We are excited to bring you a guest post by Mariana Ashley.
One thing that most students in college have in common is a lack of substantial funds to go around. Some people are lucky enough to have help from their parents while others have to pay their own way through, but no one wants to spend money where they don’t need to. So, when
it comes to preparing for college, the best thing to do is figure out a game plan for the types of things that merit an investment and the types of items that can be found on the cheap. Check out this list and then add your own, according to your priorities:
Where to save:
Textbooks are definitely a place where students should try to save as much as possible. If your college had its way, every student would buy new, overpriced textbooks from the campus bookstore, but this can run up to 500 dollars for a typical semester. It’s much better to shop around. You are not missing out by buying a used copy or renting a textbook online from a site like Chegg.com.
Kitchen utensils don’t seem like they cost much, but each little purchase here and there can really add up. There is no difference between kitchen supplies from Target and those you could find at a Dollar Store. Things like colanders, cutting boards, measuring cups, spatulas, and mixing bowls can be found on the cheap (as in 99 cents cheap), and skimping here can help you save money to put elsewhere.
Snacks are a definite must-have in any dorm room. But, there is no reason to break the bank just to keep a constant stash of Doritos or Pringles in your room at all times. In fact, no one wants to have those kinds of temptations around on the regular. It’s best to limit snacks to just the basics.
And, if you can find an off-brand that tastes just as good, you can save plenty over the course of a school year.
Dorm decorations can run you big bucks if you simply go out and buy everything you think you need from a major retailor. But, while it’s important to create a dorm space that you can call your own, dropping tons of cash just to decorate a dorm room is unnecessary. You can decorate for free with old posters or album covers. Try heading to thrift stores or garage sales to find used items that could be useful, like big chalk boards to hang on the wall or old bricks to use as book
Where to invest:
One thing you want to make sure to put some money into during college is healthy food. You truly are what you eat, so instead of worrying about the cost of fresh produce or whole grains and opting for a soup in a cup, try to allocate your money in a way that will be good for your body and mind. Nothing is more important than treating your body with respect, so this is a definite area to lay down some cash. Stock your room with fresh fruit, good bread, and snackable veggies.
Bedding is one place where spend a little extra can make a huge difference. When you get to your campus, check out your bed and see how it feels. Don’t hesitate to invest in extracushioning and some high thread-count sheets. This will help you sleep like a dream and feel good crawling into bed every night.
Comfortable casuals are essential for college. Dressing for comfort is very important in college. But, if you just thrown on the same hoodie and flip-flops every day, there’s a chance it could feel old after a while. The best thing to do is make a big investment in clothes that are comfortable,
but still well-made and stylish. You will thank yourself later.
A fast laptop is not really a luxury anymore. While it’s absolutely possible to get through college with a beat up, old computer, or no computer at all, having a nice, powerful laptop will make your life a million times easier. There’s no need to waste money on a name brand; just do some research and opt for a version with high speed and good memory.
Mariana Ashley writes about educational topics for www.onlinecolleges.net and she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.