Ways to Save and Budget for College Students

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Maggie Brown

mbrown245@radford.edu

When most people refer to college students the first thing that comes to mind would be the “broke college student” status, which can be entirely true for most students. College is a highly expensive investment, which most students come out of it in debt. However, there are many different ways college students can budget or cut costs to help them save money. Here is a list that I came up with of seven different ways that can help the average college student save and budget their way through college.

First, you can save on college textbooks and use Amazon to get them instead, by buying them used or renting them. Everyone knows that the bookstore can charge a lot of money for books that you need for classes, so try using Amazon to find better deals. There are many different sites that offer deals on textbooks, but be aware of scams and computer viruses.

Another tip is try to live off-campus after your freshman year, if possible. Living on campus is pretty expensive, so instead of paying for dorm life, split rent with some friends in an apartment.

No one is too good for Dollar Tree in college, where you can search for good deals on the necessities.  Dollar Tree is a very inexpensive store that sells all items for a dollar each. The store has all things that you can get by on, including candy, costumes, decorations, food, office supplies, cleaning supplies, and shower supplies. So when you need more basic items, hit up a Dollar Tree instead of the nearest Target.

You can also consider working on campus. Students who need some extra money (and possibly a free meal) should consider an on campus job. There are jobs available in the dining halls, work study jobs, and much more. These jobs can give students more opportunities and give them some spare change in their wallets.

Another good idea is to continue applying for scholarships throughout college. Most students find that they are rewarded with more scholarships during college than they did their senior year of high school, because they have more to offer on their applications. These things can include more experience and projects, and this can also help build up resumes for future careers.

Taking advantage of your student discounts is another way to save money, and there’s a lot of different places that offer student discounts. Big companies, such as Apple, offer discounts on big ticket items like Macs and iPads that can help students out with their schoolwork.

Lastly, you can budget your finances and money through an app on your phone. There is an app out there for literally anything, and there are several different apps for helping people stay on top of their finances and bills. As a college student, you can use financing apps on both iOS and Android phones.

There are many other ways college students can budget and save their way through their college experience, but these are just the seven I thought were important. One important thing to remember would be to not live outside of your means. This means don’t spend more money than you have. There are many cheats and short cuts out there that students can use to get better deals on anything from big items, to their coffee in the morning, simply for being a college student. All in all, students should look for short cuts that make college life more affordable.