life as an international student, then we have 5 great tips that can help you save even more money. 


Search out student discounts 

One of the best things about being a student are the numerous student discounts that you can take advantage of. If you are living on a budget, as most students are, these can be a great way to save money. You will find that student discounts allow you to spend less on almost everything. This includes the likes of travel, textbooks, and even cinema tickets. Often, all that you will need to take advantage of these discounts is your student ID card.

When it comes to student discounts, there are many official savings to be had through companies that partner with universities. However, if you look beyond these, you will be able to find many more. Plenty of small independent shops cater to students and will offer discounts. It may be worth joining local Facebook groups where these small businesses advertise their discounts to students in their area. 

There are some schemes that offer student discounts that have a joining fee. If this is the case, just make sure that you will really benefit from the discounts on offer before you part with your cash. 


Negotiate your rent

As a student, international or otherwise, your biggest expense each month is likely to be your accommodation. Of course, we all need a roof above our heads and so this is an expense that is unavoidable. How much your rent will be will depend on what area of the country you are living in as the cost of living varies considerably depending upon where you are. There may be good reasons that you need to move to a more expensive area, such as the courses that are on offer, but that doesn’t mean that you have to just accept sky-high rents.

There is no harm in asking for a rent that is lower than what is advertised. It certainly doesn’t guarantee that this will be given, but given how much you could potentially save, it is definitely worth a try. It is not just at the start of your tenancy where you may be able to haggle and get a discount. When it is time to renew your tenancy, it is well worth trying to negotiate again. 


Save on your food shop

When it comes to saving money on your food shop, there are plenty of ways of doing this. There are the biggest supermarkets to consider such as Tesco and Asda, but then there are also the discounters such as Lidl and Aldi. You will see that some of the bigger supermarkets are now price matching the discounters, but switching where you shop can still see you saving money. 

If you are intent on shopping at one supermarket only, you can still see some great savings. All that you need to do is move down a brand. Most supermarkets have their own brand versions of things as well as value alternatives. It is worth trying these and making sure that you are happy with the quality. Assuming that you are, you can carry on making substantial savings each and every time that you shop. 


Explore cashback incentives

As an international student, you may be interested in the fact that you can receive cashback on your everyday expenses. Cashback works by you buying an item and then receiving part of what you have paid back later on. In some ways, it is like a discount, but there is a delay before you see the benefits of it. You can find retailers that offer cash back when you buy their products as well as utility providers who give you money back against your bills.

There are times when the small amounts of cashback may seem insignificant, but you need to look at this over the long term. It is possible to make substantial savings over the course of a year. You won’t be able to combine your student discount with any cashback offers, but it means that you have options when it comes to how you can save. 


Head over to student blogs

If you’re looking for other ways to save money as an international student, then Google really is your friend. By carrying out some simple searches, you will find a whole host of student blogs and sites that are filled with top info that can help you out. This is often information from students who have been there or are still there. This means that you are learning from their real-life experiences.

As well as finding tips on saving money, you will also find tips on making money. There are students who explore creative, or non-traditional, ways of generating an income while they are studying and there are plenty of them who are willing to share their experiences. If you learn how to save money at the same time as earning, you can set your student life up so that it becomes as comfortable as possible. 


Disclaimer: MoneyMagpie is not a licensed financial advisor and therefore information found here including opinions, commentary, suggestions or strategies are for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only. This should not be considered as financial advice. Anyone thinking of investing should conduct their own due diligence.


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