University student money diary
06 June 2023
I'm a second year Acting student who loves musical theatre, with my favourite musical being Hamilton!
We asked Katie, a second-year Acting student what she spends in a typical week at Falmouth University.
I am currently living in a five bedroom shared house in Penryn which is only a 20 minute walk from Falmouth University’s Penryn Campus. Being able to walk to all of my lectures on campus is really convenient as I don’t have to spend money on transport.
Income & Student Finance
I receive around £8,500 in Student Finance each year. This is paid in instalments, with £2,500 being paid in September and January, and a further £3,500 in April.
In order to boost my finances, I have a job as a Student Ambassador at Falmouth University, where I work at Open Days, campus tours and events. I get paid £11.40 per hour for this role. I like to work at least one shift a week during term time to ensure that I have a healthy home, work and uni life balance. However, when there are no lectures, like at the moment as I have finished my studies for my second year of university, I work as many shifts as possible to save money for the next academic year.
My monthly rent is £442 for my room in a shared house in Penryn. I also pay £5.17 per month for insurance, and £6.90 for WIFI and £12.81 for water. As a student, I don’t need to pay Council Tax.
Regarding subscriptions, I use Spotify student premium which costs £5.99 per month. I also invested in a 16-25 Railcard at the beginning of university. This cost £70 for three years and gives me a third off train journeys.
I wasn’t feeling well today so decided to stay at home and rest. Thankfully I didn't have anything planned for this day so taking a day off to recover didn't cause any issues.
I decided to do my weekly food shop today because I was running low on milk and other supplies. I normally spend anywhere between £15 and £25 on a weekly shop and today it was £21.40.
This evening, I head to darts which is a sport I really enjoy and represent Cornwall for. I usually spend no more than £15 for the whole night. Tonight was no different and I spent £12.70 in total which includes transport there and back, darts subs for the week and two pints.
I had work today from 9:30am until 4pm at the University. I bought lunch, which cost roughly £4. Besides this, I didn't spend any money today.
Just like yesterday, I had work from 9:30am until 4pm and I bought lunch, which was again roughly £4.
I had work from 5pm-8:30pm. I decided to eat at home before my shift to avoid having to buy food out. Overall, I didn't spend any money today as I didn't need to.
I had work from 8am until 4pm on the Falmouth Campus, which is about 4 miles from Penryn. I caught the train from Penryn station down to Falmouth which cost £2.10. I picked up lunch while I was there which cost about £4.
After work, I headed to Wetherspoons in Falmouth to meet some of my course mates. I ordered a pint which cost £3.20.
I had the day off today so I decided to stay at home to catch up on some housework, including washing and hoovering. As I didn’t leave the house, I didn't spend any money that day.
- Food & Drink: £44.20
- Entertainment: £2.50
- Travel: £4.70
- Clothes & Beauty: £0
- Home & Health: £0
- Other: £0
This money diary was recorded on a week where I didn't have lectures, so it may vary depending on how many lectures I had on that day. However, this is very close to what I would spend in a regular week. I try and stick to a budget of £50 per week as this helps me to avoid massive overspending and ensures that I have enough money to pay rent and the bills.
For more information on how to budget for university, visit our Money Matters hub.