How to save money as a college student
Being a college student can put a strain on your wallet with tuition, textbooks, and other expenses to think about.
But the good news is that there are ways to save money even on a tight budget.
In this guide, I will walk you through some easy-to-follow tips on how to save money as a college student.
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Now here are the tips that will help you save as a college student:
How to save money as a college student
Table of Contents
1. Cook at home
Cooking at home means making your meals instead of buying food from restaurants or fast food places.
However, when you cook at home, you usually spend less money because buying ingredients from a grocery store is cheaper than paying for meals already made.
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So if you want to save money as a college student, try making your meals yourself.
2. Buy used textbooks
When you need books for your classes, try getting ones that someone else has used before, probably from your senior colleague.
These books are usually cheaper than the new ones you would have gotten from the bookshop, and they work just as well for studying.
As a college student who wants to save money, this can help you learn without spending too much.
You should also learn how to save money as a teenager.
3. Use Your Student Discounts
Most times as a student, you can get special deals on things you want to buy or use both physically or online.
These deals help you save money on different stuff like buying new phones, eating out, and services.
However, the only thing that may be requested for you to do is to show your student ID or use your student email to get these discounts.
4. Find affordable housing
When you want to find a place to live during college, think about sharing a house or looking for a place outside the campus to stay.
By doing this, you can share the rent and bills with your roommate, or you might find a more affordable place to live that’s not right on campus.
However, this can help you save money or use your money for other important things while still having a comfortable place to stay.
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5. Create personalized gifts
During birthdays and memorable times, you can save money as a college student by making your unique presents instead of spending a lot on expensive already-made ones.
It could be a craft, a photo album, or something you make that’s personal and tailored to their interests, showing that you care
In addition, creating your gifts means you put thought and effort into making something special by hand, which can mean a lot to the person receiving it.
6. How to save money as a college student – Create a budget
Creating a budget means keeping track of how much money you earn and how much you spend.
However, this helps you figure out where your money is going and how much you can save as a student.
Hence, It is like making a plan to manage your money better.
7. How to save money as a college student – Buy in bulk
When you buy things like pasta, rice, or other items that do not spoil over time, it can be cheaper if you get them in large quantities at once.
This means you won’t have to buy them as often, and in the long run, you’ll spend less money.
So, when you’re shopping, think about getting more of these non-perishable things together to save money over time.
8. Participate in research studies
Taking part in research studies can be a smart move while you’re in college. At certain universities, you might get paid for joining these studies or answering surveys.
This can be a good way to earn some extra money while also contributing to important research.
It’s like a win-win situation where you help researchers and save some cash in your wallet at the same time.
9. How to save money as a college student – Limit eating out
If you want to save money as a college student, you should choose places that offer affordable meals and try not to do it too often.
This way, you can save money and still enjoy eating out without spending too much.
It’s more of a rule base eating strategy, pick cheaper places but don’t make it a regular thing.
10. Sell unused items
If you have things you don’t need anymore, like old clothes or gadgets, you can sell them to get some extra money.
Just find a place online or in your community where people buy used stuff, take pictures of what you’re selling, and let others know how much you want for them.
This way, you can earn more cash and get to save some of it, in the process.
11. Use public transportation
When you want to go to school, church, or any place outside of campus, you should opt to use buses, trains, or services like Uber and Lyft instead of having your car.
By doing this, you won’t need to worry about car expenses like fuel, maintenance, and parking fees.
In addition, public transportation is often cheaper and can save you a lot of money.
12. Utilize free campus resources
One fun thing to do as a student who wants to save some cash is to make use of all the free things your school offers.
This can be things like the library where you can borrow books and study, the fitness center to exercise, and fun campus events you can join.
These things don’t cost money and can make your college life better. So, don’t forget to check them out.
13. Compare Different Shops Prices
Talking of how to save money as a college student, one thing that will help you is to compare item prices in different shops so as not to be wasting money needlessly.
