Studying On a Shoestring — 5 Thrifty Tips

college shoestring

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  • College is costly — there’s no doubt about it.

    By the time you’ve shelled out for course fees and accommodation, there’s little left for anything except cup noodles, energy drinks and mozzarella sticks.

    However, sometimes sage advice on saving cash spreads through the halls of academe and whispers in the ears of students who don’t want to blow their Benjamins.

    And luckily for you, this is one such occasion. So if you’re studying on a shoestring, here are five thrifty tips.

    Cheap rail travel

    Flying might be faster, but travelling by train can be cheap and chilled — what better way to marvel at the good old US of A than cruising past beauty spots in a comfortable carriage?

    And by grabbing cheap Amtrak tickets for students, you won’t pay top dollar when returning home for Thanksgiving or conducting a field trip to a neighboring state. Booking with a Student Advantage card bags you 10 per cent off most routes, but make reservations three days prior to travel.

    Discount food

    Your student budget won’t always stretch to eating out — but when it does, don’t forget that a range of popular fast food restaurants offer discounts to students.

    Flash your student ID at Chick-fil-A, Burger King, Dairy Queen or Dunkin Donuts and you’ll get free drinks or a 10 per cent reduction on your bill. And Pizza Hut offers students a discount of between 10 and 20 per cent on personal deep pan pizzas, so dive in!

    Marked down music

    For most students, cramming for exams would be a whole lot tougher without their favorite tunes — many academics have artists like The Beatles, Taylor Swift and Eminem to thank for their success.

    And if you’re music-mad get an Apple Music student subscription for a discounted price for up to 48 months if you’re attending a degree-granting university or college — pretty cool.


    The International Student Identity Card (ISIC) unlocks over 150,000 student discounts in 130 nations globally — it’s a passport to a whole world of savings.

    In the US, it entitles you to everything from cheap entry to Universal Studios Orlando to 10 per cent off orders over $100 with sports brand Fila. It costs just $20 and all that’s required to order an ISIC card is a passport photo, proof of ID and evidence of student status.

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    If you’ve got your own vehicle, you’ll have the freedom to roll around campus and apply for student jobs a little further afield.

    And when you’re visiting parents for the holiday season, it’s also convenient to travel to the airport in your own ride rather than relying on public transportation.

    But book airport parking with to save money and prevent the potential stress of circling around the airport looking for a space at the last minute — you’ll find deals on secure facilities coast to coast.

    These five thrifty tips for studying on a shoestring should help keep your piggy bank bulging — take advantage of them today to start saving.

    How do you live cheaply as a student? Share your advice in the comments section.

    Image Credit: Pixabay

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    Off-to-College reference:

    GUIDE: about budgeting at college

    Amazon Bestsellers: Packaged Foods (for college dorm or apartment)

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