- The tuition fees for international students vary significantly in different parts of the world, and in some countries like Argentina and Germany, a few universities offer tuition-free studies.
- The living expenses also vary depending on the standard of living and the benefits that some countries offer for international students, such as Australia where student expenses exceed the amount of $14,493 per year.
- International students can find cheap accommodation options at around $150 per month in some universities that offer student housing or free accommodation in countries that offer options of staying with host families.
Average Cost of Studying Abroad
Among all the countries in the world that welcome international students for studying abroad, the lifestyle, living expenses, university costs are what make the difference between them. Some of the most popular study abroad destinations offer affordable or no tuition fees, affordable living standards, or a great education system.
This is the average cost of studying abroad in some popular countries:
- Getting an online degree abroad is cheaper and more convenient with tuition fees of a maximum of $2,250.
- The United States tops the most popular study abroad destinations with nearly 1 million international students, followed by the UK with 605,130 international students.
- Russia and Argentina have low living costs for international students, ranging from $2,500 to $4,000 per year.
- Australia is considered one of the most expensive countries to live in for international students, with living costs ranging from $14,290 to $19,288 for a year.
- On the other hand, India is one of the cheapest countries to study abroad in with living expenses being around $3,200 - $4,000 per year.
- The United States and Australia are home to universities with the highest tuition costs ranging from $32,000 to $60,000 per year, closely followed by Ireland with university costs up to $45,000 per year.
- Spain is known for having low tuition fees for international students, ranging from €700 to €1,200.
Studying Abroad Expenses
Studying abroad has proven to be more expensive than studying in one’s home country. The average international student has to think about budgeting for the entire academic year of studying abroad or duration of the program.
Here are the overall average expenses of studying abroad:
Tuition fees for international students are higher than for domestic students in the majority of the popular study abroad destinations.
- United States: $32,000 to $60,000 per year.
- China: $2,000 per year.
- Canada: $11,800 – $15,750 per year.
- Australia: $10,060 – $35,730 per year.
Textbooks and Supplies
Some countries include the student necessities in the amount of the tuition fee or charge extra fees for student needs such as textbooks and other study materials.
Here is what international students spend on average on textbooks and supplies:
- United States: $1,240 per year.
- China: $60 – $100 per year.
- Canada: $1,500 per year.
- Australia: $360 – $1,080 per year.
Rent and student housing can differ significantly depending on the study abroad destination. Here is the average monthly cost of apartment living in some of the most popular countries for international students:
- United States: $1,500 – $3,100 per month.
- China: $150 – $1,000 per month.
- Canada: $350 – $500 per month.
- Australia: $600 per month.
International students studying abroad usually spend the majority of their income on everyday expenses.
The average living cost in the most popular study abroad countries is as follows:
- United States: 10,000$ – 18,000$ per year.
- China: $5,500 – $10,000 per year.
- Canada: $11,800 – $15,750 per year.
- Australia: $14,290 to $19,288 per year.
Public transport is the main mode of transportation for international students studying abroad, therefore they usually buy a monthly ticket to get around easier. The average cost of transportation varies noticeably between countries with the highest number of international students.
Here’s the average cost of transportation in some of the most popular study abroad destinations:
- United States: $90 – $130 per month.
- China: $15 – $20 per month.
- Canada: $30 – $80 per month.
- Australia: $150 per month.
International students and nationalities that belong in the non-EU/EEA countries usually have to pay for visa fees that range from $80 up to $1,000 depending on the country and the nationality of the applicant.
- United States: F1 visa: $510 per application.
- China: X1 Visa for longer than 6 months, X2 for less;
- $130 for American citizens; $30 - $90 for other nationalities.
- Canada: Study permit: $120.
- Australia: $420.
Average Cost of Online Study Abroad Programs
In comparison to studying abroad in person, online studies are way more affordable and both easier to apply and get accepted. Considering the most popular study abroad destinations have a higher tuition fee for foreign students than domestic students, the option of online study abroad programs is more convenient and cheaper.
