As a student, time is not on our side. University is also an expensive experience. However, being a student also has some great benefits unique to the title and there are a ton of resources to help you out.
Make use of these 15 legit and easy life hacks and save time and money:
1. Get an SPC Card
SPC cards are loyalty discount cards for Canadian students. Membership is for elementary school students to post secondary students. It gives you discounts at popular food, drink, fashion, travel, and more stores all across Canada, such as: Forever 21, Urban Outfitters, Blenz Coffee, and Flight Centre. It costs only $10.
2. Get an International Student Identity Card
The internationally recognized student card gets you discounts at museums, Amtrak, Greyhound, and places like Deer Lake Boat Rentals and bike shops.
Photo cred - @weheartit
3. Know your rights as a tenant
You have legal rights as a tenant and you should learn about your rights so that you aren't taken advantage of. Don't be mislead into paying extra fees. Free info for renters is available here.
4. Keep your student card on you
Many stores and restaurants in Vancouver offer discounts as long as you present a student card. Sura, Topshop, The Hot Box Yoga, and Dr. Sun Yat Sen Garden are just some of the many places that offer discounts to students.
5. Use Groupon and Living Social
Online coupon sites like Groupon and Living Social offer crazy good discounts for restaurants, gyms, hair salons, spas, and more. Click here for a list of unreal deals you can use this summer!
6. Car share
Awesome car sharing services like Evo and Car2Go only charge 41 cents per minute. If you split that with your friends you could be paying so little for a ride! Way cheaper than a taxi. Evo even has a bike and ski/snowboard rack. These cars can be parked for free in any designated spots, residential or permit only spots within the "home zone".
7. Buy and Sell Used Textbooks
Most BC universities have Facebook groups where students can buy and sell their textbooks. It is way cheaper to buy used than new - you can save hundreds of dollars per semester.
Photo cred - Weheartit
8. Use website/social media blockers like Self Control and StayFocused
Social media and the Internet can be a huge distraction when studying. When you can't exert self control, there's an app for that. Self Control for Mac is free and completely blocks out the distracting websites you choose for however long you want.
9. Use financial planning tools like Mint.com
Managing student finances on top of everything else can be tricky but this is where Mint, a free and safe financial management service comes in. Mint.com can help you see where all of your spending goes. It shows how much you spend in each category, such as food, entertainment, clothing, etc through easy to read charts. It helps create a personalized budget and reminds you when your bills are due. The app version is also available for Apple, Android, and Window devices.
10. Take advantage of free events and activities in Vancouver
Even though Vancouver is an expensive city, there are still plenty of ways to make the most of your student experience without spending much. Click here for a list of date ideas that will cost you nothing.
11. Use Grade Tracker Apps
Free apps like Grade Tracker for Apple and Grade Tracker Pro for Android can help you keep on top of your due dates and see what grade you need on your next assignments to reach a certain grade percentage. These apps can also help you see how much a certain grade and weight will impact your grade.
12. Join Amazon Student
We students all know that Amazon is the place to go for online shopping. It can offer huge discounts on everything from textbooks to electronics to clothes. Amazon Student is absolutely free for the first 6 month trial, and afterwards is 50% off Amazon Prime per month. You can opt out anytime. You get all the benefits of Amazon Prime such as free 2-day shipping and exclusive student deals. More info on the benefits here.
13. Get Help for Bibliographies
Bibliographies are a tedious and tricky process part of writing papers. Easybib and BibMe make it super simple and fast. All you need to do is type in the information. Easybib app can format more than 7,000 citation styles, including APA and MLA formats.
Photo cred - Weheartit
14. Free download of Microsoft Office
Many BC universities offer free downloads of Microsoft Office. All students of universities including but not limited to UBC, SFU, UVic, Kwantlen, and BCIT can get a free Office 365 subscription. Microsoft Office 365 includes Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, and OneNote.
15. Do Psychology Studies
When you have an hour or two to spare and want to make some extra cash, you can take part in the many psychology studies offered by most BC universities. For example, here is the mailing list for paid psych studies at UBC and here is SFU's. Not all studies are limited to university students.
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