A Beginner’s Guide To Student Nights Out


New to the nightlife? Not sure where to start? Let us be your guide to the more social aspects of student life.

Fresher’s week is full of opportunity to introduce yourself to the world of bars and clubs, but it can be quite intimidating if you’re not fully prepared. Here are a few little things to get you comfortable and ready to party down. Obviously, we insist that you do everything in moderation, but when does that ever stop anyone?

Pre Drinks

The first port of call for most students’ nights out, these can rank from chilled evening with a few mates to a borderline house party. Pre drinks are a great way of getting the night started for cheap, given the price of alcohol in supermarkets when you’re getting more than a few ciders.

For more than a few casual drinks, you’ll probably see a few drinking games in your time as a student. As long as you’re comfortable joining in they’re a very effective way of getting a little merry at the start of your night.

The Identikit Pub

For a cheap night out you can’t go too far wrong than your local chain pub. These places are cheap as hell and usually have a decent selection, plus if you’re feeling a little bit peckish there’s more often than not some cheap fare available here too if you want to make an evening of it.

These are usually most populated outside of student dives, so be prepared to fight for space if you settle on one of these as your choice for the night. Not to mention the regulars outside of the student scene, you’ll be sure to have something of an eventful night in one of these more affordable pubs.

The University Venue

Most university campuses have their own spots for students to unwind after a long week of hard work, and are a great option for those who don’t want to stray too far into town for a good time, or whose funds have been taking a hit. More often than not these places have some fun events going on especially over Fresher’s Week, and the admission is usually pretty good value for what you get.

Since these are almost always exclusively student hangouts, be prepared for some less than stellar conditions. A lot of this kind of venue is not always kept up to the same standards of elegance and fancy as more commercial places, but the prices usually more than make up for that sort of thing.

The Bar/Club Hybrid

These places are so thick on the ground in most university cities that it’s practically hard to move for them. These are your classy in the day/David Guetta blaring in the night deals and where basically everyone ends up at the end of a long night out with their mates. The drinks and music are pretty much only crowd-pleasing to get as many people through the door, though given time you’ll work out which one if any you can tolerate the most.

That said they’re mostly harmless and while a little more pricey than your typical pub outing, they’re a bargain in comparison to…

The Cocktail Bar

This is the place that won’t feature on many of your standard nights out, unless you have entirely more money than sense or see the interest free overdraft as a challenge more than anything. It’s usually the haunt for society events looking for a touch of class at a bit of a price tag, and unless you enjoy the suspense of checking your bank account the next morning I’d give it a wide berth unless you were celebrating something special.

That said, the drinks are usually amazing and you might get lucky with a place that does some kind of student night or promotion, but 99% of the time it’s the local of the student equivalent of the 1% and local professionals/weekend warriors.

In addition to the vast number of places vying for your custom in exchange for a drunk mess at the end of the night, there are also countless fried chicken/kebab shops open all hours waiting for you to buy something you’ll definitely regret. Help I’m A Student forcefully discourages you from wasting your money on the food here if you can help it, though we wouldn’t say no to a portion of cheesy chips now and again…

Words by Simon Whitlock

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