8/18/2015

College Students Can Save Money with These Budget Stretching Tips

College students can save money with these budget stretching ideas. Most have entered a new world where terms like budgeting and spending plans is a reality instead of a distant theory. Any parent can tell you that college students are perpetually strapped for cash.
Through the years we have been able to help our college students develop strategies to save money and stretch their budget. For the most part my daughters have been able to budget successfully. We do occasionally get emergency phone calls but even these are becoming more rare.
Coffee
This is one area that both of my daughters have struggled with. Since some dorms don't allow coffee pots it makes coffee houses that much more attractive. Stretching a budget doesn't mean giving up on Starbucks completely. Limiting visits, going to a smaller size or downgrading toppings is a budget stretching strategy that can save money.
Pizza
One of the most popular meals for college students has to be pizza. Asking about specials before ordering is can save money. Getting one topping and using coupons are other budget stretching ideas.
Movies
College students enjoy movies as much as everyone else. Matinees are always less expensive than evening showings. Discounted tickets may be available with an automobile club membership or in bulk. A simple budget stretching idea is skipping on the movie theater snacks. If you must, Carmike Cinemas offers a popcorn bucket for $15 that is refillable for $2.50.
See a play
Instead of a movie why not go to a play? Performances in the lab theaters on campus are usually free. College students can often save money on main stage productions by volunteering to usher. Attending a play is a fun way to spend an evening out.
Buy used and help the environment.
Save money by buying used. Recycling stretches the budget and saves the environment. College students can check campus bulletin boards for used refrigerators or furniture items. Used textbooks can be purchased from the college campus bookstore or from online booksellers.
Lock it if you want to keep it.
Protecting valuables is an important tool to save money. Locking a bicycle may not seem like a budget stretching tip until the bike is stolen. College students can save money by not leaving cell phones or lap tops unattended. Software like the free Prey Project may help get the laptop back if stolen.
Research gas prices.
College students can save money on gas by searching online first. Checking sites like GasBuddy.com is a budget stretching tip that everyone can use. A few minutes online to find the closest gas station with the best price can help students save at the pump.
Couponing works for college students.
Grocery coupons are another area where college students can and should save money. Look in the local newspaper, supermarket and online for budget stretching coupons. Skipping the campus convenience centers in favor of traditional grocery stores can also help college students save money.
Eliminate bank and ATM fees.

Another budget stretching tip is to forget the fees. College students can save money by using the ATM at their bank. Plus, many financial institutions have free checking accounts for college students.
Don't speed.
Park in the right lots has to be the easiest budget stretching tip to practice. Parking fines kill the budgets of college students everyone. Parking in the right spot helps college students save money, avoid frustration and stretch the budget.

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