When you want to buy something, like clothes or gadgets, it’s a good idea to check different stores or websites to see how much they charge.
However, this helps you make sure you’re getting the best price for what you want to buy.
So, you must always look around and compare prices before you decide to buy anything.
14. Limit Your Credit Card Use:
One way to save money as a college student is to use your credit card carefully to avoid getting into too much debt.
Beware to use it only when you need to, and make sure to pay off the total amount you owe each time.
By doing this, you won’t have to worry about owing more money than you can handle.
15. Use cashback and rewards
When you use credit cards for buying things, pick the one that gives you cashback or rewards. This means you get some of your money back or you get particular points that you can use for more shopping later.
It’s like a little bonus for using the card, and it can help you save some extra money or get cool things without spending all your cash as a college student.
So, when you use a credit card, try to find one that gives you these rewards to make your spending even smarter.
16. Do secondhand shopping:
When you’re looking for things like clothes, furniture, or other stuff as a college student, try checking out thrift stores or places online where people sell already-used things.
These places have items that people used before, but they’re still in good condition. Instead of buying new things, you can find what you need at these places, and it’s often cheaper too.
So, think about shopping for secondhand items sometimes to save money and still get the things you want.
17. Cut unnecessary subscriptions
Cutting unnecessary subscriptions means taking a close look at the things you’re paying for every month, like streaming services, magazines, or apps.
If you’re not using them or getting value from them, it’s wise to cancel them. This helps you save money because you’re not spending on things you don’t need or enjoy.
Hence, you need to go through your subscriptions and say goodbye to the ones that aren’t improving your life.
18. Start a Do-it-yourself(DIY) cleaning and repairs
When it comes to DIY cleaning and repairs, it means learning simple things to keep your stuff clean and fix them if they break.
This can include knowing how to clean your clothes, tidy up your room, or even fix a leaky faucet.
By knowing these basic skills, you won’t have to spend money on hiring someone to do these things for you, which can save you money as a college student in the long run.
19. Avoid Impulse Buys:
Before you quickly buy things you are having doubts about, just take a moment to think.
Start by asking yourself if the item is truly necessary or if you are just buying it because others are doing so.
This simple pause can help you save money as a student by preventing unnecessary purchases and ensuring your money goes towards things that truly matter.
20. How to save money as a college student – Save on utility bills
To save money as a college student on your utility bills, you can use less energy by doing simple things like switching off lights when you leave a room or unplugging devices you’re not using.
Also, make sure to close the fridge properly so it doesn’t waste energy, and use your washing machine or dishwasher with full loads to use less water and electricity.
However, these small changes can add up over time and help you lower your monthly utility costs.
21. Limit entertainment expenses:
To save money as a college student on entertainment, try finding activities that don’t cost much or are even free.
Instead of going out to watch movies, you can have movie nights at home with friends or family and kaleidoscope
In addition, also consider spending time outdoors by going for walks, having picnics, or playing sports. These activities are enjoyable and won’t strain your budget.
22. Use free software
As a college student, take advantage of free software options instead of spending money on pricey software programs.
There are many free alternatives available for tasks like word processing, photo editing, and even video editing.
However, these programs can help you complete your assignments and projects without straining your budget.
23. Utilize free Health care Services
Make the most of the healthcare services offered by your university, which are either free or cost less if you want to save money as a college student.
These services can include visits to the doctor when you’re not feeling well, access to counselors if you’re stressed or anxious, and even vaccinations to keep you healthy.
Don’t hesitate to use these services when you need them, they are there to help you stay well without putting a big dent in your wallet.
24. Limit your alcohol consumption
As a college student, reducing the amount of alcohol you drink can help you save a lot of money.
When you drink less alcohol, you don’t have to spend as much on buying drinks at parties or bars.
By doing this, you will have more money left over for other important things like textbooks, food, and activities with friends.