Studying abroad can get quite expensive. Tuition, visas, plane tickets, and housing - all of it can become quite overwhelming. Good news, your living cost can go down starting your sophomore year, so read more to get tips on budgeting that will help you save some $$$.
During your freshman year, living in a dorm and having a meal plan can become quite pricey. Luckily, once you get to your sophomore year, there are way more flexibility and opportunities to save money. First of all, you can find a cheaper place to live somewhere off campus. Make sure to do some research: call and ask around before you sign your lease! If you worried about not having a car, many student apartments have free shuttle busses, and many other places are still within the walking distance.
To find an apartment:
- Look online, find different property managers in Columbia, and look if you interested in any online listings they have.
- Give them a call, quite often it’s better to get in contact with someone so they can give you an updated information that might not have been posted online.
- Join Mizzou apartment groups on Facebook. There are quite a few of them, and that way you can also find some potential roommates if you need them.
- It’s always cheaper to live in with a roommate than by yourself, plus it can be a lot more fun to have friends around.
- Take a stroll around town, looking at the neighborhoods you would want to live in, quite often you can find leasing signs with phone numbers and other information. Find what you like, give the leasing office a call, and schedule a viewing.
- Don’t feel pressured to sign a lease way ahead, unless you feel sure about it. Take your time and make sure you find the best place for you needs.
Once you have your own place, you food expense can shrink significantly. If you have 225 meals per semester, it averages in $7.13 per meal. If instead your shop for fresh produce and make your own meals, you can save a significant amount of money on food! You can learn how to cook some easy recipes, and even plan out your meals for the week, bringing along you lunches to campus. If you are a coffee drinker, invest in a simple coffee machine and a to-go coffee cup. Brewing your own coffee in the morning would save you around $2-3 a cup. That adds up!
If you are worried about getting to the grocery store, don't be! There are a few grocery stores in Columbia within walking distance to campus:
- Lucky’s Market has a large variety of groceries available, and always have some good deals on produce. Stop by on Wednesdays to get twice as many deals.
- Lee’s Market is a small international market that has a variety of international foods, including snacks, frozen meals, meats, and produce.
- There is also Walgreens located close to the Lucky’s Market, where you can find all the necessities.
Hope you found some of these tips helpful, and don't forget that you can connect with the Office of International Admissions through our social media accounts or via email. Also, don't forget that you can schedule a call with one of the International Student Ambassadors to answer all your questions about life at Mizzou.