Winter is cold, dark and long and as a student with limited funds and worn through socks, it is vital to find a way to survive this most dreaded of season.
Once the mulled wine and brandy has worn off and Christmas is over, many of us forget there is a long hard slog until summer rears its short-lived head once more. For those who live in student accommodation and are completing a part-time undergraduate degree, they may spend more time trying to warm up their hands to work their keyboard than actually typing. Here we have put together the top ways students survive winter so that you can spend more time embracing student life and study this year than on the phone to your landlord begging him to get double glazing.
One top tip for staying warm is to exercise. Raising the heart rate and getting the blood pumping is a sure fire way to fight off the frost.
Either join an exercise class or just go out for a run, you will soon be feeling the burn, in more ways than one. If you don’t have the time or the idea of a jog fills you with dread than why not make like Mrs Doubtfire and get involved in some household cleaning, dragging the hoover up the stairs a couple of times is sure to make you break a sweat or at least forget about the heating.
Still feeling the chill? Then invest in some layers and wrap up warm. Thankfully, onesies are now more fetch than retch, with many great companies offering onesies in a whole range of styles and patterns so that you can find one that will help you stay warm, through both a good laugh and the ever so soft fleece lining.
The All In One Company personalised onesies are one of the best. Choose you style, accessorise and then they’ll bring it to life. Go on, we know you always dreamt of being a dragon when you were a kid. What better way of revising for a business management degree exam than being nice and toastie in your own Tuxsie?
An alternative option is OnePiece, the Norwegian original onesie. Who said onesies had to be garish? These beautiful après-inspired jumpsuits take their inspiration from that of a carefree Sunday and have built a brand around ‘the art of slacking’.
Still not warm enough? Then the SelkBag should sort you out. Forget the heating bills this winter, the SelkBag is a sleeping with arms and legs, allowing you to work and revise whilst feeling as warm as a summer’s day, just with considerably more clothes on! Their innovative design means that you move freely whilst staying as warm as you would be if you were still in bed, now that’s taking student life to the limits.
Wrapping up may keep you warm in the long run but initially, a couple of extra layers doesn’t have the instant gratification of a hot water bottle.
The Hot Water Bottle Shop have years’ of experience in keeping people warm and offer a great way of keeping out the cold without turning the heating on- just yet! With a fantastic range of designs, there is a hot water bottle for everyone, from microwaveable bottles and body warmers to animal toys. Now Ted can help you go red!
Here they have provided us with their top tip for students surviving winter.
Top tips for students:
1. You’re be surprised by how much a hot water bottle or similar heat product can reduce your bills.
2. It’s always handy to have a hot water bottle as you never know when it might come in handy.
Still waiting for yours to be delivered? Then why not make do with good old fashioned body heat? Then penguins have the right idea and it’s a great way of getting ‘closer’ to your housemates, just check that they don’t mind you invading their personal space first.
Put the kettle on
Students get through a lot of tea, and not just for the caffeine at four in the morning on the day of their deadline. Tea and hot drinks are a great way of restoring body temperature and also doubles as a great hand warmer.
When it comes to tea there has never been a bigger debate in Britain. We are passionate about our aromatic beverages and that means that the bag is best debate is unlikely to ever be settled, but here we must say we are a bit partial to good old Yorkshire Tea. Having begun in Harrogate in 1886 they certainly know a thing or two about a good brew.
Put the heating on
Finally, it may seem obvious but as students we are naturally a bit stingy when it comes to heating and bills. However, trust us, it pays to have the heating come on for at least an hour or two a day, if not for your toes than for your pipes.
To get around the astronomical costs be sure to research energy providers to get a good deal.
uSwitch is an online and telephone comparison and switching service that can seriously help reduce your heating bills, comparing the prices on a great range of products and services from energy providers. Here they have even given us some extra advice with three top tips for students to survive winter.
– Shop around: There is currently over £600 difference between the cheapest and most expensive tariff on the market so it is worth seeing what’s out there to ensure you’re on the most competitive energy plan for your needs. As a tenant you have the right to choose your own energy provider when you move in – you don’t have to take up the one of the previous occupants.
– Go digital: Energy suppliers offer discounts for managing your energy account and receiving your bill online.
– Bills, bills, bills: Energy suppliers also provide discounts for taking both gas and electricity together (dual fuel) and also for paying via monthly direct debit so it is worth looking in to this to see if you can shed some pounds off your bill before temperatures start to plummet.
– Get smart: Remembering turning off appliances at the mains when you’ve finished using them will avoid unnecessary standby expenses. Money can also be saved through means such as turning radiators up in communal areas during the day and switching to heating bedrooms just before you go to bed at night and using draught excluders.
EDF Energy offer a great choice in tariffs for students to choose from that could save you money when it comes to heating and offer a solution to that stingy housemate who would rather get frostbite than turn the heating on for an hour. They have a great live chat feature which can see all your questions answered, and besides, who could resist that cute little blob/whatever-he-is mascot?
If you want to get even more hands-on when it comes to energy then they also have a great selection of graduate programmes for students to apply for. See their case studies on their 2013 graduate intake here to see if it’s something you might be interested in.
These are just a handful of ways for students to survive winter. If you have any other top tips do share them on the GSM London Facebook and Twitter pages, we can get through this winter together!
This content was written by Rachel Smith. Please feel free to visit my Google+ Profile to read more stories.