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Look for extras to combat student costs

Look for extras to combat student costs

Category: Banking

Updated: 19/08/2010
First Published: 19/08/2010

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

On the day that hundreds of thousands of A Level students will either be toasting their exam success or drowning their sorrows, the spiralling costs of university may not be uppermost in their thoughts.

For some, it will soon be an issue they have to face, however, as new figures show that the cost of student living has risen by more than a quarter over the last six years.

Living costs have hit £718 a month, equating to £8,616 annually, and may rise by a further £100 in the next three years, according to Family Investments.

In 2004, full time students could have expected a monthly outlay of £561.

Earlier this week, it was revealed that students are increasingly taking to working alongside their studies to pay their way.

With students now forced to balance studies, rest, play and employment, it is worth weighing up what incentives can be gained when picking a student bank account.

First and foremost, accounts should be chosen on their financial merits – do you need a product that offers a large interest free overdraft, for example – but getting money off costly equipment or saving cash on rail fares are welcome extras.

Two such examples come from Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and NatWest.

The RBS Royalties Student Account offers an interest free overdraft of up to £1,000 in the first year, rising to up to £2,000 in year five.

It also comes with eye catching incentives of £100 off a state-of-the-art laptop and a Student Discount Card that offers hundreds of discounts at top retailers.

If you're likely to be travelling back home from university, then the Student Current Account from NatWest might be more up your street.

As well as offering the same overdraft terms and the Student Discount Card that comes with the RBS account, it includes a free five year 16-25 Railcard that means students can get heavily discounted travel.

Railcards are renewed annually as long as holders register for online banking and online statements.

To benefit from the offers, students must use the products as their main accounts, with student loans and other payments being paid in.

For a full listing of student accounts and the incentives they offer, check the Moneyfacts Best Buy tables.

Compare student accounts

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.