10 Ways to Save Money as a Student

Hey there :)

I'm not sure I know many students who are completely unconcerned with saving money. I've heard a lot of "Oh, I can't do _____ because of money, but I wish I could!".

You're young and should have the opportunity to go on crazy adventures and to make memories that last a lifetime. Yes, money is tight, but by saving it in some places, it makes room for you to have these opportunities. Financial pressures can make being a student difficult, but by saving money where you can, hopefully, this burden will lessen and you can worry less about your next tuition bill.

Try to remember that tuition, although obscenely expensive, it's an investment in yourself. You are making yourself more valuable in the workforce and will pay off in the long-run!

You are that passionate, hardworking student, you deserve to have (some) financial freedom!

Here are some ways I have been saving money at school, and have managed to stay DEBT-FREE. I hope some of these are helpful to you in your journey!

Apply for Scholarships
Yes, they can be time-consuming. And tedious to fill out. Some even need reference letters. It's the worst. But think of it like this: a few hours worth of your time, done well, could result in $1000 or more! Imagine it's your job and you're getting paid $1000 every few hours. You'd work pretty hard, right?! Scholarships are just like that! They are a huge help and could save you a ton of money on tuition costs.

Buy School Books and Materials Used
Sometimes there are specific workbooks you need to buy new... but for any textbook, try to find it for less than full price, if you buy it at all! Consider if you will actually need it for your course. If it would rarely come in handy, think twice.

 If you do want access to it, think about splitting the book between friends taking the same class. Most textbooks are also available at your university's library to sign out for a few hours.

If you have decided you do need to purchase the text, try the used bookstore at your university or order it on Amazon (usually for way cheaper!). There is also usually a Facebook group for people selling or buying textbooks from each other on your campus. I would recommend utilizing that as well.

When you are done, resell them to the used bookstore or on that facebook group to make your money back!

Set up a Savings Account
This one's simple! Set it up! One option is to automate payments so that a certain amount of every paycheque goes into it.

For me, I find it best to keep a set amount in my normal bank account for me to spend. Then, anything I make above that I put straight into savings. This way, you only have a certain amount that you can spend immediately! Using this method, I've already saved more than enough for my fall tuition costs. This method takes more time because you have to check every week or two and do the transfer but I personally like it.

Whichever method you choose, just make sure you do it! You earn more interest on savings accounts, so basically free money the bank's giving you! By choosing a savings account not attached to a card, it is not immediately available to you, which makes you less likely to spend it until you need it!

Don't Spend All Your Money on Take-out and Drinks
I've had my fair share of pizzas at 2 a.m. and I'm sure you have as well! But try to limit the amount that you spend on take-out, drinks, and coffees. These small purchases truly do add up! Obviously, it is unrealistic to cut these out completely, but make sure you aren't buying things every day. For me, I only buy them when I'm going out with friends. If it's just me, bring it from home! This way, I'm not limiting my socializing, but I'm not buying food every day. After all, eating out all the time is not budget-friendly, and it's super unhealthy for you as well!

Utilize University Services
You're paying good money for tuition, so make every penny of it count! Most come with bus passes, health services, gym memberships and computer software (email, Word, etc.) included in your price. Make sure you're using these to the full potential and not missing out on these great (and technically free!) services.

Participate in Free Events and Workshops
There are lots of things you can do for free at university! Check Facebook pages, as well as posters for networking events, free food, professional development workshops, professional photo shoots and more!

There are so many perks, free events and other assistance that you can take advantage of for free! Make the best use of this to limit your costs but still do things you're excited about.

Live Simply
Only bring with you what you absolutely need, and try not to buy more than that! Don't waste your money on things you know you don't need, or will not make you happy. Clothes on sale, random beauty products, different gadgets are not things you need. So cut them out! Less clutter too, which means less cleaning. ;)

Be Conscious of Your Spending Habits
Just becoming aware of how much money you are spending on certain things can really put it all into perspective! Check your bank statements every once in a while to see where all your money is going.

Take Advantage of Student Discounts
I'm guilty of not using the student discounts more often. But, they have saved me money and I hope to start asking about these discounts more often!

For a job, I had to buy steel-toed shoes. As I was chatting with the salesman, I mentioned that I was a student. Immediately, he mentioned they had a discount and I ended up getting an extra 10% off!

There are Amazon discounts for students and apple also gives a student discount. Ask around in places where you shop to see if they have a student discount. It's always worth at least asking!

Get a Job
Sometimes it has to be done. I have been lucky enough to just work during the summers and on co-op terms. However, if you're really strapped for cash, getting a part-time job could help you out! There are lots of jobs on campus (that would be flexible with your school schedule!) or find one around town.

These are the 10 ways I have been able to save money, while still being able to enjoy the student life. What do you think? Are there any that I missed?


  1. These are great tips and quite timely for me as I have three kids in college. Watch for tomorrow's Tip Tuesday. I think you will like who you see. :)

    1. Thank you very much for featuring my post on the Tip Tuesday Link Party! I appreciate it as well as all your kind words. :)


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