University is super expensive already. But the other add-ups in our daily routine can really cost us more than we think. Student budget is a thing but it has to be made very accurately in order to be a useful source of finance planning to maintain your sanity throughout the year. Here are a few easy ways you can save a few bucks throughout the year to avoid being broke especially on times you don’t want to.
Bring lunch from home
You might not want to bother making lunch for yourself early in the morning but it is all worth it for your bank account. If not every day, try alternating home food with lunch food every other day. Even if food costs you $3 a day (which is not a lot if we look at it initially) you’ll be spending a banging $90 a month on lunch, which sure is a lot of money for a student.
Don’t depend on bottled water
Bottled water is convenient but can add a hefty amount to your monthly expenses just like food does. This is why you should buy a good quality water bottle that is well insulated so that your water stays cold for longer period of time and fill it every day at home.
Make your own coffee
Coffee on the go is very convenient when you’re switching one class from the other all day every day. But it is not very good for your pocket clearly especially if you are a coffee addict like us and cannot function without that one cup of morning coffee. Buy a jar of some good old Nescafe classic and make your own coffee instead of buying it every single day from your college canteen. You can even get your own customized coffee cups and much more here.
Economies of scale???
This is an excellent way to save up whilst stocking up on your monthly necessities. Economies of scale mean a proportionate saving in costs gained by purchasing a large number of units.
Save your spare change
Little drops make a mighty ocean. If you save your spare change somewhere throughout the semester, say, in a piggy bank, you’ll be surprised at the amount of money you will end up with at the end of each semester. It feels so good, trust us.
Turn off the lights
Not turning off the lights is something we all have been guilty of at least once in a lifetime. If this has become your habit and you forget to turn the lights off every time you’re not in the room, you might be inviting some unnecessary 100 dollar bills expense.
Keep your receipts
We all throw away our receipts casually knowing they’re just a useless piece of paper we’ll never need again. But when you’re a student and also on a student budget, you might want to keep all of your receipts and go through them on a weekly basis to keep track of our expenditure. This way, it is not only easy to keep track of your money but also helps give us a reality check if we’re spending a little too much.
Pay bills on time
Everyone dreads paying their bills especially when they are too damn high. But what’s done is done and we cannot change the past. But what we can avoid is unnecessary late fees associated with all of the bills. Make sure to pay your bills on time no matter how hard you procrastinate.
Borrow/rent as much as you can
This is an amazing trick to save on huge chunks of money you could have spent. Many people don’t realize that renting/borrowing is a thing for everything and everyone. Unless there’s something you need to keep forever, try borrowing/renting stuff from other uni mates. This is much better than actually buying something you don’t need for a lifetime.
Buy/rent used textbooks
It is a known fact that university textbooks are veryyy expensive. But there are many shops and vendors in our country especially who sell these notebooks on a fraction of the original price just because they are used. And most of them remain in a very good condition. So here is for the text books you would need all year. For notebooks you need for merely one project or an exam, you can rent it from your university’s library or ask for another senior if they could lend you one.
Look out for student discounts
Many major brands and superstores offer a great deal of discounts and coupons for students. Try to avail every single student discount be it Mcdonalds, topshop or any other place. Just carry your student ID or a photocopy of it to show on the counter and enjoy some $$ off your entire purchase.
Swap with friends
Need a cute outfit for a night out? Yup, but you’re probably never going to use it again. Instead of buying a bank breaking $80 dress, go through a good friend’s closet and pick out your favorite outfit to wear. Dry clean the next day and return it to your friend with a cute appreciation note. $80 saved!
Utilize laptop as much as you can
With rapid advancements in technology and the much hyped ‘netflix and chill’ trend, utilize your laptop as much as you can for not only research papers and projects but also for entertainment purposes like Youtube, TV shows and movies. Buy a reliable laptop which you would need anyway in uni and make out the most of it.
So here are our two cents on how to stay on a budget and prevent ourselves from going bankrupt right in the middle of the semester. Many things mentioned on this blog is available on online shopping websites in Pakistan as well as thewarehouse.pk.