Probably one of the best years of my life was spent in a dorm room.  I was terrified as I set foot on campus for orientation, but two weeks into the school year, I felt like I’d been there for months.  With a handful of student loans and some spending money in my pocket, I felt like I was on top of the world and living life like I never had before.

While the year just kept getting better, the following years were never quite as exciting.  However, my next three years at school served to prove to me that there were some distinct financial advantages of living in a dorm.

Campus Proximity

Since dorms are typically located on campus, it can save a lot of travel time and trouble getting too and from class.  Not only might this give you a little extra sleeping time when it comes to that 8 a.m. class, but it can save you on transportation costs as well.

Freshman year in the dorms was the only year at school at which I didn’t have the need for a bus pass, vehicle, or both, and this saved me a significant sum on purchasing items like parking passes, bus passes, gas, vehicle insurance, and other transportation related items.


To me, living at a dorm was like living at an all-inclusive resort — an experience that left me gaining about 25 pounds that year…but we won’t get into that.

Being able to eat whatever I wanted in whatever amounts I wanted was a wonderful thing.  Not only was there a cafeteria attached to our dorm, which served all sorts of goodies, but there were newer fast food-style eateries in the dorm across the street from us at which we could use our campus meal plan points to buy burgers, fries, Chinese food, tacos, sodas, and a variety of other items.

Learning From Others

The people who lived in my dorm were powerful allies in my dorm living.  Often, if you listened to the rumors and whisperings going around the dorm halls, you could sometimes pick up on valuable money saving tips.  Certain deals that were going on, how other people were saving money on textbooks, where restaurants were offering discounts or freebies, and where free live entertainment might be taking place were just some of the ways that I found the collective knowledge of those living in my dorm could serve to save me a buck every now and again.


While you aren’t likely to get to know everyone living in your dorm, you might get to know everyone in the dorm hall in which you live.  These people can act as valuable financial resources as well.  From fixing my computer and sharing meals and rides to the store, to sharing textbooks, clothes, and all sorts of other items, I found that the neighbors I had around me on my dorm floor could be helpful in the fight to save money while away at school.



The author is not a licensed financial professional.  This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal or financial advice.  Any action taken by the reader due to the information provided in this article is solely at the reader’s discretion.