Students of Brighton and Sussex: Do not buy the One Pass card

We’ll show you how to save money for free

Marketing itself as ‘Brighton’s ultimate student annual pass’, the One Pass card costs up to £20 on its most expensive release.

Its website says that ‘the vast majority of deals and discounts available to ONE Pass card holders are exclusive, and not available anywhere else.’

The problem is, almost half of the ‘exclusive’ deals this card offers can be found elsewhere as very similar deals for free or cheaper.

15 of the 34 businesses that feature on the card offer deals to students that can be had for free or are part of other deals that you don’t have to pay to get exclusive access to. In our research, we found many featured on free student discount websites such as Student Beans and UNiDAYS. Some of the discounts appear to be just the companies’ normal student discounts.

On balance, we don’t think this represents value for money, nor that this card is worth your time.

We will have to admit that the card offers some exclusive deals that we can’t find elsewhere – like a free regular lemonade with the purchase of any portion of Nuggets or Dogs at Auntie Annes. The card does offer some exclusive deals at Husky Events – which tend to be held in Walkabout – but if you don’t really like the venue then you’re stuck with this piece of plastic.

Some might be drawn in by the 20% off Dum Dum Donuts or £9.95 for a burger, fries, and drinks at bar Revenge. However, since you can get Krispy Kreme donuts for 20% and deals at Leon and Las Iguanas for free already what is the point?

The One Pass card is a waste of time. Seriously, why would you buy this thing? We did some research on the offers available. These are the deals that can be found elsewhere.

One Pass offer: Krispy Kreme 20% off your order, 7 days a week.

Our alternative: Krispy Kreme 20% off your order, 7 days a week.

Why pay for a card that gives you a discount you can get for free? Student Beans offers the same exact deal for no cost at all. You can check it out here.

One Pass offer: Yo Sushi 25% off your order on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays.

Our alternative: Yo Sushi 25% off your order on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays.

There will be a pattern in this story if you can’t quite figure it out yet. Yes, again, this deal can be found for free on Student Beans.  You can check it out here.

One Pass offer: Las Iguanas 30% off your order.

Our alternative: Las Iguanas 25% off your order.

If you have ever gone into a Las Iguanas before, you may have seen that they offer 25% off your food if you show a valid student card. Oh yeah, you can also find the discount on Student Beans too. Why are we paying for discounts again? You can check it out here. Or even on their own website here.

One Pass offer: Bella Italia 50% off food.

Our alternative: Bella Italia 50% off food.

Man, the guys who created One Pass must’ve spent a long time arranging deals for students and locals. It took me ages to find the same exact deal on Bella Italia’s website… I’ll save you the long search and link you to it here. 

One Pass offer: Leon 15% off food.

Our alternative: Leon 15% off food.

A simple google of ‘Leon student discount’ gave me the exact deal as the One Pass, except I didn’t have to spend a penny! Don’t believe me? Check it out here.

One Pass offer: Revolution 25% off food, two for one on selected cocktails, six shot stick for £6 and much more

Our alternative: Revolution 25% off food, two for one on selected cocktails, six shot stick for £6 and much more

We checked out if the One Pass card would offer what Revolution’s own loyalty card offers and yes it is the exact same. Whilst the One Pass card costs £10-20, the £3 Revolution card works at many of their venues and lasts the whole year. You can check out their deals here. 

One Pass offer: Walkabout 25% off food and drink deals

Our alternative: Walkabout 25% off food and the same drink deals 

If you venture into the student-friendly Walkabout and show the bar your student ID, they will give a card (for £3) that entitles you to a bunch of drink deals such as £2 fosters, £1.75 Jagerbombs, and much more. This ‘mates rates’ card can also be used at other Walkabouts (apart from Newquay and Temple). You can also get a voucher for 25% off food if you sign up to their mailing list.

One Pass offer: Sourced Box 15% off monthly order

Our alternative: Sourced Box 15% off first monthly box

As someone who has used a similar service to this, Sourced Box is more aimed for the vegan, yoga-retreat, hipster and not towards students who would much rather go down the shop and buy a £1 bar of chocolate rather than a £22 box of nuts, protein balls, and tea bags.

Nevertheless, if you are interested in this product they run a referral scheme which can get you 15% your first box (which tends to be the only one people ever go for). You can join this scheme yourself and save a little bit of money by following their instructions here. Or, you can look online for people posting their referral codes.

