5-Eco Friendly Tips for College Students Living Off Campus

It’s that time of year again, when summer starts to come to an end and everyone’s headed back to school. This transition into the new school year can be exciting for many, especially those who are headed off to college for the first time or going back for another year. For many college students, saving money and cutting costs can be crucial to getting through the semester. It just so happens that several cost cutting tactics are also directly related to being eco-friendly as well. Below are five tips that will not only help the environment, but your bank account as well.

  • Traveling to Classes
    • Consider walking or biking to class if your campus is close enough. Doing so, you can contribute to reducing greenhouse gasses in our environment and increase your daily activity levels.
    • If you must use a car, plan accordingly with your friend’s schedules and carpool to campus together.
    • Another alternative option is to utilize a ride-sharing service like Uber or Lyft, and split the fare among your friends.
  • Making Extra Cash
    • Take advantage of the empty bottles and cans you may have around your house, apartment or dorm room. Find the closest bottle and can return station and receive cash for recycling! Find unique ways to split this money with your roommates, whether it’s towards cleaning supplies or a pizza night.
  • Sticking to the Basics
    • Turn off your lights. Yes, your mom was right when she used to sound like a broken record telling you to shut off your lights when you left a room. But turning off several lights when not needed can add up and make a difference on your energy bills.
    • In addition to lighting, also be sure to unplug any appliance that may not be in use. For example, phone & laptop chargers, fans, toasters, stereos, and coffeemakers to list a few. These tactics will also help make a positive impact on the environment as well.
  • Printing
    • We all know those lengthy research papers and countless amounts of articles, essays, and notes add up to hundreds of sheets of paper in a given semester.
    • Encourage your professors to allow sending assignments via email or through an online program your college may use.
    • If you must print and hand in several assignments, be sure to carefully proof read on your computer, before making the final decision to print. This will avoid printing several times, and will definitely cut back on unnecessary ink used.
    • To get rid of your empty ink and toner cartridges, recycle them to a local Staples or Office Max – and even earn rewards for doing so!
    • You can also take advantage of the option to print double sided, which can cut back tremendously on the amount of paper you’re required to use.
  • Finding a Hobby
    • If you have yard space, show off your green thumb and plant a small vegetable garden. This will save you from purchasing produce that can be expensive at the grocery stores, and can cut down the frequency you need to drive to one. Having your own garden can operate as a stress reliever to your everyday workload, and can also encourage yourself and friends to eat healthier.

Heading to college or moving off campus into your own house with friends can be an exciting next step in your life. However, with that comes increased responsibility and tasks you may not have had to worry about before. Being conscious of your everyday habits can help you stay on track financially, and can even assist in making a difference in the environment.

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