September 24, 2020 - No Comments!

Staying In: The perfect student house party in six steps

Everyone should try to host at least one party during their time at university. Here are six quick tips for making yours one to remember...

Note: always take note of the Coronovirus rules and guidelines in your area before holding any indoor gathering.

1.) Music

It’s the all-important ingredient of any great party, so don’t leave it to chance. Create a playlist in advance or find one you like. If you’re unsure, get advice from a music-loving friend (who will probably be only too happy to help). Beg, borrow or steal (but don’t actually steal) some decent Bluetooth speakers. And make sure they are ones that require a pin – that way, nobody can hijack your carefully curated selection with a room-clearing drone metal set.

2.) Food

Snacks are always good. It gives people something to do with their hands and stops hungry guests raiding your cereal cupboard. No need to go overboard, though. Some cheap crisps and dips, breadsticks, popcorn etc. should be enough to keep everyone happy.

3.) Drink

A party without drink is like a football match without goals. So even though most people will bring their own alcohol, it’s definitely worth investing in a communal supply. A couple of punch bowls / cocktail jugs usually does the trick.

4.) Lighting

Bright overhead lights are the ultimate mood killer. That’s why clubs turn them on at the end of the night. Make use of whatever alternatives you can lay your hands on. Bedside lights? Lava lamps? Christmas decorations? The world of low-watt lighting is your oyster. Candles and tea lights obviously come with a fire risk, so please use with caution.

5.) Neighbours

There are two good reasons to let your neighbours know when you’re having a party. One, it’s just common decency. Two, they’ll be less likely to complain. Give them a rough idea of when the party’s going to start and end. It might also be a nice idea to extend them an invite. Who knows? You could end up becoming friends.

6.) Stay safe

As we all know, the coronavirus slammed the brakes on all partying during the first half of the year. As we have seen this month, from time to time, the government may impose some stricter measures to help stop the spread of the virus. It’s always best to check for the latest updates on the rules and regulations in your locality.  

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 24, 2020 - No Comments!

Student Life: Best (and worst) things about sharing a house

After a year in halls, most students are expected to fly the university nest and find a place of their own. It’s nice to be able to choose where you live and who you live with. But private renting does come with potential pitfalls as well as perks. Here’s our list of top things to look forward to – and look out for – when you’re sharing a house with friends...

Best things

Cooking and eating together            

If you’ve been living in halls, your diet until now has probably been one-third canteen food, one-third cheap takeaway and one-third toast. Having your own kitchen opens up a whole new world of possibilities. Homemade curries, risotto, stews, soups, vegetarian lasagne - hell, you could even try making your own bread (it’s surprisingly simple). And the best thing is, you don’t have to do it alone. Sharing the burden, by making meals together or taking turns, can help cut costs, reduce waste and lessen the workload – and it’s great fun too!

Your own washing machine

Thank the lord of dose balls and spin cycles! You’ll never have to trudge down to the laundry room ever again.

Chilling at home

With a houseful of close friends and (hopefully) a shared living room, not going out suddenly becomes much more appealing. So slip on your onesie, hunker down on the sofa, and prepare for some cheap, cosy evenings in.

House parties!

Send out the invites. Fill up the fridge. Dust off the novelty glitter ball. Finally, you’ve got space for a proper grown-up party! Check out our top tips for throwing the perfect house party.

Worst things


Warning: you are now entering the adult world of unavoidable responsibilities and deadly boring paperwork. Unless you’re lucky, renting privately will involve paying your own water, gas and electricity bills (but not council tax, assuming you’re all full-time students). To avoid falling out (see below), sit down with your housemates at the beginning of the year to agree how you’re going to split them and who’s in charge of paying what. Our friends at The Bunch can help you consolidate all your bills into one and then split it amongst your housemates evenly.


Remember when someone (your mum, dad or university cleaner) used to empty your bins for you? Those days are gone forever. From now on, you’re going to have to tidy up after yourself – and put in some shifts on the communal washing-up and hoovering rotas as well.

Falling out

Arguments are inevitable when you’re living in close confinement. Three simple tips for avoiding conflict. 1) If you have an issue with another housemate, you’re better off talking to them about it rather than bottling up. 2) Do your share of the housework (see above). 3) Pay your bills (ditto).

