The 2019-2020 school year is just around the corner. Going off to college may be new or it may be old hat for you or your child. Nevertheless, back to school supplies are needed either way, right? Nerves may be setting in, maybe even some anxious thoughts about money or how you are going to get ready in time. This post is to help ease your mind and give you some money-saving tips to hopefully pad your bank account.
Student status. Being a student has its advantages. Be sure to use them! Check with your local internet, cable providers for special student discounts. Public transportation usually has student rates. Healthcare even offers a break for students. Are you still going to budget for those concert tickets? Student admission fees are often available. You will need your student ID in most places before they will give you student rates.
Textbooks. Instead of buying your textbooks new, buy them used or rent them. Determine what your needs are and make your purchases accordingly. By renting, you can save up to 80%. That is a huge saving. The student who is done with their textbooks and moving on try to make money off their old textbooks, so they have money to buy their new ones. Check with your college for online forums or bulletin boards, word of mouth, etc. if you want to buy used textbooks.
Stick to necessities. If you have back to school supplies left over from last year, then you don’t need to buy those things. Only buy what you need. Curb your spending by not over buying. Or if you need 2 of something and it comes in a package of four, find another student who needs the same thing to split the cost. If you think about what you need for each class, it will help you determine what necessities you must buy.
Shop sales flyers. Check you’re local back to school supplies sales flyers and online sales to get the best price. Many stores offer price-matches. So, if you do find something at the store you are shopping, but it was cheaper elsewhere, take that flyer with you and ask them to price-match to give you the lower price. Watch for coupons and use them to save even more money. Yes, some will offer a coupon during a sale, thus offering you additional savings.
Store apps. Some store apps offer exclusive app sales and deals. Be aware of this and watch for them when the back to school supplies sales are rolled out. Apps can also be a way to keep track of your bills and transfer money to the people you owe, whether that is your student loans, parents or a friend.
Being in college is not only a time for learning intellectually but for gaining additional life skills. College years may be the first time you have to pay bills, keep track of finances, buy groceries – all on top of studying! Be gentle with yourself, learn from your mistakes and move on wiser and with more money in your pocket when you have learned the art of saving money on back to school supplies and other essentials.