College is hard enough with the stress of classes, roommates, and a social life. But throw money worries on top of it? Honestly, it can be really hard to deal. So we’re here to help. If you’ve landed a job, saved up as much money as possible, and you still need a little help getting by here and there, we’ve rounded up our 11 favorite money-saving resources to help you hold on to some extra cash. For all of you out on that ramen-noodle budget, keep reading for all the apps you should download now to give your bank account a boost.
For Road Trips: Gas Buddy
Paying for gas is an unfortunate reality of life, but it’s not cheap. Fortunately, this app helps locate the best gas prices around you. Bonus: it also comes with a trip cost calculator that will help you budget for your vacation.
For Study Incentive: Pocket Points
This is a free app that rewards you for keeping your phone locked while on campus, giving you an incentive to stay off your phone while in class or studying. How does it work? You receive points for staying off your device, and then local and online businesses offer deals and coupons that you can purchase with the points you get. As you accumulate more locked time, you level up and begin to earn points faster. Some of their popular online merchants include Lulu’s, Tilly’s, Macy’s, Fandango, and ASOS.
For Financial Aid: Fastweb College Scholarships
It can be hard to find college scholarships that are a good fit for you. Fortunately, this app provides a large database of scholarships free of charge. Almost like a dating service, you create a profile, and then the website matches you with scholarships that match your interests and skills.
For General Money Management: Mint
This is a free online site and app with so many useful functions: budgeting multiple bank accounts, tracking and paying bills, calculating your credit score, setting up alerts for low funds or bills and more, and investment advice. Beyond surveying your bank accounts, it can also analyze your spending habits and provide saving tips. This app is great for students who don’t don’t know where their money is going.
For Reselling Books: Bookscouter
You may already be aware that you can easily sell your textbooks online. But if you want to get the most money back for your used school books you should download BookScouter, which compares over 35 book-buying companies to get you the best amount.
For Regifting: Raise
You know that distant relative who always misjudges what stores you shop at and then you’re stuck with a gift card that you’re never going to end up using? Raise is a hub for buying and selling those. Make some extra cash by selling your unwanted gift cards, or save some money on discounted cards.
For Everyday Deals: Ibotta
Using this is an easy way to earn money back on groceries and household items that you already buy regularly. To use it, first you find offers on stores that you are interested in, then you buy the products you want that are listed in the offer. Once you’re finished shopping, take a photo of the receipt. Once you do so, you’ll receive cash back on the items in the offer. The mobile app can also be linked to a loyalty card like Rite Aid or Nob Hill Foods, and you can make in-app purchases to instantly get cash back if you don’t want to go to the store.
For Online Shopping: RetailMeNot
A brilliant tool for online shopping, this app provides a search engine for coupons by brand, store, free shipping, or department. It makes everything super simple by applying discount codes and cash back automatically.
For Group Activities: Livingsocial
For anything from whale watching to eating, this app has you covered. Use their app to search by location for deals on activities, beauty, gastro-experiences, local stores, and travel discounts. They also have a sale section where you can get an extra discount on a company’s deal.
For Local Student Deals: Rovertown
Founded by broke college students for broke college students, Rovertown categorizes its app by college campus to help you find deals and discounts at local businesses. Plus, you get a personal code that gets you $20 cashback through Venmo for every friend that uses it.
For Literally Everything: TUN (The University Network)
This app is the do-it-all of the college discount world. It provides ways to both save and make money like resources on budgeting, a scholarship directory, job listings, local and online student discounts, as well as a textbook saving engine.
Now that you’ve saved some cash, reward yourself with some (affordable) dorm décor.
Featured photo by @desireeloyola.