Dodgy landlords

Horror stories abound of students suffering at the hands of unscrupulous landlords. To avoid getting shafted, make sure your landlord registers your deposit with a deposit protection scheme such as MyDeposits, as they are legally required to do. We also recommend keeping a record of all your bill payments and reading up on your rights and responsibilities as a tenant.


Another option is to opt for Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA). These are student 'halls’ owned and run by private companies. The facilities and security are generally of a higher standard than private renting, and it offers the larger group dynamic you get with uni halls .

If you want to check out private halls as an option take a look at Student Roost they offer a range of different accommodation options in 20 cities across the UK.  Many private accommodation providers allow you to book a self-contained residence or studio, so you still be with all your friends.

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 22, 2020 - No Comments!

Nights Out: Staying safe

7 tips for staying safe on a night out

The UK is generally a safe place for students, thanks to relatively low crime rates and reliable security cover, especially on campuses and in big cities. That said, there are always extra steps you can take to stay safe...

1.    Stick together

You’re much less likely to be targeted by criminals when you’re with a group of people you know and trust. Safety in numbers.

2.    Remember the safeword ‘Angela’

If you’re feeling unsafe at a bar or club, tell the person at the bar or the bouncer that you’re ‘looking for Angela’. Most night time workers know that this is a codeword for them to provide you with some safety.

3.    Drink with caution

Yes, that third Jägerbomb does look very inviting… but losing control can be dangerous. Try not to push your limits with alcohol, however tempting it may be. To protect yourself against drink spiking, never leave your drink unattended and do not accept a drink from anyone you don’t know.

4.    Stay on the beaten track

People are less likely to commit crime in busy areas with good lighting and lots of CCTV. If you’re going to walk home, it’s a good idea to plan a safe route in advance, avoiding dark alleyways, canal paths and parks.

5.    Don’t get involved

Strangers may want to pick fights with you when you’re out. Especially drunken strangers. The best strategy is just to ignore them and walk away. If you see a fight, get help from bouncers or the police. You can also set up your iPhone to automatically record an incident if you think you might be in danger.

6.    Travel light

The more stuff you have on you, the more thieves have to steal. Try to keep cash to a minimum and only take what you need.

7.    Only use a licensed cab

In the words of the old Transport for London safety campaign: “If your minicab’s not booked, it’s just a stranger’s car.”  You can save £5 on your first Ola ride here!

Have fun and stay safe!

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 22, 2020 - No Comments!

Nights Out: What’s on

Even in a socially distanced, post-Covid world, there are still endless options for going out and having fun...

Student's Union nights

Most universities have a Student's Union on campus. The SU provides support and advice to students and offers you a place to hang out and chill with your new friends.

Most SUs also run live music events and club nights. Traditionally, Monday night has been a popular choice for hosting these kind of events as is Wednesday (typically the sports and societies night out). Both drinks and admission are usually a cheaper than you would expect at a nightclub in town and events are usually for only for students at your uni. Foam parties, popcorn parties and UV raves are all commonplace at the SU and provide a good opportunity to meet new people from different halls and courses.

These venues also often put on a comedy night, quiz nights and film screenings too. Most SUs try to cater for all tastes, so there will almost certainly be a regular event that floats your boat - just don't forget your student ID!

Overheard events

A name you’ll certainly come across at university is Overheard: they run a huge amount of massive nights out across the biggest cities in the UK, and also trips abroad.

This academic year, the Overheard team are putting on another Spring Break Festival in Amsterdam. The event takes place over three days in April, with over sixty huge artists taking the stage. Past acts have included: Kano, Rudimental, Chase & Status, MK, Sub Focus and Hannah Wants.

The first wave of tickets always sells out in flash. But you can register for the second wave right here.

Win a house party pack

The team at Paperclip are also giving you the chance to win the perfect house party accessory pack. We're going to be sending one lucky winner
a beer pong table, party cups, a stack drinking games, balloons a bunch of other bits and bobs to make sure your first house party is popping! It's free to enter and we will contact the winner on the 25th October - just in time for Halloween shenanigans!

Head back to the welcome pack to enter our house party competition and discover more great deals.N

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 22, 2020 - No Comments!

Moving In: Essential (and not-so-essential) items

It can be tricky to decide what to take with you when you’re setting off to university for the first time. We’ve put this little checklist together to make sure you don’t miss anything out.

Quick tip: if you’re moving into a shared house, speak to your flatmates beforehand to check who’s bringing what. The last thing you want is 100 spoons, 4 toasters and 0 pans.