One Pass offer: Be At One, 2 Cocktails for £12 Valid Sunday to Thursday (before 10 pm)

Our alternative: Be At One, 2 cocktails for £12, Happy hours,  and other deals via their free app

Be At One is certainly one of the liveliest places in Brighton. Their happy hours (which you can find here) will give you two for one on cocktails. You also have the chance to grab some 2 for £12 vouchers for free from promoters outside as well as from the bartenders.

The bartenders will also get you to fill out a questionnaire about your experience which will give you yet ANOTHER cocktail voucher to redeem for the next time you visit.

Be at one also have an app that can reward you with freebies.

Still not satisfied? If you sign up to their newsletter you also get a complimentary cocktail.

One Pass offer: Club Revenge £1 entry before midnight

Our alternative: erm… £1 entry before midnight

So the One:Pass will offer you the same deal that is already on offer, but charges you for it? Revenge offer £1 entry to their club before midnight if you go to their bar next door.  They will also offer you £3 entry with an NUS card. Check out this example. 

One Pass offer: Boost 20% off order

Our alternative: Boost 20% off order

*Sigh*, we’re getting quite tired of this now. If you show a valid student ID to any Boost Juice bar you will get 20% off. Check it out here if you don’t believe us. 

If this doesn’t work, UNIDAYS offer 15% off. 

One Pass offer: Brighton and Hove Cabs 10% off metered fares

Our alternative: Brighton and Hove Cabs 10% off metered fares AND 20% off Buddies Fish and Chips.

A bit grotty, but you can pick up this card at freshers’ fair

Hardly an exclusive deal, if you get yourself down to the Sussex or Brighton freshers’ fair then you will find some promoters for Brighton and Hove Cabs that will give you pens, mugs, books, and a card that will entitle you to 10% off cab fares and 20% off Buddies for free (the deal is on the back). Look, I still have mine from last year.

If you check out their website, they also offer 10% off NUS card holders. If you missed your chance to pick up the card at the fair, you can go to your Students’ Union and pick up one.

One Pass offer: Headmasters 50% off the first cut and blow-dry, 25% off appointments

Our alternative: Headmasters 50% off cut and blow-dry if you recommend a friend, 25% off appointments

The hairdressers on Jubilee street already run student discounts if you show your NUS card (which we recommend buying as it will save you money at Co-op) which will take 25% off whatever service you buy.

You can also join their FREE VIP club that will get you 25% off every appointment from Monday – Friday 9 am – 4 pm and 10% off at all other times.

We’ll even reference it for you.

Headmasters, 2017, Chapter one ‘Offers’, P1, can be found here, last accessed 20th August 2017.

One Pass offer: Brighton Pier 25% off ride wristbands(?)

Our alternative: Two for one wristband when you travel by train

We won’t judge, but we imagine that people won’t go on the rides on Brighton Pier on their own. Since the One:Pass is aimed at freshers and freshers will be on campus, we recommend instead checking out ‘The Days Out Guide’ which will give you two for one on Brighton ride wristbands if you travel by train. All you would need to do is grab the train from Falmer to Brighton and boom, you’re sorted.

In addition, the Brighton Pier website says you can save 25% if you buy the wristbands online.

One Pass offer: Zorball 60 minute games for up to 15 people for £199.99 during the week

Our alternative: Zorball 60 minute games for up to 15 people for £199.99 during the week

You can simply find the same exact deal on the Zorball website, so why would you get the card? Evidence supplied here.

So that is our list. The whole thing is not worth your time, you will forget to use it and forget what deals are even on it after a few months of buying it.

A quick glance on these profiles and you will find many of them are part of the company that sells the One Pass

If it looks good on their social media, it is because a fair few of the people who have rated it five stars on their pages work for the company who sell this card to novice freshers.

Don’t bother getting this card.

One Pass had this to comment:

“One Pass is committed to making student life more affordable. Operating in a similar fashion to the NUS card, One Pass is about ensuring the incorporation of not only national brands (similar to the operation of the NUS card) but also more localized Brighton based brands.

“With a clear focus on student based deals, all partners are contracted on an annual basis with the vast majority on an exclusive basis – this means these deals are not available via independent third parties or on other platforms.

“Further to this, One Pass is approved student identification for all our contracted partners. Not only hosting a range of exclusive offers (not available elsewhere), including Papa Johns Pizza, Las Iguanas, Dum Dum Donutterie and many more, One Pass also includes free club entries across the year (also not available elsewhere) and student-priced drinks at a range of bars and clubs including Revolution, Walkabout and Revenge.

“It is an all-encompassing package. As an all rounded product, One Pass is dedicated to ensuring students are able to save as much money as possible at a wide range of businesses, service providers, events and more. For more information, please feel free to email us on [email protected]