How I funded my summer...

By VickyBrowzer 11 May 2020

Being a university student, you may think that any plans for summer are limited due to a lack of funds...

But that's where you're wrong.

A few months before summer arrived, I was panicking. Everyone was getting their plans together, booking flights, starting to save money and I could barely afford my food shop! I did manage to make plans for summer eventually but they weren't as good as I would have liked them to be, all because I just left it too late. I want you to learn from my mistakes.

Trust me, don't leave it too late to plan your summer (and how you'll fund it); here are some ideas of how you can save money to put towards one of your BEST summer holidays yet:

"Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves."

Whether you've heard the saying before or not, it's pretty straight forward - save your spare money. This is much easier to do if you pay by cash quite often because you just can put your change aside in a pot. If you're a card spender, round your payments up (if something costs £16, round it up to £20 and save the £4) and put the extra cash into a pot. In a few months, you'll find that you've got quite a good amount.

Bonus tip: If that all sounds like too much work, download an app to do the hard work for you

piggy bank money

Get paid for your opinion

This may feel too good to be true but I assure you it's a real thing! I wish I did things like focus groups, online surveys, product testing and mystery shopping. With all of these, you simply need to share your thoughts on something and get paid as a result. The monetary value always differs but once you get a few of these under your belt, you should have a decent amount of money to add to your summer savings.

Bonus tip: Towards the end of the year, the university sometimes offers cash rewards for taking part in surveys or focus groups about your first-year experience - ask if there are any you can get involved in.

a group of people sitting at a table using a laptop

Make use of your spare evenings

What does a standard evening of yours look like? If it's usually spent watching Netflix or playing Fortnite for a few hours, now is the time to switch that up if you want to save some cash. Companies need people to manage their online chat rooms and students have plenty of time for that. You can usually do it from home too. Always get your assignments and revision out of the way first though! 

Bonus tip: Recruitment sites like SimplyHired and Indeed have LOADS of these kinds of jobs available, you just need to find the one most suitable to you.

a close up of a person using a laptop computer

Get your cash back when you shop online

You might have noticed that sometimes after completing an online order, you're shown a cashback option. I've seen it a few times when booking National Express tickets or a journey on Train Line. I ignored these at first but when I started to claim the cashback, it completely changed the game! By doing this, you could put that money aside as if you never actually had it to help grow your summer fund.

Bonus tip: There are a few different cashback sites that have different options and outcomes so have a look around what's out there before you start claiming anything.

a close up of a english money notes and coins

Become a Deliveroo driver

Got a car or bike with you at uni or at home? This is pretty much all you need to become a new Deliveroo driver! It's pretty flexible as you have the possibility to be your own boss and only work when you're available. When you could make up to £120 a day, it would be rude not to give it a go...

Bonus tip: If you're going to be cycling all over town a few nights a week, your fitness levels will climb rapidly. Just think of the summer bod! 

a person riding a bicycle on a city street

You'll need to try 2 or 3 of these out to make sure that you're saving enough money to fund your summer. When I say 'fund your summer', it will be different for everyone but for me, this meant booking some flights to Portugal with my friends from home. How are you planning on spending your summer?

Whatever you do, I'd suggest you start saving nice and early so that by the peak of summer, you've got more than enough money to play with and enjoy your summer!