COINCollege can be an expensive endeavor, even with scholarships and other kinds of financial aid.  has come up with easy ways to save on money and avoid the constant panic of going broke.

Choose The Right Meal Plan

Campus meal plans vary depending on the university — food quality, how often you eat, how much you eat, and location can all factor in. A meal plan can be a good deal, however, so do a little research and see if it’s worth it. Grab a brochure; ask meal plan veterans; anything to get a little taste. Some univers­ities offer off-campus meal plans, too. These usually involve deals with food chains, so make sure the plan is appealing to you. If you decide to skip out on a meal plan, it’s possible to eat enough and eat healthy on your own budget. Cut out coupons, buy in bulk and sign up for a shopper’s discount card if its possible. Be creative and plan dinners with roommates and friends instead of going to more expensive restaurants.

Seek Alternative Transportation

Instead of driving to class and spending money on gas parking passes and possible tickets, look into a local bus or matatu system. If the system is run by your un­iversity, you’ll probably be able to ride for free with a student ID. If a transportation system doesn’t exist (or the existing one isn’t safe or reliable), try to work out class schedules with friends. If you’re close enough, walk or bike to class and get some much-needed exercise.

Set Up A Student Checking Account

Banks  usually cater to college students by offering free checking and savings account allowing you to avoid overspending. Make sure online banking is an option, as this makes it easier to follow your activity. Keep track of your account .
Get Organized
It might seem like a hassle, but saving receipts of everything you purchase — from small items such as a candy bar or a pens, to big-ticket items like a newelectronic- is a ­great way to monitor your spending habits. Try it out for a month. When your thirty days are up, add up all of your expenses and see where your money went. You’d be surprised at how easy it is to cut back on unnecessary spending.
Be Creative With Your Leisure Time
 Everyone needs to unwind after studying, and college campuses typically offer all sorts of opportunities — movie theaters, bars, cafes, arts centers, parks, do­wntown shopping centers, et cetera. Ask if any of these places offer student discounts. You can also think of alternative ways to have a good time. If you make the right choices and use a bit of creativity, you can have fun and save money at the same time. Plan a picnic in the park; make dinner for a date instead of going to a fancy restaurant; go for a bike ride around town. Any of these activities cost a fraction of the typical college experience and can be more fun.


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