Must haves:

Nice to have:

  • Duvet and cover
  • Pillows and cases
  • Bed sheets
  • Blankets
  • Coat hangers
  • Desk lamp
  • Mirror
  • Clock

Must haves:

Nice to have

  • Towels
  • Soap
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Shampoo
  • Shower gel
  • Toilet roll
  • Shaving stuff
  • Sanitary products
  • Hairdryer / brush / straighteners
  • Nail cutters
  • Plasters
  • Dressing gown
  • Make-up wipes
  • Flip-flops (for showering in halls)
  • First-aid kit
Kitchen (check what’s already provided)
  • Cutlery set
  • Plate
  • Bowl
  • Mug
  • Glass
  • Kettle
  • Saucepan
  • Frying pan
  • Sharp knife
  • Chopping board
  • Can opener
  • Peeler
  • Grater
  • Bottle opener
  • Tea towel
  • Washing up liquid

Must haves:

  • Laptop (and power cable) or desktop computer
  • Phone and charger
  • USB memory stick (for backing up)

Nice to have:

  • Extension lead
  • Headphones
  • Speakers
  • Desktop printer

Must haves:

  • Pens and pencils
  • Paper
  • Notebook

Nice to have:

  • Highlighters
  • Post-it notes
  • Sticky tape
  • Paperclips
Optional extras
  • Day bag
  • Water bottle
  • Keyring
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Pack of cards
Pimp your room

Looking to create a really special home from home? Here are some cheap ways to make your student living space look a million dollars.Fairy lights

Fairy lights This is a great way to cover up a bare wall, or set the mood with some dimmer lights.

  • Indian Wall Tapestry
    This is a great way to add some character to your room. Groovy.
    Check out the ‘home and garden’ section on the Paperclip app to find this item.
  • Fairy lights
    This is a great way to cover up a bare wall, or set the mood with some dimmer lights. .
  • Hang up some photos
    Hang up some photos with some string and wooden clothes pegs. Watch your memories grow as you complete your year.
  • Wire wall hanging
    This is a great way you can add your notes and decorative items. However, best to lean it against the wall than to drill it in. Your deposit will be thankful.
  • Plants (Fake ones if your terrible at keeping them alive)
    Bring a natural element to your room with some plants. If you’re terrible at keeping them alive, fake ones or a cactus will be your replacement.

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 22, 2020 - No Comments!

Moving In: Dos and Don’ts

Whether you’re in halls or renting with friends, student life usually involves sharing your living space with other people. Follow these simple etiquette tips to avoid becoming the annoying one that everyone secretly dislikes...


…respect other people’s property.

And that includes their biscuits (however tempting that opened pack of chocolate hobnobs in the cupboard may appear).

…be considerate about noise.

Everyone is allowed to turn the volume up to 11 now and again. Just not at 3am. When your housemates are sleeping. On the eve of their last finals exam.

…your dishes!

Mess can be a major battleground in communal living spaces. To avoid arguments, it’s best to tidy up after yourself as you go.


…hog the TV remote.

Or the bathroom. Or the Playstation. Or anything else that’s supposed to be for everyone.

…avoid communal chores.

A cleaning rota is a good idea. Being the housemate who doesn’t stick to the cleaning rota is not a good idea. There are a bunch of free apps available online for you and your housemates to keep track of household tasks.

A cleaning rota is a good idea. Being the housemate who doesn’t stick to the cleaning rota is not a good idea. There are a bunch of free apps available online for you and your housemates to keep track of household tasks.

…always fight your corner.

People can have very different ideas about where to position the sofa, how to stack a dishwasher and whether toilet paper should hang “under” or “over”. Of course, everybody thinks their right way is the right way. Trouble is, everybody else thinks their way is the right way too. Being willing to compromise could save you a lot of hassle and upset.

Just remember, your current living situation isn't forever. There will be some up and downs along the way, but if you follow these rules and be your friendly, kind and positive self, you shouldn't have too many problems rubbing along with your housemates in your new digs.

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 17, 2020 - No Comments!

Setting Off: Fresher’s Checklist

The countdown has begun. Get ready for your new life as a university student...

So many jobs. So little time. If you’re struggling to keep track of everything that need doing, here’s our ultimate checklist for uni first-timers.

