Dear SU, Life as a student is so expensive

“Dear SU, 
Life as a student is so expensive, and I don’t have a lot of money to spend on fun things; do you have any ideas of free or cheap activities I could do that get me out of the house?" - IEM student, 20

Great question! I think prices are one of the first things you notice during the transition from dependent to independent. The price of rent, food, clothing, and fun easily quadruple and are no longer covered by “mom, can I have 10 euros for lunch?” 

Before continuing, it’s important to remember that financial guilt is a very real feeling. Not wanting to spend money shouldn’t be a roadblock in enjoying and making the most out of your student life. This is where budgeting could help alleviate this guilt and potential stress. Managing your money through budgeting is a valuable skill that can give you a better perspective about the costs you make each month, but also a calculation of when and where you could spend a little bit more “fun” money.

Free activity ideas

Volkspark, Abraham Ledeboer Park, G.j. Van Heekpark, any place that you can visit with trees and grass are nice places to relax and spend an hour or two. Wooldrikspark even has an attached petting zoo for extra goat petting serotonin release

On the top floor of this bookstore is a giant selection of second-hand books. You can spend hours browsing these and learning about any topic you can think of.

The bike ride itself is already a journey, and once there, you can spend countless hours playing hide and seek, using the rooms as backdrops for Instagram shoots, or just simply browsing the wide array of furniture. 

Cheap activity ideas

Bowling costs 25-30 euros per hour for each lane, however, when splitting this with the amount of people that can use this lane, the costs are quite alright.

In Enschede there are a few thrift shops with varying price ranges. Het Goed and Kringloop Enschede are true thrift stores where you can find anything from furniture to clothing to boardgames. Appel & Ei in the city center is a high end thrift store selling good quality clothing items. You can visit these and make a game out of picking the craziest outfit you can find.

On the website of Gemeente Enschede you can find the route of a city walk. Of course, this activity can also be entirely free, but it doesn’t hurt to stop at Coffee Fellows and enjoy the 30% discount you receive via the UnionDeal.

Dear writer, we hope this blog has given you some ideas of free or cheap activities that can get you out of the house, and make the most of your time as a student!