It could be a piece of art for students to adopt money saving strategies while still in college. It can be hard enough to manage your finances when you’re out in the working world and have a steady income, but it becomes even more difficult when you’re a student—especially if you’re not going to college near where you grew up.
Without the security of being able to rely on your parents for financial support, you might feel like your options are limited. It’s no secret that being a student is expensive. Between tuition, textbooks, and other academic materials, your average college or university student could be spending anywhere from $8,000 to $40,000 per year on their education.
But there are plenty of ways to ease the financial stress that isn’t stressful and doesn’t interfere with studying.
However, here are a few money saving strategies to embrace:
7 Money Saving Strategies Every Student Should Learn
As a college student, you can’t help but be broke. But if you’re proactive, you don’t have to stay that way. Get started with these tips:
1. Get Books At The Library Or Buy Used Ones.
This is probably the easiest money saving strategy for a student. It’s easy to go online and buy all your course readings on Amazon and then have them delivered to your dorm room within two days; however, it’s also wildly expensive. Instead of paying $80-$100 per book, do a quick search at your school’s library and see if they have them available for free!
Even if they don’t own it, they may be able to purchase it for you through an interlibrary loan program for little to no cost. If the book isn’t available through any of those options, try checking Amazon for a used version—sometimes, people sell their books back for as little as 50 cents!
2. Use Public Transportation.
Public transportation is an excellent way for students to save a significant amount of money. If you live off-campus or in a city with public transportation, this is an easy way to save money on gas— and it’s also good for the environment.
Taking public transportation can also help you save money on parking.
3. Taking Advantage of Your School’s Student Discounts
The easiest way and the greatest money saving strategies for a student are by taking advantage of student discounts. Most colleges and universities have programs that offer students discounts at local businesses; some schools even have partnerships with national companies like Amazon or Bank of America.
Additionally, many places offer student discounts year-round, so check if your favorite fast-food restaurant or coffee shop has one before paying full price. For retail stores, check the fine print on signs and ask the cashier about any discounts before you pay for your items (you’d hate for them to charge you full price accidentally!).
4. Set a Budget
Set a budget for yourself and stick to it. A budget is a great way of mapping out how much money you’ll have coming in each month and where you need it to go. It can help keep you from spending more than you can afford on certain things and also helps with planning for expenses that aren’t part of your routine (like holiday gifts).
There are many great tools available online that can help you manage your finances more easily by giving you an overview of all your accounts in one place, breaking down income and expenses into categories, showing where your money is going, etc.
Once you know how much money flows throughout a given period, it’s easier to decide what needs to change if there’s a deficit.
5. Find a Side Hustle
A side hustle is a great way to make extra money to help pay for tuition, books, and other expenses. It can also help you build your resume and gain experience in your field of interest. There are several ways to find a side hustle.
There are freelancing, tutoring, or becoming a virtual assistant. You can start a blog, a YouTube channel, or an e-commerce store. Choose something that you’re passionate about and can do from anywhere.
If you’re not sure where to start, there are plenty of resources online that can help you find a side hustle that’s right for you.
6. Save on Your Utility Bills
When you become aware of how much energy your house devours each month unnecessarily, you can begin to make significant savings. Switching off your thermostat, making sure no devices are left on standby, comparing power and water suppliers for a cheaper price, and appraising any given incompetent machines are all examples.
If you live in a communal apartment or house, it’s a great idea to do this as a group so that everyone contributes to the savings and everyone gets a fair portion.
7. Shun Purchasing Renowned Brands
Many students think that they need to buy famous brands to look good. This couldn’t be further from the truth! There are so many great cheaper options that will save you a lot of money in the long run.
You don’t need to spend a lot of money to look good. Often, the cheaper options are of better quality! For example, buy the store brand instead of the name brand. While you’re at school, you may not have as much access to money as before. That’s why it’s so important that you find different money saving strategies while you’re at school. You’ll still be able to go out and have fun with