1. Work out what you need to pack

Some no-brainers for you: clothes (including face masks), bedding, towels, toiletries, stationery and electrical items such as laptop, phone and chargers. If you’re going to be doing your own cooking, rather than living in fully catered halls, then you may also need cutlery, plates, pots, pans etc. Check what’s provided before buying anything new. Read more about what to take with you.

2. Buy essentials

Must-have items you may not already own include shampoo and shower gel, nail scissors, washing powder, an extension cable and, of course, the all-important kettle. Wilko offers a range of ‘student starter packs’ for your bedroom, kitchen, bathroom and living room. Check out their offers here.

3. Get a railcard

A 16-25 railcard gives you 1/3 off all rail travel. Costs £30. Saves an average of £199 a year. (We’ll leave you to do the maths!) Buy one from the official railcard site or enter our competition to win a free one here.

4. Find your important documents

Passport, driving licence or other form of ID? Check. University paperwork, including your acceptance letter? Check. Student finance documents? Check. Accommodation info? Check. Now put them all together in a nice, secure plastic folder and keep it somewhere safe.

5. Set up a student bank account

A student account is not compulsory. But most come with lots of extra features and discounts that it would be a shame to miss out on. You can open an account as soon as you receive your offer letter – no need to wait until the start of term.

6. Register with a doctor

If you’re going to be spending more weeks of the year at university than at home, then you need to register with a local GP as soon as possible. Especially important if you have an ongoing health condition such as diabetes or epilepsy. Find a GP near your university

7. Check if you need a TV licence

The rules governing who does (and who doesn’t) need a TV licence are more complicated than you might think. Even if you only ever watch YouTube on your phone, you may be breaking the law if you don’t get one. See if your family TV licence covers you.

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 17, 2020 - No Comments!

Setting Off: The Four Fs

What every fresher misses about home...

Family and pets



…although, hopefully, you are about to meet lots of amazing new people, some of whom are going to be mates for life.


It might not be home-cooking, but you can still make delicious and nutritious meals in your halls (providing you pitch in with the washing up). There are so many free resources now online to help up some hearty grub on a budget.

Now and then, however, we all need to treat ourselves. That's why we're giving everyone a free Tastecard for three months! This allows you to save 50% at Pizza Express, Prezzo, Bella Italia, Frankie & Bennies and more, all year round. Just click on the link above to get started.

Bon appétit!

Fresh laundry

Remember when your clothes washed and dried themselves by magic? So much better than having to haul a stinking laundry bag down to the communal washing machines and then hang wet clothing over all your doors and radiators just to save a couple of quid on the dryer.

If you want to save some extra dollar on detergent, our friends at Smol are giving away a free trial of their plastic-free washing capsules. Not only are Smol helping students save money, but they are on a mission to reduce waste and the amount of potentially harmful chemicals leaked into the environment from standard washing capsules. All of the packaging is sustainable and 100% recyclable too!

Just hang on until we release the Moving In section on Tuesday 22nd September to access this super fresh freebie.

What to do if you are struggling to adjust

Nearly 50% of young people enter university and a third of these report experiencing some form of physiological distress - it's completely normal.
In adjusting to the student lifestyle, many students (especially freshers) struggle to maintain healthy day-to-day routines and experience academic, social and financial pressures. If you are moving away from home for the first time, that can make things even harder.

But don't fret, there are now so many great services to help you get through a rough patch. In fact, there are now some wonderful student-led services available for you for free. They know that students are more likely to talk to friends and peers about their problems, so the focus on giving students the skills to support each other safely and to effectively signpost to other mental health services when necessary. Getting in touch to these bodies wont leave you out of pocket and anything you discuss with always remain confidential. Speak to your Student's Union about the services they work with on and off campus.

Head back to the welcome pack here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Digital Welcome Pack

September 16, 2020 - No Comments!

Wilko & Paperclip team up to save students a bundle

More exciting news from Paperclip HQ...

The team at Paperclip are delighted to announce that homewear retailer Wilko will be offering a huge range of discounts on their 'back-to-uni' items and 'student bundles' to everyone who has signed up for our Digital Welcome Pack.

Wilko will be joining the likes of Amazon, Ola and Perlego in the new pack which will be released the end of the month. Not only can students enjoy money off duvets, cushions and decor for thier new uni crib, but Wilko will also be offering huge discounts on tech essentials such as headphones, power banks, printers and more...

