Attending college is one of the most significant milestones in a person’s life. It can also be quite expensive. Between tuition, textbooks, and living expenses, you might wonder how you can have any money to keep track of. However, if you’re shrewd enough, you can find ways to save money while attending college.
1. Buy used textbooks
One of the greatest expenses you’ll have to deal with in college is buying textbooks. You might be able to afford one at retail price, but a full course load can be incredibly costly.
There are ways to circumvent this, namely purchasing used textbooks. When you receive the list of textbooks you need, don’t head straight for the campus bookstore. Instead, look online for more reasonable deals.
2. Live at home
Dorm life is something that many incoming freshmen anticipate. It’s a very exciting taste of independence, but it might not be the best thing for your budget.
If you’re staying in or near your hometown, you should consider living at home. You can still have the college experience you craved but be able to save money and enjoy much more peace and quiet.
3. Use student discounts
Your student ID is like a golden ticket. It might not grant you access to everything you dream of, but it can give you discounts. Going to the movies or out to eat can be made more affordable with your ID. Be sure to ask about student discounts and look for special deals geared toward college students.
4. Don’t go out too much
Having fun with friends is one of the best parts of college, but you need to control yourself for the sake of your wallet. Eating all your meals out can really add up, for instance.
Before accepting an invitation, ask yourself if you can reasonably afford it. It might be hard to decline, but you’ll feel better knowing you’ve ultimately made the responsible decision.
5. Put money away
If you want to save money in college, you need to be deliberately doing so. Make it a habit to put aside money on a weekly basis. If you have a part-time job, try to put away at least ten percent of your paycheck. Opening a savings account is something you definitely should do in college.
When you make regular deposits, you can go through college with a much greater sense of confidence and free yourself from the anxiety of not having any sort of financial safety net.
Your college experience doesn’t need to be diminished by frugality. If anything, it can be enhanced by learning the importance of critical thinking with your budget.
Knowing how to hold onto a dollar and find discounts as a college student means you’ll be able to enter the workforce with a much better head on your shoulders. When you walk across that stage to accept your diploma, remember how your money sense helped you reach that point.