Arranging for Finances for Studying in the UK
The UK is a land of manifold opportunities. Every aspiring student sees the dream of sipping on English tea and conversing with top-grade scholars at LSE. I've seen many of my friends give up on such dreams due to financial constraints, but you can make yours a reality.
While loans are recognized quite well as a medium for accruing funds, what they also do is accrue debt. However, there is a way to study at your dream university in the UK without mounds of student debt on your back.
This is where self-funding comes into the picture. I know I know, this isn’t news to us but this method remains riddled with problems that no one is answering.
Self-funding might sound a bit daunting but it is a great solution to chart your finances and yes, your gullak money counts.
How to plan your funds?
Planning is as essential, or even more in some cases than the entire process of self-funding. I have witnessed a lot of students ignoring, or not giving sufficient attention to planning, which has sadly thrown them off the rails.
So give a little extra time when you are mapping out your budget because as much as we’d like to believe, we are not Amelia Thompson and no queen grandmother of ours is coming for us. Your budget should count the expenses for:
Rent - approximately £547. It will end up on the higher end if you go for private accommodation facilities
Transportation - Transportation can end up being very expensive if you don’t plan it out correctly. Apart from walking and cycling, you can avail the bus which will cost you approximately £100/per month (one bus ride: £1.65). Availability of public transport will not burn a hole in your pocket, so do consider investing in student passes and railcards.
Food - If you plan on unleashing your inner Sanjeev Kapoor you can spend about £80 to £100 a month, or about £250 if you eat out or order food.
Mobile and Internet charges - The Internet is absolutely essential thus one must take into account its expense. In the UK, mobile data plans vary from around £10 to £20, per month. Remigos can save you the hassle of finding the best and most economical service provider, by setting up your sim card, before you even land in the UK.
Recreational Activities - The cost of leisure and amusement activities can range from £5 to £250.
Another very important factor of planning is savings. This should go without saying but I am gonna say it anyway, no planning is complete without taking into consideration the means to save.
After riling myself through this entire process, one thing I have realized is that even the most delicately planned schemes can go awry due to non-apprehensive issues.
How can you do it? Well, there are several ways to do that:
Student Travel Cards: In the UK you can get a student travel card made so save up on your travel expenses by as much as 50%. You can get an Student Oyster card or a Railcard, to make your travel related payments simpler and avail several discounts on the fare.
Applications: A lot of applications allow you to avail discounts on a plethora of things. UniDays for example offers discounts on food, makeup, clothes etc. You might also want to look for university applications.
Student discounts and vouchers: Spotify is not the only one offering student discounts, take advantage of your student ID, and avail of various services at a reduced price.
Save up on Bank Fees: Banks tend to charge a lot when it comes to currency exchange and money transfer. You can save yourself this money by carrying out transactions through Remigos, where you can end up saving up to Rs. 1,00,000 in comparison to an average bank with no hidden charges.
In Remigos the entire process is utterly transparent!
So channel your inner Amy Santiago and plan away!
Now that we’ve got the basics cleared, let us quickly move on to how you can arrange financial resources for yourself.
1. Ask for help from family and close friends
As per a recent study, conducted by the Institute of International Education, approximately 65% of international students seek funds and financial support from their family and friends. So do seek help from your nearest and dearest ones. Paying back relatives can be a bit distressing. These days, a few models are gaining traction where people pay back a percentage of their earnings to their relatives, easing up payback stress.
More often than not, students run into issues with the banks to send this money to the university, such as delays in the transaction, excessive paperwork, etc. I know for a fact that a student’s routine is busier and more stressful than that of Elon Musk, so taking care of such tasks can be a problem.
This is where Remigos comes in.
Okay! Okay, I know it sounds a little too TeleTV but trust me, I have fallen prey to their laborious procedures and the services provided by Remigos can really ease your burden.
With Remigos you can :
Carry out super fast transactions, within a limit of 6 hours
Bid farewell to any paperwork.
Take care of any urgent payment that comes your way!
