Being a student can be expensive. So doing anything you can to offset costs should be a priority. All it takes is some pre-planning and a positive state of mind and your bank account will be a much happier place.
Make Saving a Habit
If you can't save 10% of your income, save 5%. If you can't save 5%, save 2%. If you can't save 2%, save $20 a month or whatever you can afford. But get into the habit and make it regular. When things improve, you can boost that percentage, you can boost that dollar figure and it won't feel so painful to you. You've already set it up and you're already in the habit of saving. You have to start, why not today!
Limit dining out
It’s difficult to resist time out with friends at your favorite restaurants, but limiting the time you dine out will greatly reduce your living costs (this includes coffee shops in the morning — brew your own for added savings). Try only eating out for special occasions.
Save money on transportation.
If you live on or near campus, instead of driving everyday, take public transportation or set aside some extra time and walk instead. Or, if you already have a bicycle, bike to class. The money you save on gas will really add up fast.
Contact your wireless carrier.
There is no doubt that your phone plan is costing you. So try for a better rate. Simply contact your wireless carrier, let them know you're a college student and ask about ways to reduce your package rates. A simple reduction in your data package can save you $20 a month. That’s a lot of ramen noodles!
Look for student discounts.
Many shops and restaurants offer student discounts to attract students in the area. Don’t underestimate the savings power of 15% off of a meal. Be savvy about where you shop and eat, and look for posted student discounts in windows.
Free can be fun too.
Get in touch with Student Activities and ask about activities around town that are free to students, and save your money for things you really need.