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Peer Advice: Ways to Save as a Student


Being a student may not be the most glamorous life, but luckily there are numerous perks that we can take advantage of during the next four years.

You’re most likely already shopping at these places, but paying full price. While we’re in school and even beyond, get into the habit of never paying full price for things; it’ll save you lots of money over time. Here’s a list of tips and tricks I’ve practiced over the years that have saved me hundreds of dollars.


  • Coupon codes are everything when it comes to saving money shopping online. Honey automatically applies coupon codes for you at check out so you never miss a deal.
  • You can also earn “Honey Gold” on your purchases that you can redeem for gift cards to retailers like Target, Amazon, and Sephora. Every 1,000 “Gold” earns you $10. You can see I’ve earned over $130 from Honey.

Rakuten (formerly Ebates)

  • Rakuten offers cash back on your purchases in a check that will be mailed to you quarterly. When you download the app to your google chrome, it will conveniently pop up and let you know how much percent back you can get at websites you’re shopping on.
  • The percent cash back fluctuates and there’s often special promotions that will increase the percentage to 10-15% and up. Retailers like Ulta, Nike, Target, Gorjana, Sephora participate. So if you’re already shopping here, you might as well get some money back.

Student Beans & UniDays

  • Both of these companies provide coupon codes for students. A lot of online retailers that offer student discounts outsource to these companies to verify your status. You just need to verify your school email address or provide proof of attendance when registering. Always check these two websites for coupon codes before checking out when shopping online. Since these codes are uniquely generated, they won't be found on Honey or other coupon code websites like Sometimes you can even stack coupon codes so it's important to always check.
  • Student Beans: 10-20% off at Lulus, Footlocker, Champs, WhiteFox
  • UniDays: 10-25% off at American Eagle, H&M, Adidas

Museums, aquariums, movies, amusement parks

  • Always check ahead of time to see if they offer student deals and have at least a photo of your student ID saved in your phone so you're always prepared.

Get 0% APR credit cards so you avoid any interest accruals

  • Paying just the minimum on your monthly statements is not good enough. Any overage will be subject to the credit card’s %APR. Sometimes it can be as high as 22% so you’re always accruing more debt if you don’t fully pay off your credit card balance each month. One way to avoid this is to find a credit card that has 0% APR which means your balance won’t accrue interest even if you pay the minimum. Most cards offer this deal for 12-15 months and you can transfer a balance from a different card for a 3% transfer fee which does add on to your debt, but compared to the 20-something% it’s a better option for the long run.


  • During your first year, you’ll get a free comprehensive eye exam performed by a second year. After, you can schedule a free contact lens fitting at Ketchum Health.
  • If you have vision insurance that you can use towards contacts and glasses - great! Use that benefit. As a student, you can get 6 month supplies of contacts per participating brand at a time through the student contact lens program. You also get a student discount on frame and lenses if you go through the Ketchum Health Optical.


  • A great way to practice self care and mental health is to meditate. Headspace offers so many guided meditations that target specific topics like sleep, dealing with distractions, healing after a break up, and leaving home. There’s also a section that includes workouts that weave in mindfulness.
  • Normally, this annual service costs $69.99, but as a student you can get a whole year for just $9.

Spotify Premium

  • If you’re using the free version of Spotify with ads or paying full price for premium, stop right here! You can switch to a Spotify Premium Student account (no ads!) for 4 years at a discounted monthly rate of $4.99 vs the full price at $9.99. In addition, they give you free Hulu and SHOWTIME.
  • If you’re already sharing Spotify Premium with friends or family - good on you, you’re thinking like a true saver!


  • Apple offers education pricing around the start of every school year. This is great if you’re looking to upgrade your undergrad laptop. Typically, you shave off $100-200 off of a MacBook and get free AirPods. You can also upgrade to AirPods Pro for an additional $90. This has been a game changer for me when it comes to studying because of the noise cancellation feature.
  • I’m also one of those people that believes in insurance for expensive electronics. The last thing you want to happen during school is your laptop dying on you and having to pay hundreds out of pocket to get it fixed. Most of their products come with a one year limited AppleCare warranty, but you can get 3 years of AppleCare+ that covers accidental damages too for $159. Definitely not for everyone, but it’s saved me in the past so I thought I’d share!


  • If you’re an avid Groupon-er, this one’s for you! You can get an extra 25% off local deals for 6 months, then an extra 15% after. You can use this to do fun activities in Orange County like paddle boarding or kayaking in Newport.