Strategies You Didn’t Know You Need
While college is an exciting time filled with new experiences, friendships, and growth opportunities, it can also be financially challenging as you want to save money in college without settling for less. Especially for students who are paying for their education on their own, the cost of tuition, textbooks, housing, and other college expenses can quickly add up, leaving students feeling stressed and overwhelmed.
Have these 5 Strategies and budgeting tips in your back pocket to take charge of your personal finances and make your life easier without sacrificing what you love.
Importance of Saving Money as a College Student
College may be your first taste of independence and the opportunity to explore your passions and interests. However, it’s also a time when financial responsibility becomes a pressing issue, after as a college student, you may be faced with the challenge of balancing college expenses and other expenses while still wanting to maintain a social life.
Naturally, it can be easy to overlook the importance of saving money as a college student – in reality, it is much easier than you think.
One way to save money without noticing it is to pay less than half of your phone bill while maintaining all the features of your current plan – how? Easy peasy, lemon squeezy! Hello Mobile’s UNLIMITED all-in plan for only $25 a month per line makes it possible…*hint hint*!
#1 Best Way to Budget for Groceries
As you embark on your new adventure, you will quickly realize that food will take up a big portion of your budget. Creating a budget might be stressful since your demands may fluctuate weekly; for example, during finals week or spring break week, you may need more room for drinks and snackies – no judgment here.
Here are some strategies on how to best budget for groceries:
- Weekly Budget Instead of Monthly Budget – this will also cut down on overspending. You know that bag of fresh spring mix salad you keep purchasing and tossing out? Exactly.
- Meal Planning, Prepping, and Free Events – blabla, everyone talks about it. However, here’s the kicker: if you take advantage of events and deals, you can create a ton of food and freeze it. This will also help reduce eating out because you already have something prepped that you just need to microwave.
- Holidays and Events – think about it: the day after every major holiday or sporting event, such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day, or the Super Bowl, much promotional food goes on sale. If you keep track of major holidays and events and wait a day to make your bulk purchases, you may save much money.
- Coupons, store loyalty programs, and discounts – create a spreadsheet/list to keep track of every store loyalty program you are part of and every place that gives student discounts, this will help save a lot. For example, Sprouts offers 15% off on a specified day of the week at selected locations, while Kroger offers 5% off your total purchase.
- Free Events – Is there an event coming up that’s offering free food? Make sure to attend it and bring some Tupperware to take some food home.
Tip: Besides groceries, do not go shopping at the campus bookstore. Higher education is expensive enough, you can find much cheaper textbooks online without taking on additional student loans.
#2 How to Save Money on Transportation in College
Transportation is a big expense, especially for students who live off-campus and must commute. Between the cost of a car, gas, insurance, and parking fees, transportation costs may rapidly become a major drain on your finances – public transportation will become your best friend.
What’s college without a good phone? If you know what cell phone you want, here over here – however, if you’re unsure whether you want to get an iPhone or Android, then head here to read our guide.
Here are some tips on how to save money on transportation in college:
- Public Transportation – boring but very useful. Many college towns have affordable and reliable public transportation options, including buses, subways, and trains. Consider getting a monthly or semester pass to save money – ask for discounts
- Walk or Bike — If you live close enough to campus, consider walking or biking instead of driving or taking public transportation. Not only is it free, but it’s also a great way to stay active, healthy, and do something good for the environment.
- Carpool – If you have friends or classmates who live near you or have a similar schedule, consider carpooling. You can split the cost of gas and parking, saving you a lot of money in the long run.
- Parking Fees — Costly on-campus parking can quickly add up and may not be the only choice; free or inexpensive lots may be available in the area.
Overall, there are many ways to start saving on transportation in college as gas prices continue to climb, so don’t be afraid to get creative and find what works best for you – finding ways to save money in college is the ultimate goal.
You know another cost that can quickly add up and rise? Your phone bill. Although you need it, the hidden costs and the seemingly endless stream of additional charges gradually turn this bill into one of your worst nightmares.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though! We know what it’s like to live with this necessary evil, ehm, needed bill. This was one of the reasons we created Hello Mobile – to give back to the community (including college students) through affordable prices where you don’t have to sacrifice anything.
Have you heard of our BOGO deal? Buy One Month, Get One On Us – click here!
#3 Best Student Deals and Discounts
Being a college student can be tough on the wallet. Fortunately, plenty of discounts and deals are out there that can help you save money and make your budget go further.
You’d be surprised at home that many places have student deals and discounts.
Popular Places that offer student discounts:
- Amazon – Get a discounted annual membership here.
- FedEx – Get discounted shipping with 30% off on envelopes and 20% off on packages.
- Jo-Ann – Get 10% off all crafts and supplies
- Sam’s Club – Get a $45 eGiftCard through UniDays
- Goodwill – Get a 10% discount
- Apple – Check out their discounts that regularly update
- Chipotle – Get a free drink with a purchase at selected locations
- Spotify – Get premium Spotify, Hulu (with ads), and showtime for $5
- McDonald’s – Get 10% off a happy meal at selected locations (check their website to see their other offers that even include a scholarship!)
- Geico – Get up to $200 off of your insurance by having a 3.0 GPA
Want more? Check this ultimate guide on how to create more income streams while in college.
Tip: Your campus will likely have a free gym that you can use to save money, and you won’t need a gym membership.
Besides finding ways to save money in college, there is always the option of getting a part-time job and using credit cards to help cover some of the bills, though it’s only a short-term solution. If you’re like most people, student loans and financial aid aren’t going to cut it – that’s where budgeting comes into play.
Why You Should Cut Your Phone Bill in Half with Hello Mobile
Have you heard that most students overpay for their phone bill? Having a phone plan is essential, but you can get by just fine without spending a fortune on one. Hello Mobile is devoted to providing the most cost-effective cell phone plan for every customer, regardless of their preferences or demands, so that you can save money without compromising service.
What does this mean?
It means that you can get all-in UNLIMITED Data, Talk & Text for only $25 per month per line – without hidden fees, taxes, contracts, etc., etc. tra-ra.
So, what are you waiting for? You have nothing to lose, only to gain.
P.S. Unless you got a full ride straight out of high school, consider going to community college first.
No Nonsense, Just Premium Service.