When it comes to staying financially afloat in college, the simple things can make a big difference. Smart money management does not have to be difficult. These 5 Major Ways That College Students Can Save Money On Food are prime examples.
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Make Sure That You Are Using Meal Plan To The Fullest
If you choose to purchase a meal plan at your school or are required to, get the maximum benefit out of it. For example, if you are entitled to 15 meals per week on the meal plan, be sure to show up for all 15. Many schools are now offering the flexibility as part of the meal plans to take food-to-go, eat brunch and late night meals, and make purchases at on campus mini-markets.
Go Homemade When You Can
Preparing your own meals can be the most economical way to go when you have a microwave or kitchen available to you. One of my all time college favorites was a mug of soup and some crackers. Check out this article from Buzzfeed with 23 Dorm Room Meals You Can Make in a Microwave. And 22 Healthy College Recipes You Can Make In Your Dorm Room from Greatist. For students, with a full kitchen available, the possibilities are endless.
Several items that make college meal and snack prep easier include:
A portable, microwaveable soup mug such as this one from the Sistema To Go Collection.
Be Smart With Your Shopping
If you regularly shop at a particular grocery store, sign up for a store loyalty card. The card enable you to receive exclusive discounts and, in many cases, load manufacturers and grocery chain coupons to your card to be scanned at checkout.
To find digital coupons, go to:
- Your grocery chain’s website. Often links to download the store and manufacturer coupons are housed there.
- SavingStar® where you can use savings offers and receive cash directed back into a SavingStar account.
- Cellfire® which allows you to download offers to store loyalty cards and mobile devices. You then redeem at checkout.
- Coupons.com where online coupons are available to download to a select number of store loyalty cards. Coupons.com also offers a large selection of printable coupons.
Additionally, if you shop at Target, download the Target Cartwheel app for easy savings. If you frequent Walmart, check out the Savings Catcher app. Scan your receipt and if Walmart finds lower local competitor prices, you receive the difference back through a Walmart eGift Card.
Form A Pot Luck Supper Group
Get together with a group of friends and each bring a dish for a meal. Not only do you get to hang out with your buddies, but also get to enjoy a meal for much less money than if you had to buy all the ingredients yourself.
Take Advantage Of Student Discounts At Restaurants
A variety of restaurants offer discounts to college students when you show your student ID. National chains such as Burger King, Chick-Fil-A, Dairy Queen, and Waffle House are well-known for offering special savings to students looking to save money on food. Check with these and other food establishments near your campus to see what savings may be available to you.
As you can see, a little ingenuity can go a long way in helping you stretch your dollars as a college student and save money on food.
For more College-Related Tips:
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