When my school offered me the chance to sign up for a card that would give me college student discounts, I was reluctant. I wasn’t sure whether I would use it, and I was worried it wouldn’t be worth the cost to enroll.
The card in question? The Student Advantage card. Though it cost $45 for a 4 year membership, I’ve found that it has more than paid for itself!
The Student Advantage card offers great discounts at many national retailers that I frequently use, online and off. I have used it to get 10% off the clothes I buy at Topshop, extra-cheap Greyhound bus tickets for visiting friends, and free shipping and a discount on a cute backpack I ordered from eBags.com.
It also offers tons of local discounts. Once I had the card, I could log in on the website and browse the extensive list of local offers. Many of them were for restaurants and stores near campus. I have a 15% discount at one of my favorite cafés, and there’s even a discount at a nearby burrito joint. Since these are places I would go to anyway (after all, cappuccinos and burritos are necessities), the discounts have saved me a lot. The card was definitely worth the $45, even if I had only used it for 1 year rather than 4.
I recommend the Student Advantage card most highly, but there are other cards for college student discounts that offer similar savings. If you plan on studying abroad, you might consider the International Student Identity Card (ISIC), which is only $25 and offers discounts at museums, restaurants, and hotels around the world.
Also, many colleges have their own special discount cards designed to support businesses in the area. You should check whether your school has such a card on its website, and if you’re able to sign up online. If your school hasn’t sent you information about a card, as long as you are a college student, you are welcome to sign up for cards like the Student Advantage or ISIC. Signing up online takes minutes, and they’ll mail the cards to you within days.
When choosing whether or not to sign up for card, I recommend looking through the list of offered discounts. Do the math. How often do you use these retailers, and how much could you save with the discount card? You don’t want to feel like you need to buy things you usually wouldn’t just because you have the card. But if you think you’ll save more than the price of the card — and I think you probably will — go for it! I definitely haven’t regretted it.
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