- The average cost of online education for summer programs ranges from $280 - $2,250.
- Salzburg College offers Virtual Study Abroad programs.
Student Loans to Study Abroad
Given that you are studying abroad for a semester or a year (at most), you can apply for a federal or private student loan. The type of loan you choose depends on many factors, such as the duration of your study abroad program, the type of university you are studying in, the country you plan to study at, and the tuition fees, plus living expenses.
Applying for a loan to study abroad may be a different procedure than the regular student loan application. To make sure which is the best option for you, it is best to consult with the university’s officials responsible for financial aid.
The international student loan can cover all or the majority of the following student costs:
- Tuition fees.
- Living expenses.
- Accommodation and food services.
- Health insurance.
- Travel expenses.
Studying abroad with loans can significantly lower the overall costs that come with studying in a foreign country.
Scholarships to Study Abroad
The majority of international students studying abroad in various countries in the world, opt to first find funding and scholarship options to fund their studies.
Here are some of the most popular study abroad scholarships in the world:
- Fund for Education Abroad: $1,250 – $10,000 depending on the duration of the program.
- Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program: $3,000 during summer; $4,000 per two semesters; $5,000 per academic year.
- CIEE Study Abroad Scholarships & Grants: up to $2,000 depending on the program duration.
- USAC Scholarships: award amount varies depending on the study program and course.
- The Intern Group Global Leadership Grants: award amount varies depending on the study program and course.
- CEA Study Abroad Scholarships: $400 - $1000 per summer; $500 - $3,000 depending on the duration of the program.
Popular Study Abroad Destinations
International students interested in studying abroad are constantly looking for the most affordable yet highest living and educational standard. Some of the most common study abroad options include the countries listed in the sections below, along with the number of international students, tuition fees, and funding options during studies.
Number of international students: 914,095.
The average cost of living for international students: $10,000 – $18,000 per year.
- The United States can be one of the most expensive countries in the world to study abroad in.
- The average college tuition can range from $32,000 to $60,000 per year.
- The tuition cost can vary depending on the major you choose, living circumstances, the location, and the type of university.
Here are some of the most expensive and cheapest public/private universities for international students at the undergraduate level:
|Affordable Universities||Expensive Universities|
|University||Annual Tuition Fee||University||Annual Tuition Fee|
|Sonoma State University||$9,500||Scripps College||$79,700|
|Arkansas State University||$5,400||Harvey Mudd College||$56,680|
|Southeast Missouri State University||$15,300||University of Chicago||$31,910 – $33,910|
|Bradley University||$35,900||University of Pennsylvania||$61,170|
|Ashland University||$23,000||Amherst College||$76,800|
|Bellevue College||$3,000-$11,880||Columbia University: School of General Studies||$58,440|
|Westcliff University||$13,550||Georgetown University||$59,784|
|Minnesota State University—Moorhead||$21,900||Brown University||$60,944|
|South Dakota State University||$25,550||John Hopkins University||$57,917|
|City University of New York||$18,600||Boston University||$59,050|
Third-party programs are great to simplify and speed up the process of applying and starting the study abroad experience. The fee you pay to the third-party program can cover the tuition and other university fees.
Below you can find the most popular third-party programs to study abroad in the US:
- University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC). It offers study abroad programs in more than 50 universities in US countries.
- International Studies Abroad (ISA). ISA offers study abroad programs in 26 fields throughout the US.
- Academic Programs International (API).
- American Institute for Foreign Study (AIFS). Through AIFS, students can receive financial assistance up to 50% of the total fees.
The United States holds a reputation for being an expensive country to live in, and international students should prioritize savings so that they can make a comfortable living. The average cost for a student living in the US ranges from $10,000 to $18,000 per year. The living expenses can vary depending on the city and the living conditions that surround you.
