December 1, 2021

8 Free Helpful Budgeting Applications for College Students

High education always includes high expenses. There are tuition costs, money spent on rent, food, books, and so on. For a student living on campus with a prepaid meal plan, these charges are predefined and usually prepaid. However, college life always demands additional money.

Be it a regular cup of coffee or pizza, some cough medicine, a new book, or else, it is impossible to avoid such expenses. Thus, students have to master one more skill in college. It is running a personal budget.

As a rule, an average student has to spend about $50 per week on average, making it about $200 per month. This amount, when treated reasonably, can cover the necessary expenses. Even if you have an emergency case and are searching for the write my essay online service urgently, it won’t be a problem for you.

Planning and managing budgets are easier with tools to analyze your incomes and expenditure, and there are lots of them.

Managing students’ budgets with digital tools 

A well-planned and realized budget saves your nerves and reduces stress for you. Its primary purpose is to help you control your money. You know what you have in possession and how you will spend it. Unexpected issues may arise. For instance, you have to turn to write an argumentative essay service. You’ll decide how to resolve the problem with your current funds.

Earlier, people used to record their revenues and expenses using a sheet of paper and a pen. Then, Excel sheets made the calculations more convenient and the conclusions better grounded. Now, there are many dozens of specialized applications for both desktops and mobile devices. They help you track your funds, analyze payment destinations, suggest efficient methods of saving money for your situation, and provide results in a friendly format.

Let us now have a closer look at the most popular applications.


Mint is considered by many to be the most universal and effective budgeting application for students. It is an automatic budgeting app; therefore, you can link it to your bank accounts. The software will retrieve the data about your expenses and revenues. Also, you can enter the information about each transaction manually to provide comprehensive information.

Mint is free of charge and really flexible in configuring. You can determine your goals and monthly spending limits. The limits can be transferred automatically to the next month, or you may adjust them for your needs at any moment.

You can track all your funds, debts, and Net Worth. The software lets you set the financial goals and visualize results as convenient charts with spending categories. To organize and analyze your budget becomes simple. It includes all planned and unexpected fees, like the need to pay to write a research paper, helping you make your financial management more efficient.


EveryDollar is a manual budgeting app. You’ll have to register your revenues and expenses by entering them into the system yourself. It is a disadvantage, as you have to remember that you should register each transaction yourself, and missing some of them spoils the calculations and conclusions. On the other hand, this aspect may help you pay more attention to the process and thus focus on it better.

The distinctive feature of EveryDollar is using the envelope system. It allows you to set different spending categories, such as bills, home supplies, essay writing service, books, food, etc. Then, you assign a certain amount to each envelope. The system will only let you spend as much money as is present in the dedicated envelope. This way, it aims to prevent you from the cost overrun.

The app is free, safe, and concise, with a plain and neat interface. It provides a detailed breakdown of every month’s expenses in a format of a pie chart. You can create different categories for incomes and expenses. The system helps you assign every dollar to the right destination.

Another disadvantage of the software is the absence of a trend chart. Thus, you can use it to analyze your monthly expenses, but you won’t compare it with the past data in the application. It won’t show you at once whether you are saving more or spending more this month. You will need to apply another solution, like a spreadsheet.


PocketGuard is, like Mint, an automatic budgeting application with the possibility of manually entering the data. By using this application, you can track each transaction (and add hashtags to them for easier tracking and management). Also, the tool allows you to manage your recurring payments, specify the savings goals, categorize your expenses, and analyze your results with accurate and informative pie charts.

A helpful feature is automated breaking your monthly revenue into daily parts. Thus, you know how much you may spend this day and relate it to your current needs. For instance, if you consider an opportunity to buy college essay today, PocketGuard will inform you about your financial status and the impact of that payment on it. Therefore, it becomes simpler to avoid unexpected expenses.


Wally is a simple and user-friendly budgeting application designed for manually entering the data. It has both free and paid editions, but the free software has all the functionality to satisfy the college student’s needs. Despite the standard disadvantage of requiring you to fix all your incomes and expenditures manually, the tool is excellent in all other aspects.

You can add notes and photo attachments, configure reminders, and create and apply hashtags for your transactions. It helps you categorize them and better analyze those areas that consume most of your resources. Another drawback is that the Wally application does not set a spending limit for you. You may want to order the online writing services when it would affect your budget, and the application won’t warn you about that.


The Goodbudget application is another tool designed with the envelope budgeting system. The free edition of the app allows you to create up to 10 spending categories and manage your expenses. More categories are available in the paid edition with monthly or yearly subscriptions.

The software provides you with a detailed breakdown of all your expenses. You can view the information by month, by category. In general, it is a decent and informative tool, if you are okay with having a limited number of envelopes to control the spending, or if you agree to add the subscription to Goodbudget to your regular expenditure.


Dollarbird is a budgeting application based on a calendar system. Unlike other apps that sort and analyze your expenses by category, Dollarbird tracks them day by day. This system makes it more straightforward to consider and compare your payments daily instead of monthly, as many other applications suggest. The micro-management of this kind is more flexible and helps you adjust your budgets to the current situation.

The tool requires manual input of the information and asks the user to confirm recurring payments. Such features attract more attention to all expenses, as you become more aware of what you pay money for. If you subscribed to some service long ago and forgot to cancel it – Dollarbird will detect it and notify you.


Chip is a convenient budgeting application for students that aims to help you avoid cost overrun. It combines the automated registering of payments through linking bank accounts with the possibility to enter data manually. So, if you have to order a research paper, you will need to make a note about it yourself.

The functionality of the application is decent. It allows you to set the savings goals, analyze all your expenses, from coffee to essay writing services, and track your effectiveness in saving money.

A helpful feature allows you to keep a record of how long you’ve been saving. Also, the tool can recommend you the amount to set aside at once when you get paid, which is really useful for part-time working students.

As for the drawbacks of this application, unfortunately, it is not supported by all banks. So, if you plan to use it to track your expenses in an automated mode, you should make sure that your bank supports Chip first.

Personal Capital

Another free budgeting application targets people willing to use it for a long period. It is a platform with many features and advanced tools for managing funds, including both the automated recommendations on running your budgets and consulting the live financial advisers. However, it is suitable for students too due to its productivity and convenience.

By linking the Personal Capital application to your bank accounts, you can track all your expenses and revenues automatedly. The app synchronizes the information continually and keeps you informed about your current financial status. To improve security, this software has implemented two-factor authentication, so you can be sure that no one may access your bank data.

Use the suitable budgeting application to save your funds

Many available budgeting applications help students to spend money wisely. These skills will definitely serve them well in the future. Digital tools can show you what you are spending the money on and recommend ways to reduce the expenses. So, make use of the tools properly.

About the author 

Peter Hatch

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