Ways to Save Money in College

As a college student, saving money can be hard. We’ve compiled a list to help you save your hard-earned money. Believe it or not, we live by these tips too. What better way to provide advice than with some methods we’ve already tested ourselves! We hope you’ll be able to use some of these methods during your years in college and into the future. 

Textbooks

One of the first dilemmas you’ll face as a college students is having to buy expensive books for your classes. Let’s face it, you won’t even read half of the chapters in your class for some of them. Instead of buying new books, we recommend that you rent your books!

We’ve noticed some students purchase expensive books in hopes to sell them later on for an equal or higher price they bought them for. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Bookstore can’t always guarantee that they’ll buy your books back for the price that you’re hoping, or if they will be buying them back at all later on as their need for books fluctuates every semester. You’ll actually be saving yourself SO much money by renting!

At Textbook Solutions, we aim to keep our book prices lower than your on-campus bookstore and rent out books up to 90% off their new price.

Fitness

You should also look into what is included in your tuition: take advantage of the amenities that your university offers! If you’re looking to keep in shape while in college and are looking for a gym, don’t spend your money on a membership. Most universities have a gym for their students. All you’ll need to show at the door is your student ID. You can get fit and stay active without spending more money!

FOOD

On a similar note, we know that some classes can be super time consuming when it comes to homework and assignments, which may limit your meal times. Don’t let that pressure you into eating out every day. Many universities offer meal plans included in the tuition that will give you access to the cafeterias and on-campus restaurants. It’s already included, so you’re not spending more money by eating out!

One healthy, money-saving tip for eating and drinking is to always carry a reusable water bottle with you. It’ll not only help you in staying hydrated but also save you money. If not eating on campus, you should also consider the time of day that you go out to buy your next meal. We highly suggest visiting your favorite place during Happy Hour! Restaurants are more likely to be having special offers during that time.

Resources

In addition, most universities have a computer lab that allows you to print all the documents you need for free. Instead of having to purchase a printer, paper, and ink, all you’ll really need is your USB or Google Drive information and your school ID. You won’t have to worry about not having enough ink or paper!

Of course you’ll need a means of transportation to and from the computer on campus. While having a car can be useful, you can also look into taking the shuttle. If you live in university housing they most likely have shuttles all around – and the best part is, you don’t have to pay for gas! The shuttles on campus are designed to help the students get from their dorm to classes on time. We suggest scoping out the shuttle stops and checking out their itinerary.

Student discounts

People always say you should always carry your ID, and we couldn’t agree more. When you go out, never forget to ask if they have any active student discounts. If you’re in need of electronics/entertainment, Apple, Sprint, AT&T, Office 365, Best Buy, Dell, Spotify among others offer discounts for students! Restaurants like Dairy Queen, Buffalo Wild Wings, Waffle House, and Burger King can help you save 10% on your next meal. Don’t be afraid to ask if a place has any student discounts!

Budgeting

If you’re just not sure if you can keep track of your expenses by yourself, don’t worry! There are actually various budgeting apps designed to guide you. They’ll not only tell you how you’ve been spending your hard earned money, but how much you’ve been spending in transportation, shopping, dining, etc. Here are some budgeting apps you can use for free: Mint, Wally & EveryDollar. They can also help you in alerting you when your next bill is in addition to creating monthly budgets so you can stay within your ideal budget and save some moolah!

We know how hard it can be to save money while in college. At Textbook Solutions we aim to help you Save More Green. We hope that with these tips you’ll be able to do just that!

Sweet and Savory Restaurant Birthday Rewards

Birthdays are great for celebrating with friends and family or simply just having a beautiful day off where you can relax on your own.  It’s the day where you get to be happy for another wonderful year of new experiences and new memories. So why not make the day a little sweeter? There are a couple restaurants you can go to for delicious birthday rewards both, sweet, savory, and everyone’s favorite word – free! So why not treat yourself on your special day at some these familiar places!

Starbucks

Most of the time everyone needs some coffee to start their day, and at Starbucks, you can get a free cup of coffee on your birthday. Simply sign up here and become a member of the Starbucks Rewards program, and you will receive a coupon close to your birthday for a free drink. You can order your regular coffee, a latte, Frappuccino, whatever you’re craving! It’ll give you the boost you need for a day of different activities during your birthday.

