Written by Needa
Msc Nutrition and Behaviour
Budgeting is an essential life skill, especially for a student. Moving across countries requires meticulous planning in all aspects, one of which is finance. It can be overwhelming to set a budget when you don’t know how expenses compare between countries. I did some research to understand what my monthly budget would look like. But when I came over from Dubai, it took a lot of trial and error after moving here to understand management of my expenses. Over the past few months, I picked up on how costs compare to back home to better adjust my budget. Here is what I learnt:
- Housing: Student halls are a safe and hassle-free option but also quite expensive. If you, like me, choose halls, this may serve as the biggest expense in your budget. Private accommodation comes at various prices, but often requires meticulous research and a lot of legwork. However, student hall rents are comparable to Dubai
- Food: Groceries are comparatively cheaper than Dubai. It is easy to eat economically (especially if you plan ahead and shop in budget stores) if you prepare most of your meals. But, depending on where you like to eat out, restaurant meals are expensive. If you plan to eat out 3-4 times a week, you need to set a bigger budget for your meals.
- Clothing: If high street brands are your thing (not much choice for a broke student 😐), it is easy to find great items on sale here and dress well over a budget. In my experience, clothing is more expensive in Dubai than here, so bring out your fashionista.
- Fun: It is a good idea to set aside a certain amount each month for fun activities because there is so much to do in Bournemouth. The costs for fun activities here is generally lower than Dubai, so that is a plus. Don’t forget to ask for student discounts! After all, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy 😊
- Rainy day fund: It is always wise to save up a lump sum of money for any unexpected expenses that may come up.