Job Hunting on a Budget


Graduates aren’t renowned for having tons of cash, and unfortunately, you don’t get a pay-out for graduating. This can mean that while you’re job hunting, you’re going to be on a budget.

Not to worry though, follow our tips to make sure that while you’re out of work, you won’t be out of pocket – might even get you into some good habits for life.


Whilst you may have pulled off risky writing feats or smashed an exam with little to no revision at university – unfortunately, the real world requires a bit more planning. By keeping track of what’s in the bank, you’re forced to come to terms with how much you’re spending and how much you really need to cut back. £40 may have once been justifiable on a night out, but that’s the equivalent of an on-peak return to London for some commuter belts (yes, even with a 16-25 railcard – being an adult is expensive). You’ve now got to rework your priorities and see where the money is best spent, even at the cost of a trip to the bar.

Find the most economical route

Wherever you’re planning on working, it’s always worth planning ahead to see if you can make your journey cheaper. Perhaps there’s a route that takes a bit longer and requires an extra change but saves you £10? If you’re planning your interviews in advance, see if you can get your journey ticket beforehand too – some lines have reduced tickets right up until the day before, so see if you can save yourself a couple of quid here too. If it’s possible, see if you can arrange an interview later in the day; on-peak train tickets can be up to double the standard price, although if you are going to fork out for something an interview isn’t a bad reason.

Take advantage of deals

Your university years will have taught you many things and finding the freebies should be one of them. If you need a new suit or a fresh pair of shoes, consider shopping around to see if there’s a better deal out there. Charity shops are often goldmines for good quality cheap clothing, and all the money goes towards a good cause!

Don’t forget to treat yourself

Job hunting is tough. It can be long and arduous, and a little demoralising. While you may need to tighten your belt when you’re not earning, don’t forget to treat yourself every now and again to keep your spirits up. Had a pretty tricky interview? Go and buy yourself lunch, you worked hard. Nailed a phone interview? Celebrate by grabbing coffee with a friend.

Although it’s important to save what you can, it’s also important to cut yourself some slack – this is only temporary, and no one is unemployed forever. Sit tight, and make sure that there’s enough money in the bank for when you need to fork out for that monthly travel card.


Written by: Rachel Cameron-Potter