Denny’s

Known for their breakfast, you can have a tasty Build Your Own Grand Slam deal at Denny’s on your birthday. All you must do is sign up for their rewards program with a valid email address, and they will send you a coupon to use at any Denny’s. You can have fluffy pancakes, crispy bacon, and eggs made any way you like.

IHOP

If Denny’s isn’t your favorite, you can also get a stack of sweet pancakes at IHOP because one of the best kind of cakes to get on your special day is pancakes. Once you sign up for their rewards program with an email address, you will get a coupon on your birthday for free Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity® Pancakes. You can get peaches, strawberries, or raspberries on your pancakes topped with some whipped cream!

Moe’s Southwest Grill

After eating a sweet breakfast, you are probably going to want something savory of lunch so why not head on over to Moe’s Southwest Grill. If you download their app or sign up for their rewards with an email address, you can get a coupon for a free burrito. You can build it any way you want with your favorite beans, rice, and choice of protein. Also, once you sign up for the rewards, you will get a free cup of their famous queso, which will go great with your free tortilla chips that come with almost every meal.

Chipotle

Of course, a lot of people like to go to Chipotle when they are in the mood for some southwest food. You’ll be pleased to know that you can get a birthday meal here as well. You can get a free burrito once you sign up for their rewards program through their app or with a valid email address. Get some Pico de Gallo in your burrito for some extra deliciousness!

Golden Corral

Maybe you want lots of options for breakfast, lunch, or dinner on your special day. If you sign up for the Golden Corral Good as Gold Club with an email address and your birthday you will receive a coupon to use at any Golden Corral. The coupon will let you have an all-you-can-eat meal at any time of the day. You can even get a little dessert if you still have room for it!

Chili’s

You might want some dinner at Chili’s instead. Once you are finished with your feast of their famous baby back ribs (or anything else from their menu of variety), you can get a free dessert on your birthday. Just sign up for their rewards program and fill out some information!

Dairy Queen

Ice cream is good and even better when you can have it on your birthday. If you sign up for Dairy Queen’s Birthday club rewards, you can get a coupon for a free Blizzard or Royal Blizzard. The cool thing about this coupon is that depending on when you receive it you can use it 7 days before your birthday, on your actual birthday, or 7 days after your birthday. So, you are free to get some ice cream to celebrate or keep for the next week and get some ice cream later.

Steak ‘n Shake

Maybe you want a dessert you can just grab and go since you have places to be on your birthday. You can get a special birthday milkshake from Steak ‘n Shake if you sign up for the Steak ‘n Shake eClub. They’ll send you a coupon close to your birthday so that you can get your shake of any flavor.

Smoothie King

For your birthday you might want something fresh instead of constant sweets. Something that has fruits or vegetables for a healthy alternative to your new year of being a brand new you. You can head over to Smoothie King for a free birthday smoothie! You must download their Smoothie King Healthy Rewards app and fill out some information. It’s nice to be able to take a break with something refreshing like a smoothie.

No matter how you celebrate your birthday, we hope you can enjoy some of these cool rewards. Have a stellar birthday and keep being the awesome person you were born to be!

Sweet Summertime Treats

It’s the middle of summer, and we’re hitting those triple digit temperature numbers! You are probably craving something sweet, juicy, or cold – and if you’re like me, summer is my favorite time to be creative and try something new! What better way to practice those creative skills in the heat of summer than by trying a new recipe? Whether you’re in the mood for something creamy and cold, fruity and juicy, or sweet and refreshing, we’ve got some great recipes to try this summer!

Lemon Icebox Pie

This is actually my great-grandmother’s recipe! I remember being so excited for her famous lemon icebox pies as a kid. Who knew they were so easy?? All you need is:

  • 6 ounces of frozen lemonade (let it thaw for a few minutes)
  • 8 ounce container of cool whip
  • Can of sweetened condensed milk
  • Graham cracker crust

Whip the first 3 ingredients together, pour it in the crust, and let it freeze for a couple hours. It’s the best remedy to those hot summer days!

Dairy Queen copycat orange julius

Photo from Simplee Thrifty

Those delicious Orange Julius treats from Dairy Queen are famous for a reason! You can make one from the convenience of your own home with just 7 easy ingredients. Check it out at Simplee Thrifty and try it today!

Watermelon ice cream

What screams “summer” more than these words? Watermelon is one of the most refreshing things to eat on a hot summer day – mix that with ice cream and I’m sold! Try this delicious, fruity, and healthy recipe from Easy Peasy Creative Ideas.

