How To Save On All Those First Year Uni Expenses

Expert tips for getting through your first year of uni without going broke.

Brought to you by Officeworks

Smart students save money on their back to uni supplies with Officeworks.

It’s no secret – uni life is expensive, and the first year can be particularly gruelling. You need to get yourself set up, stick to a budget and acclimate to the new lifestyle – all while handling a course load.

It can be a real drag to figure this stuff out yourself. To spare you a little research (you’ll have plenty to do this year anyway), here are our top tips for getting through your first year without going broke.

Buy Second-Hand

If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to access most of your uni textbooks online. But if you need to get physical copies, most unis have second-hand stores for textbooks. Since required reading materials can add up to hundreds of dollars per semester, it’s totally worth your time to check if they have what you need. You can also check out StudentVIP for access to a nationwide textbook marketplace.

If you’re in need of new threads, embrace the lost-art of op-shopping. You’d be amazed at the number of good-quality garments out there that can be had for just a few bucks.

Shop Around

Despite what advertising tells you, no one really needs brand name painkillers or the most expensive yoga pants. Sometimes, name-brand items are the best value – but most of the time, store-brand will do just fine, so skip the name brands and rack up the savings.

When you’re stocking up on uni supplies like books, laptops, post its and all those other essentials, it pays to shop around and do your research. Head instore or do a quick Google to compare prices so you get the best deal.

Plus, thoroughly researching your purchases before you make them will stand you in good stead at uni and in life.

Eat Smart

Eating junk food is not only unhealthy, it’s also insanely expensive (in terms of nutritional value for money).

Instead, get yourself to the supermarket and grab a trolley. Go big on frozen fruit and veg, inexpensive standbys like rice and noodles, and lean sources of protein like tuna, minced beef, legumes, or tofu. Grab a bottle of sauce or two for flavour, and maybe a wok if you don’t have one.

Next, set aside some time each week for meal-prep. Cooking your meals in bulk and freezing the remainder in Tupperware will mean you always have a meal on-hand, reducing the temptation to go out for a Maccas run.

Get A Thermos

Coffee is such a big part of the student lifestyle it borders on the religious. But faith isn’t cheap; at an average of 9 cups of coffee a week at around $3-$4 a pop, that’s well over a hundred bucks a month spent on caffeinated bean juice. And even if you’re not a practitioner right now, that can change in a hurry when you’re three assignments deep in the hole and just one weekend away from deadline.

Making your own coffee at home and carrying it around in a thermos can save you hundreds of dollars over the course of a single academic year. And if you put in the time to learn how to do it right, even a basic espresso machine (around $150) can produce café-level java.

Sign Up For Student Discounts 

Concession cards for public transport, health-care cards from Centrelink, student union memberships from your uni – all of this stuff is worth signing up for. Even loyalty programs at your most-frequented supermarkets will make a difference in the long run.

(Lead Image: Insecure/HBO)

10 Very Smart Ways To Save On A Student Budget

Pure genius.CC: Officeworks

Posted by Uni Junkee on Thursday, 22 February 2018

Smart students save. Do uni better with Officeworks.