Being a college student, can be one of the most exciting times in our lives, but there are also days when money is very scarce and you will look for ways to save money in college. As a college student, you probably don’t earn that much money yet and you have to live within a budget.
In this article, we will tell you about 15 money saving tips, which will help you to have a better college life and enjoy your time a whole lot more. So keep on reading and find out more about how you can save some money while you are attending college.
How to Save Money as a Student?
Way 1 – Borrow Blue Rays, DVDs or CDs
While you may enjoy your subscription to Netflix, Hulu, and other similar online streaming services, not having to pay these every month, can save you a ton every semester.
You may not like to borrow DVDs, Blue Rays or CDs, but it is certainly a great way to save some money. There are even some stores, which will sell very cheap movies and series or even rent them out to you, for a few cents.
Most colleges and universities, also have a large movie library, which every student can borrow for free. While these might not be the most entertaining or latest movies and series, they will surely keep you busy and maybe they will teach you something as well.
Friends and family, are sure to have some great movies and series that you can borrow for free too, which means that you shouldn’t have any problem living without cable, Netflix, Hulu or other similar services.
Way 2 – Borrow required textbooks
As a college student, you will be required to read and use different textbooks, for each of your courses. These will not only be a necessity to pass the class, but they will also teach you a lot about the subjects that you are interested in.
Sometimes, these textbooks can be very expensive and as a college student, who is trying to save some money, this is something that simply cannot happen. So what you should do, is to try and borrow some of these textbooks, either from past students, the school library or public library.
There are plenty of students who will let you borrow their old textbooks and some will let you have them, for a fraction of their cost. Ask some of your friends and family members, as they might also have some of these textbooks and will let you borrow them.
School libraries, will almost always have some o the required textbooks and they will allow their students to borrow them for free, but you must hurry, as many students know this and the textbooks run out quickly.
Public libraries are also an excellent place to find these books, but sometimes you will have to return them after only a couple of days and rent them out again.
Way 3 – Use e-books or scanned copies
Instead of printing copies of textbooks or other reading materials, try finding the e-book or scanning copies of the documents. This will save you tons of money in copies and it will also help to protect our environment.
Having such reading materials or documents in an electronic format, will also allow you to be a more organized student and to read at any time that you want.
Way 4 – Do some research when buying or renting textbooks
It is important to do a little research, before going out and purchasing or renting some of your college textbooks, as there are tons of ways to save some money on these.
As we mentioned before, borrowing textbooks, is an excellent way to save money in college, but sometimes there will be no other option than to buy some of these. In these cases, you will need to find the bookstore that has the best deals or someone who can sell you the reading materials for a cheaper price.
Using Google to see what other students have said about those textbooks, is a great way to find out, if the textbooks are a good buy or if you are even going to use them at all. Believe it or not, there are some courses and professors, who will require you to get a textbook and they do not use them at all.
You can also send an email to your professors and ask them more about the required books, to see what they expect from them and what they recommend. Some professors will also tell you that they will not be asking for certain textbooks and that they will use another one in their class.
So make sure that a book is going to be useful before you go out spending a lot of money on it.
Way 5 – Watch out for caffeine breaking your budget
Most college students enjoy and need a cup of coffee, in order to stay awake and finish their tasks. While this may not seem like a huge expense, getting a coffee every morning, can add up to a lot.
So find ways to save some money on coffee, like taking advantage of the free refills at Starbucks and other similar coffee shops. By simply staying at the coffee shop to study for some time, you can make those $2 regular coffee refills last a long time.
Some stores and colleges have free hot water, so purchase some coffee bags or teabags and take advantage of the free hot water.
Way 6 – Make Ramen Delicious
We have all eaten Ramen soups or microwave soups before and as a college student, you will most likely eat a bunch of them, so why not do something different with them.
Yes, there are some ways to hack your Ramen soups and make them more delicious, even if you don’t believe that this can happen. By simply adding an egg or two, you can make those Ramen soups, taste more like a real meal, than just a bunch of pasta.
