Fall into saving tips: Your guide to a money-saving fall season

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By Brianna Willis, Assistant Features Editor 

As we say goodbye to August and enter Sept., people start to pack up the shorts and swim suits, transition to sweaters and jeans, and look forward to all that fall has to offer.

The first official day of fall is September 22, but the weather has already begun making the switch from hot humid days to breezy cardigan-worthy days. While the transition is coming swiftly, having a good time this fall may not be within reach for some students. According to CNBC, a Georgetown University study found that students are working on average 30 hours a week and that seven in 10 college graduates had student loans with an average of $28,950 owed per borrower. Money is tight these days, and for many students who have to work to make it through college, enjoying leisure activities may come at a price. This fall, try these money-saving tips to make the most of your free time and wallet.

PSL AT HOME 

Pumpkin Spice Lattes were officially put on the menu at all Starbucks serving locations Sept. 6. According to Business Insider, this is the 13th year Starbucks has sold the latte, selling more than 200 million since 2013. However, a grande at most Starbucks locations is $5.25, and over the course of fall those lattes can add up. Instead, try making the beloved fall drink at home.

Pumpkin Spice Latte courtesy of popsugar.com

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin spice syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla simple syrup
  • 2 shots espresso, or 1 cup coffee
  • Whipped cream
  • For garnish: pumpkin spice (equal parts cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and ground clove)

Step 1:

In a mason jar or microwave safe jar with a lid, combine milk, pumpkin spice syrup and vanilla syrup. Close the jar and shake until the milk is frothy and has doubled in size. Remove the lid and microwave for roughly one to two minutes, to steam the milk.

Step 2:

Pour the steamed milk into the espresso or coffee and top with the whipped cream and pumpkin spice garnish, if desired.

Other recipes such as caramel apple cider or hot chocolate can also be made at home to save some money. As an added bonus, with the cooler temperatures arriving soon, you can make your warm beverage from the comfort of your home.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

College football season began officially Aug. 26 according to the NCAA website, however the first opening Saturday was Sept. 3 with a full lineup of college football games. For sports fans, the return of football season is a welcomed one. For Murray State students, enjoying a football game doesn’t have to be a costly affair. The first home game is Sept. 10 at Roy Stewart Stadium. This is also going to be their Senior Night so it is sure to be an exciting first home game. Murray State students can attend the games for free where they can cheer on the football team and enjoy music from the Racer Band, as well as a local DJ. For family that may come from out of town, general admission tickets are $10, and children’s tickets (3-18) are $5.00. Put on some blue and gold, and go on out to a free football game.

VOLUNTEERING

With holidays like Thanksgiving coming up soon, fall is the time of the year when we are thankful, and harvests are reaped and we enjoy each other’s company. The weather cools down, but you can still enjoy a walk outside. Halloween decorations start creeping up in yards and in hallways. Fall is a festive time, however it isn’t for everyone. For some Murray residents, they can’t afford costumes for their kids or food for their family. So this fall, consider some volunteer opportunities. Be on the lookout for Greek organizations and other on campus organizations holding philanthropic clothes drives, or canned food drives. Volunteer at Need Line, Soup for the Soul or Racers Helping Racers, an on-campus food pantry accessible to students with a student ID no questions asked. Contact them to see what you can do to help.

FREE FOOD

Most students have some sort of meal plan, but some commuter students may have opted out of spending more money on a meal plan when they could eat at home. Some students may not be able to afford a meal plan. Winslow is hosting their Harvest Dinner on Wednesday, Sept. 7 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. The menu can be found online or on fliers around campus. It is free to all students and is a great time to be around friends and enjoy a fall-themed dinner. Be on the lookout for information about their Thanksgiving dinner as well, for students who can’t make it home but still might want the comfort of eating with loved ones and eating a homestyle Thanksgiving meal.