Going off to college after those long years in high school can seem surreal. You may feel a mixture of both excitement and uncertainty. Feeling this way is understandable since you will be walking into unfamiliar territory, and it’s best to be mentally and financially prepared for this next step.
If you are traveling abroad for your school or to another state, saving money will be a big concern. During the semester, you may not have the time to work since you will be focused on studying and acing your courses. You also don’t want to keep asking your parents for pocket money whenever you need to restock supplies. So, if you’re determined to get through your college education without being broke, here are a few tips that could help you spend less during your years of study.
Look for discounts and freebies.
After filling out your college applications, meeting admission requirements, and getting into your dream college, the next thing that comes to mind is your living situation. It’s even more of a concern if you’re an international student or you’re moving out of state for your higher education. Apart from toiletries and food, you’ll have to think of your living supplies like bedding, clothes, laundry supplies, and small yet necessary things like hangers.
Hangers may not be the most expensive thing on your list of things to get, but any amount you can save counts. To get free hangers, you can walk into a retail store like Old Navy and ask them if you can keep the hangers they plan to throw out. The best time to go is an hour or 30 minutes before closing time; the attendants at checkout are usually willing to help.
Travel as cheap as you can.
You may be eager to leave your parents’ house and the confinement of curfews that come with living there. However, when you’ve been away from home for a while, you’re going to miss it. So, you may plan a trip back home over the summer or for Christmas after the fall semester. If it’s not your homesickness taking you back home, you may want to travel somewhere for spring break.
To make your trips more affordable, you need to search out discount rates on flights and your hotel room (if you need one). You can opt to use the Expedia website or Groupon to find traveling coupons instead of buying a regular ticket. Also, most airlines are open to offering students a great deal on their travel, and this is why it’s best to carry your student ID card with you on your trips. You can also get discounts on a car rental with your school ID card in most states. Groupon also offers travel package deals if you visit their “getaways” tab.
Download apps that help you take odd jobs.
Apps like Fiverr, Task Rabbit, and Gigwalk could come in handy for you as a college student. Making extra cash for your upkeep without having to bug your parents is necessary. Gone are the days where you would need to go on a job search to get by as a student. Now, you’re just one mobile app away from finding some freelance jobs that could make you enough for the week. The good thing about these jobs is that you get to choose when or if you’d like to take them and at your convenience.
Try applying for scholarships.
There are so many scholarship opportunities these days. All you need to do is go online. Companies are willing to offer financial aid to students based on different things. Sometimes, these entities sponsor students in specific educational programs like girls in science or scholarships for athletes and creative kids. It’s hard to believe that you could qualify to be sponsored through school, but you never know. Just check their eligibility criteria, and you may be lucky.