All work and no play et cetera… When in college or university you need to unwind every once in a while. One of the ways of achieving this is by taking a night out on specific days.
If partying is your cup of tea, you understand how the fun can end up leaving a dent in your pocket. But this doesn’t have to be the case if you follow these tips.
1. Get Started from Home
Drinking costs can quickly add up when buying at the club. For this reason, you could start at home with what you have in the fridge. It could be beer or the scotch whiskey you saved from a previous session.
When you do this, you can save a lot—drinks tend to be more expensive in nightclubs because of the high demand (obviously). Getting the buzz going before going in means you’ll have to buy less to keep it going.
2. Eat a Proper Meal Before Hoping Out
A night out full of activity comes with the munchies—be sure to eat a hearty meal before going out. Otherwise, you’ll leave a huge hole in your wallet if you decide to buy food at a restaurant or in a club.
Alternatively, prepare something before you go out that you can eat as soon as you get back from your activity. This would be perfect if you own a microwave oven to help you heat up your food in less than a minute.
3. Be an Early Bird at the Scene
Night clubs tend to charge more as the night grows. Interestingly, if you come in early, you may not be required to pay an entrance fee in some places.
In this case, prepare yourself in advance and get to the venue before the peak hours kick in. The only price you may have to pay is showing the bouncers some ID which you should have if you’re reading this. The few shillings you save could get you an extra drink or pay for your transport when the party’s over.
4. Always Work on a Budget
Having a working budget is the oldest and most effective way of managing finances. You can have a weekly or monthly budget depending on your income or allowance. If you follow this budget religiously, you’ll always be within your means financially which is our goal here.
As such, you’ll always have enough for all your other essential expenses. To get started, you can perform an audit of how much you spend on a typical night out and use this information to guide you in drafting your budget for the subsequent partying sessions.
5. Don’t Volunteer to Sponsor Your Friends
Have you ever noticed how friends become generous in their spending at parties? Don’t be this friend. Never volunteer to pay for anything—only consider doing it upon request. If you aren’t comfortable with it; there’s no shame in pulling out especially if you’re on a tight budget.
Remember, it’s you who’ll deal with any financial consequences when the party is over. Refer back to point #4 and always stick to your budget if you want to save your money. You came to your respective school alone and you’ll leave alone.
6. Have Some Physical Cash on You
On top of budgeting, ensure you carry enough cash on you when going out. It’ll help you save a lot because ATMs near nightclubs usually charge a lot more than ordinary ATMs.
Demand for cash is always high in such a setting and banks would take full advantage of it. Use your local ATM to withdraw the cash if you need to while heading out.
Also, M-PESA and mobile banking transactions usually come with hefty fees. Using cash will save you a lot in this regard especially if you’re going to perform multiple transactions. But remember you always have to be keen not to lose physical cash.
7. Go Out on Off-Peak Days
Everyone goes out on Friday and nightclubs will always capitalise on maximising profits from this kind of traffic. Surprisingly, in most places, entry fees and stuff like drinks usually go down during off-peak days (Mon-Thursdays).
If you don’t mind the smaller crowds, always make arrangements to go out on such days. Given the cheaper nature of off-peak days, you could end up spending half of what you’d have spent on a Friday or a Saturday.
8. Drink A Lot of Water
Drinking lots of water in between alcohol sessions won’t only inhibit the adverse effects of alcohol but also make you consume less. You’ll drink less because the water will make you feel full and drinking less will result in spending less money.
However, you’ll have to pay a small price of numerous visits to the toilet which shouldn’t be too big of a deal. It can be an opportunity to get away from all the noise for a bit.
9. Use Public Transport or Split Uber Charges
If you’re out with friends and live in the same area—always wait for each other if you have to use a taxi. When it’s time to go home, you can take one taxi and split the charge. If you’re a trio, you could save more than 60% on taxi charges.
Alternatively, if public transport like a bus or bodaboda is available in your direction—use it at all times unless for security reasons. Public transport will cost you a fraction of what an Uber would cost you on any given day.
10. Attend House Parties
Being in college or university comes with the privilege of having tons of house parties every semester. Instead of going out to a nightclub—scour around for house parties.
Despite being wilder than usual, most parties offer free drinks which means you’d end up saving on buying drinks. In some cases, you’d be required to bring your own drinks but this would still be cheaper than the expensive shots down at the club.
Furthermore, being with peers would be much more fun than being out with older strangers. You could even form long-life friendships at house parties.
Bonus Tip: Do Your Assignments in Advance
Remembering the fast-approaching deadline on your university assignments can be a huge buzzkill when you’re out enjoying yourself. Always plan your time well to ensure you have all your schoolwork covered so that you can go out and enjoy yourself without worry.
My strategy back in the day on campus was to do every assignment by Friday evening and have a full weekend of relaxing until Monday. This approach gave me enough time for sports, partying and a bit of travelling outside town.
Save Your University Pocket Money
Money is never enough especially with the stressful nature of university in Kenya. You need to save as much as you can and use the money in critical areas of your student life. Cutting back on your partying budget is one of the best ways to save something extra.
Fun is good but not necessary all the time, you can skip a few weekends and stay indoors beside the tips above. By doing so, you’ll develop a saving culture which will come in handy when you start earning money in the real world outside of university.