Smart Living at University

Moving away from home and living in student halls gives students the opportunity to live independently, and you definitely learn a lot! Continue reading to find out about how to live smart (e.g. saving money and time) in university halls.

Student moving into student halls on Manor Park.

Make the most of the space in your room

University halls have lots of spaces to store your things, sometimes you just need to think outside of the box. Below are some ideas on where you could store your things:

  • Store shoes/items under the bed
  • Buy under bed storage boxes for extra storage
  • Store your suitcase on top of the wardrobe
  • Use organisers that can hang on the back of the door
  • Buy small-medium storage boxes for the shelves to store small items
  • Put spare toiletries in a box under the sink (if you have a sink in your room)

Buy items when you arrive to university

If you arrive to university by public transport or have limited space in a car, it can be a lot easier to buy larger or heavier items once you move in. This could include things like duvets, pillows, blankets and cooking equipment. The University of Surrey is only approximately a 20 minute walk away from Guildford Town Centre where there are several shops to buy everything you need.

Don’t bring everything to university

When packing to come move to university, it can be very easy to want to pack everything you own… but in reality you don’t need everything if you have lots of things. Think about what you will need for the duration you will be at university for; for example, if you plan on going home over the Christmas holidays, you may not need to take your summer clothes for the first semester.

Freshers Angels welcoming new students to student halls.

Don’t over buy food

It can be very easy to over buy food each week, this can cause unnecessary food waste and waste your money. Plan ahead and consider if you will be going out or having take away food that week.

Food shopping

Think ahead when you go food shopping. If you walk to the supermarket, consider using a backpack and reusable shopping bags to make it easier to carry your food.


Make sure you meet the minimum quantity of laundry when you go to the laundrettes. Alternatively, you could share the washing machine/dryer with a close friend and share the cost! A shopping bag can also be useful to carry your laundry to the laundrette, alternatively you could use your suitcase.

Flat meals

Another way to save time cooking and money on individual ingredients is by cooking meals as a flat. This can be a nice way to socialise, improve your cooking skills and try new foods!

Look out for the sales/student discount

If you need to buy something, whether that’s clothing, books or even electronic items, do your research as you may find a sale or student discount!

Students walking through Manor Park.

This blog went through tips for living in student halls. To read other blogs written by current students at the University of Surrey, click here.