University student pondering money saving tips while holding up his piggy bank.

10 Money-Saving Tips for Students

As a university or college student, you’ve probably already accepted the fact that these next 4+ years will cost you thousands of dollars. But what if we could tell you that’s not necessarily true? Sure, you’ll pay lots for tuition, housing and food―but there are ways to save some valuable money as a student, too.

These are 10 money saving tips for students worth trying!

  1. Don’t buy your textbooks until after you’re instructed to read them
  2. We’ve all made this rookie mistake―purchasing the recommended and mandatory course materials before the semester starts, only to realize later that you didn’t even open them. And by the time you’ve rushed to return the books, they’ve already decreased in value. Don’t let this happen to you! Only purchase/rent your course materials once your professor has instructed you to use them.

  3. Opt out of your student health and dental benefits
  4. Once enrolled, you’ll most likely be given student health and dental benefits without even realizing it. If you’re already covered under your parents’ plans or have benefits of your own, ensure to opt out of these student benefits to save you hundreds of dollars.

  5. Be a campus gym rat
  6. Most post-secondary campuses offer gym memberships and recreational classes at a reduced rate for their students, so cancel your external exercise memberships and take advantage of the ones provided for you.

  7. Take advantage of student discounts
  8. Cards like SPC are great benefits to budget-wise students. You can score lots of great deals as a student, so make sure to sign up for student discount cards, discount websites and bring your student ID everywhere you go.

  9. Go carless when possible
  10. Parking at post-secondaries is at a premium and often quite expensive! Save that money instead and carpool with friends, walk, ride your bike or take transit. Most universities offer free transit passes with your tuition, so make sure to use it.

  11. Apply for scholarships
  12. There are thousands of dollars that go unspent every year from scholarships that are never used. Do your research and apply for as many as you can. Not all scholarships are grade-based and even if they are, apply anyways. It’s free money to help students like yourself, so go for it!

  13. Bring your own food
  14. We know, we know―bringing your lunch was so high school. You’re an adult now with lots of options to choose from! But those options come at an expense to your wallet. Save that money instead, and bring your food and snacks to campus so you’re not tempted by the cafeteria.

  15. Same goes for coffee
  16. The average caffeinated beverage costs between $3-5, which is a lot of money if you get one every day. Make your own drink at home and save that $5 for a special latte (or beverage of your choice) once a week instead, because #treatyoself.

  17. Start paying your student loans off now
  18. The last thing you can probably think of at this moment is paying off the student loans you’ve only just started acquiring. But that’s exactly what we’re recommending. Any extra money that comes your way from your part-time job, gifts or family, put it towards paying off your student loan so the final number isn’t so scary once you’ve graduated. Remember, every little bit helps!

  19. Create a realistic budget
  20. And because we know university isn’t just all about attending classes, it’s important to create a monthly budget that works for you―and then stick to it. It’s all too easy to get caught up in the moment and blow hundreds of dollars on food, drinks and fun, but you don’t want to wake up the next morning not knowing how you’re going to afford the gas to get to class.

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