Going to college is not only expensive in itself, but comes with a ton of responsibility which can lead to poor spending habits. If you’re like most of us college students, we’re living on a budget and any tips on saving money are super useful. Here are 10 tips on saving money in college that will change your life!
1. Eat Out Less, Eat-In More
A super easy change to make to save some money is eating out less. We all know it can be hard to deny a nice meal out with friends every once in a while, but instead of going out and spending $20 on a meal, cooking a nice meal at home will help your wallet. For those of you living in a dorm, you can cook with friends and take advantage of the communal kitchen to whip up a delicious and cheaper meal!
2. Make a Budget For Yourself
Creating a weekly or monthly budget for yourself and holding yourself accountable for what money you’re spending can also be a great way to save your money. If you are keeping track of how much money you’re spending and what you’re spending it doing, it can be easier to see what areas you’re spending too much in and plan accordingly.
3. Shop At Second Hand Stores
For those of us who love to shop, being in college and on a budget can present some problems when we just don’t have the money to shop for fun anymore. A great way to still shop but save your money more wisely is by shopping at second hand or thrift stores where you can find great pieces for a cheaper price! Explore around your city and find some stores where you’ll be able to continue shopping without breaking the bank.
4. Invest In A French Press Or Small Coffee Maker
If you’re like me and spend a ton of money on coffee, a great investment to make is buying a french press or small coffee maker for your dorm. It might cost more upfront, but it saves you a ton of money in the long run since my average cup of coffee can cost as much as $5. Making coffee in your room also saves you the time and hassle of going to a coffee shop and waiting for your coffee when you’re in a rush!
5. Take Advantage Of Your School’s Dining Halls and Markets
If you’re on a meal plan at your school, take advantage of that and use your meal swipes to eat rather than spending money on groceries or eating out. At my school, we also have a little market with groceries where we can spend money from our meal plan, so take advantage of that and buy groceries there if possible!
6. Prioritize What Is Actually Worth Spending Money On
Sit yourself down and see where you’re spending the majority of your money. Are you spending this money wisely? Or are you spending $20 a week on coffee? Making small daily changes can add up to a lot in the long run. Personally, I’d rather make my own coffee for a week and buy a concert ticket the next week. Prioritize what you want to spend your money on!
7. Student Discounts!
There are a ton of places and websites that give student discounts if you show your ID card, so do some research and go to these places instead of others when you’re spending your money!
8. DIY Over Purchasing
If you can make it yourself, it’s probably going to be cheaper than going out and buying it. Especially for dorm decor, it’s super easy and fun to DIY decorations and art instead of going out and spending your money on it.
9. Use Public Transport Over Driving/Uber
I know I spend more money than I’d like to by using Uber or Lyft to go places when in reality, I would save myself so much money if I just used public transport. If you have access to the train, bus, subway, etc., take advantage of it. It’s also more eco-friendly!
10. Sell Clothes You Don’t Need Anymore
I always get tired of my wardrobe and don’t know what to do with my clothes. I started selling my clothes on Depop to make a bit of extra cash and it really helps for a bit of money to spend elsewhere! It’s also super fun to scroll and look through all of the other cool pieces people are selling!