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5 Great Ways Students Can Have an Active Social Life on a Budget

Group of friends at college campusAs a college student, chances are good that you have champagne taste and a beer budget. In other words, you want and deserve to do fun things during your spare time, but you’re not exactly rolling in dough to afford the nice dinners out, endless shopping sprees or even popcorn and tickets at the movies.

Fortunately, with a little creativity and a group of willing friends, it’s very possible to have an active and fun social life in college without breaking your budget. For example, check out these affordable ideas:

Check out semi-pro sports games

If you attend college in a major city, you might dream of attending a professional sports event. While the ticket prices for an NHL or MLB game may be more than you spent on books last semester, semi-pro games tend to be just as fun and way more affordable. Google your college town name and “semi-pro sports” and see what pops up.

If your college is in an area that hosts spring training baseball games, you can often purchase a general admission lawn ticket for very little money and watch the pros play a game from the comfort of a blanket.

Outdoor concerts

Some concert tickets may be affordable at first, but once you add in parking and a post-show meal it can get expensive quickly. Instead, check the local paper and watch for posters advertising outdoor concerts. Typically held in a park or amphitheater, outdoor concerts are often free or cost a few bucks for a ticket. You can usually bring snacks and beverages in plastic containers with you and enjoy a fun evening of music.

Host social gatherings at your place

While it can be fun to head out and hit the local bars, the tabs add up pretty quickly. Instead, host some parties at your place and encourage everyone to bring a favorite food or beverage to share. You can even up the cultural ante a bit and purchase high quality beer like some Guinness Nitro IPA for your gatherings.

Schedule a craft night or game night

Two great ways to socialize with other college students are to host a craft night or game night. If you are feeling crafty, check out Pinterest for ideas and invite several friends over to share a creative evening together. Crafts don’t have to be expensive—for a few bucks you can buy supplies to paint wooden ornaments or picture frames.

Game nights are also a budget friendly option. Check out thrift stores for gently-used copies of Monopoly or Clue, pop a few bags of microwave popcorn and stock up on soda when it’s on sale.

Explore your college town

Google “things to do in (name of your town)” and you might be amazed at how many free or cheap events are coming up. You might find spring carnivals that are open to the public, art museums that offer free admission for college students, farmer’s markets where you can purchase inexpensive fresh produce, or even a planetarium that offers shows for a few bucks. Sometimes it’s so easy to focus on what’s happening on campus, it can be easy to miss some amazing cheap events that are within biking or driving distance.

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