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message 1: by Katerina (new)

Katerina | 252 comments so..since as college students are broke and have to be very thrifty..what are some creative things that you guys have done to save money, get good deals, etc. ?
I'm dying to know because I feel like I'm burning all my money..and I know some of you are older and almost/done with college.


message 2: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
hmm..well..i'm not really the best to ask. I spent too much money all the time..however..alot of it was taking advantage of local specials at pizza places or other restaurants if you wanted to go out to eat. Some places had special deals for people who were college students. Also, if you are buying groceries for like things you will use alot..having a membership to BJ's, Costco's or Sam's Club helped out. I always had my BJ's membership that my stepdad paid for and I would always let people use the card. Coupons helped out too though. My boyfriend and I would always find really good buy one get one free coupons. umm..other than that..I sucked at saving money. I bought clothing wayyy too much and never on sale.


message 3: by Katerina (new)

Katerina | 252 comments those were some good ideas! Thanks!


message 4: by Kelsey (new)

Kelsey (xtoloveistolivex) | 534 comments Oh boy. I'm really starting to hate money. Basically what I do is shop for food and clothes on sale. It's good to use coupons for food too, because it will save you a lot of money. I try not to buy anything extra, because I really can't afford it. My weak point is books. I really should get a library card. Basically, I only buy things that I need and then I treat myself to going out or getting something every once in awhile.


message 5: by Katerina (new)

Katerina | 252 comments everything is seriously so expensive!! i try not to drive too much or make sure I'm carpooling.


message 6: by Janet (new)

Janet I do a lot of coupon cutting! But I have heard...beware! If it's a Buy 2 for $10 or buy 2 get one free, you're actually spending more money half the time. Meaning if you only need one, just buy one, don't buy the two! Did that make sense?


message 7: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
hahah yeah..i have a friend who does that ALL the time..she's like..LOOK AT THE DEAL I GOT! and then i'm thinking..but why do you need 50 of whatever it is..i thought you just wanted one. haha

its best for dining out with someone..like a buy one get one free entree. That way my bf and I would always just split the cost of the entree we had to pay for. we saved so much money.


message 8: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 143 comments sales..i just go straight to the sales rack.
I also try not to go out to eat much.
One of my friends is really thrifty..she is always saving a ton of money somehow.


message 9: by Bree (new)

Bree (breezybaby) | 144 comments i always look for coupons..and if you live in a college town..some places will have student deals for your university/college


message 10: by Lori (new)

Lori Walker I rarely eat out simply because I live in a house and have a full kitchen (and I love cooking). But my college is in a really small town that basically runs around the college. And since it's in the middle of nowhere, the prices on everything are higher. Therefore, I do most of my shopping when I go home and my mom pays for it (she pays for it anyway) then and there. I buy a lot of impulse foods, which is not good. I really need to cut back because I have a ton of food in my kitchen, but sometimes it feels like I have a lot of ingredients and no food. This should probably be a rant.


message 11: by Kelsey (new)

Kelsey (xtoloveistolivex) | 534 comments I live in California right now, so the prices on everything are so much higher! So whenever I go back home to Minnesota, I end up buying all my clothes there, because there's no sales tax on clothes in Minnesota!


Abigail (42stitches) | 53 comments Budgeting is very important and trying to stick to it isn't always easy but helps. I do use coupons occasionally and not to sound like I'm advertising or anything but getting an Entertainment book is really useful for being able to go out for real cheap. They aren't horribly expensive and if you can get one for Christmas (too bad it is just past) then it's even better. There are tons of "buy one get one free" dinner specials and you can get them for practically anywhere in the states. My husband and I got one as a wedding gift (the year before I graduated) and it was real nice because we didn't have a a lot of money but we still got to go on dates pretty often for real cheap. We also did the buying in bulk thing. We lived with another couple and that helped get the bills cheaper and it enabled us to buy bulk food and not waste a lot of it in the process.


message 13: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
ohh man..Entertainment books are amazing!! it has saved my bf and i so much money because of all the buy one get one free things..and the nice thing is that my 2 best friends and their boyfriends had one too..so we could all go out together with our coupons. lol. i would def recommend getting one if you have a boyfriend or a really close friend that you always go out with..but not so much if you are single..because everything is pretty much buy one get one free.


message 14: by Caiti Casey (new)

Caiti Casey Spiess (mrssteven) Ha! SBG I'm taking one on Wednesday nights with my boyfriend and sister. I was just about to mention it and you beat me to the chase. Dave Ramsey is soooo funny!


message 15: by Caiti Casey (new)

Caiti Casey Spiess (mrssteven) So I looked up the Entertainment book and they don't even sell them in my state!


