Student discounts and deals: how to save on everything from a pizza to travel | Student finance

Whether it’s your weekly shop, a takeaway meal, a textbook or new clothes, there are plenty of ways to save money on the essentials of student life (and the not-so-essentials).

A huge variety of discounts and deals are on offer, although to take advantage of some of them you will need to be signed up to a student discount scheme.

Three of the main ones are Totum (the new name for the NUS extra card), UNiDAYS and Student Beans.

Totum says it has more than 350 offers and discounts available across its platform. It has a free digital version but the membership that comes with a card, which you will often need for a deal, costs £14.99 for a year or – at the time of writing – £24.99 for three years.

UNiDAYS and Student Beans are free to join.

A pizza
There are ways for students to save money on takeaway food. Photograph: PinPep/Rex/Shutterstock

However, with some retailers, all you need to do is flash your university card.

Keep a close eye on websites such as MoneySavingExpert.com because they feature regularly updated lists of the top student deals.

Here are a few of the best deals on offer at the moment:

  • 35% off at the pizza chain Domino’s. Totum, UNiDAYS and Student Beans were all offering this deal at the time of writing, although the terms varied: for example, Totum’s was for online orders of more than £40, while with Student Beans you needed to spend £25 online.

  • The fashion retailer Asos normally offers a 10% student discount, although for a limited period it has been upped to 15%. You need a discount code, which must be obtained through the Asos student validation form that you can complete online, or via Totum, UNiDAYS or Student Beans. Asos’s website gives an end date of 27 September 2021, although some of the student discount sites carry an end date of midnight on 12 September.

  • 25% off university textbooks courtesy of the Oxford University Press website. Simply enter the code WEBXSTU92 at the checkout. It means a book costing, say, £32.99 can be picked up for £24.74. You should probably try other websites and secondhand bookshops first, in case the book you need can be found cheaper elsewhere.

A National Express coach.
A National Express coach. Photograph: Dylan Martinez/Reuters
  • Apple has special pricing for students at, or heading off to, university. One of the promotions gives you a free pair of Apple AirPods when you buy an iPad or Mac. This promotion is due to end on 11 October. You verify your eligibility via Apple or UNiDAYS.

  • The Empire and Cineworld cinema chains are among those offering discounts to students (you will usually have to show valid student ID). Prices vary but at the Empire it might mean paying £6.50 instead of an adult price of £8.99, while at Cineworld it is often a £2 saving. The Odeon chain used to offer discounted tickets for students but no longer does.

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