Hello! I’m Chris, recent Leeds uni graduate and current SEO. After reading Nielsen’s blog and noticing the “posts from other students who want to have a crack at blogging” clause in his sidebar, I thought I’d get in touch and offer a post. He nobly obliged.
So here I am, offering my insights into simple actions students (and indeed anyone) can take to:
a) Save money
b) Eat healthily
c) Get fit
Tip one: Buy a bike
The initial expense of a bike may seem counterproductive to point a), but if you add up the cost of the bike and the basic equipment and divide it out over a year, it almost certainly works out cheaper than alternative travel:
£500 (bike) + £30 (helmet) + £20 (lights) + £10 (high-vis) + £30 (lock) = £590, or £11.35 a week
Often you can break the repayments up over a year (or longer) as well, and depending where you buy from you can get 0% interest so you’re not getting stung on the repayments. Not only that, but cycling is fun, social (if you participate in cycling groups or events like Critical Mass), and great exercise (point c)).
Tip two: Spend thrifty
Fairly self-explanatory on the surface: spending less equates to saving more. Knowing where you can save money is the skill, though. As a student I spent a lot of money on microwaves, kettles, toasters and whatever else when I moved from halls in first year to houses thereafter (stingy landlords, you see). In retrospect I could have saved a lot of money by shopping at stores who have special student deals.
You can also save money by pausing before each purchase and asking yourself ‘do I really need this?’ – another relatively simple but surprisingly effective technique to achieve point a).
Tip three: Eat soup
Soup is great. Get pretty much any combination of vegetables, perhaps some lentils, a sprinkling of assorted herbs and spices, blend it up, and you’ve got soup. You can either follow recipes (my favourite) or experiment and come up with your own. Depending what you include, you’ll be on your way to point b) if you make your own soups, and also well on your way to point a) – 8 portions worth of the soup I gave the recipe for previously cost me just over £3 – that’s a week and a half’s worth of lunch for around 38p a day.
Souper (if you’ll pardon the pun).