I haven’t updated the blog for almost 25 days. I apologize for that. I’ve had a very hectic months due to the start of studies. I didn’t have any Wi-fi from the 1st of September to the 14th of September. I started in Flensburg at the University but I also study in Sønderborg. I find it very cool. I’ll tell more about later.
Right now am I changing the design (again) on the blog before I start with anything. From there I will about some of the things which have happened in September. And then will the blog start up again, slowly 🙂
Now as I’m starting on my higher education, I recieve 5903 DKK (790€) as a student each month. For others it may be a little but for me it’s plenty. As I was doing an internship in Hamburg I recieved 650€ (4850 DKK) before taxes. There is more than 100€ difference. But I managed to get my finances in order as I made a budget for every month. Here I also used discount codes online, in shops, super markets etc. Therefore I would like to share some of my experiences/tips.
Before you make the budget
There are many things you have to think of when you make a budget. There are some essential things which are always or often there as a student:
Mobile / Internet
Before you get started I recommend you to make a food plan (inc the prices of the ingredients). Then you will get an idea of how much money you should be spending on food. You should also research more on the prices of mobile, internet, rent, power, water, heat etc.
Make a clear budget (I made mine in Excel)
As a student you may not have too much money to deal with. You can always get a studentjob to solve this problem. But it would always be a good idea to have an overview. I made my budget where I put a limit on the amount of money I was allowed to use. The first picture (Sheet 1) is where I put in my costs for each day. Thereafter all the data was put into Sheet 2 by formulas.
Make it clear
You can make a visual overview (graphical presentation) of all of your costs
Set a limit (Note! Be realistic when you set your limits!)
Be aware of you may need to put money aside to sudden arising costs (not necessarily party, alcohol… But important things as medicine, bills etc)
Divide your costs into variable and fixed costs
If you want to make something similar to mine, you should make it with 2 sheets. 1 is where you enter the costs, the other is with formulas. You can save it as a template.
Discount codes online and in shops
Believe it or not. Discount codes can sometimes be important if you do have the most money to deal with. 5%, 10% or more can make a big difference. So go ahead and look for discount sides. But also use your common sense! A lot of companies manipulate the consumer with discount codes which may make you buy something with 50% but is not worth it.
Keep an eye on flyers/advertising
Keep an eye on different deals. This involves food, beauty, electronic, makeup, things for home etc. For example if your favourite toothpaste costs 2€ as a deal instead of the usual 3€, then you should just buy 2 of them. In the long term you got more for less money.
Make a food plan for a week at a time.
To make it work you need tp make a plan. It may be annoying to plan a whole week. On the other hand you would save a lot of money as you are capable of calculating how much money you will be spending on a week.
Make a grocery list
You avoid the so called impulse buying. You often get tempted to buy goods that you may not even need. When you have a list, it’s easier to stick to it.
Buy food on offer (and put it in the freezer)
If you care about being healthy, you may already know that it can be quite expensive dealing with such goods as vegetables, meat etc as a student. Therefore I would recommend you to keep an eye on the flyers (much like the “flyers” section I wrote earlier). Sometimes you can buy 1 kg chicken fillet for almost no money. You can buy the chicken and put the in the freezer and then save for some other time.
Buy groceries in the morning or shortly before they’re closing
The super markets always have products which be near the last sales date. You can be lucky to find meat or something similar that is reduced by 20 – 50 % discount. Then you can freeze the meat and you is it some days later.
NEVER EVER go shopping on an empty stomach!
This is another trap when you’re out shopping. Maybe you have a grocery list but the hunger can ruin it. We get tempted with our eyes and nose. The stores have a staff that is specialized in tempting consumers to buy some sweet things etc., just by placing the things in a certain area. So if you’re already a bit hungry, you better have some guts!
Make dobble portions
I’m not only talking about making a portion of pasta for 4 days. If you make a new dish every day, is it both time consuming and it can end in having food waste. Make a bigger portion which you can warmup the next after or bring it as lunch as well.
Leave money at home
If you really want to save money, leave your cash at home if you’re going to work, school etc. when they have a cafeteria, snackbox, snack vending machine. Sometimes as I go to the university I don’t even have a cash or card with me if I know that I don’t want to buy anything. The temptation to buy a little snack may come if there is a cafeteria nearby.
It’s funny to hear from students with their money problems. In the mean time they are walking around with the newest Hilfiger watch, Diesel accessories. Do you know how much money you can save on recycling? I admit that some of my clothes are from recycling. And some brands are Adidas, VILA, Hummel. The clothes have been worn a couple of times or maybe more. But hey, there ist mostly nothing wrong with most of the clothes. And you in most cases also support recycling which is only a good thing. But you’ll never know. They may have much more that you might find valuable. One man’s trash is another man’s gold!
I hope you can use some of my tips or just considerations for what you’re doing. Even small changes can make a huge difference. What do you otherwise do to save money? If you have any other methods you’re as always welcome to leave a comment! 🙂
As other people in Denmark I had to apply for an university before the 5th of July, which I also did. Many months before I have tried to fufill the requirements to get in to the Hamurg University but it wasn’t possible. Broken, I realised I had to find an University in Denmark. In my mind I always had the voice of that I wanted an international line. That is why I chose BSc in Economics and Business Administration – International Economics and Business Relationships (English) in Sønderborg. I wrote a bit about it in Hamborg eller Sønderborg. Buuuut… I think around the 15th of July I found something different in Flensburg. I had already taken a look at Flensburg but it was as a German Applicant. Now I managed to come from Flensburg University’s website to the websit of SDU (University of Southern Denmark). There I found a line named BA int./SPRØK (Sønderborg/Flensborg). At first I was just thinking “fuuuuck that….” because I had already passed the deadline of applience for the first round. So I kept myself the next 3 weeks updated and also evaluated the chance for getting in via a free, avaible spot. I already knew that my chances were good because of my grades and also because of the number of applicants from last year.
In 2014 it looked like this:
Available spots: Free admission
Number of applicants 1. prio: 39
Number of students admitted 1. prio: 34
Numbers published the 30th of July 2015 regarding the numbers of applicants and students admitted:
Available spots: 86
Number of applicants 1. prio: 25
Number of students admitted 1. prio: 24
Because of this I was able to conclude that I shouldn’t fight with anyone over the remaining 61 spots. But everything has been luck. But statistically have the humanistic lines at SDU been reduced with 1 %. Personally am I happy that this exactly this line isn’t that interesting for many 🙂