It’s no myth. When we read about students portrayed as penny-pinching, resourceful youth, we know it’s true because every one who has studied has lived that reality of campus life! In the limbo between university studies, volunteer experiences, internships and paid work, students frequently find themselves imagining new ways to be thrifty and efficient with their time and money. Here are some considerations to help you find the right deals for you.
- Do your research
Good ol’ Google. There are plenty of new apps and subscriptions that aim to save students money. These can range from websites offering discount codes for use during online checkout or quick easy ways for making money in marketing research, to apps that compare prices to find the cheapest alternatives or that get you cashback on purchases in specific places. It can get pretty creative, so don’t let up the search if you don’t see something at first glance. There, seemingly, is a fit for everyone.
In addition to looking up what the world wide web has to offer, consider investigating your campus. Most universities have special agreements with local stores, restaurants, gyms, salons, and even clinics. Most locations near universities, at the very least, take into consideration applying a discount when you mention you study nearby and would be excited to tell your friends about it. Campus and city newspapers often have special sections for coupons and groupons for students.
2. Consider investment to payoff
Some of these opportunities for discounts or deals may work for you with seemingly little work, but always read the fine print. Many companies will pay if you let them observe your habits, spending, and engagements with products. How do you feel about your privacy in that situation? While some offers to save money happen by not shopping, other offers allow you to earn more while spending it. Sounds great, but consider your credit score before signing up for a new credit card just for the freebies at the front end.
Another factor is time. If it takes you over an hour to cut and sort coupons for your grocery list, weigh that against how much you are saving per week to make sure you’re not over-spending in hours. If your email inbox is so flooded with superfluous advertising content, then perhaps it isn’t worth your time taken in sorting it all – or your sanity!
Each person will have a different level of tolerance for speaking up and asking for a discount, or signing up all of their contact information for a free set of goodies. While it is important to consider wisely before diving deeply into anything, there is merit in testing out the metaphorical waters. Make small goals to check out possibilities and prioritize longer term action plans from the options that work best for you.
Uncovering the time-savers may seem daunting, but if you stay focused on what’s important about the experience and the payoff, you are sure to find ways to maximize student funds and fun. Best of luck to you and your wallet!