Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Freebies and more :)

Wellll I said I was going to talk about freebies following on from my previous blog as well as give a few updates on my life, so here it is :)

FREEBIES: Now these are, as the name implies, free :) which definitely makes it one of my favourite money saving tips! These freebies aren't enough to live on, but they certainly help provide a treat or two along the way!! The majority of freebies I tend to get the most are kindle e-books, cinema tickets and, most enjoyably, food :D. These freebies are usually gained in one of two ways; either you enter your details and get sent the freebie (by post or electronically), or you get given a voucher to print out to exchange for the free products. You'll be surprised at just how much companies are willing to give away to help promote their products, especially around the holidays (Xmas/valentine’s day etc.). For example, last Christmas, Pringles (the crisp not the clothing brand :P) had this advent calendar on Facebook, and every day you could open a ‘can’ and potentially win a prize...I did it most days whilst on the bus as it literally took 2 seconds to do, and as a result I won a variety of prizes including a Pringles speaker, a £10 iTunes voucher and an e-book voucher (to buy books for my kindle with). All of which came in very handy...not bad for a couple of minutes work, eh?

Other freebies I've got recently include: Christmas tree anti drop spray, a Brother Cider sports bag, £25 organic mini skin care starter kit, £20 train fare vouchers, 80 drink aware plastic cups (which went to the cheerleading club) £30 worth of takeaway, XXL BBQ papa johns pizza, Thornton’s chocolate Santas, 15ml Lacoste perfume, mini speakers, free cinema tickets to see: The Hobbit, Les Miserables, life of pi, I give it a year, and the list goes on and on….

Before you get the wrong idea or anything, these things weren't gained by spending hours and hours searching for them (I don't have time for that :p); all I would do, when I was bored in lectures or on the bus, was quickly browse Facebook and see posts about these things via bargain pages like '10 ways to have more money as a student', or the company's facebook page directly, put in my details, and voila free stuff!! It really is as easy as that and anyone can do it!!!

To prove it, when my boyfriend and I were going out earlier this week we got to Bromley a little bit too early for the cinema, so decided to look around the shops for a bit. Since neither of us had much money we decided to see how much we could get for free in the space of like 20 minutes...the results are below:

These things were gained by signing up to their Facebook site/using the codes on O2 priority moments! Again, not bad for 20 minutes work! These went down perfectly when we went to the cinema/restaurant...(where coincidently the restaurant had a 50% off deal on).

So now you know all my tips and tricks I would seriously recommend trying them out for yourself :)!
Now moving on to the updates about meeeee (I'll stick to the academic updates for now, and I'll do the personal stuff in my next blog, promiseeeeeee)

Second term is well and truly underway and although I only have 2 lecture/seminars this term (Law and Psychology and Advance Statistics) it seems like I'm busier than ever!! I think it's because I have the ever present thought of my dissertation looming over my head! My draft is due in in a mere few weeks and I still have soooo much to do in terms of the write up!

My courses are going okay though, the Law and Psychology module is really interesting and ties in with my dissertation really well as we're currently looking a lot at the unreliability of eye witness testimony. Advanced Statistics is okayy, it's kind of been a repeat of what we did in second year at the moment, so I'm hoping that once we get into it a bit more it should pick up hopefully :)

But yeahhhh, that's all I have time for now!! In a while, crocodilessss x

Friday, 1 February 2013

MONEY again :)

Following on from the theme of my last blog, regarding budgeting I decided to write this one about my top money saving tips!! One of the main things you’ll hear students go on about is having no money, yet very few are actually savvy about how they spend it.  I know I wasn't in the beginning either, yet after some family problems, money began to get really tight for us and so I began to look for ways to save money wherever possible, and now I've decided to share them with youuuuu :)

Tip number one:  VOUCHERS

These are really really handy if you like to eat out a lot, as just by going for one meal a week can cost anywhere from £50-£70 a month depending on where you go. Yet a lot of the big chains frequently have special offers on where if you just print out the vouchers and hand them over, you can instantly cut a huge chunk of your bill! These can include, BOGOF, 50% or a cheaper set menu. Most of the biggest chains such as Pizza Express, Zizzis, GBK etc. offer the biggest discounts and have now expanded to using mobile phone apps, so in some cases you don’t even need to print out the vouchers!! This was particularly handy the other day when my friend and I had planned to go to a restaurant (and had a voucher for it) but when we got there, it had a sign in the window saying they had unexpectedly closed early for the day and so we were stuck as neither one of us could really afford to pay full price for a meal…we then luckily went onto the o2 priority app and they had an offer on there for Zizzi, where you could get two courses for £10.95, so I got a calamari starter (£5.95) and steak and mushroom salad (£11.95) for the bargain price of £10.95, saving me a grand total of £6.95 :) woooo.

Obviously you could save more money by just not going out, but if you love socialising/eating at least you can save money this way :)

Source: http://www.publicdomainpictures.net

Tip number two: COUPONS/CODES
So Coupons are usually printed vouchers which either gives you a certain amount off an item or gets you the item for free, and you hand these over at the checkout (usually in supermarkets) and they take it off the money for you. I love to use these but many of my friends feel ashamed/embarrassed to use them, sometimes because they’re worried about what the cashier thinks….Having worked in a supermarket before I can honestly tell you they really don’t care…In an average 3 hour shift I used to serve anywhere from 100-150 people and I would struggle to remember a single one….As long as you’re not stupid with them and try and use 100 of them etc they really don’t mind. You can often find these in supermarket leaflets/newsletters (or in certain supermarkets such as Sainsburys they give them out at the till) and they really do help to take money off your bill…every little helps and all!!

Codes also work like coupons, but they’re used online…you’ll be surprised just how much money you save just by doing a quick Google search. Like for example, I was shopping in Dorothy Perkins and they had these gorgeous boots which I fell in love with, but unfortunately they were out of my size and suggested I buy them online…So I went online added them to my basket, added my student discount which took 15% off, then I did a quick Google search for ‘Dorothy Perkins codes’ and like the third or fourth vouchercode site down had a 20% off + free delivery code which saved me an extra £10!! Not bad for a few minutes searching :D so every time you’re about to buy something online, if you just do a quick search and if you find something it can save you money, and if not all you've wasted is a couple of minutes of your time.

But yes :) these tips won’t make you rich and may sound like common sense but you’ll be surprised just how many people don’t do some of these things.  And these tips will definitely save you some money, especially you were planning on buying certain things anyway :)

That’s all for now unfortunately :( but my next blog will involve talking about another money saving tip… FREEBIES :D as well as various other updates on my life :)