There are now also many supermarkets, which sell different types of Ramen brands and some include a lot of vegetables and some real meat. Try buying some of these and they will surely taste a whole lot better, than the regular Maruchan soups.
Adding other things that you like to these soups, will also make them taste better and they will save you some money while attending college.
Way 7 – Keep snacks with you at all times
Some colleges and places, overprice some of their food and this is why you should have some snacks with you at all times. By doing this, you will not have to purchase some of these overpriced foods and you will save a ton of cash.
There are also some college dining halls and restaurants, which will have special meals and prices, so make sure that you take advantage of these too. This is one of my favorite ways to save money in college.
Way 8 – Limit your nights out
Although this may be very tough as a college student, you will need to limit the times that you go out or find places that you don’t have to spend money at. There will always be some parties to attend or some college events, which you will not need much money at all.
You should also try to cut out vices, such as smoking or drinking, as these can be a huge expense and they go by the hand when going out. If you are going to smoke or drink, try to do it less, as it is also not good for your health.
Way 9 – Change your phone plan
If you are spending a lot of money on your phone every month, it will be a great idea to change your phone plan while attending college. This will give you more money every month and you can either save some or spend it on something else.
Most colleges have free wi-fi for their students, so if you are living on campus you will not have a problem with this. If you are renting an apartment or a place to live, try to use your wi-fi as much as possible, so you can save data on your phone plan.
Way 10 – Meet with your advisor
This may not sound like a very fun thing to do, but meeting with your advisor on a somewhat regular basis can help you to save some money on tuition and college costs.
Asking and talking to your advisor, can help you to decide what classes to add to your schedule and at what time. This will prevent you from taking any unnecessary classes and to actually focus on your goals.
According to The Simple Dollar, this is one of the smartest things that you can do while in college, as it will guide you on the right path and you will not have to spend on textbooks that you will not use much or that have nothing to do with your goals in life.
Way 11 – Use College Student Discounts
There are plenty of businesses that offer discounts to students, so do not forget to ask about these whenever you are going out. Many of these, will actually help you to save a lot of money and some will get you into some cool places.
Way 12 – Tax Incentives
The government and other associations, give out tax incentives for qualifying students, so trying to apply to some of these, can also help you to stay within your budget and to actually save some money at the same time.
There are some credits for students and other expenses that you can deduct, if they are related to a student loan interest, so make sure that you ask around and that you choose the best options for you.
Way 13 – Choose a bank with advantages for students
There are now also many banks to choose from and being able to pick the one that offers the best opportunities for students, will surely be handy.
Getting a free checking, a no fee policy or a no low minimum balance, can be of great help to any student. You should also be aware of where ATMs are on campus and if your bank has any there or near campus.
This can save you a ton on fees and transportation, which is why it is smart to do a little research and find a bank that gives you the best opportunities out there. Not only will you save some cash like that, but you will also get credit card options and more.
As long as you organize yourself, your budget should last you until the next deposit.
Way 14 – Pay your bills on time
Make sure that you know when everything is due and that you almost always pay your bills on time. This will save you money on late payment fees and save you lots of troubles as well.
The following is a video of how you can stay better organized and pay your bills on time. While some of the tips may not be thought of for college students, they will certainly help you to pay your bills on time.
Way 15 – Find a job
There are many colleges and businesses, who have job opportunities for students, so take advantage of this and find a job. If you can find something on campus, you will certainly be able to save more money and time.
There are no better ways to save money in college than to learn how hard it is to earn it and this can only be done by finding a job and working for some time. After this, you should value money a whole lot more and you will learn to save it too.
The following is an interesting video of how you can find an internship during college. Being able to work as intern, can help some people a lot and for some, it is a requirement in their career plan.
So watch this video and learn a few tips for how to become an intern during college and earn some real cash, while you learn.
Ways to Save Money in College Final Words
Those are some ways to save money in college that I used and liked if you know some great ways also feel free to write your money saving tips for college students in a comments section below.