University students are struggling to manage the cost of living as they step into the new academic year.

From avoiding paid parking to skipping meals, University of Wollongong students say they are ‘not managing’ the expenses of life.

Pulse Pantry is a ‘free’ points-based grocery store on campus that provides food for students experiencing financial hardship.

Pulse Pantry manager Demelza Jones said international students were most effected because they are not permitted to work long hours due to visas restrictions.

“Their income is capped,” Ms Jones said.

“[Pulse Pantry] was born out of Covid, but it’s not going anywhere”

Ms Jones said Pulse Pantry has big plans and hopes for a bigger space.

“More groceries, hopefully a bigger budget next year and just putting more food in more mouths,” she said.

The ‘free’ grocery provides food to hundreds of students each week and is open for volunteers and donations.