Here’s a fact about studying abroad: it’s expensive. As an international student, you must learn how to manage your money. Otherwise, you’d end up spending money on things you don’t need.
Your school allowance may not be that much, but that’s not an excuse not to save money. Setting aside a few coins here and there can help you save money that you might need at some point.
Be ready to respond to financial emergencies by saving up some cash. Here are 10 tips that could help you save money, and make your allowance stretch to cover all your needs.
Shopping wisely includes shopping for your groceries, and other necessities such as clothes. Create your meal plan for the week, then build your grocery shopping list around the necessary ingredients.
For clothes, accessories, and other merchandise, opt to buy from street markets. If you’re not a fan of big crowds, wait for sales and discounts, or use coupons to lessen the cost of your purchase.
Consider Meal Options
Cooking your own food is still cheaper than buying a meal plan. But if you don’t have much time, you can choose any of your university’s meal plan options.
At a set price, you can have access to a specific number of food choices with a meal plan.
Opt for Second-Hand Books and Learning Materials
As long as you’re buying the same edition of textbooks, there’s no reason not to choose a second-hand copy. Look for previous students who took the same subjects as you, they might be willing to sell their copy at a lower price.
Avoid Impulse Buying
It’s hard to resist impulse buying. Consider weighing your needs and wants before making a purchase.
Use Travel Cards
Most travel cards are available for public transportation such as buses, and trains. Travel cards give you discounts on your travelling fare, especially if you’re a student.
Choose a Cost-Effective Health Insurance
Pick health insurance that has excellent coverage and many benefits. Don’t pick a cheap option only to compromise on the medical benefits. Choose an option where the price justifies the service.
Pay Rent / Bills on Time
Some billers and homeowners charge a fee for late payment. You can avoid these fees by making sure you pay on time.
Pick Activities That Don’t Cost Money
Some universities have campus attractions that don’t cost a single cent. There are also other leisure activities to enjoy including free trips to museums or hiking trips.
Switch to Web-Based Channels to Communicate With Family
Subscribing to a telecommunications provider and making overseas calls can cost a lot of money. There are a lot of free web-based channels and apps such as Skype and Facebook Messenger that offer communication services for free.
Use Student Discount Benefits
Many retail shops offer items that are purchased with student discounts. Don’t be shy when inquiring about student discounts as most stores would happily apply these.
You can use student discounts at retail stores, restaurants, and public transportation. Make sure to take advantage of this discount when going out.
Studying abroad is expensive but saving up cash can help you in the long run. Read our articles here at MSM Unify to learn more tips on how you can save money as a foreign student.