5 Great Apps That Save College Kids Money

The stereotype of the struggling college student is no joke. Not only are you on the hook to pay for tuition, fees, books, and living expenses every semester, but the way most school schedules are laid out, you can’t hope to get a high-paying job in the meantime. Nope, you’re looking at minimum wage employment, most likely, and if you take your studies seriously, you’ll probably want to work only part-time, as well. This can make money a little tight, even with help from parents, scholarships, and student loans. However, you don’t have to live like a hermit during your time in college in order to ensure that you don’t overextend financially. In this modern era, there are all kinds of mobile applications designed to help you save money so that you can still enjoy your life even as you work towards a higher education and ultimately, better paying jobs. Here are just a few fantastic apps for both iOS and Android users that every college student interested in saving money should know about.

  1. Chegg. There’s not a lot you can do about the cost of tuition, but there are several ways to make your biannual book-buying binge less painful. You might buy used books from the book store or rent them online, just for example. Or you could save yourself some time and money by downloading this free app that helps you find deals on textbooks. Whether you’re looking to rent or buy your books, Chegg can direct you to the options that will save you the most. And with no shortage of digital downloads, you can save some strain on your back, as well. You can even use the program to sell back books you no longer want.
  2. BillMinder. This app will set you back $1.99 initially, but it’s well worth the expense for students that are paying bills for the first time in their lives. All you have to do is enter your monthly expenses and due dates in order to see them on a calendar or get reminders when bills are coming due, ensuring that you’ll always remember to pay on time, avoiding late fees and black marks on your credit score. You can even view charts and reports for a quick snapshot of where your money is going on a monthly basis. In short, it can help you to keep your finances in order. And considering what you might spend on late fees otherwise, the 2-dollar cost will likely pay for itself.
  3. Skype. When you’re away from your home, your family, and your friends for the first time, it’s not that surprising that homesickness would set in. But rather than wasting your minutes on calling, your best bet is to download Skype so that you can see a friendly face for free. Best of all, this app also offers cheap international calling (six cents a minute), so you can still talk to family and friends for less should you opt for a study abroad program.
  4. Onavo Extend. If you use your data package a lot and you’re constantly suffering overage fees, then you’ll be happy to download this free app, which claims to multiply your data usage by as much as five times what you currently get simply by compressing your data. The amount you actually get could depend on a number of factors, but the reporting function can help you to determine the best methods of controlling your data usage. And every little bit helps, so even if you only get a little more out of your current data plan, it’s worth the free download.
  5. DrinkOwl. If you want to find deals when you head out with friends for a drink, you might want to try this free app. You can use it to find restaurants and bars in your area offering happy hours or drink specials that will ensure you never again pay full price for beers and buffalo wings. And the fact that you can search by beer, wine, or liquor means you’ll always get your drink of choice. Whether you’re working towards a bachelor’s degree and living in the dorms or you’re going for anĀ MBA degree online, this app can help you to save some money when you blow off a little steam with your pals.

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