College life is one of the most amazing experiences of your life – you move away from your parents, you get to meet new people, explore new opportunities and most importantly, you start paying your own bills.
Studies have shown that 49% of students get worried when it comes to managing their finances during college. You have to have an understanding of how much money you need to get by without a hitch. So here are some tips that will help you save a significant amount of money at college:
1. Use student discounts
Being a college student has its benefits when it comes to vailing discounts. Your student ID doesn’t just help you get through college gates but also lets you take advantage of discounts and offers at restaurants, online and high street stores, theme parks, and more.
2. Don’t pick up bad habits
You’re young and full of vigor, you want to have new experiences… we get it. College includes meeting new people, hanging out with your gang, partying every now and then and having a good time. Students often pick up habits like smoking, drinking and using drugs during their college years. While it’s great to have a good time, don’t get used to cigarettes, alcohol, and drugs.
Not only are they harmful to your health, but they are extremely expensive. Moreover, once you get addicted to any (or all – lord save you) it becomes almost impossible to quit. Don’t risk your future for a puff of smoke.
The average amount of money you need to continue the habit of smoking for a year costs a whopping $2829 plus of course, the medical treatments you’d need later on in life aren’t going to be cheap either.
3. Chart out a meal plan
As a student, you’ll be busy with making notes and assignments be involved in the co-curricular activities and you barely have time to prepare meals. Convenience food is a good option when you’re in rush but the cheapest and the healthiest option is searching for restaurants specially cater to students. You can also prepare food in batches and store them in the freezer and eat them as you need. And if you prefer to eat freshly-cooked meals, try a hand at one-pot recipes which are filling and require only a handful of ingredients. Also, cook only as much as you need. This way you will be saving on the ingredients and also eliminating waste.
This is one of the most valuable lessons when it comes to saving money. If you’re planning to go out for a party, it’s a good idea to gather around for a couple of drinks before hitting the club. Not only will it save you a hefty amount of money, but will also set you in the right mood by the time you reach the venue. So bond over your fellas as you sip beer and sway away at the club.
Please note that this article does not promote drinking. We urge you to drink responsibly.
5. Switch to cheaper alternatives
As a student, you’re cooking your own meals and doing your own grocery shopping. You’re in charge of buying things you need, unlike back home where your mum probably did all the grocery shopping. Your fancy favorites can eat away all your money so, reduce your budget by a notch simply by picking out cheaper alternatives.
Don’t shy away from asking for discounts and switch supermarkets if that helps. Some supermarkets are far better than the others; they offer good quality products at cheaper rates.
We’re not asking you to not buy anything that’s expensive, just not buy everything that’s expensive. Swap some branded items from your list for the basics range. You won’t even feel the difference other than the cutesy packaging and it will largely reduce your grocery bill.
6. Sell your clutter
For some unknown reason, we all love holding on to clutter. As if one day you might end up needing the first outfit you wore in college (which BTW does not fit you!) Absolutely not.
Selling the clutter will not only help you clear out a decent amount of space but will also help you earn some extra bucks. You can sell everything from backpacks to books, clothes, and accessories to shoes on sites like Amazon, eBay, Elanic to name a few. All you have to do is take a photo of the item that you plan to sell, list it and let the cash roll in!
7. Swap eating out for better alternatives
You don’t always have to fine dine with your friends and go to rave parties. Save money by finding out creative methods of having fun like going to the park for a picnic, or hitting the beach to surf, or having a game of charades with your friends. They’ll also make up for good memories. Win-win!