College isn’t cheap. And we’re not just talking tuition. Between the cost of books, living expenses, food, and going out, your budget’s probably pretty tight. Good news, though: All you need is your school-provided .edu email address to take advantage of plenty of sweet student discounts. We hunted down the best deals for you to study (or party) on. Use all that extra cash to treat yourself to something nice, like beer.
Even if you’re an old-fashioned pen-and-paper kind of student, you’re going to need a laptop. Apple’s Back to School deals offer up to $300 off most Macs and now the iPad Pro, and they’ll throw in a pair of Beats headphones to keep the tunes playing between classes. If you’d rather work on a Windows machine, Lenovo gives students 10 percent off, and Dell offers students $150 off qualifying laptops.
Want a more traditional desktop set-up back in your dorm? Invest in a good keyboard. Das Keyboard gives students a 20 percent discount on their keyboards. Just make sure you don’t keep your roommates up with your clicking and clacking.
Productivity and Research
Getting a degree takes a lot of work. Make it easier with a good set of productivity tools. Microsoft will give you a free—totally free!—subscription to Office 365 if you have a .edu email address, so you can tackle the bulk of your work in Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and OneNote. Should your .edu address use Gmail, it’s probably through Google for Education, which entitles you to unlimited cloud storage for all your essays, projects, selfies, whatever.
If your studies involve 3-D modeling or animation, try the free three-year license to Autodesk’s software suite. That includes Maya, software for 3-D animation, and AutoCAD, software for 3-D modeling. Adobe gives students its Creative Cloud subscription, which includes Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere, and more, for $20 per month. And if you’re on the computer science track, or just want to add coding to your list of skills, Github’s Student Developer Pack gives students a suite of text editors and web hosting credits to get you started on your coding journey.
No matter what you’re studying, you’ll probably be writing a lot of papers. Endnote can alleviate some stress from your last-minute essay writing by helping you find scholarly articles and format your citations. Normally, the software costs $250, but students can pick it up for $114. A good alternative is Papers—$80 normally, $50 for students—which has a built-in reader to let you dive into your research from inside the app. Get the iOS app and you can sync across devices for on-the-go research.
News and Entertainment
On top of all the knowledge your professors will drop on you, it’s important to stay informed on what’s going on in the world. Take advantage of your university email address by getting a discounted subscription to The New York Times ($6 per month for students), The Wall Street Journal (15 weeks for $15, or $50 per year), or The Economist (12 weeks for $12, or $115 per year). Those rates are on par with introductory offers, but can last you all through school. Don’t have a few dollars to spend on news? The Washington Post offers digital subscriptions to students totally gratis.
Of course, you’re not going to spend all four years with your nose in a newspaper. Socializing is important, too! Create the soundtrack to your college days or a playlist for your next party with a subscription to either Spotify Premium or Apple Music for $5 per month. And when you need to stock up on Solo cups for your next party, cut down on shopping time with Amazon Prime. Students get a six-month free trial, which gets you free shipping and access to its video streaming service. After your trial is up, you can hold onto your yearly subscription for $50.
Whether you’re heading home for the holidays or just need a weekend getaway, AMTRAK offers 15 percent off tickets year-round as long as you have a valid student ID. You might find cheaper fares through Greyhound, which gives students a 10 percent discount; Zipcar also gives students $10 off membership fees. When it’s time to move out, use FedEx’s 20 percent discount to trim down shipping costs—whether you’re starting your first job, or moving back in with your parents.