Sometimes, what seems overly complicated gets solved within a matter of hours. Sometimes all you have to do is have the right approach at the right time. If you don’t believe me, listen to the story of Sumit Samos Turuk, from Koraput who successfully managed to collect funds for his degree at Oxford University.
Sumit, a first-generation learner from a Dalit family was able to raise his tuition fee along with 8 lakhs extra.
Just like Sumit, you can do it too. So maybe this time apart from your best friend, rant out your issues to the people around you! Your honest appeal can be your way to your dream university.
To successfully carry out the process, you should follow the steps mentioned below:
Set a goal. It is good to set a limit to how much you want to collect!
Find websites that can connect you to a large band of people. Some of them are listed below :
Tell your story. Share your dreams and passion, you never know how many will end up connecting with you.
Set up a secure mode of payment. You can rely on Remigos here, which is RBI regulated, so no more delays and security breaches to worry about.
This is a tried and tested way of ensuring the collection of funds for your education in the UK. Nothing feels better than a well-earned scholarship. First of which, is that you don't have to pay them back
Unlike popular belief that only the brightest can score a scholarship, these days, a variety of opportunities, catering to every kind of intelligence are present. They can be broadly classified as :
Merit-based scholarships, are awarded for your achievements in a variety of fields. They are offered by both universities and the governments
Specific scholarships are designed to uplift people from a certain ethnic community and also bridge the gender gap. They aim to empower such students by taking away the financial burden that comes with quality education.
Grant or need-based scholarships are awarded in consideration of your financial standings. These scholarships are given to the financially weaker sections of society.
Some famous scholarships to be on the lookout for, are :
Scotland Saltire Scholarship
Charles Wallace India Trust Scholarship
Now while every scholarship has its eligibility criteria and deadlines, a few basics must be kept in mind while applying
Start Early - You should try to initiate the process as early as possible, you wouldn’t want to wait for another year, just because you did not keep tabs.
Check websites regularly - This might sound like a very small thing to mention but a lot of information that you are looking for is already available on government and university websites. So keep following them for regular updates.
Keep all documents prepared- Scholarships can ask for a variety of documents, from evidence of admission to results of the previous educational institution. So, be prepared with all the necessary documents.
Keep your well-wishers close- Remember, that this process can get tedious and stress-inducing so above all keep your well-wishers close and do not hesitate to ask for help.
The ladder might be a little exhausting to climb, but if done strategically, the hike up to the hill is not that steep.
Get a part-time job
Your Netflix dream of working in Starbucks or a cute cafe can be your key to achieving your self-funding goals. While it may get hectic, the result will be worth it.
Some part-time jobs that are popular in the UK are:
Dog Walker- This fun job can get you a good amount of money and you will also end up making some pretty loyal furry friends.
Proofreader- Time to use your IELTS certificate! Use the hours you spent honing your grammar, put your reading glasses on and get ready to earn some extra bucks.
Private Tutor- You can earn money by teaching people around you, any of the skills or subjects you are good at.
Barista- And of course, you can find yourself the job of a barista, in a cafe which suits your schedule, which shouldn’t be difficult to come by.
While we’re on the topic of part-time jobs, it is bound to get tiring. Between classes, tests and your job, how are you supposed to find time for other important tasks?
Allow Remigos to rescue you!
Remigos helps in setting up essentials and other services that would otherwise cost you a lot of time and money. They include:
Setting up a sim card
Getting the best insurance deal
Replacing 6-month upfront rent with comfortable monthly payments.
Easy payment of tuition fees sans the paperwork
Tracking payments so you don’t miss any deadlines.
And no this is not too good to be true.
We truly believe in making the lives of students easier, of making the heavy process of financial management a tad bit lighter. Remigos saves, tracks and monitors, it is like your personal marvel superhero, making your experience in the UK, much smoother.
I believe the most important thing to remember as a student aspiring to study abroad is that there is always a way. No matter how difficult the situation may seem, there is always an option, an opportunity, or service providers like Remigos, for that matter!
Never stop looking, and you will surely find yourself studying at the university of your dreams and living your best life.