Here is a list of the everyday expenses for the average student living in the US.
|City||Accommodation||Groceries and Restaurants||Transportation||Other|
|New York||$2,200 – $3,100||$260||$130||$280|
|Boston||$1,900 – $2,600||$200||$90||$230|
|Chicago||$1,250 – $1,800||$150||$100||$270|
|San Francisco||$2,470 – $2,900||$250||$80||$250|
|Philadelphia||$1,120 – $1,700||$200||$97||$250|
|Los Angeles||$1,600 – $2,290||$220||$100||$260|
|Atlanta||$1,180 – $1,600||$190||$95||$270|
|Washington DC||$1,790 – $2,250||$220||$100||$250|
Number of international students: 605,130.
The average cost of living for international students: $17,000 per year.
- The tuition fees for international students studying in the UK range from $14,100 to $38,000 for undergraduate and graduate studies.
- There are 109,145 EU students enrolled in higher education studies in the UK.
- On the other hand, the number of Non-EU students enrolled in UK universities is 452,225.
Here are some of the universities with the highest number of international students and their tuition:
|University||Undergraduate Programs (USD) per year||Graduate Programs (USD) per year|
|University College London||$28,000||$10,500 - $36,000|
|King's College London||$26,000 - $59,000||$24,000 - $45,000|
|Coventry University||$17,000 - $18,000||$20,300 - $25,000|
|The University of Edinburgh||$28,275 - $37,000||$16,000 - $42,000|
|Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine||$38,000 - $55,500||$20,000 - $78,000|
|The University of Manchester||$24,500||$57,000|
|The University of Glasgow||$22,500 - $58,000||$8,800 - $31,600|
|University of the Arts, London||$28,900||$31,600 - $40,300|
|The University of Warwick||$27,300 - $55,500||$25,400 - $37,700|
Here are some of the most popular scholarships for international students in the UK:
- British Council Scholarships for Women in STEM
- Chevening Fellowships
- Cardiff India Scholarships
- Charles Wallace India Trust Scholarships
- Inlaks Scholarships
Most universities in the UK usually work with third-party providers to help students go through an easier application process. Third-party providers are independent and students use them to find suitable degree programs.
Here are some popular third-party programs in the UK:
- Arcadia University
- Butler University
- International Studies Abroad (ISA)
- The Study Abroad Foundation.
Aside from the study costs and fees, students who wish to study abroad in the UK should also get informed about the living arrangements and expenses. The living costs usually depend on the city, whether the university offers dormitories, the students' lifestyle, and many other factors.
Below you can find a list of some of the elementary monthly living expenses for international students in the UK:
|Accommodation||Student housing - $500 – $740.Apartment rent: $980 – $1,200.|
|Food and groceries||$50 - $120|
|Transportation||$15 – $20|
Number of international students: 492,185.
The average cost of living for international students: $5,500 – $10,000 per year.
As China is continuously focusing on investing economically in the education sector, the tuition fees and the living cost for international students can be affordable in comparison to other countries. University costs vary on the location, program, and level of education. However, the tuition fees can start from as low as $2,000 per year (at world-recognized universities).
Here is a list of some of the most affordable universities to study in China:
- Bohai University: $2,000 per year for undergraduate studies; $2,500 – $2,800 per year for graduate studies.
- Chengdu University: $2,200 – $3,300 per year for undergraduate studies; $2,800 for graduate studies.
- Wuhan University: $3,100 – $3,700 per year for undergraduate studies; $3,600 – $4,400 per year for graduate studies.
- Shenzhen University: $4,000 – $4,700 per year for undergraduate studies; $4,700 – $5,500 per year for graduate studies.
- Beijing Chinese Language and Culture College: $3,000 – $3,900 per year for undergraduate studies; $4,000 per year for graduate studies.
- Jinzhou Medical University: $2,800 – $5,900 per year for undergraduate studies; $4,700 – $5,000 per year for graduate studies.
- Asia Europe Business School: $11,300 per year for undergraduate studies; $16,500 per year for graduate studies.
University scholarships offer coverage of the tuition cost along with free accommodation and a monthly stipend for everyday living expenses.