Student Bundles

This year, Wilko will be offering a number of Student Bundles to save you heaps of cash (and making multiple trips to the high street during your first few weeks on campus).

wilko, kitchen, paperclip, deal
Wilko's kitchen in a box

Not only can you get all your kitchen essentials (spoons, corkscrew, chopping boards, grater, etc) in one bundle, but you can also get your bedding and desktop set-ups sorted in just a couple of clicks. All items are conveniently packed in a sturdy, plastic, water-proof container with hand grips, perfect for the big move.

We've made it super simple to access these great deals, all you have to do is wait for the Welcome Pack to drop into your inbox and follow the link to start saving - there's no need to enter a promo code or create another account.

Speaking about the new additions to the pack, our CEO Rich said, "We're all delighted to be working with such a great client as Wilko. Many of the team have fond memories of kitting their student homes out with Wilko products during their times at university. Now we can help other students recognize the convenience and value of Wilko for themselves!"

If you haven't already, you can sign up to our Digital Welcome Pack for free here - it only takes 30 seconds!

That's not all...

Not only do we have Wilko joining the party, but we have added even more deals to the pack! Students will soon be able to enjoy a whopping 40% off their gym threads from our friends at Distancewear. Once the Well-being section is released, all you have to do is follow the link, enter the promo code once you select your garms and before you know it you'll be looking super-stylish whilst you sweat it out!

Prefer corduroy to cardio? Fear not, as we have also teamed up with Atlas Vintage to offer yet another discount on their entire range online. Again, just follow the link and enter the promo code at checkout to make a tidy saving.

Remember, there still time to get your Digital Welcome Pack completely free today!

Want to keep up with the latest news from Paperclip HQ? Give us a like on Facebook here.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in News

August 27, 2020 - No Comments!

The top 20 items students need to add to their uni shopping list

The top five must-haves alone will set parents back £1,897 in the first term...

As students around the UK start getting ready for university life, the race is on to get all the must-have items ready for beginning of the year. The Paperclip team reveal the top 20 most sought-after items ahead of the September term.

The top five most in-demand student items – including bikes, a smartphone and laptop, cost on average £605 via Paperclip. While if parents are buying brand new, these same five items would cost a significantly higher £1,897.*

On average, the total cost of buying all of our 20 items second-hand on our online marketplace comes in at around £1,695.

Speaking about our findings, our new CCO Keith Parkman said: “The first term of university can be incredibly expensive for families, particularly if you’re adding a new laptop in to the mix.

“However, the first five items on this list alone cost more brand-new than all 20 items if bought second-hand on Paperclip, so it really goes to show how shopping around on platforms like ours can make all the difference to student spending, particularly when it comes to tech.”

To help families tick off the necessities, we have released the top 20 most searched items ahead of the first term in September...

The top 20 most wanted items are:

2. Textbooks
3. Bike
4. Clothes
5. Laptop / Macbook
6. Headphones
7. Games console
8. Chair
9. Kitchenware
10. Desk

11. iPad / Tablet
12. TV
13. Monitor
14. Lamp
15. Mirror
16. Duvet
17. Camera
18. Fridge
19. Printer
20. Weights

On the latest trends, Keith added: “Life as we know it has changed significantly in the last few months, and this year’s university students will be experiencing something entirely new. That being said, we are still seeing a huge number of searches for household items like kettles, duvets and lamps so it very much looks as though prospective students are looking forward to venturing out on their own for the first time. 

kettle, items
This Stagg kettle has been viewed over 400 times on the KCLSU marketplace!

“One thing that we have seen as a result of the pandemic is an incredibly high demand for bikes, which are now in the number three spot – up from 8th in 2019. Although there are a handful of universities that we’ve come to associate with cycling, it’s amazing to see how many students all over the UK are now planning to bike around rather than drive or get public transport."

This Intense 5.5 FRO was recently sold for less than half the RRP on our Greenwich SU marketplace back in June

With so many items added every day to our uni marketplaces, new students can be sure to find what they need for starting the next chapter of their lives. Students can also find our pick of the bunch in the 'Featured items' section at the top of our platform's homepage.

Heading to university this September? Read about our free Digital Welcome Pack for students or sign-up here...

*Paperclip uses its marketplace data to report on consumer behaviour and trends in student spending, including the most popular items, searches and average spend at key points throughout the academic year.

Published by: Paperclip HQ in Musings, Perspective, Trades