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NUS Student Discount Confusion

Oct 18 2006 18:27
Nick Simpson
The value of the new NUS Extra card has come in to question as many retailers accept a standard student ID for the same discounts.

Launched a few weeks ago with around 130,000 cards already sold to students, the new NUS Extra card appears to be a huge success. Furthermore it boasts "exclusive" discounts at major highstreet retailers, in return for a £10 fee.

According to the NUS website, "NUS Extra gives you access to tonnes of great discounts" - but it's true value has come into question after the London Student discovered chains such as Topshop issue discounts to students brandishing merely a college ID. The NUS is now asking students to report companies offering discounts to non-NUS students, so action can be taken to prevent it.

As an example of non-exclusivity, Cineworld, the cinema chain with a venue close to the Evelyn Halls of residence, have a policy of accepting not only NUS cards but any student card. After being contacted by CGCU President James Fok they phoned every Cineworld cinema in non-NUS areas to double check they were complying with the policy of giving discounts to all. Other discounts from the likes of Microsoft, Ryman's are also available to all students.

A selection of companies participating in the NUS Extra scheme were contacted by Live! and CGCU, with most happy to offer discounts to all students. Amazon, one of the key "wins" of the NUS discount scheme, has explained that it intends to roll out discounts to all students at a later stage, with the NUS deal being "temporary".

If the new NUS Extra card was available to Imperial students, the benefits appear to be significantly watered down, although the current NUS Treasurer, Joe Rukin, argues that it is down to a communication problem with staff working in the the shops. The NUS is actively campaigning to stop non-NUS students getting discounts.

One of the reasons for the new card is to take money directly from students into the NUS accounts, while propping up poorer students unions at FE colleges, who receive smaller subventions. Without a clear break even point for the new scheme and a six figure debt the finances of NUS are far from appealing.

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Discussion about “NUS Student Discount Confusion”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
1. Ant   
Oct 18 2006 19:58

"The NUS is actively campaigning to stop non-NUS students getting discounts"

Nice to see that the most well known voice of students in the UK has its priorities firmly in order.

Fair enough if they strike special deals with previous retailers who don't already offer discounts to all students, but to go around trying to bully retailers into withdrawing long standing policies of giving discount to all students just to sort out their failing accounts is just c**p and childish.

Could leave you asking are they really the type of people you want representing you?

2. n/a   
Oct 18 2006 22:40

Agreed with Ant. For the NUS to be campaigning against student discounts for non-card holders is further demonstration of the fact that their interest has nothing to do with representing and aiding students, and everything with self-preservation of a redundant, indulgent, deeply corrupt bureaucracy.


The Student Union at the NUS university I attended last year recently "lost" the sponsorship funding obtained through hard work by the student TV station there, disabling them from actually meeting their obligations to the sponsor, and without ever locating and returning the money to either sponsor or society. Coincidentally, this occurred after one of the station founders criticized the NUS over their support of the lecturers' marking boycotts.


Oct 19 2006 09:32

Of course, if the retailer has a sign stating "Student Discount" They must, by law, offer that discount to ALL students, upon proof of that status. If they want to be exclusive it'd have to say NUS Extra Student Discount. Bit pants. Bit like that Ace card I was conned into buying in my fresher year.

Oct 19 2006 16:26

What Ace card?

5. Griz   
Oct 24 2006 13:28

Well i have just sent quite a nasty email telling them exactly what i think about where their loyalty lies.

Nov 06 2006 21:40

I regularly go to shops, cinemas and try to buy ticekts to venues where they explicitly require NUS card, and refuse to give me a discount. Most workers at these shops haven't even heard of Imperial College!

Nov 07 2006 01:14

Thats because the NUS have been asking companies to deny discounts to non-NUS members in order to force places like Imperial to join.

Nov 08 2006 21:00

Surely if companies haven't heard of Imperial, it's up to our sabbs to raise our profile a little by writing to them?

Nov 08 2006 22:43

Just to prove the point from clearly.

I contacted Cineworld over the summer and they came back to me making it very clear that it is a student discount. I provided them with a list of Non-NUS affiliated universities and Cineworld have even gone into the trouble to ensure all their cinemas in areas where these universities are located have been informed the situation and will provide student discount to all.

Let me know who have refused you discounts, I am only too happy to contact them.

10. Ant   
Nov 09 2006 08:14

"it's up to our sabbs to raise our profile a little by writing to them?"

Something that I believe either one of the Sabb positions or possibly a member of staff was mandated to do in cases where students reported difficulties.

Nov 12 2006 22:53

NUS discounts = bollocks

Pay what the item is worth or don't buy it!

12. djidji   
Dec 18 2006 16:08

I have bought NUS extra a few weeks ago. I was so excited to go shopping for Christmas. Unfortunately, the first shop I went to to ask for discounts told me I had to register online first to the shop.

