3 Easy Ways to Save on Printer Costs at College

Friday February 3, 2017

With the costs of tuition, books and housing, college students and their parents have plenty of expenses on their plates. One expense people may not consider is the price of printing essays, notes and materials while on campus. With all the papers due semester after semester, these costs can quickly add up.

By following a few simple tips, however, you can easily save on printing year after year through smarter purchasing decisions and some easy cost-saving measures.

1.Consider Purchasing a Personal Printer

Rather than spend money to use a facility printer for every need, consider purchasing a personal printer that will only require paper and ink cartridge replacements. To further eliminate costs, money can be pooled together with friends or roommates for a communal dorm printer. If you take this route, be sure to determine ahead of time who will ultimately keep the printer (perhaps the person who pitches in the most money) and how the machine will be restocked with necessary materials. Collecting a small sum weekly or monthly into a ‘printer fund’ may help eliminate any disagreements about who is responsible for supplying materials once they run out.

Generally, inkjet printers are suggested over laser printers for students because they are the least expensive option and have the capability to print photos and color better than laser.    

2.Utilize Economy Budget Options

There are a number of settings and options to be mindful of prior to printing documents to get the most out of every page. For example, if printing class materials, be sure to only select the relevant pages with necessary information. Anything that will otherwise be thrown away should be unselected prior to printing. Use the “print preview” function that displays how pages will appear before they are printed. This feature can help you resolve formatting issues before you print.

Is the majority of your printing done in mono? If so, or if 80% or more is done in mono, change the settings to default to print in mono not color. Then change your setting back to color in your printer settings when printing in color. This will save on the color toner being wasted and reduce your printing costs.

Fit more per page by decreasing margin width, reducing text size and eliminating unnecessary line spacing to significantly reduce the final page count. Lastly, if the print option has been selected but the printer hasn’t kicked into gear just yet, give it a moment before pressing print again to avoid printing out materials twice.

3. Save on Paper and Ink Cartridges

For notes and even essays and homework – if the professor allows – consider printing on both sides of paper to maximize use and cut down paper costs by half. Be sure to also consider the type of paper being purchased. While thicker, higher quality paper may seem like the better option for turning in assignments and carefully crafted essays, professors ultimately care about the words on the page more than its presentation, so save the cost and go with standard printing paper.

Save ink by sticking to black and white printing for personal needs (especially graphs and charts), reducing font size and eliminating unnecessary material prior to printing.

Buy alternatives to printer-brand cartridges. You can save big money on printing by buying high-performance ink and toner from places like Cartridge World – instead of full-priced printer cartridges from office supply stores.  

Local Experts

We are here to help with local, friendly advice. Our experienced and impartial staff will take the time to understand your printing needs and recommend the right printer and supplies for you—whether you’re printing a term paper or presentation. Find a Cartridge World store near you.