Here are some scholarships that some universities offer in cooperation with the Chinese Government Scholarship or CSC Scholarships:
- CSC Scholarship in Tsinghua University
- CSC Scholarship in Zhejiang University
- CSC Scholarship in Peking University
- CSC Scholarship in Wuhan University
- CSC Scholarship in Xi’an Jiaotong University
- CSC Scholarship in Shandong University
Here is the average monthly cost of living in China:
|Accommodation||Student housing - $150 – $400 Apartment rent: $300 – $1000|
|Food and groceries||Home-cooking: $170 – $200Outings: $3 – $10 for a meal|
|Transportation||$15 – $20|
Number of international students: 416,437.
The average cost of living for international students: €11,208 per year.
- Considered as one of the most popular countries in Europe for studying abroad, numerous universities offer free tuition for international students.
- Germany holds a reputation for being an affordable study abroad destination with a monthly average of €930 in living expenses, depending on the city.
- Student fees per semester can range from €100 to €350 depending on the university location.
- Some public universities in Germany have no tuition fees for either international or domestic students, excluding extra administration and student fees per semester. Such as the Technical University of Munich, the University of the Mannheim University of Breme, the University of Cologne, and others.
Before making your final decision for studying abroad in Germany, it is important to learn about the opportunities available to fund your studies as well as any additional financial support you can receive.
Here are a few of the most common study abroad, exchange, or scholarship programs available for international students:
- Erasmus+. Erasmus offers up to 12 months of funding for your academic studies.
- German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). Can support your entire studies or only short-term courses.
- Congress - Bundestag Youth Exchange Program. It supports students during one year of study or internships depending on their objectives.
In terms of housing and accommodation payments, Germany holds opportunities for students to fund their stay or find accommodation through the following programs.
- CEA’s Berlin program
- IES Abroad’s semester in Freiburg
The cost of living in Germany differs depending on the city and lifestyle you choose.
Here are the differences in monthly living and additional costs between some of the most popular cities.
|Munich||€1,200||€300 - €400||€100||€265|
|Berlin||€800||€150 - €350||€120||€260|
|Frankfurt||€880||€200 - €360||€130||€270|
|Stuttgart||€850||€160 - €200||€150||€240|
|Cologne||€740||€150 - €180||€100||€250|
|Hamburg||€860||€140 - €150||€90||€230|
|Leipzig||€550||€130 - €150||€80||€220|
|Dortmund||€500||€130 - €140||€90||€290|
|Essen||€470||€130 - €140||€80||€200|
|Dusseldorf||€750||€140 - €150||€80||€230|
Number of international students: 388,782.
The average cost of living for international students: $11,800 – $15,750 per year.
- Compared to the US and other well-known international countries such as UK and Australia, Canada has more affordable studying abroad options.
- Canada can still be expensive depending on the origin and background of the prospective students.
- The average cost of tuition in Canada is USD 22,500 per year, depending on the field of study and level of education.
Here are a few universities according to the tuition fees per year for international students:
|University||Undergraduate Programs (USD)||Graduate Programs (USD)|
|Newfoundland and Labrador’s University||$10,200||$5,000|
|University of Manitoba||$16,775||$9,180|
|Concordia University||$18,000 – $21,300||$12,190|
|Ryerson University||$25,000 – $30,250||$23,840 – $21,000|
|University of New Brunswick||$22,900 – $25,600||$23,120|
The following are a few available scholarships for non-Canadians:
- Canada-ASEAN Scholarships and Educational Exchanges for Development (SEED) - for mid-career professionals.
- Canada-CARICOM Faculty Leadership Program.
- Canada-CARICOM Skills Training for the Green Economy Scholarships Program.
- Canada-China Scholars' Exchange Program.
- Emerging Leaders in the Americas Program.
- Study in Canada Scholarships.
Aside from scholarships, international students can also apply for student loans through the Canadian Student Financial Assistance Program (CSFAP) or private loans (banks).
How much will you spend on living expenses while studying abroad? Whether you are studying on a scholarship or supporting your own studies, it is important to know how to manage your budget and save money on living costs.
