Student NUS Card: Everything You Need to Know
One of the greatest perks of being a student is the discount that comes with it, from cinema tickets to clothes and holidays, studying for a degree can get you money off almost anything. We suggest taking full advantage of this, and the best way is by purchasing an NUS card.
Some assume that paying £12 for a card isn’t necessary when your university provides you with a student ID. This is fine, as long as throughout your entire three years as an undergraduate student you are lucky enough to meet only lenient sales assistants. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for most people, so parting with that £12 may be necessary.
Don’t panic, though; here at University Compare, we understand the financial situation students are in and how every pound counts so we’d never suggest paying for something that isn’t going to be beneficial. We’ve broken down the perks of this little piece of plastic into our three favourite categories, food, shopping and travel!
First things first, food! Going out for dinner can be an expensive business and a rare treat for those of us who can barely afford to eat at home let alone in a restaurant. However, for those special occasions, it makes a nice change and is easily affordable with an NUS card. Presenting your card when you ask for the bill will automatically wipe 20-25% your entire food order in restaurants such as Prezzo, Frankie & Benny’s, Pizza Express and Zizzi’s. That basically means if four of you go for dinner, you only pay for three to eat; perfect for taking your flatmate out on their birthday!
If you’re the type of person, who needs greasy food after a night out, head to a McDonalds on the way home instead of a kebab house. Those with an NUS card receive a free cheeseburger or McFlurry with every meal; we’re sure your drunk self will not need convincing on this one, and hey, you may even survive a night out at university!
If you’ve found the cheeseburgers and alcohol have caught up on you around midterm, you may want to think about a healthier lifestyle. Living like a carefree student is fun for a while until you can no longer fit in your 15% off jeans. Those clever people at NUS have thought this through as well and offer a discount on gym memberships. Sign up for free with companies such as ‘The Gym’, and you can pay just £19.99 a month, all you have to do is watch the pounds disappear (and we don’t mean from your bank balance).
When loan day arrives, it’s normal for students to go a little overboard and spend too much, justify this by showing your NUS card wherever you go. Don’t be embarrassed to ask any shop if they accept student discount; some may not advertise it but still accept it. Some popular high street stores who offer student discount are Claire’s Accessories, Matalan, New Look, Republic, Topman, Topshop, Miss Selfridge, Mulberry, Fat Face, Blue Inc., Bench and Austin Reed. (To name just a few!) These all offer the basic rate of 10-15% off but look out for special deals when they up the discount to 20%.
If you tend to shop online, then you will most definitely benefit from parting with £12 at the beginning of the year. Websites require you to enter your unique NUS number in order to get the discount, but with websites such as ASOS offering timed sales for students of up to 30% off, you’ll make your money back almost straight away. Online shops you can save money with include: Amazon, boohoo.com, ASOS, missselfridge.com, Ticketmaster and missguided.co.uk
If you’ve moved halfway across the country to go to university, you’ll find that those trips to visit your parents and to see friends will cost you more than you can afford. Train tickets are not cheap, but with a 16-25 Railcard, you can save 30% every time you travel. What’s more, an NUS card gets you 11% off the initial cost of the Railcard which means you’re saving money even before you’ve begun to save money, who can argue with that?
If you’re yet to be convinced that NUS can save you money, we urge you try and obtain a discount from this list of shops without one. You can see how much more money you can save with your NUS Card, by seeing the shops that will be accepting the NUS Card, here.
After all, we’ve admitted that some shops are very lenient and let you off with a student card. We just don’t want you to skip to the till, arms full of clothes, beaming smile on your face because of your savings to be greeted by shop assistant unwilling to co-operate. Trust us, full priced clothes do not feel as good.
If you need to see your savings in black and white, the NUS website also has a handy tool which enables you to input your average monthly and yearly spending and then calculates how much you can save if you spent the same amount but used an NUS card.
Click here to have a look at your spending, or more importantly, your savings!
Using this, you can really weigh up your options and decide if buying an NUS card or how an NUS Extra Card can be beneficial to you personally.