But when I tried to register online, each time they ask me to write strange number they call password, or code, I never managed to put it in.

I makes me so angry and regret the day I thought to buy that NUS Extra.

I want to go to the cinema , but I can't find how to view the discounts online.

If anyone has faced such trouble, please let me know.


13. ??   
Dec 19 2006 02:07

We cant get NUS extra yet??!!

14. n/a   
Feb 07 2007 13:17

Any1 have an update on when we can get hold of NUS cards?

Feb 07 2007 17:14

In theory shortly after Valentines day - we will send a message out when we get a precise date.

Feb 07 2007 18:23

Will sales reach triple or even double figures?!

Feb 07 2007 19:54

maybe if you think nus extra is affordable you don't need a student discount.

it seems the nus is simply making those of us who have to think twice before spending a tenner even poorer by denying us student discounts that shops were previously happy to give to all, and all just to make up for their shortcomings.

great support you're giving us there

18. n/a   
Feb 18 2007 00:08

Oooo "Imperial College Union" is now listed in the nusextra online ordering page!

Feb 18 2007 01:05

That was slow... it's been there for a few days now. I was there for the 'historic moment' (not my words) when John Collins bought the first Imperial College union NUS Extra Card...

20. Eric   
Feb 18 2007 14:19

but I have been getting discounts from HMV since my first year... why do I need to buy the card?

Feb 18 2007 16:05

Lai Down!

22. nik   
Jun 03 2007 18:55

u are all geeks

23. An0n   
Jun 03 2007 23:41

nik, thank you for that compelling and detailed argument, it has added much needed depth to this mundane conversantion.

Now be a good litte primate and scurry off and climb up whatever tree you came down from to grace us with that masterfull summary of the blindingly obvious.

Oct 03 2007 13:09

i have to say that all these student cards annoy me why do we have to pay for them in the first place? you should just get one when you are a student. fact - students dont have any money. therefore we should autimatically be eligable and all get the same fair discount! these cards just exploit ppl :( you know that you would have to spend at least ?70 to get ur money back and thats saying that u will get a 10% discount everytime its basically not fair!!!!

Oct 16 2007 22:04

i had my nus card come through on saturday and on the letter it said that to find out which shops let you use the cards to come onto this website but i cannot find the shops anywhere on here so putting that on a letter is pointless if you are not going to hav the shops on here in the first place

Oct 16 2007 23:44

I very much doubt the letter told you to come to this website. Perhaps you misunderstood the letter or can't use the internet properly?

I am about to give up on higher education in the UK. Evidently the dumbass:smart ratio is about 1,000,000:1.

Oct 17 2007 10:27

Harsh Ashley. Are you having another bad day?

Oct 17 2007 11:32

I think I've just come across one too many "students" who seem to lack a number of the critical thinking skills which should be required to get a degree.

It is almost proof that the only reason for the 50% HE target is to keep people off the dole...

Oct 17 2007 11:55

Take it as a compliment that Live! comes up very quickly if you google a topic that has an article about it.

Link 3 - "Student Oyster Card"

Link 10 - "NUS student discount card problem"

Link 1 - "NUS student discount card trouble"

30. Ant   
Oct 17 2007 15:05

Yeh but Andrew most of the time when you think "oh new post I wonder what new outlook this person will have" it turns out to be a moron who can't even be a**ed to read the article or last two posts which are shooting down the moron before them who thought this was a)TfL help site, b) NUS card help site etc

Dec 26 2007 18:03

I was told by mu university (Coventry) that buying the NUS Extra card was mandatory. I grudgingly bought it, only to discover that places that are supposed to offer NUS discounts, don't. Apart from being able to get student discounts with my university ID, I feel ripped off, cos I can't even use the damn NUS card anywhere! Subway, Amazon, and various other stores that are supposed to accept it say they have never heard of it. I emailed NUS to complain and as for a refund, but they just told me that the card is non-refundable. And the stores that say do accept it, you have to spend like 50 pounds in order to get a tiny discount, and I'm never going to do that. NUS are only here to con money out of students, and as an above post says, you do wonder what they're thinking when they are trying to get stores to stop giving discounts to non NUS student card holders! I say boycott!!

32. This post has been deleted.
Feb 01 2008 14:56
33. cheese   
May 15 2008 23:34

if i knew how i knew what i knew, id only know half as much !!

34. becki   
Jun 18 2008 14:22

this probably has nothing to do with your discussion but does anyone know where i can get a full list of discounts available with the NUS card. It's the ?7 not the extra one. If so please email me on .com

35. Cheryl   
Oct 07 2008 16:43


Anybody know where i can get a list of the shops that accept the student discount card.

If so please email me on .uk

36. Shiv   
Nov 20 2008 20:06

Where do you get discount with your cards what shops can i go to pls let me no please e mail me .uk

Closed This discussion is closed.

Please contact the Live! Editor if you would like this discussion topic re-opened.


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