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September is probably the most depressing month of the year for students everywhere. As we desperately cling on to the last days of summer, unwilling to face the reality check that hits you like a hammer on the first day of school, let’s remember that being a student isn’t the worst thing in the world.
To cheer you up, we’ve compiled a list of discounts you can enjoy now that you’re back in school.
Student Price Card
The best way to take advantage of student discounts is probably the Student Price Card (SPC). The fee for the card is $9, but the possibilities are endless. Most discounts are 10 to 15 per cent off and many retail stores, restaurants, beauty salons and other specialty stores participate in the program.
Some of our favourite perks: Nando’s Chicken (10 per cent), WIND Mobile (save an additional $25 when you sign up for WIND) and Forever 21 (10 per cent off your entire purchase).
There was a lot of hype when Topshop landed in Canada, and their 10 per cent student discount gives students everywhere more reason to be excited about the British fashion giant. You may not feel good about walking into 8 a.m. classes, but at least you’ll look good.
Before you become a jaded college student rolling up to class in ketchup-stained sweats and a hoodie, you can get 20 per cent off all regular-priced merchandise at Club Monaco with a flash of your student card.
When exam time rolls around and you want to start a Netflix marathon study, there’s nothing more necessary than comfy sweaters. Roots has your back with their 20 per cent students discount. Just make sure you have your student ID on you.
Every summer, Apple offers education pricing for those who want to upgrade from their high school-era laptops and cell phones. You can save up to $200 on a new Max or $20 on a new iPhone with free shipping if you shop online.
Right now, Amazon Canada is offering its two-day shipping program, Amazon Prime, free for students. It includes two-day shipping on all qualifying products, so you can get that dented used textbook before you even start thinking about those course readings.
Be warned: the “free” clause only lasts for six months – after this period is over, students have to pay the student Amazon Prime fee of $39 a year for up to four years.
On Wednesdays, bulk barn offers 10 per cent off for students, because obviously you need at least three pounds of gummy worms to get you through those all-nighters.
Select Loblaws locations typically close to universities and colleges offer special food combos or 10 per cent off meals. As the semester progresses and nutrition goes out the window, this will probably become more important.
Depending on your location, some Dairy Queen locations offer student meal deals or offer student discount cards. They’re perfect for when you feel like having some soft serve with that study session.
Don’t Forget to Look Out for Campus Favourites
Independent restaurants immediately within or close by the campus area often offer student discounts. Once you get comfortable with the area, start experimenting with tried-and-true local favourites (there’s guaranteed to be at least one) or find your own hidden gems.
Cheap or Free Museum Days
Many museums across Canada offer free or cheap admission on certain days, like Toronto’s Royal Ontario Museum offering free admissions on Tuesdays. However, Ottawa-based students are the luckiest with a variety of museums to enjoy. The Canadian Museum of Nature and the National Gallery of Canada are free from 5:00-8:00 p.m. on Thursdays, and the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum is free from 4:00-5:00 every day.
The ISIC Card
This is basically the international version of your student card and it’s recognized all over the world. If you ever find yourself at the Louvre in Paris or the Coliseum in Rome, you can flash your ISIC card to qualify for their student discounts. It’s $20 to get the card online, though some postsecondary institutions offer them for free. We suggest checking in with your student government or if the on-campus travel agency.
They not only work abroad:
With your ISIC card, you can receive 15 per cent off admission for one of Canada’s most iconic buildings. Keep in mind that any popular tourist destination across Canada is likely to have some sort of discount, even without the ISIC card. Some honourable mentions include Glenbow Museum in Calgary, the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa and the Vancouver Art Gallery.
If you’re planning to travel within the country, VIA Rail offers student bundles like the Canrailpass, which gets you seven one-way trips within a 21-day period, and general student-priced fare (must be 25 and under). No ISIC card required.
For trips closer to home (or just cheaper) Greyhound offers 20 per cent off adult fare for ISIC card holders, and 10 per cent off with a student ID card.