Student alcohol spending drops? Not a hoax headline but the palpable truth. The six-month-old introduction of nine thousand pound a year tuition fees has triggered a fittingly sober effect on alcohol spending among university students.
Student money site Save the Student found that first year students under the new student finance system are venturing out to drink less than final year students. An apparently puzzling ratio of 1.23:1.57 days a week for first years amongst their finalist peers suggests a financial awareness of the youngest university generation. With the significant fee increase, a similar adjustment of fiscal intelligence appears to have surfaced.
An average of nineteen pounds a week is now being spent of drinking ‘out’ across the spread of university year groups, significantly lower than last year’s NUS figure of twenty-eight pounds. As pre-drinking becomes an increasingly popular money saving technique for a school night, Save the Student’s January 2013 ‘Student Drinking & Nightlife’ survey found that a third of a student’s night out budget is spent on cheap bottles to drink before leaving.
“This news does not necessarily mean that students are drinking less,” said Owen Burek, founder of Save the Student. “It may be that the typical student is simply becoming more price sensitive to pennies spent at the bar”. With the cost of living and attending university having distinctly risen in the past year, Burek adds that “it’s clear that students are responding to the pressures of having to save and budget”.
As fees rest at a tripled fee of nine thousand pounds a year, this monetary reaction should be closely followed as 2013’s prospective first year students gear up for their exams.
For more information on Save the Student, visit www.savethestudent.org
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