Your student time is one of the best times in your life. You learn a lot of new things, experience lots of fun parties and make friends forever. But: a student does not have too much to spend. You may be working alongside your studies and you may receive student finance, but tips for making ends meet are always welcome every month. In order to let your bank account shine through – and above 0.00 euros – throughout the month, we have listed ten easy tips for you to save money as a student in this article.
1. Buy with a discount
Okay, we all have to eat whether you’re a student or not. Buying food is probably one of your biggest costs per month: you have to get food every day. Fortunately, we have some useful tips to save a lot of money on your groceries . For example, keep a close eye on the promotions of various supermarkets: which products do you need, and where are they in the (week or month) offer? This way you can quickly save a lot of euros on your food. That is a bonus! If you don’t feel like going through the brochures of different supermarkets, there is a very handy app for you: the Advertising Folder app. You can also easily search there, so that you can find the best offer in no time.
If you are in the supermarket, then also pay attention to products with an action sticker. Almost every supermarket commends products that are due the day or the day after. You can still eat it on the day itself, and that often saves you a 35 to 50 percent discount! This way you can eat cheaply, and you also help the environment, because these products are not thrown away.
2. Make a little more effort to eat cheaper
It is said that students prefer to be lazy than tired, but it is also easy to just go to the nearest supermarket. Putting in a little more effort can still result in a fuller wallet: cycle a little further to the Lidl or the Aldi instead of, for example, the Albert Heijn. Even though that cheaper store is a little further, it can save you a lot of money in the month! Do not forget to go to the market: there you can really buy delicious vegetables and fruit for next to nothing. At the end of the day it is even cheaper, and you can take all kinds of tasty fresh products for a few cents. So do it.
It is also good to make a little more effort in the supermarket to save money. The cheaper private label products are always at the bottom of the shelf: the more expensive A brands are at eye level. This way you are unconsciously influenced to come to the more expensive products. But you no longer fall for that: if you bend over, you can save a lot of money. And packs of private label rice, pasta or milk really don’t taste any less.
3. Cook in several portions or eat together
Another food-saving tip is to cook for several days. Have a nice meal with your housemates or your friends, and share the cost of your meal together. Cooking for several people is a lot cheaper than preparing a single meal. Even if you don’t feel like or have time to eat with others, it is a good idea to cook for several days.
You can then store your food in the refrigerator for up to three days, or even freeze it for several months . Then you always have a nice meal at home. For example, make a large portion of pasta bolognese, which is nice and cheap (especially if you make it for several days) and very easy to defrost in the microwave or in a pan. By the way, freezing is always a good idea: even if you come across a good offer, such as 1 + 1 for free. This saves you a lot of money in the long term.
4. Cook with what you have at home
Of course, you occasionally feel like a certain food, but if you want to save money, it is also a good idea to cook what you already have at home. To save money, go through your kitchen cabinets and see which meals you can prepare with the products you already have at home. Do you have no inspiration for a good recipe? You can search for a specific product on the Albert Heijn or the Jumbo website, and a number of tasty dishes will then roll out. This way you never have to throw anything away and you don’t have to buy a whole shopping list for one meal. That makes a difference!
5. Bring your own food
This tip requires some planning, but will save you a lot of money in the long run; bring your own food to college, to work or if you are going to study somewhere. Of course you can also score delicious sandwiches or a fat bite in the canteen of your university, but if you do that often, the costs quickly add up.
Make sure you always have something to eat with you so that when you are hungry you are not condemned to buy food. For example, prepare a tasty meal salad that you can easily take with you in a bowl, or make some old-fashioned sandwiches at home. By the way, cooking at home with your friends can be just as tasty as in a restaurant – and a lot cheaper. A good idea to introduce yourself, so.
6. Go for second hand!
Whether you want to score a new outfit or score a new desk for your student room, second-hand is the way to go. Buying used items saves a lot of money, and you are also good for the environment. But it is of course especially nice that your wallet will not be empty very quickly if you need some ‘news’.
On second-hand sales sites such as Marktplaats, but also on Facebook Marketplace, you can easily search for products in your area, so that you can pick up your new purchase by bike. You can also buy your necessary purchases, such as textbooks, second-hand via Bol.com, Marktplaats, or the Facebook page of your study. That can easily save tens of euros compared to brand new textbooks. Definitely worth looking for.
7. A new outfit for that fun party? Then use this tip
As a student, you of course go to a lot of nice student parties. You want to look good, and that requires a nice outfit. Before you put all your student finance back in a new dress or that one nice skirt, there is also a cheaper solution to look nice. We already wrote above that second-hand is a good idea: in a vintage shop you can score a nice outfit for next to nothing, or search specifically for sites like Marktplaats or United Wardrobe for your new second-hand pearl.
If you want to save money by spending nothing on new clothes at all, you can also organize a clothes swap party with your friends. Collect the items of clothing you never put on again, and let your friends do the same. That sweater that your girlfriend no longer likes so much can become your new favorite piece. By exchanging clothes, or by simply borrowing that nice dress from your girlfriend, you still have the feeling of a new outfit – without spending a single euro on it.
8. Go for bulk packs
For food, it is better to cook for several days, because the more, the cheaper. This is also the case for products such as toothpaste or shampoo: in order to save money, it is a good idea to score large packages. You have to brush your teeth anyway, and if you buy three tubes of toothpaste on offer, it is much cheaper than just one tube! Bulk packaging is always cheaper than a one-off purchase.
Therefore, always buy a package of deodorant, toothpaste or sunscreen, because you do use these products anyway. You can also choose to buy such a discount package together with your housemates: this way your (perhaps small) student room is not packed with products, but you can enjoy the discount.
9. Always take your student card with you
As a student you should always pay a little attention to the money. Studying (and the accompanying lifestyle) is expensive enough! Fortunately, many companies feel the same way, which is why you as a student often get a discount when showing your student card. For example, at various (clothing) shops you get a 20% discount if you are a student, just like when you buy the entrance ticket to parties, museums and other fun activities. Therefore, make sure you always need your student pass, and check if you get a discount.
10. Take a closer look at your insurance policies and your rent
Every month your money goes to your landlord and the necessary insurance and subscriptions. Therefore, take a close look at this, because you may be paying too much. You can check whether you are paying too much for your rent via a points system of the Tax and Customs Administration, unfortunately that is often the case in many cities. If you pay too much, you can request a rent reduction. That makes a difference every month! It is also useful to compare insurance and (telephone) subscriptions, so that you can always choose the cheapest option. Many companies also have student insurance or subscriptions, so you also get an extra discount. Definitely worth it, so.
11. Smart or fewer steps
One of the biggest costs as a student is of course going out. Of course you prefer not to save on this by going less. However, there are a number of tricks you can apply during your night out that can make your night out considerably cheaper. You can read all about it in this article .