Abigail (42stitches) | 53 comments Oh no, how odd.


message 17: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) Two words: Plato's Closet -- I buy a lot of clothes, and if you want to be green, and thrifty, definately see if there is one in your area. For books I get them on amazon or download them on torrent. I can't believe this hasn't been mentioned, but if you see something advertising free food, GO TO IT, you will meet new people and get food thus saving money.


message 18: by Caiti Casey (new)

Caiti Casey Spiess (mrssteven) Plato's Closet is truly amazing! I don't know if all of their shops are set up like this but the one near by has EVERYTHING arranged by color!


message 19: by Heather (new)

Heather (andshewontsleep) | 278 comments I also love Plato's Closet. There is one about 5 minutes from my parents house, so every time I go for a visit I try to make a stop there to shop and sell my unwanted clothes.


message 20: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
ohh i love Plato's! I have sold alot of stuff there too!


message 21: by Leila (last edited Jan 16, 2009 11:13AM) (new)

Leila (leilasbooks) | 31 comments In order to save, I put away every month, about half of the money in a saving account. Then I see if I can live on the rest that I have. If I need more - I take some more money out from the saving account.

I also try not to eat out that often because it can get really expensive. Cooking my own lunch and dinner saves a lot of money. By that, I usually make a little big dinner so that I eat some of it as dinner and then put away some for the next days lunch.

Buying a package of cookies, chips or a kind of snacks to bring with me saves the impulsive money that one sometimes spends at campus when wanting "something to bite in".

I try to take with me coffee or tea in thermos as it helps also but unfortunately I am not a good coffeemaker so it doesn't happen too often. I drink a lot of coffee and I do buy a lot take-aways but by trying not to do it everyday, I do save some cash.

I live about 6 miles from the campus and I try to take the bike as often as I can instead of taking the bus (I don't have a driving license and even if I did, it would be too expensive since the gas price here is extremely high compared to the US). The first times are not so fun, nor are the times when it rains but after biking a lot, I have started to appreciate it a great deal because well, first of all it wakes me up thoroughly, and then I get a lot of exercise and it's just nice to be able to get fresh air, listen to music and bike for a while. It usually takes me 30-45 min though my record is 15 min (I was in a real hurry). Just by that, I can save around 60$ a month (bus card).




message 22: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) oh, and by books on torrent, i meant textbooks like economics blah blah, if it's a real book, I want a physical copy to own, so I buy it off amazon, or I'll check out library book sales.


message 23: by Allison (new)

Allison this is something i'm definitely trying to work on.
go to your schools student union or bookstore. a lot of them will have free coupon books for students. and anywhere you go, make sure you ask if they have a student id discount. many places do, they just don't advertise it.
as for food, before going grocery shopping, make a menu for every meal you will need to eat. for example, i don't eat breakfast, but i have coffee every morning. so, for sun-sat, my breakfast column reads coffee. then what will i eat for lunch everyday, then dinner? i try to make larger dinners so that i can take leftovers. i also have to eat 3 meals at campus, so i try to think of food that is easy to take- hot pockets, sandwiches, etc. as for snack type foods, i take a notepad to the grocery store and write down the price every week. that way i have a general idea of how much it costs, and if it's cheaper one week, i may buy 2 of the item, if i know i'll use it.


message 24: by [deleted user] (new)

*cough* em........read Evasion.


message 25: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
Anybody being especially thrifty these days?


I was without a job for a while so I just cut back alot. I stopped going out alot and I realized how much money I had previously spent on restaurants and bars. I started cooking more and found that I could make a ton of things using the same ingredients. I honestly just quit clothes shopping cold turkey..:) That was hard for me BUT I figured that I wasn't going out as much so I didn't really need new clothes.


message 26: by Jess (new)

Jess Since I'm required at my school to have a meal plan, I learn to utilize it well. I don't buy a lot of things from the dining halls, unless I'm in a pinch, but instead I pick up fruits, veggies, eggs, and other staples at our little store on campus. I also go to Wegmans (grocery store) to pick up more interesting essentials for about $20-30 every week or so. I cook a lot, then bring leftovers for lunches and snacks on campus, and stick more in the freezer for when I'm too lazy to make something from scratch.

I think it depends a lot on your budget; for example, I make around $300 at my on-campus job, but I don't have to pay rent (I live in a university-owned apartment) and my only real bills are my cell phone and my credit card. I imagine budgeting's a lot more difficult if you also have rent to pay!

