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How to Apply to College and Not Pay Money for It

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These days the majority of U.S. colleges will take money for processing your application. Although the fees are not that high and range in between $35 – $50, students who choose to submit several college applications at the same time can feel the difference.

However, not many perspective students know that there are ways they can apply for free. With all the additional expenses looming up such as the SAT or ACT test fees, college costs and, for many, loan debts, such savings could be extremely beneficial and much appreciated.

Here is a list of seven major ways you can avoid paying pricey college application fees:

  • Students, who are eligible for the SAT fee waivers, might also be considered eligible for application fee waivers from some schools. Your school counselor will help you find out more information about application fee waivers you can qualify for and look into eligibility criteria to be met.
  • Students applying online can expect to score free application submissions at many colleges and universities. As a rule, such information is available on schools’ websites. So keep your eyes open for any such options when exploring college websites.
  • Schools that are eager to meet their perspective students and their families face-to-face, can sometimes try to encourage them to come to the school personally by offering free application. Scheduling an official college visit can help you get the desired waiver.
  • A simple letter of recommendation from a relative or friend who graduated from the same college can become your pass to getting an application fee waiver.  Having a grandparent, parent or sibling who graduated from the same school might mean a lot.
  • The so-called legacy waiver is usually given to the relatives of a graduate who won some kind of award from the college.
  • Students who attend special information sessions on-campus or participate in diversity programs can expect to have their college application fees waived or partly reduced.
  • Finally, the best way to avoid spending money is to not apply at all. It does not mean you have to forget about your dreams of getting to college, but rather that you should limit the number of schools you are applying to. Choose four schools at the very most. Eventually, it will all come down to one college, so why waste money for something you are unlikely to make use of?

Be pro-active and take advantage of any opportunity you have. Consult with your guidance counselor to learn more about application fee waiver options available to you.



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