How to save money using your student card

BEYOND library privileges, Tracy Pham show you how to put your student card to work to get the best discounts in Melbourne’s restaurants, shops and cinemas. 

How to save money using your student card

So you may not like the grainy mug shot on your student card, but it’s really worth flashing it once in a while.

Beyond library privileges, what many students don’t realise is how useful the plastic card can be for helping slash the price on food, event tickets and fashion.

If you have time on your hands, a good place to seek out discounts available to students in Melbourne and the other states is Discount Detective, but here are some of our Melbourne favourites:

Food and drink

Whether it’s relaxing, dining, people watching or shopping, Melbourne seems to have it all – not to mention plenty of cheap eats!

In fast food restaurants like Hungry Jacks, McDonald’s, Subway and Oporto, students can get a free medium-to-large upgrade on either chips or a drink every time they show their student card.

Pancake Parlour, Baskin Robbins, Easyway Tea also offer 10 to 20 per cent discounts on drinks and desserts, while Sumo Salad, Burger Bun, Wagamama, Grill’d and Taco Bill have special student offers on their menus.

Little Orange Book of Big Discounts

Have you heard of Meld’s Little Orange Book of Big Discounts? It’s been created to help you pay less, experience more!

If your student card is still not working hard enough for you, have a look online for discounts sites.

The biggest of these, Student Edge, is free and has heaps of discounts like 10 per cent off drinks at Gloria Jean’s Gourmet Coffee, Hudson Coffee, Inferno Cafe, Café Connection and Link Espresso Bar.

Do also check out this awesome little project (see left) our business students embarked on last October to create a nifty discount book to help the budget conscious get the most bang for their buck when they eat out, shop, travel and more.

Fashion and beauty

Food isn’t the only thing you can get discounts on. Your student status can go a long way to reducing the cost of that new wardrobe when you shop at some of the city’s biggest fashion stores.

Myer, Topshop, StyleThread and Novo shoes all offer a 10 per cent discount for fashion lovers. Melbourne Central also has their own version of a student card that gives you discounts at various stores like GAP and Portmans. To get one, head over to the information desk next to the big clock.

At Toni & Guy you can get 10 per cent off that new haircut, while other salons like Beauty on Flinders, Alia Hair and Preen have their own student rates.


Naturally, you’re going to need somewhere to show off that new wardrobe. Luckily, your student card can also be pretty effective when it comes to a day or night out.

Most of Melbourne’s most popular attractions have student discounts. Melbourne Cricket Ground Tours, Melbourne Zoo, Old Melbourne Gaol and Philip Island Nature Park are just some of the more famous. You can also buy concession tickets to the footy, cricket, soccer, tennis and rugby league.

If you’re looking for a relaxed night at the movies, flash your student card at Reading Cinemas, Hoyts or Village for a substantial discount. Cinema Nova on Lygon St has half-price tickets on Mondays and Lygon Court even lets you park for free.

And the rest

If you’re studying a course that requires uniforms, equipment or textbooks, some industry specific stores and bookstores offer a discount. For magazine lovers, subscriptions from websites like Magazine4student and Isubscribe will cut the price of your favourite rag mag.

The Age offers concession-priced subscriptions for full-time tertiary students. For $45, students can choose either the seven-day Digital Edition or weekend home delivery of the printed Saturday Age and Sunday Age.

In the computer world, Microsoft Office has student deals for all its Office programs, while Apple reduces the price on Mac computers, Apple software and selected accessories.

Some car rental companies will also discount the price of that weekend road trip.

Student discounts are plentiful in Melbourne. Just remember, a lot of shops won’t actually publicise their discounts or they’ll only be available on select days. Take your university card out with you when you shop and be sure to always ask if they do student discounts – you will be surprised how many do!

Know of any awesome student discounts we’ve missed? Share in the comments box below! 

For more information about Meld Magazine’s Little Orange Book of Big Discounts, and how you can purchase a copy (free shipping!), click here

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