For books, I've given away nearly all of my book collection. Pretty insane for a book lover, right? Well, I'm also a minimalist. (I also read a lot of minimalist blogs, which might be useful for anyone who's interested in paring down his or her life, having more money, and becoming healthier.) So I've given many of my books away to my school's library or PaperBackSwap, because I know I can get the majority through either InterLibrary Loan, Voyager (our catalog system), or the public library. I've kept books that I cherish and reread over and over again, and sent the rest out the door. This also means that I don't BUY books new, typically. I'm also kind of hesitant to buy used books, since I frequent PaperBackSwap and the library so much.

Oh, and before grocery shopping I take a peek at the ads for Wegmans and Target, make a realistic list of things I need for the week, and look through my coupons. I also Google for coupons, which you can DEFINITELY find online. It's so useful. Money Saving Mom and Deal Seeking Mom are two blogs with tons and tons of links to coupons.

One further thing is that I don't buy clothing that I'm not in love with. I only own one pair of jeans, three pairs of cropped pants, and two pairs of shorts—but they're all high quality and last me a long time. (I tend to buy pricier clothing, e.g. J.Crew, so it's worth it to me to have one nice thing than tons of crappy or lower quality things. For that reason H&M and Forever 21 don't fit my style or my philosophy on clothing. But I think a good part of this depends on style, since I have to plan accordingly for my J.Crew spends!)


message 27: by Jess (new)

Jess I have heard of Freecycle! I haven't used it, though, since I don't really like the idea of telling people my address (at school). One of our student groups runs a beginning- and end-of-year Freecycle on our campus, though, which is pretty neat! But I regularly donate old clothing and sell some others (like things that no longer fit) on eBay.

Anna, I'm glad you also think the minimalist lifestyle is cool :D


message 28: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
I didn't want to start a new thread for this but have any of you heard of Swagbucks?

I had a friend tell me about it and she swears on it because she has gotten a ton of Amazon giftcards and Itunes gift cards because of it. I resisted for a while and didn't do it but finally checked it out when another friend got a freaking Wii through it.

Basically all you do is use it as a search engine and you can randomly get points. There are also other things you can do to get points (special offers, swagcodes, shopping on certain sites, etc.) I've only been doing it for a week but it seems pretty cool. I'm just wondering if anyone else is on there.


message 29: by David (new)

David (canadiandave) Thrift stores and where I normally shop, or the 90% off racks at Nordstroms, Macys, Dillards, etc.

I stock up on sale items at the grocery store (I think I bought 30 boxes of cereal over two weeks in January for $1 each instead of $4-$5....and I still have about 5 left).

I just bought p90x for $45 on Craigslist new (instead of $150) which should save me from spending $35 a month on a gym subscription. I also got a new running buddy.

I bought my car (2002 Hyundai Elantra) for $2700 cash and just buy liability insurance. I don't speed more than 9mph over the limit so I havent' ever got a ticket.

I pay off my credit card every two weeks (it's tied to my bank account).

We have an awesome Dollar Theater (ok...$1.50) that plays movies that are about 4-5 months old. I can wait that long.

Two for one coupons for dates and wherever possible. Last week, I took a girl to the play Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and got ice cream for about $20 instead of $40.


message 30: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
I wish we had a dollar theater! I'm the same way..I don't mind waiting for certain movies to come out!


message 31: by Kelly (new)

Kelly | 308 comments We have a dollar theater, it's amazing every wednesday is $.50 day the rest of the days are $1 to $1.50, and the movies are not that old probably 3-4 months like David said. Worth the wait imo

I'm also an avid coupon collector...just have to watch out some coupons aren't really a good deal!


message 32: by Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner), The Founding Bookworm (new)

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 4407 comments Mod
Where do you get your coupons from?


message 33: by Kelly (new)

Kelly | 308 comments They usually come in the Sunday newspaper with all of the store ads. We get at least two magazines each sunday dedicated to coupons, it's pretty nice!!


message 34: by Kallie (new)

Kallie | 42 comments What helps me when I'm shopping, especially when I have to get a bunch of little things, is first of all, make a list. Accumulate the list for a couple days ahead of time, as you think of things, add them. Then, once you get to the store, stick strictly to the list. At most, allow yourself to get one item that is not on the list. Also, as you pull things off the shelf keep a running tally of how much your total is, and round up to the nearest dollar. I find I have a tendency to spend a LOT more when I'm not thinking about what I'm pulling off the shelves and what it costs. Keeping the tally reminds me that I can't afford to go all out. And by rounding up for each item, you will be pleasantly surprised at the register when your total is less than you calculated :-)
It's still a work in progress, I need a lot more practice on my budgeting skills, haha.


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