Learn about saving for college

Start with a goal

You don’t have to try to save the full amount all at once. Start now, figure out your goal, and you can help your student borrow less in the future.

How to save for college

Compare ways to save

You have choices, ranging from basic savings accounts to tax-advantaged college savings plans. See what each has to offer and what's right for you.

Compare college savings plans

Build your own custom savings plan with the College Planning CalculatorSM

Explore your college savings options


Money market accounts

Certificates of deposit

Cash back for college programs

529 plan accounts

Boost your savings

Make a plan to pay for college

Create a personalized plan with the College Planning CalculatorSM.

Build your plan for college

Save for your next big purchase

SmartyPig® is a free online savings account that can help you save for a car, vacation, or whatever's next.

Learn more about SmartyPig

I opened a GoalSaver Account a month or so ago... Right now, I have a college tuition goal for each of my daughters.

- Andrea M.

How American families save for college

use a 529 plan account

use a general savings account

use an investment account

use a certificate of deposit

Source: How America Saves for College 2016, by Sallie Mae and Ipsos. Responses may include more than one method; does not total 100%.