13 Ways to Survive College on a Budget

$5 Daily Budget for College Students

Student debt is no joke. Tuition, textbooks, that deluxe meal plan. Once your school expenses are covered, it can be tough to scrounge up enough to grab a pumpkin spice latte before class. And let’s face it, that “paid” internship won’t get you very far. Fortunately, with a few tricks of the trade, you can live off way less than you think.

1. Don’t forget about ramen.

Scurvy isn’t still a thing, right?

2. Stick to the basics.

Who says variety is the spice of life?

3. Host a party where everything is “bring your own.” Charge $5.

Future entrepreneur in training.

4. Go to club events for the free food. Don’t actually join.

If you plan it right, you’ll have breakfast, lunch and dinner covered.

5. Don’t forget to call Mom.

She’ll just be glad to actually hear from you, right?

6. Have your friend swipe you into the dining hall.

Sharing is caring!

7. Consider all your shopping options.

Everyone can feel rich at the Dollar Store.

8. Practice your stealth moves.

When your meal plan doesn’t let you take snacks back to your dorm room.

9. Hit up the free samples.

You might have to start practicing some disguises.

10. Remember to always carry your student ID.

You won’t feel this good again until you’re a senior citizen.

11. Take advantage of freebies.

When you bring your McDonald’s milk jug in for the free refills.

12. No microwave? No problem.

Coffee pot ftw!

13. Use all the coupons.

It’s a way of life.

Looking for some real budget tips for college students? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered:

Latest Posts

See All Posts
Common Student Financial Misconceptions

Common Student Financial Misconceptions

April 6, 2021   |   Genevieve Carlton

Student loans, budgeting, and paying off debt can leave students, recent graduates, and their parents feeling lost. Can you appeal for more financial aid? Should you open a credit card?...

Financial Terms Glossary for College Students

Financial Terms Glossary for College Students

April 1, 2021   |   Genevieve Carlton

College students make financial decisions that can shape their future. This financial glossary includes terms related to financial aid, credit, and taxes. By learning financial vocabulary and studying financial literacy...

Advertisement AffordableCollegesOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Search for Online Colleges by Subject

Discover schools with the programs and courses you’re interested in, and start learning today.