For a lot of international students financial means are secured by their parents, which are locked in a KU Leuven account. Every month the university sends a specific amount of money to the student’s personal bank account. Even though this may seem as a large amount, it can be very hard to manage in an efficient manner. For many students, the money includes the rent cost as well as other living expenses. Even though Brussels seems to be very expensive, there are many ways to manage your spending the right way, while also being able to save.
Being that KU Leuven Brussels does not have a campus, the first and most difficult task of all students coming to study here is finding a house or room to rent. There are a few student housings available in the center; Brusselo, Studiopolis, Sparstraat, etc. Even though they have their positive aspects, they are very expensive for some students to afford. Some good ways to find cheap housings are most definitely on Facebook groups by searching “Rooms to rent in Brussels” and other similar sentences. There is a possibility to find a more affordable house that is located in the center, but most of the houses with a lower price will be outside of the center.
Cooking at home will save you a lot more money than going out to eat. Even though this is true, there are some shopping areas where it may seem very expensive to go, take for example Carrefour and Delhaize. There are many other shops such as Lidl and Coloryt that are cheaper to shop in, but still maintain the good quality. There are also many fruit and vegetable markets in different communes usually on Sundays that sell cheaper and fresher products.
It is undeniable that eating out is a big part of being a student. The average cost for a student meal in Brussels is around ten euro. There are some cheaper places to eat if you are trying to save money such as kebab fast foods (Capadocia, Sulltan’s Kebab, etc), Greek pita restaurants, Pam Pam, etc. There are also some fast food places that have cheaper deals on certain days, for example Dominos on Tuesdays and Saturdays which can be very affordable.
Going out and drinking in Brussels is not very cheap. Most of the students’ monthly allowance gets very affected by Friday and Saturday nights. It is important to implement the mentally of pre-drinking at home, because buying alcohol in the shops is much more economical than at bars. There are also many bars that have happy hours, such as Celtica, where before twelve am it is possible to get a large pitcher for only six euro. There is also a shots bar where a section of the shots costs one euro for each.