How do students spend their money?

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In Malta, money, like sex, is a taboo. So, after our sizzling sex survey, it seemed natural to lift the lid on your spending habits.


This article is from The Insiter

In Malta, money, like sex, is a taboo. So, after our sizzling sex survey, it seemed natural to lift the lid on your spending habits.

Are students thrifty pennypinchers or Carrie Bradshaw wannabes? Do students live up to their stipend-guzzling reputation? Read on to satiate your curiosity (because asking you friends outright would be plain rude!)

Methodology: Unlike our sex survey, which used a representative sample of 300 random students, this poll was carried out using 200 questionnaires, 30 of which were discarded as students had inserted invalid answers. Out of 170 questionnaires, 78% of respondents received a stipend. We only took their answers into account in this report.

We openly invite government, academic researchers or students writing their theses to repeat the poll on a larger scale.

78% of students polled receive a maintenance grant.

Out of these students ONLY:

29% say they worry about their financial situation ‘very often’.

Only 3% say they ‘never’ worry about their financial situation.

60% get pocket money from their parents.

55% get eighty euros or more each month from their parents.

76% earn money from a job, whether full or part time, or just a Summer job. 5% want a job but can’t find one, 20% don’t have a job (not even a Summer job) and don’t want one.

45% earn at least 2400-3600 euros annually.

50 % have their own car. 27% not only have a car, but their parents bought it for them.

92% have their own computer. We did not ask whether they had paid for it using their Smart Card.

68% spend at least 16-20 euros on a typical night out.

57% buy food from outlets on campus.

78% live with their parents and do not pay rent and utility bills.

On average, they spend 57 euros a month on fashion, hair, beauty therapy and beauty products. This amounts to two thirds of the normal monthly stipend (84 euros)

73% believe that the stipend is vital for their financial security.

89% are against the removal of the stipend system.

76% are against allocating stipends only to those students experiencing financial difficulty (means-testing), while investing the rest of the funds in the University of Malta.

83% are against replacing the stipend system with optional loans which must be repaid once the student has achieved job stability.


Is this spending reasonable or excessive? Should the stipend system be reformed? Would you refuse to vote for a party that reformed the stipend system?

3 thoughts on “How do students spend their money?

  1. anonymous says:

    a lecturer who i will not name is practically forcing us to dish out 60euros on a book to obtain an internet access code to do the homework, when we had already bought a perfectly good book, with mainly the exact same content for the first semester. is it possible he has a commission on this book? that\’s were stipends are going.

    on a side note, some constructive criticism to the Insiter…a questionnaire of a total of 200 (both valid and invalid) is nowhere near enough to represent the student body of circa 10,000 students. I suggest that more time is taken to conduct surveys in order to receive a greater representation.

  2. anon says:

    I\’m all for means testing.
    I live with my parents, who are both pensionsers. My stipend hardly ever covers the cost of my laptop loan, internet subscription, telephone and mobile costs, petrol, and visa expenses. I haven\’t said anything about socialising for a good reason-I hardly socialise at all anymore, as all I have left after expenses, in a good month, is around 7 Euro.
    I have no time for paid work as most of my waking hours are consumed with lectures or studies-related stuff (unpaid work practise-needed to obtain a warrant)

  3. Graham Crocker says:

    Remember that the stipend system was already paid for by our parents, through taxation.

    I used my maintenance grant on computer equipment and books for the second semester. Stipend is used for petrol, stationary & go mobile cards, but other than that it remains untouched for a rainy day (eg: laptop dies..).

    The thing about student loans is that it turns your first 2-5 working years into slavery (as is the case with many foreign graduates) .

    Not to be a communist ,but the disparity
    between the poor and the rich will eventually grow, because the rich wouldn\’t need a loan or wouldn\’t be scared of debt, while the poor would be discouraged by debt (i.e. no uni for poor people).

    The stipend aided me, when my desktop computer stopped working ( without the stipend I wouldn\’t have been able to afford a laptop).

    Oh and have you seen the book prices in Malta? I bought a 55 Euro (at another 60 Euro) book that was selling from at 20 Euros postage included.
    Daylight robbery if you ask me, atleast the stipend goes back into the Maltese economy, because if it wasn\’t for the stipend No Student would buy books or computer equipment from Malta.

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