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College provides many catch-22 situations. The most common is that students need to pay for tuition and resources, while focusing on studying rather than working. This is fine for students whose parents have the money to bankroll them. But for most of us, balance, compromise, and sacrifice are all non-negotiables.
Those three traits are all necessary for making the best use of the money we do have, whether it comes from parents or part-time work. It can be very disheartening, though, when you can’t use the money you save on the things you actually want to do. Too much of it has to go to textbooks, resources, and plain old living expenses.
Fortunately, there are some ways for students to save whatever money they can. If you follow these 3 tips, you’ll save more money than you think you can.
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Textbooks are extremely expensive and, from the publisher’s standpoint, this makes sense. They’re expensive to compile but have a very limited target market. However, knowing this changes nothing about the fact that students simply cannot afford them. And so students over the years have bought textbooks second hand from those who have just completed the year they are entering.
In turn, publishers started releasing new editions of textbooks on an almost yearly basis. These “new” editions sometimes simply change the order of certain chapters or how they number the pages. In most cases, the older editions are good enough.
Of course, if you’re doing a course in a field in which changes happen quickly (law is a good example) the new edition might have some necessary updates. But get a hold of an old edition and compare. Or, even better, ask the lecturer of the course.
Student credit cards are one of those subjects which has very fine lines. They can spell financial disaster for certain students. For others, they open up doors. Credit cards help you build a credit record, which will be crucial as you get older. They also give you access to rewards programs. Most significantly, they give you that extra bit of money when you absolutely need it.
If you’re considering getting a credit card, you need to know yourself. Do you have the discipline to manage it properly? If your answer is “I haven’t in the past but I’ll do my best this time,” you’re better off waiting until you’re making money. But if you’re generally very disciplined, a credit card can give you the perfect boost. Find out here about which credit cards are the best for students.
Fast food is cheap. However, not only is it unhealthy, but you can eat for cheaper if you learn to cook. If you keep yourself well-fed, with food you’ve made yourself, you’ll be healthier and find yourself making fewer impulse purchases. Instead of eating out all the time because you’re feeling a little hungry, you’ll eat properly at mealtimes and have leftovers for snacks.
It’s a good skill to have in any case. Yes, it takes a while to learn and can be quite frustrating at first. Also, you’re not going to know exactly how to go about shopping the first few times. But there are apps which help, along with the endless trove of information online (and videos). Once you’re used to the basics, you won’t need to obsess about the recipe and you’ll have a good idea of how to feed yourself for less.
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