By David Giordano
It’s your first day of classes here at Bryant University. You get up extra early because you don’t want to be late on your first day. Your bag is packed and your outfit is already laid out, you’re heading out the door when your stomach growls. You have plenty of time to go to Salmo and enjoy a filling breakfast, but instead you decide to go to dunkin donuts. There’s nothing wrong with a bagel and a medium coffee right? It’s only four dollars. But what happens when you start going there three or four times a week? What about lunch or going to the grocery store or getting ready for the weekend? What happens when all of that builds up? That’s right, you go broke and it can happen very fast.
College is expensive and it can be difficult keeping track of your finances. Things can get very overwhelming especially for new students who are more responsible for themselves than ever before. Luckily, here are some tips and tricks to rescue your finances before Around the World Weekend.
- Going out to eat
This is pretty straight forward. Don’t go out to eat every day. Go to Salmo, you already paid for it so you should eat there. Regardless of popular opinion, you should eat at Salmo as much as possible. It’s fine to go out and eat, but limit yourself to 1-2 times per week. Yes that includes weekends.
- Forget about the super diets
I get it, the freshman fifteen can be intimidating and no one wants to go home and hear about how well their older brother’s clothes now fit you. But going to Jamba Juice every day and getting the $11 super vegan, gluten and dairy free lawn mower clippings shake that your pet rabbit is eyeing is not the way to go. Again, go to Salmo and get a salad for one meal/day and go light on the dressings. It’s really easy to eat healthy at Salmo because of their options and salad bar. Not mention you already paid for it.
- Get a water bottle
This cannot be stressed enough, water is great, but regularly buying water can be expensive. Get a refillable water bottle and carry it with you as if it’s your daily planner. There are bottle filling stations all over campus that you can stop at and fill up your bottle. It saves money and reduces your carbon footprint. It’s cost effective and environmentally savvy.
- Make a list
More for you compulsive shoppers, make a list of things that you need at the grocery store the day before you go shopping. This gives you time to realize you forgot half of the things you actually need. It also gives you time to realize that half of the things on there you don’t actually need. A good trick is to make your shopping list and try and cut it in half. With this in mind, it’s easy to pick out things you don’t actually need. This is a good skill to develop when you’re young because it will come in handy in the future.
- Leave your wallet behind
For you weekend warriors, don’t keep your wallet on your person all the time. Everyone can get a little forgetful especially during the weekend. To save some time and literal money, leave your wallet/purse in your dorm. Take only the essentials such as your keys, ID and phone. Not to mention when you want to go to Ronzio’s at 1 AM, you have to go back to your dorm to get your money, and the sight of your bed might make you reconsider that mac and cheese pizza with bacon.
College is a time of growth and personal development. Going broke does not have to be a part of that process. Do you have to follow these down to the last point? No. There’s no harm in splurging every now and then as long as it doesn’t become a habit. There are other tips and tricks out there, but these are a good place to start. Over your time here, you’ll even find your own tips and tricks to save money.