My name is Ekow Bartels, a PhD student at the Surrey Business School. My research topic is on contextualizing innovation in Africa’s informal artisanal and small-scale mining; development trajectories, impacts and policy implications.
I live in a band E university accommodation at Bellerby Court-Wealden House, which is a self-catering flat. It is located on at the edge of Manor Park campus near the Royal Surrey County Hospital and close to Tesco superstore.
Why I love my accommodation
What I like most about my accommodation is its quietness and easy access to various places of interest, including the main University Stag Hill campus (15min walk), Tesco (5min walk) and Surrey Sports Park (5min walk).
Who I share with
I share my flat with 5 other students (all masters students) and we all share a communal kitchen.
Do we share duties?
Each house mate does their own grocery shopping and cooking but we sometimes spend time together at the weekends chatting and cooking together.
Compared to my home accommodation
My accommodation is small compared to my home in Ghana, largely because of the different layout and design. In Ghana our houses are generally built on a large scale because of the hot temperature conditions to allow more air circulation throughout.
Despite this, I love my university accommodation as it is very well managed to cater for all amenities we need.
Here are my top budgeting tips:
1. Plan and budget for the week/ month with a spending limit
2. Shop and cook in bulk to save time and money
3. Look for discounts (especially student discounts) and sales to save money.
4. Track your expenditure to know if you exceed your weekly/ monthly budget
5. Walk to nearby shops to cut down on bus fares
6. Buy long-term bus tickets to save cost
7. Use a railcard for train discounts.