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    Hi,
    I'm currently looking at Royal Holloway as one of my first choice universities - but I'm from the North and don't know what to expect! Is Egham expensive? What is living near London actually like? I need answers!!!!
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    (Original post by katyallison1505)
    Hi,
    I'm currently looking at Royal Holloway as one of my first choice universities - but I'm from the North and don't know what to expect! Is Egham expensive? What is living near London actually like? I need answers!!!!
    Hi Katy,

    It's so great to hear you're interested in Royal Holloway!

    In my experience (coming from Devon and also being a bit worried about the living costs of the area) I never found it too much of a problem. Students get the London allowance for student finance without the major costs of living in London. I lived in catered Halls (Reid) which made meals fairly cheap and I came up with some great ways of keeping track of my spending. Things like travel costs stayed relatively low because most of the things you need on a day to day basis are in walking distance of campus.

    The thing I loved about Royal Holloway (coming from outside the London area) was how accessible London was, but that you were still able to keep outside of the main city when you wanted to. This means that you're able to explore or even find industry specific work in the city but also take walks through Windsor Great Park and have that campus sense of community.

    Our Fees and Finance section on our website is super helpful for information on loans, bursaries and scholarships, but if you have any specific questions just let me know!

    Summer
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    Thankyou so much! This is an excellent help 😊
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    Would you be able to share some of the methods you used to keep track of your spending? That would be super useful, thanks in advance!
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    (Original post by Shawless)
    Would you be able to share some of the methods you used to keep track of your spending? That would be super useful, thanks in advance!
    Hey, Shawless! I'm not the rep by any means, but I'm a current student at RHUL who's been trying hard to budget, so I'm happy to share some of my tips.

    My main saving grace has been my little budgeting spreadsheet I set up to try and manage how much I spend. I made it before term started, to try and provide for me a "maximum spend" boundary; essentially, how much I can spend without starting to suffer for it. I estimated a good amount per week (on a 38-week basis, since that's the length of the term, and also on a 52-week one since I do exist for the rest of the year too) per month and per year and made sub-categories to fit.



    Obviously, my estimates might be totally different to yours! My travel home is quite expensive, but I don't pay for my phone contract and I don't drink, so the two tend to balance each other out.



    With those categories above, I then added onto the side of the table with a more accurate weekly budget - I've been writing in all my expenditures as they've happened. (That -5 was me gaining £5 for taking part in a language experiment with the Psychology department!)

    The first purple row is my total spend for the week; the one beneath it is how much is left over after my week according to the budget I laid out for myself. As you can see, it's always been more - I've barely touched halfway at all for any of the weeks so far, and hopefully it'll stay like that.

    Every week I put the remaining amount away in my savings account, and to keep track of how much should be in there I have this cool cumulative savings row:



    (I'd like to thank my GCSE maths teacher for this. If nothing else, I managed this with that A.)

    The green tab is how much I spent in the entire month. I think I'm doing pretty well.

    So - right now I have almost £300 away in savings in case I need it! It's a great feeling to have. I know I'm living quite frugally in the scheme of things for now, but I know it'll make my life much easier in a few months time.

    I hope this helped, and it wasn't too "wow, look at Jinkx with her boring spreadsheet", haha. Honestly, as long as you're not going absolutely overboard you shouldn't struggle for money at Royal Holloway at all; my worst enemy has been gingerbread hot chocolates from Crosslands and nothing else.

    If you're curious about RHUL at all, my fresher's blog is detailing my entire first year at uni here, so I hope th at might help you out should you need it! <3
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    (Original post by Shawless)
    Would you be able to share some of the methods you used to keep track of your spending? That would be super useful, thanks in advance!
    (Original post by Jinkx Monsoon)
    Hey, Shawless! I'm not the rep by any means, but I'm a current student at RHUL who's been trying hard to budget, so I'm happy to share some of my tips.
    <3
    Hi Shawless,

    I'm sure Jinkx's (incredible) response probably answers your question, but I thought I'd pitch in a couple more ideas on how you can keep spending down at Royal Holloway.

    1. I lived in catered Halls (Reid!), so at the start of each term I set myself an ideal budget for food and then topped up my student card with that budget at the start of term. This had a few benefits of making sure you have enough money for food at the end of term (when other students may be on the tinned beans), you don't have to constantly be sure you have money on your card and continue topping up, and it meant that you could actually see how much you had spent on food alone.
    2. Alternatively, if you're looking to live in self-catered Halls I'd recommend making sure you always have one or two easy microwavable meals so you're much less tempted to order in takeaway on those nights you can't be bothered to cook or are too busy working.
    3. Planning travel can also save you a bit of money. Something like a 16-25 railcard offers you 1/3 off your train journey, group tickets on the train are often discounted, if you're going to Windsor as a group of three or more it can be cheaper to get a taxi than the bus, and travelling home via coach is probably cheaper than the train.
    4. NUS cards are incredibly useful to have around Egham, Staines and London. Loads of places do student discounts from big chains to independent stores and even the hair dressers. This is particularly good for buying big products like laptops, but even discounts on the small items add up.
    5. If you want to be quite strict with your spending, I always found taking your weekly budget out as cash was a good way to deter you from overspending, especially on evenings out. It's a good way of forcing yourself to take note of costs and how much you've spent that week. There's also a Santander bank and a few cash points across campus, so it's really easy to do.

    I hope that gives you some idea of ways to save money at Royal Holloway! If you have any other questions or want more tips let me know.

    Summer
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    I can't really comment on the costs of living in private accommodation as I'm a first year living on campus, but I can give you my opinion on Egham itself.

    I came from the north too (Yorkshire) and I had no problem getting used to it here. Egham is a nice and quiet place that you'd feel safe in pretty much any time of the day. You can walk to the high street from campus in about 15 minutes and busses run from outside founders to Egham shops several times an hour.

    Egham is a bit limited for shopping but you still have a Tesco, Waitrose and an Iceland store and when you consider the fact that a 5 minute train ride from Egham to Staines is just £2.45 with a railcard, it really does become a non-issue. Egham to Waterloo is a 40 minute train ride for just under a tenner, so nothing too bad either. In my opinion, being in close proximity to London while not actually being in the heat of it all is a huge plus.

    Overall, it's a nice place to live if you want somewhere nice and relaxed.
 
 
 
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