It’s no secret that going to college is expensive. That’s just a simple reality of life. There are endless bills, skyrocketing tuition costs, and limited time to make enough money to cover everything while going to class.
Ambitious students must learn ways to make every dollar count. That includes discovering tips to save money in college.
Fortunately, this article is here to help. These money saving tips for college students will show you how to cut back on spending in order to reduce stress and anxiety.
Keep reading to learn the financial tips that every hardworking college student should know.
Take Advantage of Public Transportation
The first thing you need to do is park your park. Or sell it. After all, it’s no secret that owning a car is a major expense.
You’re probably still making payments, so that’s at least a couple hundred buck a month. Plus insurance and gas. And there’s also upkeep and the possibility of tickets, which can really sting when every dollar counts.
So take the bus, carpool with friends, or take advantage of whatever free public transportation options are available in your area.
Buy Used Textbooks
Textbooks cost a fortune. This can obviously put a major strain on a limited budget. Thus you need to be smart about how you spend money on an item that you’ll only be using for a few months.
Fortunately, you can buy used textbooks. Used books are typically available at the university book store on campus, or simply purchase them from students who have already completed the course.
An even better idea is to swap books for classes you’ve already taken. This way everyone gets what they need for a fraction of the price.
You can also find used textbooks online at greatly reduced prices.
Stop Eating Out
Dude, stop eating out. This is a major waste of cash. Yes, it’s fun to head out with your pals to a local burger or pizza joint, but you’re going to find yourself blowing through your bankroll much faster than you can actually afford.
This is one of the biggest pitfalls for college students. You might be surprised just how fast the cash goes out the window for things like ordering a late night pizza delivery or going out for dinner and a movie on Saturday night.
The smart move is to buy your own groceries and cook at home. This will also help you eat healthier. And if you have roommates, pool your money and split the grocery bill.
Staying in and cooking your own meals might sound boring, but you be surprised how much money you’ll save, and you might also discover it’s a lot of fun learning to cook great meals on the cheap.
Take Advantage of Your Student Discount
Never leave home without your student ID card. This little jewel is your key to great discounts everywhere you go.
Believe it or not, tons of businesses such as the Apple eduction store offer student discounts on an endless number of products and services. This often includes restaurants, retailers, movies, and online sites where you like to shop.
Just remember to always keep your student ID handy and be ready to flash it when you check out. Nothing could be easier than that!
Become a Tutor to Fellow Students
Need to earn some extra cash but don’t want to leave campus? No problem, just become a tutor.
This is a great way to earn money while providing a much-needed service to fellow students.
When you are strong in a specific subject, simply post your name in an online campus forum, announcing your willingness to tutor your peers. And with FaceTime and Skype, you don’t even have to leave your dorm room.
Tutoring enables you to make the extra money you need without leaving your room, and you won’t have to worry about dealing with an employer.
Take Advantage of Free Entertainment
Here’s another tip: stop wasting money on movies and concerts out in the wild. Instead, take advantage of on campus entertainment opportunities such as…wait for it…movies and concerts that you can enjoy for free.
Yes, it might be fun to spend an evening out on the town with friends, but you can often do the same things on campus and save tons of cash in the process.
Minimize Credit Card Use
Credit card companies love college students. That’s because they want to hook you early and charge big time fees and interest on debt that will follow you for years. They also understand that students are spenders, thus you are the ideal consumer.
Don’t fall into this trap. Use your credit cards for emergencies only.
Live in a Dorm
You might love the idea of moving into an apartment off campus. But try to resist. Living on campus will help you save money, because you’ll be more apt to take advantage of free campus activities. And you’ll eat out far less.
Limit Alcohol Consumption
Once you’ve reached the legal drinking age, there will be no shortage of opportunities to drink in college. But you’d be wise to resist. Not only will drinking alcohol impair your ability to focus on your studies, it will also hit you hard in the wallet.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy a beer on the occasional weekend, just try to make smart decisions that will pay off in the long run.
Become a Resident Advisor
Working in your dorm is a great way to make extra money. Being a residential assistant or advisor will provide the opportunity to get to know your peers better, while also reducing your tuition expenses. It also looks pretty good on a resume.
So get involved, work hard, expand your social network, and enjoy the many benefits of your ambition.
Shop at Thrift Stores
You’re gonna need clothes. That’s no big secret. But you don’t have to spend a fortune.
Resist the impulse to buy the latest and greatest fashions. After all, you’re in college. Smart students quickly learn the value of shopping at thrift stores.
In fact, it’s kind of cool saving money buying great clothes that are practically new. You’ll quickly come to understand that buying new is for suckers. Let someone else waste the big bucks while you score designer items they didn’t want.
Shopping in a thrift store is fun, saves a ton of cash, and no one will ever know the difference.
Curb Your Late Night Cravings
There’s no denying that hunger cravings are gonna hit late at night. During late night study sessions, or just hanging out with friends, beer and pizza will sound pretty amazing.
But this is also where you will end up wasting a ton of cash. You’d be far wiser to eat a cheap snack from the fridge and save your money for something more important.
Late night cravings are hard to resist, so maybe consider going to bed earlier, drink water, and do whatever it takes to give your wallet a break.
Focus on Your Studies
You’re in college for an education, right. So keep your focus on the ultimate goal of getting a great education so that you can eventually land an amazing job after graduation.
When you focus on keeping your nose in your books rather than having fun, you’ll spend more time in your room and the classroom rather than clubs, bars, and other places designed to take your money.
In other words, keep your eyes on the prize, and then you’ll have fun down the road once you’ve established your career.
Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk is still a great way to save money in the long run. Especially when it comes to staples such as toilet paper, frozen food, and toiletries. This is stuff you have to have anyway, and each trip to the store increases the odds of impulse spending on items that you don’t really need.
You might spend more upfront, but smart shoppers understand that buying in bulk will help stretch your money as far as possible.
Start Paying Off Student Loan Interest ASAP
Believe it or not, it’s crucial to start paying down the interest on your student loans as soon as possible. Because once you graduate, the interest on the loans you’ve accrued over the past four years will start piling up fast.
It might sting a bit sacrificing cash for student loan interest now, but your future self will thank you.