Man holding empty wallet
Whether you are still a student or have started your career, chances are you are feeling the pinch of this economy. You may feel like you are entirely squeezed dry but when you focus on saving money, there are quite a few areas you can cut back.

Only Buy Essentials – This goes for food, clothing and life extras. Instead of buying name-brand snacks, try the store brand. Swap out takeout lunches for brown bag meals you make at home. Try to get another season out of your coat. You don’t have to exist solely on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or walk around in rags but you do need to shop smart and stick to the basics.

Only Buy Items On Sale – When you are shopping, look for sales. Coupons also come in handy too – especially since some stores double them. If you utilize both tactics (sales and couponing), sometimes the additional discount could be applied to the overall total of your shopping cart. Another tip is to buy clothing after that particular season’s sale has begun. Or shop at consignment shops. You’ll still get high-end stuff at a fraction of the cost.

Cut Out Unnecessary Expenses – Calculate how much money you spend dining out, going to the movies and meeting friends after work. Road trips to visit buddies and vacations with family and friends is another culprit sabotaging your budget. Consider the popular “staycation” fad. Check out all of the natural, historical and interesting activities and locations in your local area. You may be surprised at what a fun “trip” you have!

Take On A Part-Time Job – Moonlighting is a great way to bring in some extra cash – especially during the holidays or over the summer. Depending on your job, a part-time gig can also provide you with a generous discount, which will save you even more money. A handy tool if it’s a location you already frequent.

Cut Back On Amenities And Utilities – How much do you watch cable? Do you really need a “smartphone” when you have the Internet at your apartment? Could you get away with turning the heat down a few degrees or switch the air conditioning off at night?  Evaluate your bills and see where you can trim off some excess.