poor uni student

How To Survive ‘Til Pay Day When You’re A Completely Dirt Poor Uni Student

You just paid for five litres of petrol with twenty cent coins, your search history is filled with junk like “how much can I sell a human kidney for” and you’re convinced the flavour of Mi Goreng will be stained on your taste buds for all eternity.

Congratulations, you’re broke.

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Whether you’re terrible with your finances, got smacked across the head with a bunch of sudden bills, or aren’t entirely sure how you have just $20 that’s gotta last you three weeks, just know not all hope is lost.

As someone who has been in the trenches of being broke (hello!) I’ve got you sorted with some short-term fixes to help you survive the time between now and that sweet, sweet direct deposit hitting your bank, otherwise known as pay day.

#1 Cry

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Let it all out hun, we’ve all been there. Turn the shower on to an almost-scalding temperature, play some Enya, assume the fetal position and just cry.


#2 Make It A Contest

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Nothing like a little spot of competition to spice things up – and stop you from crying – huh? The only difference from this being, you know, a fun challenge is that the only competitor is you and the prize is not starving to death.

Before going to the shops to stock up on 75-cent loaves of bread and near out-of-date lean cuisines, have a good look in your pantry. Then empty its contents and try your best to make something out of the ingredients – kind of like a really depressing MasterChef challenge.

Carry this mentality when you eventually make your way to the supermarket to blow the $3.70 you can afford to spend on food this week. Make it a game to try to get as much as possible for as little.

True story: I once made a lentil stew which fed me for 8 meals for just $3.60… get creative, binch.


#3 Make Some Ca$h

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You know the best way to solve money problems? Make more money.

Yeah, you can pick up some extra shifts, but we need cash NOW, right? This is when you’ll want to hit up Facebook marketplace or Gumtree.

Go through all your shit, find a bunch of stuff you can sell and throw it up online – I’m talking textbooks, appliances, that weird dining set your aunt got you for Christmas last year, whatever you can get rid of.

Mark them at a price people can’t refuse and collect some cold, hard cash, baby.


#4 Sell Your Self Skills

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Don’t own anything you can’t liquidate into cash money? No biggie! It’s time to sell yourself… I mean, sell your skills.

Walk some dogs, clean a house, tutor a kid… you get it. Online message boards like Gumtree are always on the hunt for people to do odd jobs for cash.

I once walked for close to six hours dropping real estate brochures into people’s letterboxes for a whopping $25. Was it cute? No. Did I buy $25 worth of frozen pizzas when I was finished? Oh yeah.

Look, being broke is the absolute pits and nobody’s idea of fun, but there are ways around it if you get creative and lower your standards enough to go letterbox dropping.


Good luck, and if you need a loan, don’t call me!