Would you agree with me if I’ll tell you that most students are uneducated when it comes to money?
I’m a student myself, and I can’t helped but notice how my fellow students are spending nowadays. Most of my classmates don’t even pay attention to where their allowances are going, and I think some of that can be blamed on the school’s education department.
They are not educating us on how to value and manage our allowance.
Money management isn’t even included in our curriculum. Unless you’re taking accountancy or other business-related course, I don’t think most professors would even even address personal finance in their classes.
This is why it’s crucial that you take the time to learn how to properly manage your money and save money as a student, so that good money management will be an established habit by the time you leave college.
Martin of Studenomics.com wrote a good article on why money management should be taught in school before, and I totally agree with him on that one.
And to help savvy students like you, I have compiled some of the best money saving tips for students that you can easily implement into your life.
30 Ways To Save Money As A Student
Learn to budget your allowance
The first thing you should do for you to have more money as a student is learn how to budget your allowance. Track your expenses for 30 days, so you can see how much you need to live on, and how much you’re spending is being wasted, or extra spending. Then make sure that your needs are covered, and that your wants are within income limits after you put a small amount into savings.
It’s the old adage of living within your means.
Pack your own lunch
If you really want to get a good start on saving some of your allowance, then you should start cutting down on your food expenses first.
It’s because most students spend most of their allowance on food and one way to cut it down is by packing your lunch at home and bringing it to your school, as opposed to buying in the school cafeteria.
If you can’t do this on your own, then maybe you could ask your parents or a bag-lunching friend to help you out with some menu ideas and budgeting.
Avoid going to the mall often
Whether you’re a student or done with college and a hard-working professional, the mall can be a dangerous place as it tempts you to spend money that you might not have.
Choose a less costly form of entertainment, like reading books at the library, studying with a friend, or having a board game night.
Avoid eating at fast food chains
Most students are attracted to fast food chains because they offer “cheap” and “delicious” food.
Unfortunately, eating at fast food chains generally isn’t good for you or for your wallet.
The menu items at fast food chains may look enticing because they are cheap, but if they’re putting your health in danger you’ll end up spending more on medical care later. With a little resourcefulness and creativity, you can make healthy and delicious meals at home, which can save you money and your health.
Be with frugal friends
Hanging out with frugal friends or those who already know how to value money can help you achieve your financial goals. They may even teach you some money saving tips that they practice themselves. I’m sure you’ll be able to find at least one frugal friend on your campus.
Invite your friends to your home
If you can’t hang out at your friend’s house, then maybe you could invite them at your home instead.
You don’t really need to go out just to have fun. A movie marathon with your friends, for example, can be a great way to enjoy your free time as a student.
Avoid dining out
Dining out can drain your budget very quickly. Choose instead to cook at home, either on your own or with friends. You’ll save lots of money, gain great cooking skills and have fun all at the same time.
It’s a lot cheaper that way, but if you really want to dine out…
…Then be with your friends
Going out in a group can save money, even at sit-down restaurants, if you can share meals or appetizers with a friend or two instead of ordering your own separate meal.
Always bring a water container with you
Buying a safe and high-quality container will save you tons of money on that you’ll no longer have to spend on bottled water. Choose to carry your water bottle with you everywhere, so you can avoid having to pay for water on the spur of the moment.
Must Read: A Quick Way To Save Money With A Water Bottle
Keep alcohol consumption to a minimum
I started drinking when I was in high school, so I know how hard it is to resist peer pressure.
Drinking with your friends or during parties is fine, as long as you know when to stop.
Exercising control in this are can save you money, and a lot more too.
This is one thing I’m really against. Smoking is not only a proven carcinogen (cancer causer), but at roughly $8 a pack, it’s a very costly habit.
Be active and learn to play at least one sport
Don’t get a credit card
It’s not good for you to be having a credit card in your wallet because marketing companies make a career out of tricking students to spend more money than they have. Getting a debit card is better for you, because you can only use the money you really have; so if you have nothing in your savings account, you can’t buy anything.
Don’t fall for the lure of the fancy credit card with your school’s name on it.
Avoid impulse purchases
Focus on what you need to buy, and don’t fall prey to the temptation of impulse purchases. Remember that you’re a student who is living on a limited budget, and remind yourself how freeing it will feel to graduate with little to no debt because you’ve managed your money wisely.
Save money on textbooks
Whenever your professor ask you to get a book, try to look for it in your school library first.
If it’s not available there, then check it out online and buy the used book not the brand new one because it’s a lot cheaper, and it is still the same book.
Get used to second hand items
Having used items isn’t that bad, and it’s also a good way to save money as a student because used items are cheaper. I’m not saying you should always buy used, but things like books, gadgets, and cars can be bought as used, and they would still perform somewhat like their brand new counterparts.
Maximize the use of your school supplies
Instead of buying new school supplies at the beginning of each year, work to take care of the things you bought the first year, to see if you can make them usable for the following years.
You can easily save money by simply taking extra care of the school supplies you already have.
Sell things that you don’t need anymore
Always bring your ID with you
You’re a student and being one has some privileges and benefits that you should take advantage of. I’m sure most establishments around your campus offer discounts to students, that’s why you should always bring your ID with you.
Don’t skip your classes
Get a scholarship
Trying to get a scholarship will benefit both you and your parents, and it can really help you save money as a student.
It’s because you’ll be able to study for free, and also receive a monthly allowance as well. It’s a win-win situation for you and your family as long as you do well with your studies.
Go to a school near your home
By going to a school/university near you, you’ll be able to save a lot of money on transportation expenses and avoid paying for any rent. You can still stay at your parent’s house where you can just sleep at your room and also enjoy free food, courtesy of your parents.
If you want to try and live on your own, then you should invite some of your friends to come with you
Some students may feel the urge to live their homes early, maybe because of family problems or their school is too far, while some are just ready to leave the nest.
If you’ve decided that getting your own housing is for you, seek out one or more housemates that can share in the expenses.
Learn to do your own laundry
Buy the most affordable laptop that could satisfy all your needs
Use public transportation
Before you ask your parents to get a car, try to think first of the money you’ll be able to save if you would be getting your own car a little later in your life, maybe after you graduate college. Having a car will cost you a lot (just see the current price of gas).
Look and see if there’s an option for public transportation, walking or biking to where you need to go.
Get a part-time job
It can be hard to save money as a student because the money that you can save can only come from your parents, guardian, or scholarship and loan monies. Getting a part-time jo is a good way to have more money to spend or save.
It will not only help you in saving more money, it can also help to teach you better money management skills for when you’re graduating and earning the big bucks.
Open your own savings account
Getting a savings account of your own is a good thing for you because you’ll be able to place your saved money in a secure location. Your chosen bank can also help you grow your money by giving you small incentives for trusting your money with them.
Learn to invest
Maybe you’re thinking that it’s too early for you to put your money on investments but in reality, it’s not.
Investing now is the best way you can do to grow your saved money, and if you do it in such a young age, you’ll be able to enjoy the benefits of compound interest.
Rick of FinancingLife.org wrote an article before on why you should invest early, you should read it and know yourself why you should invest as soon as possible.
I hope those money saving tips could help you out. Now, are there other ways not on the list above that helped you save money as a student before?
If there are any, why not share it at the comments below and let your fellow readers know about it.