Below is a list of the average monthly expenses as an international student in Canada:
|Dormitories||$350 – $600 (USD 275 – 470)|
|Shared Apartments||$400 – $800 (USD 300 – 630)|
|Rentals||$300 – $500 (USD 230 – 400)|
|Transportation||Subway: $65 - $99 (USD 50 – 80)|
|Food and Groceries||$200 – $300 (USD 150 – 230)|
|Internet and Additional expenses||$600 – $700 (USD 470 – 550)|
|Healthcare Fee||$37.50 – $75 (USD 29 – 60)|
Number of international students: 370,000.
The average cost of living for international students: €9,600 – €10,000 per year.
After Germany, France also belongs to the list of the most favored countries in Europe for international students. The tuition fees are surprisingly similar between domestic and international students, and public universities are known for their affordable tuition costs. The average tuition fee for undergraduate studies in public institutions starts from €380 to €3,770 and around €230 for graduate studies.
Here are some of the cheapest universities for international students and the tuition fees per year:
|University of Strasbourg||€184||€256||€391|
|Université de Montpellier||€180 to €700||€180 to €700||€180 to €700|
|Université de Paris||€262||€335||€472|
France is one of the countries in Europe with numerous possibilities for international students to fund their studies if needed. The French government provides several scholarships, some of which are listed below:
- Eiffel Scholarship in France for international students.
- Eiffel Excellence Scholarships.
- Ile-de-France Masters Scholarships.
- École Normale Supérieure International Selection.
- Ampere Scholarships of Excellence at ENS de Lyon.
- Université de Lyon Masters Scholarships.
The living costs in France can be quite expensive in comparison to the neighboring countries. The good news is that both international and domestic students can benefit from the discounts in grocery shopping, restaurants, and other essential and entertainment services.
Here are some of the main living expenses and their average monthly cost:
|Rent/Accommodation||€600 – €1,000|
|Shared Rental Apartments||€400 – €600|
|Transportation||€30 – €80|
|Groceries/Food||€150 – €250|
|Restaurant/Drinks||€80 – €100|
|Utilities||€30 – €50|
Healthcare: The state health care costs around €210 for a year. However, you are covered if the following apply to you:
- You are under 28 by the beginning of the academic year you are applying for.
- You are enrolled in a program longer than 4 months.
- You come from a non-EU country.
Number of international students: 350,000.
The average cost of living for international students: USD 14,290 to 19,288 per year.
- The number of international students in Australia has decreased by 17% from the previous year with 685,236 international students.
- International students in Australia have proven to spend more money than is predicted by the government (USD 14,493 per year).
- Tuition fees for international students in Australia vary depending on the level of study (in USD below):
- Undergraduate studies. $14,290 – $32,147 per year.
- Graduate studies. $15,720– $35,730 per year.
- Postgraduate studies. $10,060 – $26,600 per year.
- Scholarships and grants available for international students in Australia:
- Australia Awards
- Destination Australia
- Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP)
- Australia APEC Women in Research Fellowship
- Provider scholarships
The predicted amount of yearly living expenses ($14,493) for international students include the following classification:
|Food and groceries||$360 – $715|
|Other expenses and entertainment||$215|
Number of international students: 334,500.
The average cost of living for international students: $3,000 to $4,000 per year.
Attending higher education institutions in Russia has proven to be quite affordable in comparison to other European countries. In addition, the government is committed to financially supporting international students during their studies.
- The typical tuition fee in Russian universities is around $3000 to $8000 per year, which usually includes accommodation, student fees, and study materials.
- The tuition fee for a Bachelor's degree in Russia can range from $3,430 to
$3,700 per year.
- Graduate programs for international students in Russia cost around $2,100 to $6,570 per year.
- International students usually pay up to $5,900 for postgraduate studies.
Russian government scholarships have been funding around 15,000 international students each year. The scholarships include student housing (if any), tuition fees (for the entire program), and small allowances.
Similar to most study abroad destinations, most popular Russian cities are usually more expensive and unaffordable for international students.
