Easy Budgeting Tips for College Students

Hey y'all!

If I had a dollar for every time I heard a college student calling themselves broke, then I wouldn't be a broke college student myself. Your early twenties is the time when you get to learn about a not-so-wonderful thing called a budget.

Although a large majority of us are still under mom and dad's wing, we still have to mostly fend for ourselves. Some of us learn the hard way when we run out of dining dollars only a month into the semester, and then there are those of us who very wisely choose to use our money to do laundry instead of going to the bar for the fifth time this week. (even if there are $3 shots)

I'm definitely a mix of the two. I don't waste my money on dominoes every night, but I've had a few times where I've held my breath while scanning my debit card. It's all about balance, right?


→  Poshmark : We all have old clothes that we don't wear anymore. If you have some designer pieces, you can sell them super easily on this app! Use the code "BCRCM" to earn $5 when you sign up!

Walmart Savings Catcher : I do practically all of my grocery shopping at Walmart, believe it or not. They have super affordable prices and have everything I need. But did you know you can scan your receipts online and the website / app will price checks local stores in the area? If the app finds any store around you that has something you purchased for cheaper, then you earn that money back. I've earned about $35 just from using the app! It's basically like free money.


Clean out your email subscriptions - If you see that your favorite store is having a sale, you're probably going to want to check it out, even if you know you don't need anything new. It's better to just avoid the temptation altogether by unsubscribing. 

DIY gifts - Birthdays, anniversaries, random holidays, and especially Christmas. Buying gifts for everyone on your list can add up quick. Instead, do a quick search on pinterest and find something crafty to make. Not only is it going to be a lot cheaper, but it's also a lot more meaningful!

Only use cash when going out - I also recommend leaving your credit card at home so that you don't have any sort of temptation to overspend. I know that drunk you will be mad, but sober you will be thankful. 

Rent textbooks online - The biggest waste of money in college is buying textbooks. This semester I actually rented a textbook from my schools bookstore and they wouldn't accept it because it had the tiniest amount of water damage in the index...the INDEX!!! So that's why I have vowed from now on to only order my textbooks online. So much cheaper and easier!

Stick to water when going out to eat - Soda is expensive people!!! By choosing to drink water, you keep your body happy and healthy, and your wallet a little more full. Every little helps!


Buy generic - Target brand ketchup tastes the same as Heinz ketchup, I promise. Even if you think they don't, just suck it up. With all that money you're saving, you can buy an extra round at the bar, right?

Buy in bulk - This is more for things that last a long time. If you find yourself repurchasing something frequently (aka frozen broccoli), then opt for the bigger bag. Although you'll spend more buying it at first, you'll be saving since you won't have to keep repurchasing it.

Coupons!!! - I'm not saying you have to go crazy, but definitely take a peek at your penny saver next time you get it in your mail box instead of just throwing it away. You might be surprised that you were about to buy TP and there's a 10¢ off coupon.

Don't go grocery shopping when hungry - I'm sure you've heard this one before. When you're hungry, you're going to buy things that you don't necessarily need. Instead try to go grocery shopping right after you eat, so that way you avoid temptation.

Make a list before you go - I have to do this anyways or else I'll forget everything I need to buy. But if you stick to a list of things you actually need, you won't over spend or over purchase things. Just make sure you only buy things on your list!

Have a weekly menu plan - By planning your meals ahead of time, you can write down all the ingredients you need to purchase, and also continue using the same ingredients throughout the week so that nothing gets thrown away. Plus you'll actually learn how to cook!


If you answered yes, then definitely check out :

Target Cartwheel : This app is one of my favorite things ever! It seems pretty standard at first. You can add coupons for things that spark your interest. But the cool part is that you can actually scan your items in the store with your phone and it tells you if there's a deal on it. There are so many times that I've gotten an extra 5% off of something just for scanning it!

There's also a rewards section, so every time you use your barcode, you get points that can be redeemed for free stuff like a target cafe item, something from bullseye's playground (aka dollar spot), or a check lane treat!

 If you don't have an iPhone or Android, you can still use Cartwheel by checking out the website and printing out your barcode!

Target RedCard : You save 5% on every. single. purchase. Why WOULDN'T you want to get one?? The best part? They have a debit card version too, so you don't have to worry about adding another credit card to your wallet. Added perks 
include free shipping on most items and an extra 30 days for returns.

P.S. this post contains affiliate links which means if you purchase or sign up, texasweettea may get something in return. Thanks.


  1. All excellent tips - especially the one about not going to the store while hungry! Hangry shopping is the worst! I've managed to get my grocery bill down to between $20-35 per week (which is amazing in DC) but whenever I shop hungry It goes way up! haha

    xo Deborah
    Coffee, Prose, and Pretty Clothes

    1. I always end up buying junk food if I go to the store hungry! And wow that's amazing! You go girl!

  2. Great tips! I'm not in college anymore but I always make a list when going to the grocery store. It makes the trip faster and keeps me from going crazy.

    1. I seriously don't understand how people can go to the store without a list!

  3. I actually just posted all about ways to save money in college and some of your items are very similar! It's so hard to save money in college but tips are great!


    1. Wow perfect! I'll definitely check them out. Thanks Makaela :)

  4. Love these! Will take any excuse to save some money, college kills my wallet! Thanks for the great tips! :)

    1. So true. Thanks for the sweet words, Juliette!

  5. These are great tips, even for non-students!
    For textbooks, check with your school library before you rent or buy. I found several that my library owned or could borrow via inter-library loan. It was a huge money saver!

    1. Kacy, omg that's actually so smart and I've never thought of that before!! Thanks for the advice!

  6. These are all such great tips! and applicable even if you're not in college :)

    Beauty & Colour | Vegan Lifestyle Blog

  7. Definitely saving this post-- and downloading Poshmark! Thanks for the great tips!


    1. Ahh yay! Poshmark is definitely my favorite app for selling (and even buying) clothes!

  8. Great tips! I really needed this as I am a broke college students LOL. I never would have thought about these tips. xx