College days are the best part of your life. You get to know the world like never before, tasting the first lessons in freedom and a whole lot of other things. It is also the time when you could be incredibly irresponsible, but don’t worry, after all, it is a part of the experience, right?
The key to partying and socializing in college narrows down to one thing, and that is money. Anyway, at this point, it’s worthwhile to remember what that ad says, “There are some things that money can’t buy, but for everything else, there is…(You know what)“.
Best Methods to Save Money if You are in College
Now being in college need not stop you from saving money. On the contrary, you get to save a lot during those times. So here are some easy ways to save money without sacrificing your fun.
1. Be Your Own Finance Minister; Make a Budget: The first thing you need to do when you start to save is to make a workable budget. It may sound funny, but it is actually fun. There should be a long-term budget and meager monthly budgets.
A long-term budget means calculating the rough estimate of your expenditure for your whole tenure at the college. Find that how much money you can spend at that time. This is just a rough estimate and is used to give you a sense of how much you can spend.
This helps you to plan your monthly expenses. If you are rich enough, the budget could go up. If you are going to college on a student loan and then you will automatically reduce the long-term budget.
Short-term budgets are detailed and usually done at the beginning of each month. This is where you must actually be saving money. Divide your expenditures into groups like food, rent, transportation, entertainment, etc., and allocate money to each group.
Then strictly live according to the allocation. You can also allocate more money to entertainment, but you must be able to make up for it in the next month. This way, you could keep your long-term budget in check and can have real fun when you decide to party.
2. Beware of Small Expenses: You may not see them or feel them, but they are always around you, sucking away at your income. Be careful of these small expenditures, which will eat into your pocket. Those amounts are hard to find because they are small and sometimes very natural.
You might not remember quickly how many times you went to a tea stall for a cup of tea. Expenditures like these are a drag on your pocket money.
If you are more aware of your spending, then you can prevent overspending on items like these. In addition, there are small expenditures for some like smoking, using paan, and drinking. Those who are able to quit these habits can see how much they could save at the end of the month. Moreover, leaving the practice could also save astronomical amounts in medical bills.
3. Change Your Lifestyle: Actually, using a bicycle or using public transport is cool, never mind the amount you can save in this way. It is also a service to humanity. Going eco-friendly has the added advantage of improving your health. Use your bicycle to go to college, and you will be in better shape than your friends in no time.
Choose pastimes that are different and not too costly. You can pick up a hobby or go for some societal work. Having no alternate activities makes you want to spend time with your friends at the mall, go to expensive restaurants, etc.
You need not shun these things altogether, but you can put in a check by doing something that gives you more peace at heart. Just substitutes those expensive things that provide you with fun with more productive and useful activities that provide you with pleasure.
4. Eat Healthily: This step is from the above one. Eating healthy, homemade food is part of changing your lifestyle. You have to spend vast amounts of money to eat healthy foods. On the contrary, more money is spent eating junk food than healthy ones. How ironic is it? You spend more money so that you can eat foods that are bad for your health.
Eating healthy also means saving money. If you are staying at home, help your mother in the kitchen and learn exactly how she prepares those delicious foods that no up-town restaurants are going to cook for you. This could also help you out in the future when you are away from home. There is no better fun for those living with friends than cooking tasteless food with your friends.
5. Avoid Credit Cards Like the Plague: Now, you need to get this into your head: You Don’t Need Credit Cards to Live Your Life. See, most youngsters are so much addicted to this card that it practically rules their life. Maybe it is the false sense of security you feel thinking you can buy almost everything if you a credit card.
But remember, before long, you will be in deep trouble with a neck load of debts that you cannot repay. Why do you need to lose your reputation when you can live with dignity without any debits?
6. Learn The Way of the Buddha: Well, you could add a sense of spirituality to your saving regime. So learn the way of Buddha, which is the ‘Middle Path. ‘ The crux of the teaching is simple; don’t do the extremes, dear.
Don’t overspend, and don’t be a miser either. Learn to go through the middle path. God will give you the power to think, or otherwise, you won’t be reading this, right? With complex thoughts, it is also possible that you know what is right and what is bad for you.
So, to practice Buddha’s way, you must use your head and be wise enough in your spending ways. Only a person who can enjoy the world and also bear the hardships of renunciation could really say that he is living in the right sense.
7. Investing is the Best Saving: As the saying goes,” Attack is the best defense”. This could be applied to your college saving technique too. Invest your money in income-generating sources that give you moderate returns. It is better to avoid risky investments because you are in college and not earning.
When you are investing the money, you are actually saving the amount, which would otherwise have been spent. The moderate-income that you invest in will give you an incentive to keep investing and make more money. So if you want to save, invest your money each month.
8. Do Part-time Jobs: There is nothing better than working and making your own money. This helps you in saving too. With the added income, you could also invest it and make more money. You could plan your investments in such a way that you will only need money from those investments and not from your parents.
Besides, having jobs in colleges will prepare you a lot in the future when you get into the real world. You will get a feel of real-life that encourages you to perform better.
These are simple and basic rules on how to save when you are in college. In addition to saving money, learning to save will also help you to discipline yourself. So start saving without losing any of the fun of college life.