Here is the average monthly cost for international students in Russia:
|Accommodation||Dormitories: $6 – $66.Rented apartments: $205 – $570|
|Food and Groceries||$105 – $132 in cheaper cities. $200 – $265 in bigger cities (Moscow, St Petersburg, Kazan, Vladivostok)|
|Utilities||$80 – $100|
|Entertainment/Other Expenses||$130 – $265|
Number of international students: 250,000.
The average cost of living for international students: $15,000 per year.
In comparison to popular European and American cities for international students, Turkey offers low tuition fees and quality education along with an affordable living cost. Spending money on Turkey is mostly done in cash, and most daily activities offer student discounts.
- During the last year, the Turkish currency rate “TRY” has fallen, hence becoming a great advantage for both Americans and Europeans studying in Turkey.
- The average cost of tuition in Turkey ranges from $3,000 – $19,000 per year, depending on the type of university.
Here are some of the most affordable universities in Turkey for international students:
- Kadir Has University: $12,000 per year for all education levels.
- Izmir Institute of Technology: $4,000 to $15,000 for two semesters.
- Middle East Technical University: $220 to $370 per semester.
- Uskudar University: $3,200 per year.
- Cankaya University: $4,430 per year.
- Yasar University: $6,500 per year.
- Bogazici University: $1,500 per year.
- Sabanci University: $15,000 per year.
- Universities such as Cankaya University, Koc University, Hacettepe University, Sabanci University, and similar others offer various scholarships for international students.
- USAC and SU Abroad cover accommodation and other living arrangements for international students.
The average monthly living costs in Turkey can range from $350 to $450.
Here’s a more detailed description of the living costs per month for international students in Turkey:
|Dormitories||$30 – $300|
|Shared Accommodation||$200 – $500|
|Health Insurance||$30 – $100 per year (if not purchased in the home country)|
|Food and Groceries||$1,100 – $1,130|
|Other Expenses||$50– $100|
Number of international students: 208,901.
The average cost of living for international students: $10,800 per year.
Japan is known for being one of the most developed countries in the world, including the education system. Therefore, the tuition fees and the living costs can be expected to be high. The average tuition fee in Japanese universities ranges from $12,000 to $18,000 per year, varying depending on factors such as university type, or whether they offer student accommodation.
Here are some affordable universities in Japan for international students and the yearly tuition fees:
|University||Tuition fee (USD)|
Some of the best scholarships for studying abroad in Japan are listed below:
- The Bridging Scholarship: $2,500 per semester; $4,500 per year.
- Tanaka + Green Scholarship: $4,000 per semester; $5,000 per academic year.
- Freeman-ASIA Award from the Freeman Foundation: $3,000 per semester; $7,000 per academic year.
- Fund for Education Abroad Foundation for Global Scholars Scholarship: $1,250 per semester; $10,000 per academic year.
- TEAN Scholarships from The Education Abroad Network: $250 periodically for the entire academic program.
- Japan Foundation Fellowship Program: the amount varies depending on the program, however, it is an annual award.
You can find the average monthly expenses listed below:
|Food and Groceries||$70 – $100|
|Utilities||$60 – $70|
|Transportation||$40 – $50|
Number of international students: 208,366.
The average cost of living for international students: €8,000 – €9,000.
Everyday life in Spain can be affordable if you are conscious of your spending habits and manage your finances wisely. More popular cities such as Madrid and Barcelona can be quite expensive for the average student income. Spain is considered a cheap location for students with Bachelor's degrees ranging from €700 to €1,200 and Master’s from €1,000 to €3,500.
Find everything you need to know about annual university costs and tuition fees below:
|Universidad de Granada||€758||€821||Granada, Melilla, Ceuta|
|Universidad de Alicante||€831||€897||Sant Vicent del Raspeig, Alicante|
|Universitat Rovira i Virgili||€1,060||€1,730||Tarragona, Reus, Catalunya, Vila-Seca, Sescelades, Bellissens|
|Universidad Complutense Madrid||€1,280||€1,455||Madrid|
|Universidad Carlos III Madrid||€1,420||€1,500||Getafe, