University fees are expensive enough as it is and while you’re trying to learn how to do everything while you’re at university, trying hard not to be broke or being broke again is probably one of them. As a student you’ve got bills, rent, stationery, books to pay for and on top of all that, trying to have a decent social life (by social life, I mean partying. Lots and lots of partying).
To help you prevent yourself from being broke, here are some money saving tips for broke students:
Broke students are always low on money so don’t spend what you don’t have. If you’re low on money, don’t spend it all at once. That top you saw in the shop might be cute and perfect for that date you have coming up but if you spend half your money on that top and you’re left with peanuts for food shopping, you’re probably going to be eating peanuts for dinner.
Set yourself a budget every day or every week and make sure to stick to it. Be strict with yourself and with how you spend your money. By budgeting, you’ll have a routine of how much to spend and when to spend it as well as helping you to manage your money better.
2. Buy things on sale
Wherever you can, buy things on sale. Why buy things full price when you get it for cheaper?
Whether this is about clothes, books or even food, you’ll be saving money and trust me, it all adds up. You’ll be able to stretch your money further and this will mean you can use any money left over for something you want after you have got all your essentials.
Food is usually reduced in supermarkets when it is at or close to it’s best before date; this food is still edible and can mean that you can save the other food you already have for another day instead.
Reuse and recycle! There are plenty of life hacks which you can incorporate into your university life which will help you save money here and there.
If you have a small chocolate box, you could use it as a makeshift pen pot. Maybe you have a lot of spare paper left over from high school? Rip out all of the unused paper and make your own notebook.
Do what you can to make the most of what you have instead of just throwing it away. What you think is useless or no longer needed, could actually be useful.
4. Borrow if you can
If you’re one of those broke students, you have probably run out of money quite a few times.
If you’re in one of those situations, ask to borrow things whenever you can (but don’t borrow money or get loans as they may make your broke situation worse than it actually is and you could end up in a lot of debt).
If you don’t have the money to buy hair straighteners or that book that got added to the syllabus, ask a friend if you can borrow it. You’ll be saving money and the hassle of going out and buying your own.
5. Question if you really need it
When you’re a broke student, you don’t have the money to spend on things you really don’t need. Only when you have the money or you can afford it, should you then splurge on the things you want.
If you find yourself buying too many things you don’t need (and regret buying them!), try selling them on sites like eBay where you can make some extra money and help you get out of being broke.
6. Take advantage of student discounts
If you’re a student, you get the perk of student discounts. Use this to your advantage and use it wherever possible.
If you’re on a tight budget, using your student discounts can help you save money. Many shops and restaurant accept student discounts so make the most of it. Many places accept your university ID card but some may require an NUS card.