The Best Money Saving Apps to Download Now

Living on a student budget can be difficult. As we all start to see the difficulties with the cost-of-living crisis it is important to plan and budget carefully, to cut costs where we can without compromising on the quality of our lives. One way in which students can make the most of their money is by searching for and downloading the best money saving apps.

You’ll find there’s loads of apps out there, so it can be tricky to find the best ones for your needs. Whether you’re looking to save money on travel, shopping, music, or just to build up some cash savings for the future, stick with us and we’ll guide you through! 

Money saving apps

Apps for saving money 

 We’ve of course got to start with apps that will help you build up a rainy-day fund and put away some cash on a regular basis.  


Plum is one of the best money saving apps around, as it is easy to set-up and just goes on saving you money in the background as you go about your daily life. Plum calculates how much money you can afford to save after tracking and analysing your spending habits. It’ll automatically put aside small bits of money as and when it deems fit, depending on how you choose to use it.  

For example, Plum offers the ‘Round Ups’ feature where the app rounds up to the nearest £1 every transaction you’ve made over the previous week. So, for example, if you have spent £2.74 in the corner shop, Plum will automatically deposit £0.26 into your savings account. This makes for an easy way to quickly build up your savings, a great thing for students living on a budget, especially if you buy a coffee every morning to get you going – those purchases soon add up to real savings in Plum. For those of you interested in investments and earning interest on your savings, Plum Plus and Plum Pro are the paid-for versions of the money saving app. 



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Another example of an app that helps you save money., Chip analyses your bank transactions and over time learns when and where you have spare change in your account, automatically putting it to one side in a savings account for you. You’re not left out of control though, with simple functionality that allow you to set the level of savings that you would like to build up. This could be at a slow and steady pace where a small amount is put aside, or you can go for a fast-paced savings approach. This can be reviewed and confirmed before each auto-save if you wish to edit things. 

The longer you have Chip, the better it will become at learning your behaviours and the types of savings and tweaks you make, automatically adjusting to make better decisions for your savings goals. ‘Save Streaks’ and ‘Payday Put Away’ are other cool saving features that you can take advantage of with Chip, whilst you can also take up the offer of automatic investments from your savings.  This is one of the best money saving apps that make it easy to put money aside, no matter your reason for wanting to do so.  



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Apps for banking and budget management 

The possibilities for banking have changed from traditional high street banks to complete control from the palm of your hand.  


Starling Bank is an app-only bank account that functions in a different way to what you might have been used to with a traditional high street bank. You can open a current account with Starling in just a few minutes for free, and it will bring you a wealth of benefits in terms of learning how to budget and understanding your finances. The whole idea behind Starling is to make it easier to manage your money. The home screen has a simple design and tells you at a quick glance how much money you have in your account and how much you have spent each day. 

When you dig a little deeper you can see how it helps as one of the best money saving apps around for students. Your spending is split up into different categories (which you can personalise to help define your spending as clearly as possible). These insights are invaluable to help you learn how to manage your money effectively and to see exactly where your money goes every month. You earn interest on any money in your account and can set yourself spending limits and savings goals which are easily trackable through the app. 



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Similar to Starling, Monzo is one of the best money saving apps in the smartphone app-based banking world. All the best bits about banking solely on your phone have been refined on Monzo over the years, so you’ve got access to the intuitive, intelligent features that will make a big difference to how you manage your budget.  

You’ll receive real-time notifications of any spending and incoming transactions on your phone, which helps to give you a sense of your cashflow on a daily basis. There are savings features galore to help you build up your rainy-day fund, you can freeze your card immediately through the app if it is lost or stolen, and there are no extra fees when you use your Monzo card abroad.  



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Apps for saving money on travel 

Travel is an essential part of our daily lives, from getting to and from university, to visiting friends and family in other locations. Travelling can become very expensive if you’re not too careful. These apps are designed to help you save money wherever you can. 


Not all students have access to a car, but if you do, you’ll know how expensive it can be to keep it running. Costs for insurance, petrol, and parking can all add up quite quickly, but with Parkopedia you can change the game and save money with parking. It is a fantastic money saving app that provides you with details of free parking in your current location. Whether you are looking for free parking around campus every day for university or you are looking for free or cheap parking when visiting another city for the day. It can be so frustrating to park up in what you think is a free parking spot and then find a parking ticket on your windscreen when you come back a few hours later. Parkopedia should make this trauma a thing of the past! 


Train travel gets more expensive every year. What should be a fun, easy, and cost-effective way to travel around the country, and to use as a commute every day, has become an expensive chore for many students. It’s easy to feel priced out of train travel, which is a shame, but there are things you can do to save money when travelling by train. Trainsplit is an app that can save you up to 90% off expensive rail fares if you’re lucky. Instead of buying one ticket to get to your destination, splitting your ticket can sometimes save you a lot of money. The app will find the best solution to save you money on your journey, suggesting splitting the journey up into multiple fares, sometimes up to 2, 3, or 4 tickets. You can stay in the same seat the entire time, but you’ll have spent much less money than you would have normally. 

Alongside a split ticket app such as Trainsplit, you should also take advantage of any railcard that you are eligible for. For £30 per year, a Young Persons Railcard gives you 30% off your rail travel, just remember to book in advance whenever possible and always carry your railcard with you when travelling (although they are digital these days so easy to find on your phone alongside your digital tickets). 


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Managing your bills and expenses 

Whether you live on your own or you share student accommodation, it is important to keep track of your bills (especially if you are responsible for all your utility bills in a shared student house).  


Sharing bills of any kind can be difficult to manage, especially if there is only one person managing or acting as the admin for an account and the bills for a household.  Splitwise is also a fantastic app to use on night’s out or when you are out for a meal with a big group of friends. If you do absolutely everything with your university friends, course mates and house mates, Splitwise helps you keep track of who owes what and can split bills evenly to make sure everyone is treated fairly when it comes to spending money.  


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Saving money on food 

Learning how to cook is an important part of growing up and will become central to how you live your life as a student. A big part of your budget is linked to food, so how can you save money in this area? 

Big Oven 

The Big Oven app is incredible. It helps you to learn more about food, ingredients, and different taste combinations. If you want to save money on your weekly meals, Big Oven also has a leftovers function where you can input all the ingredients you have leftover in your cupboards and fridge and gives you suggestions of delicious meals you can make with them. This is possibly the best part of this app, helping you reduce your food waste and become a better cook in the process! There are countless recipes on the app for you to explore, and remember that we too have suggested some tasty student recipes in the past.  


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Selling things online 

Sometimes you want to make some quick cash and selling your things online makes a lot of sense. If you have clothes, books, or other items that you no longer use why not make a quick sale online using an app such as Depop or Vinted. 


You can sell absolutely anything on Depop, with a 10% charge on any sale that you make. Depop is the best around for making money online through selling your second-hand wares. The design looks and feels like Instagram, making it accessible and simple to use, especially if you’ve never done this type of thing before. It is easy to upload your sale item, add a photo, description, price, size, and any other important information you think is needed. Vintage items are popular on this platform, but you can pretty much sell anything you want. 

This list of the best money saving apps is by no means the definitive list, but it is a great start! We understand the pressures students face when managing budgets and living within their means. Why not make the most of technology and some of the latest and greatest apps to save a bit of money on travel, food, fun, and bills, whilst also putting aside some money regularly to build up a savings fund? 



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If you enjoyed reading this blog, you should read our blog on How To Keep Up With Friends This Summer next! 

Still need a place to set up home when you head off to university? Then explore the variety of student accommodation locations we have available here at USL.