Sometimes, it seems like there are very few upsides to paying thousands of dollars in tuition and years of your life to sit in a classroom. Sure, eventually it leads to a decent job in a field that you like, but that's so far away. Some of the only more immediate benefits to being a student are the wonderful, wallet-rescuing students discounts available to anyone who can produce a valid college ID. We're breaking down the best music-related deals for you this fall, to help you find (and make, if that's your thing) the songs that help you concentrate, unwind, and recharge.
I've paid for both Spotify
and Apple Music
, and I have to say, both music streaming services are great in their own way. If I had to choose one to pay for, I'd choose Spotify. It seems to have more original and customizable content; Apple's playlists and channels are all curated by Apple Music staff or "influencers", but Spotify lets all of its users create and share playlists. For students, both streaming services are offering 50% off ($4.99/month). Not a bad deal at all--and you can always cancel your subscription at any time.
Amazon just announced that its streaming service, Amazon Music Unlimited
, will be available to students for $4.99/month as well. I haven't used this streaming service, but like Spotify and Apple, Amazon has a library of millions of songs--plenty to keep any music lover busy. The extra sell is this: if you're a Prime member and a student, Amazon Music Unlimited is $6 for the first 6 months. Like Apple and Spotify, Amazon offers offline playback, which is great from the walk to campus, hitting the gym, or the drive home for Thanksgiving.
also has a student discount: $4.99/month for their regular streaming, or $9.99/month for high-fidelity streaming. I haven't tried Tidal, but I know it's essential if you want to be at the front of the line to listen to new music from stadium-packing artists like Beyoncé
. At that price, you could combine a Tidal subscription with one of the other streaming services and have the best of both worlds.
offers a student discount occasionally, but recommends you contact the venue directly if the discount option isn't showing up on their website. This is always worth a shot: plenty of venues offer discounts to students. If you don't mind waiting until the last second, you might even be able to snag discounted rush tickets, tickets that venues haven't been able to sell ahead of time.
If you're new on campus, keep your eyes peeled for free concerts and cheap show tickets. Often the student organizations that book talent have big enough budgets that they can bring huge artists to campus for events like orientation or homecoming without charging students anything.
If you're an aspiring musician or filmmaker (or both), Apple offers a bundle of apps for $199.99
, including Logic Pro X and MainStage 3, professional-grade audio production applications. Their interfaces are a little intimidating, but if you're already enrolled in media production classes, they're a step up from GarageBand
, which is also a great (and free!) application for Mac users.
Finally, check out the many computer and headphone discounts at Best Buy
. If you haven't invested in a solid pair of noise-canceling headphones, do you future finals-studying self a favor and purchase a pair. You'll thank me when every single ambient noise in the library is distracting you from writing that 10-page essay that's due tomorrow.