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How to save money this summer as a student abroad

money saving ideas
Young students need to know how to be smart but also enjoy their time abroad and this holiday is the perfect opportunity to implement some great tips on how to budget. Source: David Dee Delgado/AFP

If there’s a season that needs money saving ideas, it’s summer. In 2021, even more so. The world may be cautiously reopening, but things are no longer the same. Your usual haunts for discounts, the budget stays — many may have closed or changed.

The good news is some money saving ideas are timeless. Whether you’re in Europe or the US, these tips can apply to you. 

money saving ideas

As summer approaches, the best way to practice budgeting is planning ahead with your savings. Source: Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP

 

We take a look at some great money saving ideas including what you can do to earn some income on the side as a student abroad. Below we’ll help you deal with financial constraints while still being able to enjoy your summer break:

Plan ahead

The best way to practise budgeting is planning ahead with your savings. Set aside money for food, accommodation and transport — the most important things. It’s also good to always have an emergency fund of at least US$2,000 just in case. 

Buy local SIM cards

Never use your SIM cards from home. If you’re crossing national borders, get a local SIM card as they’re usually much cheaper and also come with great WiFi packages to keep in touch with your family and friends. 

money saving ideas

Local SIM cards are usually much cheaper. Source: Aleksey Filippov/AFP

Use your student status

No matter where you are in the world, there will always be discounts for students, the elderly, the differently-abled and young children. Take advantage of this! Carry your student ID and don’t hesitate to ask vendors if they offer student discounts.

The Internet is your best friend

If you are planning to travel this summer, another way to make use of your student status is to look for the best travel deals for you. Sites like StudentUniverse work as a travel agency working with partners for the best possible deals for you. Alternatively, you can also do a little work of your own and find direct airlines who offer discounts for students. 

Hot summer body

Make use of your legs instead of cabs. Opt for trains instead of Uber. It’s free and a great way to burn off the three gelatos you’ve already had by 12 p.m.. Plus, it’s the best way to take in the surroundings. If you’re in a foreign country for a longer period of time, consider a train pass because as a student you’d also get cheaper fares. 

Earn some side income

Summer is your chance to earn some money while you’re abroad. This could be through hospitality jobs (where they usually tip well), au pair jobs (where you get to live with a family and learn their culture), and resort jobs that usually pay for meals and accommodation as well. 

Another great way to earn money in non-English speaking countries would be to teach the language. Magic Ears is specifically for students pursuing higher education to teach English to young children as a form of passive income. The base pay is US$26 an hour which is typically more than what other tutoring companies offer. You can do it remotely which means you have time to enjoy your holiday as well.