Unfortunately, even if you ate all the ramen noodles in the rainbow, you’d still be craving something more eventually. In addition, there’s got to be some ways to make money in college as well saving it. For those who can do both, you don’t need a fortune to survive or pay off your semester’s tuition. In addition, these ways to save explore a bit more about the college lifestyle as well as getting the most financial aid possible.
1. Free Pizza, Free Drinks, Sign Our Petition
As a college student, going to events with free food and drinks can be a daily way to branch and meet people, as well as save on your food bills. These events can have you eating like a king and if you’re extra thrifty, you could just take some home with you. Most of the time, you’ll get finger foods, like pizza, sandwiches, crackers, chips, and fruit.
If you’re thinking you’d just rather save the trouble, that one meal isn’t going to really help your finances, just think about how your groceries pile up and the cost to eat per day in college. Frankly, you can also eat rather well by attending these events and also getting to know other people on campus who enjoy free food as well, because you’re not the only one just going to an event for the food. You could feel bad about it, but the people planning the event know what they’re doing by advertising free food to a college campus full of hungry young people.
2. Fill in the Gaps with FinAid
Most college students understand how financial aid works, because it’s a requirement when you apply for admission that you also apply for financial aid if you need money for school. However, budgeting doesn’t seem to be as important, but if you know your budget and what you need to live comfortably, then picking up different grants, work study jobs and scholarships, makes a lot of sense and becomes a necessity.
So, as young as middle school, students are taught how to fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, otherwise known as the gateway to the Pell Grant, other financial aid grants, federal fellowships and government student loans. Along with these grants and work study programs, apply for scholarships, and even apply for those awards with low amounts. Most people don’t and that’s why you have a better chance to accumulate financial aid wealth by picking up the dollars where you can.
There’s also an abundance of easy ways to do this online, so it can literally just take a half hour to an hour per day, or even less, to find scholarships and apply online. Just add it to your homework list.
3. Don’t Let Textbooks Weigh Down Your Bank Account
Like tuition, textbook prices go up every year, and some publishers do just add a new section just to make students purchase the new edition. However, college students have been renting textbooks for years, and some of them have finally realized how to make renting textbooks and owning used textbooks much cheaper.
Online places that have textbooks for rent are becoming the most popular way that students get the books they need, and send them back when they don’t. Sites like Chegg, Amazon Kindle, and eCampus provide a lot of options for all subjects and easy shipping. In the case of tablet readers, like Kindle, you can save a bundle by getting your books in electronic format. In order to make this process really work, rent your textbooks early, which means getting the book list earlier than the start of classes and having a pre-emptive attitude about saving money for textbooks.
When it comes to financial aid, you should also remember that this money must last you over a period of several months for tuition, room and board, textbooks and other supplies. Even while eating for free, working as a teacher’s assistant and buying all the ramen you can, you can blow through financial aid pretty quickly. It can take just adding a part-time job or coming up with a craft to sell that can replace the funds going out of your bank account in the name of your education. When it comes to college saving, just be smart about what you spend, don’t buy on impulse and make as many friends as you can. They may have more ramen to share with you!