Making ends meet in college is a growing issue for many college students as the cost of living and the college fees rise at an exponential rate. Those who are lucky could depend on their parents to take them through the college years although many would have to earn themselves either entirely or partly to supplement whatever they get from their parents and through scholarship funds. This article will give few insights as to how a college student can make ends meet without resorting to drastic measures or having to cut college to work part time.
One important aspect when it comes to making ends meet during college time is to budget the income and the expenses well ahead of time. Thus, one should write down the money received from parents, income from part time jobs, contributions from scholarship funds…etc as income and bills, tuition fees, food expenses, travelling costs, costs for books and entertainment as expenses. Having a fair idea about the expenses will enable a college student to be caution when spending and therefore to manage his or her expenses as much as possible.
Cooking one’s own food is another cost saving method while it can make an enjoyable pastime for some. At the same time, cooking could also prevent one getting board of eating frozen food or eating the same food repeatedly. When talking about cooking, one need not cook as if one’s mother cooks at home, but just enough to both enjoy and to get some nutrition at a fraction of its usual cost.
Register early for courses
Registering early for courses could also save money as when the deadlines pass, certain colleges will charge extra for registration. Thus, one needs to plan the courses, which he or she is to undertake for a particular semester or for the year, well in advance.
Sharing is also a useful method to make ends meet during college times as it can save on the car rides to the grocery, purchasing of textbooks, eating out, paying bills…etc. In this regard, it is essential for the college students to build a network of friends whom they can trust as ‘true friends’. In most instances, having friends with similar financial problems could make matters easier when discussing cost saving initiatives.
Make use of affordable or ‘free’ entertainment
Finding entertainment, which do not cost will also help immensely to manage the college students’ budget. Thus, hanging out with friends, playing outdoor games, cycling, walking, making use of free movies shown at the college, participating in societal activities…etc can bring entertainment for the minimum cost than buying tickets for musical shows or going to a club where one needs to even pay a entrance fee.
Apart from these measures, one could also cut down on buying cable TV, renting movies, using internet to buy items or downloading music, purchasing brand new furniture for the room…etc. At the same time, college students can also collect even the penny that they see on the ground as with time, these pennies will add-up to a considerable amount without even noticing.
Although these are just simple strategies to make ends meet during college life, there are many other innovative methods used by students to save costs and in most instances, such small-time measures are highly successful than trying to earn extra from several different part-time jobs.