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Student budgeting tips

As an international student budgeting is one of the key aspects you have to take into account while studying overseas. It may get a little tricky especially when you’re settling into a new country. Here are some tips for you to better balance your budget in Australia.


With a budget in mind, write down a list of necessities that you have to get and their estimated expenses either weekly or fortnightly. Afterwards, think of how much you would like to save during that period before finally allocating the rest of the money for entertainment purposes. Be willing to sacrifice if you want to save money or have overspent on your necessities- it is important to prioritise when it comes to budgeting.

Use your student card

Did you know that your student card can entitle you to various discounts such as discounted movie tickets, network stores like Optus which allows you to have student discounted plans and clothing stores like Bardot and Cotton On where you can get your desired item for a reasonable price (check out UniDays for cheap and good deals).  As for transport, remember to apply online on the Translink website for concession fares so that you are able to travel around anywhere for 50% off.  This is really helpful as you are able to save a lot on travel fares. Unfortunately, this is only applicable to university students in their first year and above.

Supermarket specials

Do look out for products that are sold at half price in big supermarkets like, Woolsworth and Coles! Even better, if the expiry date of the product is a day or two away from the purchased date, the cost will be reduced significantly and you wouldn’t want to miss that. Occasionally, there are various other sales going on so remember to check them out.

PS. Be a Flybuy or Woolsworth Reward member, you will get to enjoy different benefits. For me, I currently have a Woolworths Rewards card which allowed me to have $10 off every time I collected 2000 points from my purchases.

Earn extra cash

As international students, we are entitled to work up to 20 hours per week. Why not spend some of your free time doing a part-time job so you can save up and treat yourself once or twice a month? Babysitting or tutoring are two of the great ways to earn some spare cash for yourself.

Free activities (save money)

Australia is home to many scenic nature spots, that are absolutely free! Instead of watching a movie at the cinemas or visiting entertainment places that require you to pay, why not save the money and visit some beautiful nature spots? Queensland is renowned for its pristine white beaches and lush greeneries, and it does not cost a lot to visit them (besides travelling and food). If you’re heading to the Gold Coast try Surfers Paradise, Tallebudgera Creek and Rainbow Bay. As for Sunshine Coast, try Kondalilla Falls, Noosa Beach, Mooloolaba, and Coolum Beach. If you want convenience and somewhere in Brisbane, try Mount Coot-tha, Mount Glorious and Mount Gravatt. If you’re looking into somewhere between Brisbane and Gold Coast, I strongly recommend the Scenic Rim.


Hi everyone! I am Nicola and I'm from Singapore. I decided to come to Australia to study because I wanted to pursue my passion for dance at QUT, as well as to gain new and memorable experiences overseas. After graduating from QUT International College I decided to take my passion for Dance further with a double degree in Dance and Education. While studying at QUT I have become actively involved in the local dance community and attend international dance competitions whenever possible. I am certainly enjoying my time studying here at QUT and thankful for all the opportunities QUT has provided for me. My goals are to inspire others and impart my knowledge to future students who can grow and learn from my experience.

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