Ways to Save Money During College & University

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Whatever Wednesday
Hello Beautiful People!

With the teeth grinding cost of tuition, it’s important as students to do everything we can to spend money wisely and save as much money as we can. Although I’m not the best with money, it’s definitely something I’m working on. I made up a list of ways to save money during college and university to share with all of you!

Wait to Buy Textbooks & Buy them Used

With all the excitement of starting university, it’s easy to run and buy all your textbooks before classes even start. This was one of my biggest mistakes during first term in my first year and I’ve definitely learned my lesson since then. Wait until the first week of classes and see what textbooks and editions you really need. If the option of buying those textbooks used is available, then absolutely buy them used from the bookstore or even better, from another student. One thing I stress the most is to make sure that if it’s okay to buy the older edition of the textbook (even if its a little different), then DO.

Have a Weekly Budget

Work out a weekly budget for groceries, drug store necessities and weekend spending. Getting used to the idea of having a specific budget will not only help you during university but it will be a great lesson to hold on to for the rest of your life. I typically put 50% of my weekly budget to groceries (once a week), 20% to drug store necessities (although it depends on the week), and then the other 30% into my weekend spending. Although these percentages may not be the same for everyone, it’s a great idea to work something similar out for yourself in order to not go over your weekly budget (it can be hard, but it’s something you have to work at)

Sales and Student Discounts are your Best Friends

Sales are everywhere at grocery stores and drugstores, and even better, student discounts are available almost everywhere you go. Find out where and when student discounts are available and plan your schedule around that. For example, on tuesday my grocery store gives a 10% student discount, so I go grocery shopping every tuesday so I’m able to get the discount. And on Thursdays, my drugstore does a 20% student discount and a lot of things go on sale, so I only go to the drugstore on Thursdays. Know what is available to you and pay attention to sales. If something goes on sale that can stay for a long time (pasta) and it’s a very good deal, buy in bulk, don’t wait for it to go on sale again because you never know (learned by lesson when pasta went on sale for 50 cents and I only bought one pack…the next time I needed to get some, I ended up paying full price for it).

Make Tea, Coffee and Meals at Home

Buy yourself a coffee maker and a kettle (or you can just use a pan and you stove…or microwave…it’s up to you) and make your own coffee and tea at home and bring it with you to school. Although you’d only be spending a dollar or two at a coffee shop for coffee or tea, it can really add up and it’s a lot cheaper to just make your own. It’s also a really great idea to make all your meals at home rather than buying any meals at school or going out for meals.

The Dollar Store should be your Favourite Stores

You’d be surprised how many things are available at the dollar store. Party cups, table clothes, snacks, cleaning supplies, cooking supplies, toiletries…everything. Before going out and buying something from the drugstore or the grocery store, check the dollar store first! Sometimes they even sell brand name items for cheaper than at other stores!

Stay Active for Free

Although being active is extremely important, there are always cheaper alternatives to buying a gym membership (even if the gym membership at your school is cheaper than usual). If you don’t want to spend the money on the membership but want to stay active, find the alternatives. My housemate does pilates (definitely check out Blogilates on youtube for some great workouts!) in her room using different youtube channels and I do the same for yoga (some of my favourite channels are Yoga with Adriene and Yoga with Tim). You can also stay busy and active by joining different clubs at your school (whatever interests you…there are hundreds to choose from!)

Say See Ya Later to the Hairdresser (if you’re brave enough)

Hair grows back and cutting your own hair to save some money isn’t the end of the world. I cut my own hair using barber scissors that were given to me (but I’m sure you could buy some off of amazon) and I save A LOT of money by doing this!

Take Turns with your Housemates/Roommate

If you have housemates or roommates, it’s a great idea to take turns buying things like milk so you don’t have 4 jugs of milk in your fridge at once. More things you could take turns buying are things like toilet paper, paper towel, tissues and cleaning supplies!

I hope these tips help some of you save money whilst you’re at school! I know I’m going to try to stick to some of these myself! Have a great weekend everyone!

xo Ali Grace
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