Nicola Anderson at MyTutor unveils simple university budgeting tips, with easy swaps all students should be aware of

According to research by Save the Student, living costs for students are up 14 per cent since last year and experts have predicted that they will need an extra £439 per month to bridge the gap. 

With many parents struggling to front the extra cash, as household budgets across the UK are squeezed, relying on parental support is no longer an option for many students. 

With this in mind, MyTutor – the UK’s most trusted tutoring service – offers an array of university budgeting tips: 

Set a weekly maximum spend (leaving room for unexpected costs) 
It’s easy to go about your life buying a couple of things here and there, and before you know it you’ve blown two weeks’ budget. 
The best way to avoid this is to look at the total amount of money you’ve got until next term (after rent and bills). Then work out a weekly budget by dividing it by the number of weeks until you next get money, leaving plenty of room for unexpected costs. 

Check your bank balance regularly 
Stay in control of your finances by checking your balance every few days. Find out if your bank has a good app to let you check it quickly and easily on the go too.

Cook a few meals in advance and freeze them 
Student life can be crazy busy. With studying, any extracurricular projects or societies and your all-important social life, preparing food can end up low down in your list of priorities. 
Set aside some time each week to prepare meals for a few days. Something satisfying that keeps its flavour like a chilli or a riceand-veggie dish will come to the rescue when you’re in urgent need of grub. If you want to be even more prepared, you can make a big dish, divide it into several portions and freeze them so they’ll keep for weeks. 

Stock up on dry ingredients at the start of term 
While you’re feeling flush at the start of term, prepare for harder times by bulk-buying dry ingredients like rice, pasta, beans and sauces. That way, if you do spend too much too soon, you can rest assured knowing you won’t go hungry in the last couple of weeks. 

Instead of eating out with friends, try a pot luck 
A great way to socialise on a student budget is by doing a ‘Pot Luck’ style dinner party. This is simply where one person in your group hosts, and everyone brings one dish each that they’ve cooked. It’s fun to see what everyone comes up with, and you can then rotate who hosts too. 
You can keep it fun by choosing a cuisine for everyone to follow and assign starters, mains, sides and desserts so you have a full meal.