What is one thing the majority students have in common?
Being broke, of course!
Now, unless you were a trust fund baby or got your finances together early (go you!), there was probably a time in your life when you were broke. Hey, we’re even willing to go out on a limb and guess that this time was probably during your education and schooling. If this is you right now, read on!
Here at Broke Today Rich Tomorrow, we know A LOT about being broke. Funnily enough, we also know a lot about being a student #stravingstudentlife.
That is why, today we are going to be talking all about saving yourself some pretty dollars while being a broke student! (Pssst.. even if you’re not a student anymore, you might still find some of these useful!)
Without further ado, let’s get this post rolling by delving into some tips:
Buy everything you can second-hand.
This is a mistake I often see first years making, whereby they purchase their study materials new. From brand new textbooks, to course specific wear, to even brand new technology, the cost of buying everything you need for your studies can send you bankrupt! Some advice? Just get everything you can second hand. Need 5 textbooks this semester? Try the second-hand book shop. Need a lab coat and goggles for your practicals? Message a recent graduate and see if they’re willing to sell you theirs. Need a laptop for uni? Check online and see if you can score yourself a deal!
Only pay for what you actually need.
Dear God, do not sign up to on campus gym! Just. Don’t. Do. It. I have nothing against gyms or exercise for that matter, but when it comes to on campus gyms, things tend to get ugly. First of all, you are getting ripped off. Second of all, let’s be realistic – you portably won’t go. I don’t know about you but the absolute last thing I want to do is go to the gym after an exhausting school day. Just no!
In saying that, you probably don’t have a lot of spare cash laying around as a student, so only pay for things you actually need. Yes, that Statistics textbook may be “prescribed”, but if it’s been over a month since your lecturer last mentioned it, you probably don’t need it. This goes for just about anything course related – only buy something if you actually need it!
Take advantage of student perks.
Believe it or not, being a student does actually come with a few perks! There are a lot places that offer student discounts and deals, where you can often score a cheaper deal just by showing your student identification. Quite often you can get student discounts at movies, selected retailers, fast food places and even at some service providers. It pays to look around your local area and see if you can find some!
On that note, there are also plenty of places that will offer services completely free of charge for students. More often than not, they are situated on campus and paid by your university. These can include services such as free health checks, professional counselling, career workshops and many more.
Make your own meals and bring them to school.
I’m sure you’ve probably heard this one a thousand times but it is worth repeating: make your own food. Be your own caterer. Get good at making sandwiches, so that when it’s lunch time, you have something to look forward to. Also, get good at making your own coffee, because boy will you need it!
Choose where you live wisely.
The number one expense faced by students these days is rent. Quite often, rent can take up almost half of a student’s income, if not more. One of the best ways to save money as a student is to carefully consider where you can afford to live while in school. If living at home or with family is a viable option, take it. If not, consider moving in with friends into a share house to lower your expenses. More often than not, living on your own is the most expensive option. Make sure you are realistic and do the math before signing anything!
Shop the sales and take advantage of free trials.
Why buy something full price when you can shop the sale? If you know you want to buy something in advance, wait around for a sale and save yourself some serious dollars. When there is a sale, stock up on whatever you need then and put whatever you saved in the piggy bank. Another tip is to take full advantage of free trials. Just make sure that they are actually free before you sign up with no hidden fees. If you don’t love it, make sure to cancel your trial before it expires so that you don’t get charged.
A really good trial going on at the moment is the Amazon Audible trial, whereby you can sign up today and get two free books! This makes life really convenient, as instead of reading the books, you have them read to you, saving you precious eyestrain and energy that you need for study. I am personally using this right now and I highly recommend it. If you want to try it out, click here:
Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks
The last tip of today’s post is to commute cheaply! Yes, you read that right, find a way to make your transport cheaper. Unless you absolutely have to, don’t get a car, especially if you’re under 25. The upkeep, insurance costs and parking fees will cost you a small fortune. Another point is to apply for a concession card and use it reduce your public transport fees. Then of course, there’s always walking, which will not only save you money, but will also keep you in shape and toned!
That just about wraps up today’s post. As a fellow broke student, I hope these tips will help save you a few dollars here and there!
As usual, let’s get the conversation rolling in the comments. Tell me, what is one tip you have for saving money as a student?
Let me know in the comments below!
Being broke is temporary. Being rich is a journey.