10 Ways College Students Can Save Money

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

10 Ways College Students Can Save Money

College students are always on a tight budget.  The price of everything just keeps going up and it seems that their scholarships and student loans just don't cover everything.  Learning to spend smart will help make that money go a lot longer.

1. Lower Housing Costs 

Housing is one of the biggest expenses for college students.  If you are not required to live in the dorms, you can check out lower cost rental options.  You can find a large house and split the rent with several friends.  You can check local message boards for rental or roommate options.

2. Save on Food 

Food is also a very large expense for college students.  School meal plans may be an economical option for college students.  To see if they are the best option for you, figure out how much each meal will cost and also check out sample menus to see if they offer foods you enjoy.  If you have a microwave, you can cook many foods right in your dorm room.  Try to limit the number of times you eat out in restaurants each month.  When you do eat out at a restaurant, try to use a coupon or go out for lunch instead of dinner.

3. Cut your Entertainment Expenses 

Cut your entertainment budget by attending free or low cost events on campus.  If there is a local performing arts center, you may be able to get free admission to shows if you volunteer to usher at the events.

4. Save on Clothing Purchases 

Clothing is another area where you can cut costs.  You would be surprised at the great clothes you can find at local thrift shows.  You can also get together with several of your friends and have a clothing swap.

5. Textbook Savings 

Textbooks are a major expense for any college student.  Your college bookstore may offer used textbooks and may even offer textbooks for rent.  You can also check online sites for textbooks.  If you do purchase books online, make sure you purchase the correct edition for your college course.

6. Save on Office Supplies 

Dollar stores offer great deals on supplies that you will need for college.  You will find pens, pencils, paper, notebooks, rulers and more at the local dollar store.

7. Slash your Banking Expenses 

If you have a debit card or checking account, check with a local credit union or bank.  Many of them offer free student accounts and may even offer a free initial order of checks.

8. Save on Transportation Expenses 

Even if you take a car with you to college, you may save money if you take public transportation for local trips.  Most municipalities offer a student bus pass that will save you a considerable amount of money.  If you want to go home on weekends, check to see if your college has a ride-share board.  You may be able to split costs with another student.

9. Save on General Supplies 

While you are at college, you will need personal care items like soap and shampoo.  You will also need cleaning supplies for your dorm. To save some cash head for the local dollar store, you will be amazed at the selection they offer.

10. Cheaply furnishing your Dorm or Apartment 

If you need any furniture or small appliances for your dorm room or apartment, check out your local consignment or thrift store to save some money.  If they don't have what you need, check out the local Sunday paper and try to find it on sale.

Saving money while you're in college is not really that hard if you just put a little effort into it.  You just have to get into the habit of being frugal and soon you will have extra money in your pocket or your savings account.


Karl Stockton has vast experience writing on online communication schools.

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