The Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU) recently published their 2015 ‘Third Level Education Survey'. They asked parents and students about how they plan to meet the costs of third level education.

The results show that 59% of parents expect to get into debt to cover college costs, with €5,030 the average debt per child per college year. The research also shows that parents contribute an average of €453 per child per month, up on last year. With money worries being a big concern for parents and students, we at Skibbereen CU have come up with several tips to help new students to manage their financial needs in this new stage of their lives.


Tip 1: Work out all the new expenses you will have. For many of you, this is your first time living away from home, your first time buying your own groceries, preparing your own meals, paying bills. Without a clear plan in place, you may overspend. It is a good idea to set up a budget to help track your expenses. See our tables below for the average cost of living for college students.


Tip 2: Track your spending and income for a few weeks at the start of the college year. This will give you an idea of your average spending over the year. It will also show you instances where you were overspending and give you opportunities to cut back for the next month.


Tip 3: If you need to borrow, calculate your total borrowing requirement, but don’t draw down the entire loan immediately. This will allow you to maximise your efficiency and avoid overspending. If you are in receipt of a student grant, borrowing each term will also ensure that you need to borrow less.


Tip 4: Always shop around for the best deal. Whether this means doing your shopping in Aldi or Lidl, or buying your textbooks online, it always pays off to look for the best deal. This applies to loans and borrowing too. Always check out the different loans available, the APR and any other charges.


Tip 5: Sometimes, things can be overwhelming and it helps to talk to someone. All colleges have a support structure in place for their students. If you run into any financial difficulties, you can always talk to us at Skibbereen Credit Union.


No Grant Costs


1 Year


Rent incl. Bills


€350 a month by 9 months

Student Contribution (Fees)


Set by government at each budget

Living Expenses


€85 by 36 college weeks made up of bus €20 food €50 and other €15

Books, Printing & Stationery





All figures averaged from a survey on local college students.



With Full Non-adjacent Grant Costs



1 Year


Rent incl. Bills


€350 a month by 9 months

Student Contribution (Fees)


Set by government at each budget.

Fees Grant


Paid by Susi Grant.

Living Expenses


€85 by 36 college weeks made up of bus €20 food €50 and other €15

Books, Printing & Stationeary



Maintenance Grant


Paid by Susi Grant



All figures averaged from a survey on local college students.


Saving for College



Parents need to save…

Over 18 years

College Cost For Four Years

Cost with No Grant

€20 X 2 Parents=  €40

€40 X 52weeks=  €2080

€2080 X 18 years = €37,440



Cost with Full Non-Adjacent Grant

€7.50 X 2 Parents = €15

€15 X 52 Weeks = €780  

€780  X 18 years = €14,040


Cost with Just Fees Paid

€14 X 2 Parents = €28

€28 X 52 Weeks =€1456


€1456 X 18 year =  €26,208





Posted on: September 4th, 2014

Posted in Budgeting, Educational loans, Financial Planning, Skibbereen Credit Union

The Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS) have said they are very concerned at the reliance of Irish people on legal and illegal moneylenders. Some families use them to keep up with their weekly expenses, while others turn to moneylenders at more expensive times of the year, especially in September when children return to school and December as Christmas approaches.mabsLogo_large

Some of these moneylenders can charge up to 270% annual interest on the money they lend, while illegal moneylenders can charge up to 400%.  Families who borrow from moneylenders face huge repayments, which they sometimes can’t afford without borrowing more money.

MABS has called for struggling families to come to them before they borrow from a moneylender. They can check to see if families are receiving all the entitlements they are eligible for and inform them of other services that they may not be aware of.

Skibbereen Credit Union offers a free and confidential money managing service to our members. We can help you create a plan to tackle debt problems and take the first step towards financial health. For more information, you can visit our website here, or call us on 028 21883. 

Looking for something to do this month? Be sure to check out these local festivals and events coming up in August!


01-04/08 Barbecue & Country Music Festival Bantry
02-04/08 Live Music & Barbecue Bantry – Whiddy Island
04/08 Baltimore Regatta Baltimore
05-08/08 Calves Week Schull
06/08 Cape Clear Regatta Cape Clear
08/08 Ballydehob Summer Festival Ballydehob
09-10/08 Schull Regatta Schull
08-17/08 Rosscarbery Family Festival Rosscarbery
14/08 Heir Island Regatta Heir Island
17/08 Annual Family Fun Day Cape Clear
20-24/08 Masters of Tradition Bantry
21-24/08 Baltimore Deep Sea Angling Festival Baltimore



Posted on: August 5th, 2014

Posted in In the Community, Skibbereen Credit Union, Things to do in West Cork

The launch of the 142 registration plate lead to the biggest day in car sales in six years, according to SIMI (Society of the Irish Motor Industry). 4,264 were registered on the first day of 142 registration sales, compared to 1,924 cars on the first day of 132 registration sales.happycarlady

New car sales were up by 23% in the first half of the year, which is far more than was sold in all of 2013. Cork has seen a 27.5% increase in new car sales in the first six months of 2014 as compared worth the same time in 2013. It is expected that this trend will continue for the second half of the year.

