Saving Money on Student TravelBy Lauren Dawes of the GKBC Academy
Now your first term is under way and you have settled into where you need to be, we thought you could do with some money saving travel tips. We asked Lauren Dawes of the GKBC Academy to give you the low down on saving the pennies.
Whether it’s just a day trip, a night out in town or a full-blown holiday abroad, there are plenty of ways for us students to save a bit of money on travelling.
These simple tips should help to save a few of those ever-important pennies – and of course allow you to blow more of your money on the good stuff once you arrive at your destination, rather than be wasted on the journey there!
If you want a journey that is absolutely free (and good for the environment too) then bite the bullet and get walking or cycling. I’d be the first to admit that it’s usually a last resort – but really it’s the obvious thing to do, and a great way to get outside and do a bit of exercise.
Think about the cost of joining a gym – why pay to run on a treadmill, when you could simply get a work-out in en route to places for free? That’s double savings for you!
This applies to the longer journeys as well, since even just getting off the bus a few stops early can make a difference to your ticket price and get you burning those calories.
Exploit Public Transport
Make use of your bus & rail services – and of your status as a student! It may feel like the world’s out to get us most days,
but I’m glad to say that at least as far as bus and train tickets are concerned we get a pretty good deal.
A Young Person’s Railcard costs just £28 a year and gets you a third off all your rail travel; think about the money you could save just coming to and from university on that. Researching what’s available to you is key; things like group saving deals are often around, for example when four people take the same rail route you can get 50% off! There’s also a great website called Tickety Split which calculates the cheapest route to your destination on the day by splitting tickets.
Whenever possible try to book in advance as well; not only are you guaranteed a seat, it’s a sure-fire way to get the biggest savings on tickets.
Whether you’re the driver, or the one being taxied about by a friend or colleague, you should always aim to fill as many seats as you can for a journey. It’s friendlier to the environment and much less to pay once you split the costs for petrol.
Always agree on the rates before the journey too, to avoid awkwardness or being short-changed by ‘forgetful’ passengers. The same applies when booking a taxi for a night out; the more people you share with, the less you have to pay individually. And if you’re not in too much of a state, you could always walk at least part of the way back – ladies, pack some of those handy foldable flats into your bag beforehand to avoid crippling yourselves! But be careful…
Always plan a journey beforehand to avoid unnecessary and costly detours/delays/taking the wrong route etc. and get familiar with your bus and rail times so that you’re never caught out or stranded!