While you may be working your way through the summer as you are home for college break, you might also be spending all of your hard-earned money as well. But wasn't that the point of working throughout the summer to save for when you head back to campus?! If you are struggling to save money this summer while working, here are 15 ways to kick those bad habits and start to save!
1. Save energy, skip the car!
Forget wasting money on gas and instead choose the eco-friendly route of walking or biking to where you need to go. You can also check out the public transportation that is available in your city.
2. Head to the free stuff!
Check out your community's or city's free local events. There could be free music performances, movies in the park, or culture events and street fairs going on right in your neighborhood! Soak it up.
3. Pack your own lunches
Do you find yourself eating out for lunch or grabbing a snack during work? Skip eating out and spending money on food options by packing a lunch from food you have at home. This could easily save you upwards of $50 a week!
4. Utilize the local Library
Summer reading on the brain, but don't necessarily want to pay for the book? Head to your local library and register for a card! Checking out your summer reads from the library is one of your neighborhoods best kept secrets (plus it offers a quiet and peaceful place to plop on a couch and read a few chapters!).
5. De-clutter your closet, and sell, sell, sell!
Bringing all of your clothes and just miscellaneous 'things' home from college could show you that you have a lot of 'stuff.' This is another great area not only to save money but to make some money, too. Get started by de-cluttering your closet and getting rid of all of the clothes you no longer wear, no longer fit, or just not your style any longer. And the best part is that there are places you can take these clothes! You can either donate them to your local Goodwill, or try selling them to a local consignment shop.
6. Reinforce your side hustle
Have you been building a dream of yours on the side of going to school and going to work? Use this new-found free time this summer to aim a bit more focus on your side hustle and get to work at your successes!
7. Give yourself a limit
What we mean by this, is limit the amount of times or ways you spend money by going out with friends. For example, plan on only going out to eat with friends to once every week or so. You can slowly make these limitations more constraint as you see fit, or if you have something you are saving up for, then take away one of your activities with friends that costs money.
8. Make shopping lists and stick to them!
In preparation of packing your own lunches, it would first be great to make shopping lists. By preparing a grocery list ahead of time, you are sure to get the items you need for the meals you are sure to eat (and save by not eating out!). One piece of advice: don't go to the grocery store hungry (we've done that a few two many times...).
9. Cut out cable
Let's face it, most of us are streaming music, TV shows, and movies. With companies like Netflix, Hulu, and Chromecast, cable TV is becoming less and less popular among college students. If you are an avid user of these streaming or subscription-based programming, it might be time to ditch the cable and save where you can!
10. Shop where the discounts are
As a college student, there are certain perks that your student I.D. carries along with it; be sure to make the most of the discounts you receive! Whether those discounts can be used on campus or in your community, it is a great way to see if local participating businesses offer student rates or discounts. Want to head to the museum? Be sure to check and see if there's a student discount so that you can save!
Not sure what DIY stands for? It's fairly simple: DIY stands for do-it-yourself. This is oftentimes referred to crafts, household projects, beauty tips and remedies, recipes, and many more. Are you in the market for some new furniture for heading back to school? Do you see a new fashion trend and you cannot find the style anywhere in stores? These are the perfect opportunities to create a DIY project and better yet, save money.
12. Entertain at home
Summer brings most college students back to their hometown, which presents the opportunity to reconnect with old friends or those you haven't seen in awhile. This is also the time where most friends will want to be getting together and going out to catch up. Instead of going out and spending money, why not entertain your friends in the comfort of your own home? You can plan fun activities to do right at home rather than having to go out and dole out your hard earned cash.
13. Hide your temptations
Are you more apt to spend your money if you have your debit or credit card constantly on hand? While budgeting and limiting yourself to certain expenses may be difficult with some many temptations, we suggest hiding that spending money. Going to meet up with a couple of friends but reallllly don't want to spend money that day? Do yourself and your wallet a favor and perhaps leave a credit or debit card behind safe at home and only bring out a small amount of cash. This will help hide and hopefully eliminate those temptations.
14. Stop collecting and start selling!
While we alluded to this point about de-cluttering your closet and getting rid of old clothes that you don't wear anymore, there are other things that might be collecting dust in your home or dorm. There are tons of great resources available to help you sell your things (and there are tons of people out there looking to buy them!). Check out Poshmark or Craigslist when it comes to selling your items.
15. Rent eTextbooks this fall!
*Insert shameless plug here* but one way to save as you head back to school in the fall is to compare your textbook buying options! Be sure to check the savings that can be had with eTextbooks (especially when there are multiple rental options available).