Swinburne Student Survival Guide

7 Student Budgeting Tips

- Keep track of your spendings

There are traditional and innovative methods for students to keep track of their spending. Most importantly, you are aware of where your money is going and how much you are spending on everything. Furthermore, it is critical for students to save money, limit their spending, and develop better spending habits in order to have a better future.

- Make a plan

Personally, I don't think it's too difficult to make a spending plan if you know where your money is going and have been keeping track of your spending. However, if you're someone who is terrible with money and also doesn't normally keep track of their spending because the process is so tedious, I completely understand and sympathise because I am that person as well. But you're in luck today because, after years of searching for the best spending tracking app and also an app that you don't have to pay for any subscriptions, "Money Manager: Budget Planner" is the best free option to go for, and it's easy to organise your spending without having to worry about having to pay for the subscription monthly because it's all free for Apple and Android users!

- Supermarket deals

What’s more therapeutic than running an errand at a supermarket? Nothing, because grocery runs are always the best in my book. No one can definitely beat me on this. Anyway, for someone who is so obsessed with groceries, I’ve found quite a few deals and hacks that I’d like to share with my fellow mates to save a few bucks to pay for something crucial and essential. If you’ve just arrived in Melbourne awhile ago, do yourself a favour by downloading Flybuys and Everyday Rewards to collect points and find out about more deals on these apps while shopping at Coles and Woolworths. Trust me, you’ll thank me after this. It saves you so much. Not only that, if you personally love shopping at Woolworths, you could sign up for their subscription for only $7 per month called Everyday Extra from Everyday Rewards to get a 10% discount off at Woolworths and Big W monthly, freebies, and points. It helps students like us save more on groceries. On the other hand, we have FlyBuys, which gives us the opportunity to shop happily at a lot of stores while collecting points, for example, K-Mart, Coles, Catch, Target, Bunnings, Liquorland, etc. Furthermore, every Wednesday, Woolworths and Coles will release their half-price buys on their weekly catalogues for customers to check. Therefore, do check it out or run your grocery errands on Wednesday to save your wallet from the extra money being paid.

- Use your student ID card to get discounts

​​Student IDs are like golden tickets. It gives you lots of perks without having to do much other than show your student ID to the store that you’ll be purchasing your items or food from. Therefore, remember to bring your student ID with you when you go out by yourself or even with your friends, because you’ll never know when you’ll need it.

- Create two bank accounts

I’ve been told by a friend of mine that having two bank accounts will make you spend less and save more. To be frank with you, she was right. ​​It helps to be more aware of how much money you've spent, and you could set up a separate account for your expenses, rental fees, bills, and so on. You could, on the other hand, keep another account for future savings. If you don't want to open another bank account, you can use Revolut, a prepaid debit card. As a result, you would only need to top up your bank account if necessary. It doesn't take much personal information from you to open an account with them, which I find very convenient. As well, if you're an international student like me, you could also use Revolut's international financial services.

- Getting active doesn’t have to be hurtful to your wallet 

I’m sure a lot of you have tried workout apps and programmes before, but did you know that the Nike Training Club App and Darebee are free? Yes, you’ve read this right. This app and website are free to use and provides access to over 100 different workouts via audio and demo videos, making it ideal for both beginners and advanced users. Aside from that, there are many beautiful parks and hiking trails in Melbourne, and with modern advances, there are many apps dedicated to walking and running, making walking and running less boring. It may be difficult to find a walking partner because everyone has different schedules due to work and school, but getting active is made easier with these programmes and music.

- There are more deals than you think

When I say that there are more deals than you think, I mean it. I've discovered that many students don't understand student discounts and end up paying more than they should. When you pay less, you save more, which is a good thing. As a result, here are a few platforms where you can find discounts on your favourite brands without spending too much money. What a win-win situation for everyone!

  1. ISIC
  2. Liven
  3. EatClub
  4. UNiDAYS
  5. ShopBack
  6. Cashrewards
  7. Student Edge
  8. Student Beans
  9. Boost your super


Listen to studying abroad on a podcast called Life in General with Vanessa Chim, an international student from Swinburne.