UNIVERSITY LIFE’S ADDED COSTS AND TIPS TO SAVE
By Evan Bryant,
Carleton University, BJ 2025
The costs of tuition, and housing fees if staying on campus, are clearly outlined when applying to university, but what are the added costs of moving away from home and completing your degree?
Food will be the biggest expense for most students not on their school’s meal plan, and this can get costly if not planned for, or if you like to eat out. Groceries can be costly. Even on a lighter diet you’ll probably be spending around $250 to $400 a month.
One thing to look for is grocery stores offering a day for students to get money off of their groceries. Tuesday’s are 10 per cent off for students at my local grocery store, so I get a big haul every couple of weeks.
If you’re away from home, I would always suggest having a school meal plan because it ensures you’re eating enough while studying. School can get tough and making meals can seem like a chore. Before you know it, it’s November and you’re eating cereal for all three meals.
What I cannot stress enough is if you’re a coffee drinker, get yourself a coffee machine and make it in the morning and try your best not to spend the money at school or the coffee shop on the way.
It can seem too easy and so cheap but it does add up. Getting into the routine of pouring yourself a cup at home can get rid of that $5 a day charge.
Another expense slipping the minds of some is the cost of having fun, because unfortunately in this world, having fun costs money (most of the time).
It’s important for your mental health that while at school you’re taking breaks and doing things for fun, but it’s not always cheap. Going to a football game, a restaurant with friends, mini-golfing or bar-hopping are all great escapes from the pressures of school but they all cost money.
Some great things to do without breaking that bank are going for a hike or walk in nature, playing video games, or many more listed here.
These added expenses can quickly make wallet thinner, but they’re vital to a healthy year and successful university life.