In the wake of increasing tuition fees for universities in Nigeria, I am dedicating this article to students and parents who have children who are about to resume or who are currently studying at the University. It takes the support of parents and the commitment of their children or students to jointly navigate the current economic situation while maximising their learning potential and achieving their desired degree.
Financial management is a skill that is not necessarily taught in school, but various private organisations, financial institutions, and financial literacy organisations, like Smart Stewards, which I lead, have taken it upon themselves to teach financial literacy at educational institutions across the country.
As a student at a tertiary institution, you must develop an inquisitive mind about how money works—how it is made, managed, and multiplied—and in this article, I’ll be talking about how to save money.
As you embark on your journey through college or university, your mind may be buzzing with excitement, curiosity, and perhaps a tinge of anxiety. Amidst all the academic challenges and social adventures that await you, there’s one crucial skill that will serve as your faithful companion throughout this transformative phase: the art of saving money.
Navigating the world of higher education can be financially demanding, but fret not, for I bring you a treasure trove of practical money-saving methods tailor-made for the Nigerian student context. Let’s embark on this financial expedition together, discovering the hidden gems of financial success while embracing the joys of being resourceful and responsible.
1. Craft a Budget blueprint
Your financial journey begins with a budget—the compass that guides your spending and ensures you stay on course. Start by listing all sources of income, including allowances, part-time jobs, and financial aid. Next, outline your essential expenses like tuition fees, accommodation, and textbooks. Allocate the remainder to discretionary spending but be prudent! Prioritise needs over wants, and remember, a well-crafted budget is the foundation for fiscal freedom.
2. Go on a treasure hunt
Student discounts, sales, and freebies in Nigeria are waiting to be discovered. Show your student ID with pride and save money on films, meals and travel on public transport and at a wide variety of stores. Keep your eyes peeled for discounts tailored specifically to students and think about signing up for a loyalty programme that offers discounts and other perks in exchange for your business.
3. The Art of Thrifting
Thrift is the name of the game on the busy streets of Nigeria. Explore the excitement of shopping for a steal at one of the many colourful local markets, where one may find one-of-a-kind treasures and inexpensive clothing. Thrifting is a sustainable fashion statement that may save you a lot of money.
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4. Share and Save
Life on campus is all about camaraderie and shared experiences. Explore cost-saving opportunities by splitting expenses with roommates or classmates. From cooking communal meals to carpooling, sharing resources can make a significant dent in your monthly expenses while creating cherished memories.
5. Get Savvy with apps
You can count on technology to help you become financially savvy in today’s modern world. Learn about a multitude of money management programmes, discount sites, and reward programmes. You can save money, keep tabs on your spending, and get rewarded for making regular purchases with the help of these digital aides.
6. Textbook Treasure Hunt
Textbooks, the essential tools of academia, can be budget busters. But worry not, as Nigerian students have mastered the art of textbook treasure hunts. Explore second-hand bookstores, online platforms, or campus bulletin boards for discounted or used editions. Additionally, consider forming study groups where you can pool resources and share textbooks.
7. Conserve Money With Meals
It’s enticing to try out new restaurants, but the cost may add up quickly. However, preparing your own meals is a fantastic way to save money. Get yourself a reliable rice cooker and familiarise yourself with some easy, healthy recipes that will satisfy your cravings without breaking the bank.
Dear Nigerian students, your academic journey is a golden opportunity for personal growth, and mastering the art of saving money will empower you beyond the classroom. Embrace these money-saving methods and let your financial prowess shine alongside your academic brilliance.
Remember, a naira saved is a naira earned. With every naira conscientiously saved, you pave the path to a prosperous future while relishing the joys of fiscal responsibility. May your college and university years be filled with academic triumphs, unforgettable experiences, and a lifelong legacy of smart money management.