There are many options for financing your new car. If you are considering buying a new car this year, why not borrow from Skibbereen Credit Union. We currently offer a New Car Loan with a rate of 5.99%, which is one of the cheapest rates in the marketplace to own your car. Come into one of our offices in Skibbereen, Schull or Drimoleague to talk to a member of staff, or call us on 028-21883. And don't forget, you can use our Loan Calculator to see your potential repayments or even apply for your loan online.

Looking for something to do this month? Be sure to check out these local festivals and events coming up in the next two weeks!


16/07 Parish Fete Schull
17/07 Carbery Show Skibbereen Showgrounds
17/07 St Barrahane's Festival of Music St Barrahane's Church, Castletownshend
18-27/07 Union Hall Festival By The Sea Union Hall
19-20/07 'Eileen' & 'May The Force' By Playacting Theatre Schull Parish Hall
20/07 Castletownshend Regatta Catletownshend
20/07 Schull Market Schull
21-24/07 Fastnet International Schools Regatta Schull
24/07 Beowulf: The Blockbuster – Fit Up Theatre Festival Schull
25/07 'Eileen' & 'May The Force' By Playacting Theatre Schull Parish Hall
25/07-02/08 Skibbereen Arts Festival Skibbereen
27/07 Schull Agricultral Show Schull Town Park


Have an event you want us to mention? Email or call 028-21833.


The CHEAPEST RATE in the Market Place

Mid Summr Loan

  • Borrow up to €5000
  • Pay as little as €2 a week in interest
  • FREE Life Insurance included
  • We are providing you with up to €5000 in cash to spend any way you see fit helping you to avoid raking up big credit card debts!

You can apply online or by calling us on 028 21883.

This is a limited time offer and is only available until August 31, 2014.


Weekly Repayments Including Interest


1 Year

2 Years

3 Years





























                      Applies to new borrowings only

*7.22% APR                                                        Terms & Conditions Apply


Finance also available for larger loans and longer terms. For more information, visit our website.

Get up to 10% Credit Union discount plus great cover

We've teamed up with AXA  to bring all our members a 10% discount on their insurance.

Car Insurance

  • Up to 10% Credit Union discount (with a €350 own-car damage excess)
  • Up to 75% no claims discount (if 5 or more years claims free driving, subject to a €317 minimum premium)
  • FREE motor rescue when you buy AXA car insurance

Home Insurance

  • Protect your home, contents and personal possessions (minimum premium €150)
  • 10% Credit Union discount (new business) and €30 off renewals
  •  Up to 15% discount (new business) and €30 off renewals

Travel Insurance

  • 7.5% discount if you have standalone private health cover
  • 10% extra Credit Union discount
  • Cover arranged in minutes


Get a quote today

1890 336 339


Expires April, 2016. These discounts may be amended or withdrawn by AXA at any time. Terms and Conditions apply. Minimum premiums do not include 5% Government Levy. Credit Union membership discount cannot be used with other offers. For your own security and to help us improve our service, we may record or monitor phone calls. AXA Insurance Limited is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland. AXA Travel Insurance is authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland as an Insurance Intermediary and is underwritten by Inter Partner Assistance S.A. Brussels. Your Credit Union is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland and is acting solely as an introducer to AXA Insurance Limited.

Posted on: June 25th, 2014

Posted in Skibbereen Credit Union

We are delighted to launch our new loan product "Tweny Is Plenty".

We understand that finding that extra bit of cash for a special purchase when every cent of your budget is already earmarked is a very difficult task.

With this mind we  developed Twnty is Plenty to enable you keep control over the repayment amount. You will only ever pay up to €20 a week.

This means you can borrow up to €4,000 over 5 years for as little as €20 a week.

For further details :

Our May Loan Special at 6.99% is the cheapest small loan in the market place.

Skibbereen Credit Union is keeping the cost of borrowing low. We are providing you with up to €4000 in cash to spend any way you see fit helping you to avoid raking up big credit card debts.

  1. Borrow up €4,000
  2. Up 3 years repayment options
  3. Pay as little as €2 a week in interest

Apply now. Limited time – offer ends May 31 2012

                                                             7.22% apr. Terms & conditions apply

Congratulations to St Josephs Girls National School, Skibberreen on winning The Under 11's section in the Cork Chapter Quiz on Sunday 4th March. With over 20 teams taking part it was a close battle all the way ending with a tiebreaker between Skibbereen and Clonakilty with Skibbereen ultimately winning out. St Josephs Girls N. S. will now go on to represent  Skibbereen Credit Union at the National Finals in the RDS on Sunday 1st  April.

Also taking part in the Chapter Quiz was St Patricks Boys National School, Skibbereen who also did us proud on the day.  

Posted on: March 5th, 2012

Posted in In the Community, Skibbereen, Skibbereen Credit Union

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