8 things college students should not waste money on


Illustration | Brittany England

Bryan Cordova,
Managing Editor & Spanish Editor

With the start of the quarter being just after the holidays, some students find themselves strapped for cash, yet anxious to shop. The temptation of spending is easy to give into, but some things should just be avoided no matter how good the deal is. Here are some things students should save their money on this quarter.

1. Scantrons:
Scantrons cost about $1.79 per pack or 15 cents each. There is really no need to buy scantrons when ASI gives them out for free on the second floor of the New Union.

2. A Printer:
As convenient as a printer may seem for home printing, the cost of ink and paper, and some of the frustrations that last minute technical problems that seem to happen at home should be avoided. Printing in the library is ten cents per black and white page, and 50 cents per color page. Now that most assignments are submitted online via Blackboard or turnitin.com, you can avoid the hassle all together.

3. A High End Laptop:
The most common use of a laptop in college is for writing papers, streaming videos and using Wikipedia. Any strong program like Visual Studio or Adobe Master Programs are available at the library computers along with the many computer labs on campus. Buying an expensive computer isn’t needed for simply using Microsoft Office, and Blackboard. Library also issues loaner laptops at the reference desk on the second floor.

4. An External Hard Drive:
As tempting as some of the deals are, 1TB for $40, the convenient and free Google Drive and Dropbox with almost 20GB of free storage are always available and have little to no records of lost files. Also CSUEB now offers 1TB of storage with Microsoft Cloud.

5. Textbooks:
With new book prices in the hundreds, rentals come at just under and average of $60 on Chegg.com, and some professors tell their students to get previous editions or don’t require books at all. Sluggbooks.com is another great place to find the best rental book deals on the Internet for a cheaper price.

6. Anti-Virus:
Some anti viruses come as trials for new laptops and require users to purchase the full version after a few weeks. There is no point in spending so much money on the programs, when there are great free anti viruses such as AVG for Windows and Sophos for Macs.

7. Microsoft Office:
The office suite sells for a yearly subscription of $80 or $7.99 a month, but the Google drive is free and is compatible with Microsoft’s service. Also CSUEB now offers students the full suite with their horizon emails; so don’t waste your money.

8. Cable TV:
TV shows, movies, and news can all be viewed online for free or for a much lower price through streaming services like Hulu and Netflix. Also a lot of popular channels are moving to online content like HBO and ESPN. Ever heard of popcorn time? Download the program, you won’t regret it.