For anybody heading off to college, it’s the next big adventure. Along with attending class, making friends and discovering independence, you’ll also need to get to grips with managing your money. This can be tricky with so many other plates to spin, but don’t panic, as this handy guide comes packed with seven simple solutions to get you saving at college without missing out on a good time.
One of the easiest ways to save money at college is by meal prepping. It’s simple enough; aim to do one food shop a week and buy all the essentials for the week. Plan your meals and find recipes and food ideas so you can cook in bulk. This way, you can save portions for a later date. Freeze portions or put portions in the fridge for you to reheat and cook throughout the week. A quick trip to get some food can lead to spending an unnecessary amount of money on food. A dollar here and there on food really adds up!
Shop much later in the day. This is when you’re more likely to find the best deals as supermarkets will reduce prices on items that they need to be sold by the end of the day.
For any college student you’ll want to personalize your living space with all the essentials. Making your room feel like home shouldn’t be overlooked just because of budget. Get creative with innovative, quick fixes to make your room cozy and comfortable. Think fake plants, bright and cheap colorful storage, and fun bedspreads. Print out some photos for your wall that you can enjoy and cherish long after college has finished, and take your room decoration one step further with a certificate frame for your diploma. This could be from your high school or previous college studies. Graduation frames can be a great reminder of what you’ve achieved so far and can be a great motivator on those lazy days.
Student discount is another failsafe way you can save a few dollars every week or month. Check out what your college offers its alumni when it comes to bargains and discounts, and head online for a definitive list of the restaurants, clothes shops and other retailers that offer student discount. Some businesses have your back! Take a look at this handy list of student discounts available in the US.
Student discounts aren’t limited to clothing and food items. You can get deals on travel and subscriptions to music streaming services such as Spotify! Do some digging to make sure you find all the ways you can save.
Get savvy with spending with vouchers whenever possible. Vouchers may be delivered through your door or could be displayed around campus or in your nearest supermarket. A little goes a long way, and those saved cents will add up!
Ah, the all too familiar costs of printing! Printer ink can get pricey, and these costs mount up when you consider the cost of paper and the printer itself. You can save a lot of money by heading to campus to print out your work and assignments. Chances are you won’t need to use your printer every single day, with peak times falling around hand in time. Plan for this and give yourself plenty of time to head to library or student union to print out your work.
College books can get very expensive, so check out your reading list in advance so you can check books out of the library instead of buying them. This tip comes with a bonus as you will be thinking ahead and be more organized with your work prep!
If your college schedule allows for it, try and get a part time job to see you through your college days. This doesn’t have to be a complete commitment and sacrifice of all your free time. For example, you could work at the student shop one day a week, or a local retailer a few mornings a week.