College is an expensive four years of your life, or, if you’re like me, almost five years of your life. Between rent, tuition, books, and other fees, it doesn’t leave much wiggle room financially. It’s taken me a while to fully figure out how to manage my money, but I’m sharing my favorite tips to save money during college.
- Utilize College Discounts– There are plenty of stores that offer discounts to college students. TAKE ADVANTAGE. You only have the identity of a student for four years (usually) so you might as well use the discount while it’s offered. Among the places that offer discounts are Apple, Insurance companies such as State Farm and Allstate, CorePower Yoga, Spotify, J. Crew, ASOS, Kate Spade, MadeWell, Topshop, Buffalo Wild Wings, and many others.
- Be Honest with your Friends. If you’re trying to save money, it’s OKAY to tell them that. There’s no shame in being frugal. Now that’s not to say that you can’t go out for frozen yogurt or a game of bowling. But if they ask to go to dinner and you’ve already spent money on food that week, chances are, if you tell them that, they’ll realize they should probably be saving money too. Plus, some of the best memories, in my experience, are made in the small apartment, baking chocolate chip cookies and watching Intervention while avoiding studying.
- Shop Poshmark, Mercari, Ebay, and other discounted websites. If there’s a specific item you’re looking to buy, or if you’re looking to splurge a little, chances are that you can find that item on one of those websites for cheaper.
- DO NOT buy books from your school’s bookstore. They are such a rip off. I’m a firm believer in renting from Amazon. They have every textbook imaginable, and who really needs to buy all of those books anyways? Where are you supposed to store them once you don’t need them anymore? Who has space for all of those textbooks?! Not me!
- Budget! I know, budgeting sounds like something that a forty year old mom with three kids should do, not a college student. But it’s a good habit to get into. There are tons of printables on Pinterest and lots of apps to help you manage your money. My personal favorite is Life Budget. The app allows you to enter your income and your expenses, and it helps you to visualize just how much of your income that you spend on unnecessary things. No one really wants to enter that they spent $183 out of a $200 dollar paycheck on clothes.. I hope these tips help you to make smarter financial decisions, and although I’m certainly no financial guru, I’ve found these tips have really helped me to get a grasp on financial responsibility. What money saving tips work best for you? Leave me a comment below!