Managing your money
You’ve now survived a semester at university and gotten used to the new currency and cost of living. University life is not all work and no play, but having a decent social life comes at a cost. To get the most out of your university experience, you need to learn some basic money-management rules. You’ll have a great time and keep a track of your money, and the skills you pick up will help you manage your finances for life.
Choosing the right bank is important, therefore, shop around and see what services the bank offers. As an undergraduate student you are more likely to receive an interest free overdraft provided you stay within the limit of your overdraft. If you are confused about which bank to choose you can always speak to university staff for guidance. It also helps to have a branch of the bank on campus.
Once you have set up a bank account the next thing is to set a budget. Most international students will have paid their full or part tuition and accommodation fees before coming to the United Kingdom. Therefore, most of the money that international students have with them is for their personal day-to-day expenditure. Essential costs include utilities, food, travel and phone bill. These costs tend to stay the same for me but food costs can always rise when you eat out often. The remaining amount can be spent on books, household supplies, toiletries, clothing and social events. You can always save some money by investing in a 16-25 rail card or NUS card for discounts.
If you know you are the kind of person who likes to go out quite often then it might be helpful to do some part-time work to keep you from getting in to your overdraft, and having extra money never hurts.
Murad is currently studying Accounting and Financial Management BA (Hons) at the University of Sheffield. He took the NCUK IFY programme at INTO Manchester.