Saving money while in college can be tricky. But, you can stay on top of your finances with a few simple tips.
Show your student ID
A discount might be available just for the asking if you can present a valid college ID. College student discounts are available for almost every budget expense, including:
- Beauty products
- Entertainment and electronics
- Home decor
Always ask before paying at the register. Not every business that provides college student discounts advertises these perks.
Buy used textbooks
New textbooks are expensive and sometimes unnecessary. Check to see if your campus bookstore sells used books.
Don’t go it alone. Your peers are likely looking for ways to save, too. Consider splitting the cost of certain expenses with at least one other college student. A roommate, or two, can significantly reduce housing expenses. Even without a housemate, you can still save money by purchasing items in bulk and splitting the cost with friends.
Remember to buy only what you need, shop sales, and compare price differences across brands to save the most money when buying in bulk.
Search for free events
Start by visiting your college’s campus events and entertainment webpage. You might find information on free movie screenings, fitness classes, and gaming events. In addition to free events, don't forget to check for discounted entry to university athletics and opportunities in the arts such as campus plays, music performances and art exhibitions.
Use loyalty cards
Stretch your food budget by using loyalty cards. Eating out doesn’t have to be off-limits when money is tight. Start by showing your student ID to help keep costs down. Make your money go further by eating at restaurants that reward your loyalty. Some programs, like My Panera® and Chick-Fil-A One®, invite customers to sign up for loyalty programs and earn points that can later be redeemed for free food and drink or other discounts. Download their apps and scan at the register or drive-thru to earn points. You might even receive surprise rewards for being a regular customer.
Give your budget a makeover
Tracking your expenses is necessary if you expect to keep costs down. However, reviewing your financial habits is also a must if you hope to plug any budgetary leaks and save money long-term. Here are a few to consider:
- Pay bills on time to avoid late fees.
- Use a Kasasa® checking account to earn interest, cash back, or refunds on specific purchases.
- Make interest-only payments on student loans while in school. Doing so can reduce the total amount you must repay after graduation, hopefully resulting in paying off your loans earlier than expected.
The money habits you form now can help lay the foundation for a stable financial future. Learning to live within your means might mean making a few adjustments that add up to a ton of savings at the end of each month. Adopting these changes now can benefit your finances long after college graduation.