money-saving tips for students

Money-Saving Tips For Students


Compiled from student responses to the Money Saving Tips contest (brought to you by StudentAwards in partnership with Scotiabank).


  • In order to save money, here are some tips I use. Instead of staying in all of the time, you can try watching a DVD you own that you haven’t seen in a long time. You can also rent from a library or watch Netflix, which costs a lot less than going out to the movies. If you want to go out to a theater, find a matinee showing. If you want to go to a concert, wait to buy your tickets because the last minute tickets are sold at cheaper prices. Lastly, instead of going out for dinner, try cooking a meal and having a few friends over. You can turn it into a game night. Not only will it be cheap, but fun too.
  • Borrow books, CD’s, and DVDs from the library instead of buying or renting them.
  • If it’s your birthday, the comedy club Yuk Yuk’s usually gives out tickets for free shows if you ask! It would be really fun to go with some friends to see some of the newest and funniest Canadian comedians around!
  • Entertainment on a budget is hard to do. Movies, dinner, and the mall are so expensive these days and when you throw in saving for school, it makes it harder. The following are tips on how to save money on entertainment: 1. Get a Scotiabank card that collects scene points, it’s a great way to save money because when you get a certain number of points you get FREE movies and snacks! 2. Get an Airmiles card, collect points and get points for gift cards for shops at the mall and restaurants. 3. Movie night in. Call friends over and have them bring their old movies from when you were younger, this is a fun girls night and a way to save money!
  • Go to the drive-in on their weekly “carload night.” A group of 5 … or (in a van) 8 whole people can get in for 15 dollars… that can be as low as $2.25 each for 2 hit movies! Not to mention the absolutely fantastic time you’ll have with your friends! You can even bring homemade goodies to save at the concession stand! Bring some bug spray, a few blankets, and cuddle up for a great time!
  • One of my favourite past times is exploring parts of town I haven’t been to before. Discovering cool new places is thrilling, but it’s all about the journey, too!
  • In order to save money on entertainment, I often check out the free concert and event listings for my city. There are often fun events going on in my, or nearby, communities. Combine these free events with taking the bus or carpooling and you have yourself one cheap day or night out. When I or my friends are set on going out to a bar or club, we often try to go before the time when cover charges are required or to bars with a good drink and food specials.
  • Do a little dance, make a little love, get down tonight. It entertains well.
  • Adopt a dog from a shelter, they’re cheaper there and they will provide you with lots of entertainment (and love).
  • A lot of museums offer discounts on certain days or during certain times (morning or during the winter).

Food and Drink

  • Always split a meal with a friend. Portion sizes are usually fairly large and splitting the cost saves you money! Order water for a drink, as most of us don’t get our daily recommendation of water intake. It’s healthy and cheap, what more could you ask for?
  • Make your own meals. You can eat good and healthy food on a low budget by not ordering in or going to restaurants.
  • There are four key things to shopping for food cheaply: don’t be a stickler about brand names, buy in bulk, watch for sales, and don’t be afraid to clip coupons.
  • One word: freezer. Freezing leftovers is very useful and saves money and time later on! You just have to thaw and reheat and your meal is ready!
  • I plan my nights out on the days that my favourite restaurants have specials that I like, even if that means spending my one night out on a Tuesday!
  • Work at a restaurant where they will feed you for free, not only do you get to make some cash, but you also receive a free meal every time you work.
  • I always go online to find free product samples that food companies provide. For example, Kellogg’s was giving out free food samples for their new high fibre cereal! I always keep track of free giveaways provided by these big companies! Ever since I’ve been receiving these samples, I’ve never had to buy snacks again!
  • My brother, his girlfriend, my boyfriend, and I all take turns going to Super Store every two weeks. Each person makes everyone’s lunch for those two weeks then we switch. It ends up costing about $80 dollars each to buy lunches for the entire semester. It is a huge saving, considering many people buy their lunches every day, which can totally add up.
  • Create a veggie garden to grow some of your own food!
  • Go to the grocery store with a full stomach so you don’t buy more than you are going to need just because you’re hungry at the moment.