Healthy fruit salsa

Photo from What Molly Made

I don’t know about you, but “fruit” and “salsa” would not be something I would put together…until now! This healthy fruit salsa recipe from What Molly Made is a fruity dessert that is good for you and satisfies that sweet tooth at the same time. It also includes a recipe for cinnamon sugar pita chips, the perfect crunchy chip to dip into the fruit salsa!

Strawberries and cream magic bars

Photo from Tidy Mom

Get your baker’s hat on for this awesome recipe! It has strawberries, cream cheese whipped cream, and a cookie crust – sounds pretty magical to me! Check it out at Tidy Mom and make some for your next get-together.

Peach Cobbler

Photo from Pinch of Yum

There aren’t many things more American or traditional than peach cobbler on a summer’s day. This recipe from Pinch of Yum is so low maintenance and delicious, you won’t believe it takes only 15 minutes of prep time!

Frozen oreo pudding cake

Photo from Lil’ Luna

Were you wondering when I’d get to some chocolate recipes? This one is perfect for those chocolate lovers in the summertime! Lil’ Luna has an awesome recipe for this that just makes my mouth water!

No Bake Summer berry Lasagna

Let me tell you, this recipe from Oh My Goodness Chocolate Desserts is the real deal. It’s perfect for the summer and 4th of July with it’s 3 layers: red (graham cracker and strawberry jam), white (cheesecake with strawberries), and blue (blueberry jello salad). Top it off with more fruit and white chocolate, and you have the perfect combination.

s’mores bars

S’mores are the perfect summer treat and always make me feel like I’m at a campfire! These s’mores bars bring together everything you love about s’mores, without the need to build a fire. Try it today from The Baking ChocolaTess!

Sheet pan fruit pizza

Here’s another (semi) healthy yet delicious and sweet fruit recipe! Just cut up all the fruits you want, and pile it onto a sugar cookie crust. You could even drizzle some chocolate or caramel on top…the possibilities are endless! Get it from Jamie Cooks It Up.

The next time you have a family event or get-together with friends, whip up one of these amazing treats and enjoy the summer!

Dorm Room Microwave Meals

College is a huge transition in many of our lives, and it comes with so many amazing (and sometimes stressful) experiences! One of the biggest changes is going from living at home with your parents, to living either in a college dorm room or apartment. Living in a college dorm can be tough on your eating habits because it’s not very conducive to cooking. College dining halls are great, but sometimes you don’t want to get out of the dorm for every single meal! We understand the struggle, so we’ve found several recipes that can be made in your college dorm with just a microwave and mini-fridge! No more late night packets of ramen and spoonfuls of peanut butter!

Breakfast

  1. Overnight Oats – there are so many ways to make overnight oats, and all you need are oats, any type of milk, and whatever toppings you want! Most overnight oat recipes are super simple. All you have to do is combine oats and milk in a 1:1 ratio (½ cup is usually a good breakfast size) and then mix it up with your favorite toppings. That can be berries, nuts, coconut, chocolate chips, yogurt, peanut butter…the sky’s the limit!
  2. Microwavable Scrambled Eggs – sounds strange, but it’s so easy and healthy! All you need is a microwave-safe bowl, eggs, and a fork. You can eat it plain or top it with avocado, microwavable bacon, or salsa for a kick!
  3. Blueberry Muffin – classic breakfast recipe you can make in the microwave!

Main dishes

  1. Microwavable Mac and Cheese – ultimate comfort food! You can make this in a mug in less than 5 minutes. It’s also perfect serving size for 1 person!
  2. Baked Potato – that’s right, you can make these right in your microwave! Just pop that potato in the microwave and get your toppings ready – it takes less than 10 minutes!
  3. Vegetarian Burrito Bowl – for when you can’t make it to Chipotle! You can make so many variations of this depending on what toppings you have, but the base is so quick and easy!
  4. Pizza in a Mug – you may seem skeptical, but it’s a college dorm room staple! This recipe gives the basic ingredients, but you can jazz it up with whatever toppings your heart desires.

Sweet Treats

  1. Chocolate Chip Cookie – for those nights you can’t get rid of your sweet tooth! Learn how you can make a homemade cookie in just a couple minutes.
  2. Strawberry Pop Tart – this could be a breakfast, but also satisfies late night cravings! Just like a pop tart, it has a sugary outer layer and jam-filled center – you could try any flavor of jam to mix it up!
  3. Coffee Cake – an indulgent treat you can make in a mug! And who doesn’t love coffee at all times of the day?