There are numerous ways you can save money as a student. However, some things are more important than others, so you don’t have to give up on everything you spend your money. With good money management, you can get through your studies, have fun, and have some savings for a rainy day.
These things are doable for everybody; they just require some effort. I can not make you do these things, but I can give you ideas on how you can actually save money as a student. Let’s get right into it.
Budgeting and tracking your expenses
The first thing is budgeting. I can’t address the importance of budgeting enough, if you find it hard to make your money last. By doing some basic budgeting, you will see exactly how much money each thing costs you each month or week.
You can start budgeting with just a pen and paper or some software like Excel. There are apps made for budgeting as well, if you think that would be an easier option for you. I would suggest going with Excel or an app. This allows you to do the budgeting faster, since the software does the calculations for you.
Start by tracking your expenses for one week or one month. You will then see, how much you are spending on each thing and can make a budget based on that. It can be really difficult to say how much you are spending on each thing from the top of your head.
By having some data, you can make your budget from which will make it more realistic. And remember, the most important thing about budgeting is to stick with it. It loses its purpose if you don’t follow the limits you have set for yourself. Can you stick to your budget?
Grocery lists are another thing you can do to save some or even a lot of money every month. By thinking beforehand about what you need from the store, you can make a grocery list and avoid impulse purchases.
Grocery lists are a good addition to budgets. When you have a certain amount to spend each month, you can calculate how much you can spend on a single trip and how long you have to survive with those groceries. Also, when you know how much you can spend, you are less likely to buy something you don’t necessarily need.
There are other benefits of doing a grocery list as well. It will help you remember everything and prevent you from making several trips per day. This will save you time and money since you won’t have to buy so much useless stuff.
Eating and drinking at restaurants
Eating out can be an expensive habit for a student. And if it is not, you are probably eating unhealthy food that will have numerous bad impacts on your performance.
If you don’t eat healthy, you will have less energy to complete your school. A healthy diet is very important if you want to maintain high efficiency when studying or working.
So, how to eat healthy while sticking on your student budget? The answer is simple: cook by yourself. If you are not a skilled cook yet, learn. It will save you a lot of money in the coming years and cooking can be a lot of fun.
You will know exactly what you are eating, and this way keep your diet healthy. It is also a much more cost-efficient way for students to cook their own food.
YouTube and the internet overall are full of cooking tutorials and guides. Choose something easy to start with if you are new to cooking, and don’t unmotivate yourself by trying to do something really difficult at first.
Accommodation and transportation
Accommodation can cost a lot if you only have a limited student budget. The best and cheapest option is probably to live in your student dorms with some roommates.
If you wish to live outside your school, having a roommate to split the expenses with can help out a lot. Rent and accommodation overall can alone be the biggest expense on your budget, so find ways to reduce that and you don’t have to save so much on other things.
Transportation is another thing that can cost. If you have your own car, that can be very expensive. Even if the car was cheap, even still. Insurances, taxes, maintenance, repair, fuel, etc. Owning a car is not cheap. Try to use public transportation as much as possible.
“Save on the big things so you don’t have to save on the small things”
Find ways to earn more
One of the best things in my opinion on the list on how to save more as a student is simply to just earn more. When you have more money to spend each month, you don’t have to do budgeting if you don’t want to. You can eat out if your income is high enough.
When you earn more, you can easily keep your living standards without compromises and still have money saved up every month.
There are a lot of ways you can earn more. You could start a part-time job or even start your own business. It doesn’t have to be anything large that requires a lot of capital. Here are some posts about starting a business if interested.
If you decide to take a part-time job or start your own business while studying, make sure your studies won’t suffer from it. Don’t burn yourself out. What is the point of paying for tuition fees, if you don’t have enough energy to learn anything? Allocate your time so that you don’t burn out. Make sure you have enough sleep and free time.
Last thing on my list to save money as a student is to graduate earlier. This is one of those “easier said than done” things, but it can be done. This way, you will have to pay less in tuition fees and also have more time to work and earn money.
Let’s say you are paying 20 000 annually for tuition. After you graduate, you can earn 30 000 dollars annually. If you graduate one year earlier, you will not only save 20 000 dollars in tuition fees, but also earn 30 000 dollars more.
That makes a total of 50 000 dollars of money saved, just by graduating one year earlier. If this was the case, I would say that it is better to try to graduate earlier than to work and study simultaneously. The amount of money you can save by completing your studies faster and graduating early can be even bigger than in my example.
These are some ways you can save more money as a student. I am sure there are several other ways, but these are some basic things that pretty much everybody can do with some effort.
I have a post about how to save money smarter, not harder. You can read it here if interested.
If you wonder what to do with the money you have saved up, maybe invest some of it to learn how investing works. Posts about investing can be found here.
Hopefully this was helpful to you, have a nice day.