We're experts at this in our second year in our student flat - regular heating isn't really an option! Hehe!
Firstly, invest in a good dressing gown and a good pair of slippers - day or night, these will keep you cosy and stop you from reaching for that thermostat.
Second, learn the value of layering. Yesterday afternoon I was wearing a t-shirt, a jumper and a hoodie all topped off with my dressing gown - it was nice and toasty! Slipper socks and slippers are also a good combination to keep your feet warm!
Make use of all those decorative throws and blankets and any spare duvets you have for guests - currently I'm using my usual double blanket with a spare single slung over the top, plus two throws. It is so comfy and cosy it's untrue!! And also the bed looks amazingly inviting when it's made up with all the blankets.
Hot water bottles should become your best friend...I'm currently being greedy and using two as my poor feet seem impossible to wam up at night. A nice cosy bed and a cool bedroom is an ideal combination - I find heated bedrooms uncomfortable and stuffy to sleep in, a hot water bottle is indispensable.
Next, get some draft excluders going...For those of you on a budget, stuff an old pair of tights and tie in a knot. Stuffing materials can include old clothes, more old pairs of tights and all those socks that come out of the washing machine no longer part of a pair.
Now get cleaning. A good scrub at the bathroom tiles or a thorough clean of the kitchen will help to build up a sweat, which under all those layers will keep you warm for hours!!
Make the most of your post-cleaning cuppa - whether tea, coffee or hot chocolate, don't leave it sitting on a coaster! Once it's cool enough to hold, keep your hands warm by wrapping them around the mug!
Now it's time for tea...Be like me and stay in the kitchen whilst cooking - the heat from the hob or oven will keep you nice and snug!
When it does get too cold to keep this up, turn the boiler/thermostat down to economy and use a timer set on the minimum amount of heating you can get by on. Don't be tempted to flick it on if it gets a bit chilly, just throw on another layer of clothing. As others have said, only turn on the radiators in the rooms you use.
And for those of you with a bit of cash, double glazing works wonders. We have it in our flat and there's a big difference between our heating bills and our friend's heating bills who have no double glazing. If you don't have the cash to invest in double glazing, a nice thick pair of curtains and a home-made draft excluder will help.
If, like us, you have two front doors (we have storm doors and then a front door, but maybe you have a porch), don't try to be welcoming by leaving the first set open, keep them both closed and keep in the heat...and the cash in your pocket!! Your guests will be thankful for the warmth that greets them once they get inside :)
And if you're lucky enough to have a fireplace, collect some wood then make a nice big fire...That's the thing I miss most about home in the winter in my fire-free student flat!
I am a thrifty student and can't afford to use the central heating...