By Padma Radhakrishnan
- Use alternative forms of transportation.
Try taking the loop bus (which is free) or using the Enterprise Car Share service (where rates start at $7.50 an hour) on campus to go out on the weekends with friends. This is more economical than having a car on campus because you don’t have to pay unintended expenses like gas or maintenance.
- Check the balance of your Get It Points/Carte Blanche Points
systematically.It’s a good idea to check the balance on your card in order to stay under the points limit. One way to check the balance on your card is to swipe your card at the kiosk in the library.
- Organize your credit card receipts in one area.
This helps you have easy access to track of all the credit card expenses because you can use your receipts to verify your purchases at the end of the month. It also helps you to watch your spending and stick to your budget.
- Try to bring your own snacks instead of using the vending machine.If you need a snack for a late night class or a study session, try to bring your own snacks instead of buying from the vending machine. This is more affordable as you can buy snacks in bulk; it can also be a healthier alternative to the junk food in vending machines.
- Keep a small amount of money in your wallet and refill only when necessary. If you only keep a small amount of cash in your wallet, then you will be less likely to overspend because you mentally limit yourself to spending what you have on hand.
- Seek less expensive alternatives of entertainment and fun on the weekend.It can often get pricey having fun on the weekends because you might frequent the movies, where tickets can be almost $10 a ticket. Take the loop bus to Princeton and spend the day exploring the town for a less expensive off-campus outing. You could also attend CUB-sponsored events on campus, which are often free or low-cost.
- Sell your textbooks at the end of the semester and be sure to return your rented books. If you bought your textbooks from the bookstore, you have the option of selling them back. You can also sell your textbooks online on Chegg.com or Amazon.com. Be sure to also return your rented books at the end of the semester to avoid racking up unwanted fees.
For even more tips on how to save money on a college student’s budget, check out these sites: