Managing your budget

8 August 2018

13 tips for making your budget stretch as far as possible!

As a student, you want to get your degree as fast as possible. But you also want to enjoy the ride: watch a movie, go out, explore hobbies, ... On top of all that, you probably also have to pay your tuition fees, course material, housing and food.

It all costs money, of course. And you probably have a budget that you want – or have – to stick to. Here are a few tips to avoid going (deeper) into debt, while still making the most of your student years! 

Keep track of what you spend!

To better manage your budget, you first need an accurate picture of what you spend every month. A sheet of paper will do the job, but there are also lots of free apps available for keeping tabs on your budget via smartphone. You can import details of your incoming and outgoing payments from your ING Smart Banking app or Home'Bank.

Keep track of your accounts for a few months and you'll soon get a pretty good idea of your average expenses. Which will make it easier to decide whether you can afford to go to the movies at the end of the month or not ... 

Tips for balancing your student budget
  1. Find out whether you are entitled to a grant.
  2. Buy your course notes and books second hand.
  3. Put your small change into a piggy bank.
  4. Take advantage of “happy hour” at student bars and cafés.
  5. Look out for student discounts, e.g. with your student card.
  6. Plan ahead and buy birthday/Christmas presents during the sales.
  7. Enter ING competitions to win tickets for concerts or football matches.
  8. Use the ING Smart Banking app every so often to check your account balance.
  9. Use websites and shops that sell second-hand goods.
  10. Check competitors' prices online before buying expensive item.
  11. Find out the best formula for bus, train and metro fares for students.
  12. Find a fun student job that you can easily combine with your studies.
  13. For students sharing accommodation: Cook for yourself and share your meals with your flatmates. Never go shopping on an empty stomach, and always take a shopping list.