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Solutions for Students Drowning in the Murky Depths of Printing Costs

Posted in Printing Tips and Tricks on 10 December 2012

A Printer Paints A Thousand Words

I look back to my student days with a fondness that sadly compares to cheesy cinematic dream sequences. I gaze off into the distance, an innocent smile creeping its way onto my face, followed by an inevitably long exhale before the camera dissolves into some sepia toned images of days gone past and haircuts best forgotten. This nostalgic, utopian retreat is swiftly plundered, ransacked and indelibly transformed into a nightmarish monstrosity when the finer details rear their ugly heads: hangovers, nearly freezing to death every Winter due to a lack of heating and, of course, the endless amounts of extortionate printing.

During my first year of University I’m happy to say that everything was hunky dory on the paper and printing side of things. The English department made printed hand outs of the assigned reading each week for every student, meaning we’d happily trundle over to the English Office and pick up our industrial sized bulk of essays for the following week’s perusal. Inevitably this was costing them an arm and a leg so they changed policy the next year and made us print out all of the assigned reading. Initially this didn’t seem like too big a problem, boy oh boy was I wrong.

broken printer

The first thing I learnt about printing from home was that operating a printer designed for home use was akin to wrestling a bear in terms of physical pain; within the first week I’d lost count of the amount of times I’d smashed my head on the bottom of my desk as I unceremoniously got down on all fours to feed the printer more paper or unblock it. Not only this but the sound of each page being printed was unnervingly comparable to somebody throwing up. Fortunately I’m made of pretty sturdy stuff and had just about convinced myself that I could handle a weekly wrestling match with a vomiting bear. How wrong I was.

Come week 2 it was brought to my attention that I had already run out of ink. The cartridge had cost me around £30 so this wasn’t the best news at all. This home printing experience of pain, audible discomfort and daylight robbery repeated itself cyclically week upon week (upon week) until I’d reached the end of my tether. Not only was I paying through the nose but printing out my weekly reading assignments was taking up a ridiculous amount of my spare time.

I’ve Finally Finished My Thesis, How The Hell Do I Print This Thing!?

I was able to combat the financial drain, not to mention the physical strain, of printing from home when I outsourced printing services from Doxdirect. Not only was the quality of printed product exponentially better, it was significantly cheaper than doing it from home and saved me a bunch of time. Thanks to Doxdirect I didn’t wake up every Monday morning staring anxiously at the snarling beast of a printer beneath my desk, I’m happy to report that it’s been hibernating in the garage for the last few years.

Doxdirect’s printing services really came into their fore towards the end of my MA year when I had a 20,000 word monster of a thesis that needed printing and binding. Presentation counts for so much when it comes to marking these days and I was thrilled not only with the aforementioned ease of their printing services but also with the quality of the binding, which I am sure helped me scrape my way into the top bracket of marks.

While most students opt for printing out their work/reading assignments in their own rooms, it’s honestly just not as financially comfortable or as relaxing as outsourcing your printing needs from an external company such as Doxdirect. Why not give it a go yourself and give both your wallet and the slowly growing lump on the back of your head a break.