Although many remember their college days as the most fun they’ve ever had, in most cases that is also the period when you’re so constrained with finances, that every tip for saving money is more than welcome. Here are some, provided by both financial experts and students themselves.
Planning is the Key
Think about your income and expenses and write them down. Alternatively, you can use one of many apps for your phone or tablet to do this. This will help you track your expenditure, without asking yourself where you’ve spent all the money. What’s important is to track every single transaction and revise the budget regularly, say once a week.
Location and Accommodation
Depending on the place where you’re studying, it might be cheaper to choose a place a bit further from the university and pay more for public transport (often discounted for students). Also, having someone to share the costs is obviously a sound idea, but you have to be careful when choosing your future roommate(s). It’s vital that you agree on the most important issues, including sharing the costs.
Some great savings can be made here. Replace traditional bulbs with energy-saving or LED ones. Turn off the lights when leaving the room or flat and plug out the appliances when they’re not in use. Every little helps.
“You should regularly check your fixtures for any leakage of malfunction. Also, installing a dual-flush toilet would save both water and your money“, advise Sydney-based experts for blocked drains.
Depending on your mobile phone plan, you may have unlimited Internet access, which allows you to communicate with friends and family at little or no extra cost, using Viber, WhatsApp or Messenger.
If possible, you should regulate the heating in a way that you keep it at minimum during the time you’re out. Also, there is no need to overheat during night, since you’ll be tucked into bed, tired of all the studying.
Shopping for Food
Don’t go shopping for food hungry! You’ll just run up a huge bill and buy more than you actually need. Also, you’ll probably find that buying unbranded stuff is in your case the best value-for-money option. Another tip for saving some extra cash is to buy in bulks or visit a market closer to the closing hours. Many sellers are just too reluctant to take home their unsold products and you might get some food on the cheap.
If you don’t know how to cook, you’ll need to learn. Cooking your own food not only saves money, but also gives you a great sense of achievement. Your first dishes will probably be no rival to your mum’s or granny’s, but in time, you’ll master the skill. Here are some recipes that might get you started.
These are available for transport by buses and trains, visiting galleries, museums, theaters and cinemas, as well as some cafes and restaurants. Ask around and you’re bound to find out many more benefits provided to you by your Student ID.
Buying and Selling
If there are books, items of clothing or furniture you no longer need, feel free to sell them. You’ll gain some precious space and earn some extra money on the way. Also, when in need of such things, make sure you have a look at pre-used ones, most of which are available at very low cost, provided you just take them away from someone’s flat.
Of course, there are many more ways in which you can improve your financial situation. Getting a part-time job, if you can afford it with your workload, is a great idea, but regardless of how much money you have or earn, there’s no reason to spend more than you need.