For students, studying in Ireland offers a great opportunity to get their education in some of the best institutions in the world. In addition, Ireland offers a high quality of life. It is no wonder that many people want to go there to study and live. However, it is not cheap at all to stay in Ireland. In fact, in many areas of the country, the average cost of living is around $2,500 per month. And living in its major cities such as Dublin will be higher still.
Here, you will find some information and money-saving tips to help you manage your living expenses while in Ireland.
Make Use of Discount Cards
One of the best things about being a student is the number of discounts one can get. There are various discount cards that international students are eligible or can apply for, which they can use for almost any kind of transaction.
International Student Identity Card (ISIC). The ISIC card can be used by international students in various countries worldwide to get discounts on almost anything—from restaurants, hotel accommodation, shopping, movies, traveling, sports or other entertainment activities, and even for buying materials needed for school like books, and laptops.
Student Leap Card. This card is mostly used to get discounts when traveling using Irish transportation services including DART, LUAS, Dublin Bus, City Direct, the Irish Rail, and so on. Aside from traveling, it also offers discounts on some partner brands such as McDonald’s meal and the Irish Times digital subscription.
Student ID. You can also ask establishments if they offer discounts to students. Some shops and restaurants won’t even ask you for specific discount cards, but just your student ID.
Bring Your Own Reusable Bag When You Shop
When you shop, bring your own reusable bag—not only is this a good way to help the environment, but it is also a good way to save money. This is because using plastic bags when you shop is taxable.
Eating out once in a while is ok, but eating out every day can easily deplete your budget and savings. Instead of eating in a restaurant, if it is feasible, cook your own food. Usually, it is better to buy ingredients in big supermarkets because they offer cheaper deals than smaller grocery stores. Some known budget supermarkets are Aldi and Lidl.
Aside from that, another tip to save money is to buy a supermarket’s “own brand” of food, because they are usually cheaper.
Shop for Second-Hand Clothes and Books
Instead of buying new or branded clothes, which are expensive, students can instead shop in second-hand clothes shops or charity shops. This is a good option, especially when buying expensive items such as coats.
Join Clubs and Societies
Joining your institution’s clubs and societies, which offer various activities, is a great way to meet and interact with other people, and another great way to save money. For example, instead of going to a movie house, if you join a film society, you can watch a good movie at a cheaper rate.
Share Your Rent
For those renting their own place in Ireland, it is better to share a rent than pay for the whole place on your own. Renting a shared room may cost as low as €400 while renting a shared apartment with a private room may cost up to €850 a month.
Knowing some basic money-saving tips is an important skill that students can use wherever they go.
Want to learn more useful tips while studying Ireland? Check out MSM Unify’s articles about living in Ireland. To start, check out this article on how you can start working part-time in the Emerald Isle.