When Freeport Braintree outlet village asked us if we’d like to check out their second ever Student Night, we sent our bargain-loving reporter Luke Bowes along for a spot of retail therapy…
The sun was shining, the freebies were flowing and the discounts were on form. With discounts varying between 10% and 30% in stores including Hollister, Lacoste, Ted Baker, Levi’s, Adidas, Ann Summers, Kurt Geiger, GAP and The Perfume Shop, there were some great savings to be made last week at Freeport Braintree’s Student Night. The perfect excuse for a bit of post-student loan shopping!
Upon arrival at the centre there was a stand manned by Student Shopping UK staff, where I collected my student wristband (essential to claim your discounts). I was also given a map that highlights which stores are offering a discount to students – and they also have posters in their windows, making them pretty hard to miss. Like most student nights you can pre-register online to save time when arriving – just ensure you take your student card with you otherwise you won’t be able to collect your wristband!
Freeport Braintree differs from a lot of student nights I’ve been to before. Why? Well, firstly it’s in an outside village-style complex as opposed to the more traditional indoor shopping mall, and secondly it’s an outlet shopping centre, meaning a lot of the stock is already sold at lower than high street prices, with discounts of up to 60% off on offer at the village’s 85 stores. You will commonly find the previous season’s stock, end-of-line items, cancelled orders, quality seconds, discontinued products and returned merchandise in the stores, which means you get extra great value when you factor in your student discount too!
Heart Essex had a stall there where you could spin their ‘Wheel of Fortune’ and possibly win prizes that include gift vouchers, theatre tickets and goodies from Freeport retailers. As well as this, French Connection had a competition called ‘Find the F’ in store, with five golden tickets to be found – three worth 30% off in store and two worth £100 to spend in store. So there were a few things to do should you wish to take a little break from browsing the shops.
The event wasn’t quite as busy as some of the other student shopping nights I’ve been too, but in some ways this was a huge positive as I could browse around the village in no time and make my purchases – some new running trainers and a couple of tops to continue training in.
There is easy access by rail, with Freeport Braintree being less than an hour away from central London and having its own dedicated train station. There are also good connections via bus and road, with the centre being close to the M11 and Stansted Airport.
And if you’re not within striking distance of Freeport Braintree, you can see what shopping centres offer student nights nearer to you at the Student Shopping UK website.