As I have been a student here in Rotterdam for around nine months, I just want to share my experience. Perhaps it can be a useful tip if any of you want to study in Rotterdam 🙂
Rotterdam Student Guide 101
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1. Albert Heijn Bonus Card
Once you arrive in Rotterdam, you can find Albert Heijn on almost every corner. Albert Heijn is not the cheapest supermarket but believe it or not, the price of goods in different Albert Heijn could be different depending on the neighborhood. Other cheaper supermarkets are Aldi, Jumbo or Lidl, but the distribution in different areas are not as many as Albert Heijn. That’s why it’s still handy to have one Bonus Card from Albert Heijn. It is free, and you can get it just by asking. Not everything is a bonus though, have to see which items that are discounted in different times.
Albert Heijn Bonus Card
2. Go to Blaak open market
Still related to grocery shopping, when you are a student, I suggest you don’t eat outside a lot but cook by yourself. Blaak open market is in front of Markthaal and happens every Tuesday and Saturday. It’s an exciting market, and my friends and I also like to go there. It’s closed at 5 pm, and towards the end of the day, they give even lower prices.
View to Blaak area
3. Tanger market
Speaking of the cheap market to shop, Tanger market is another market to go, especially if you like to eat meat (sorry my vegetarian friends!). Tanger market is a Moroccan market, it is also a halal market, so it comes very handily for my Moslem friends too. Tanger market is located in Niewe Binnenweg.
4. Buy a super cheap and ugly bike
Yes, the bicycle is one of the main transportations in Rotterdam. However, don’t think to buy a fancy bike because bikes are easy to be gone here. It gets stolen, or I don’t know what happened, but my housemates already lost her bike twice. It also happened to my other friends. So, the advice that we got from the local is to buy a shitty bike, make it as eye catching as possible by painting it with shocking colors, and don’t invest too much on an expensive bike but invest in the lock. Sometimes you even have to use 2 or 3 locks. For me, I use a kiddy bike because I learn how to bike here, so maybe nobody wants to take my bike!
5. Use Grammarly
This tip is something that will be useful for your study, especially if English is not your first language. Many of university programs in Rotterdam is using the English language, that’s probably one of the reasons why there are a lot of international students in Rotterdam. The case is, sometimes, no matter how you do good in English conversation, you are facing some problem in English writing. At least, that’s what I faced. I still need some proofreading software, and grammarly is very handy and useful. I got a lot of assignments in the form of an essay, and it helped me to use this. It corrected my spellings, grammar, and writing style. Now, that I’m in my thesis period, I use grammarly even more. It is student friendly because they even have free programs and premium programs.
So far, that’s all that I could think of to share with you. Wish you luck with your study! 🙂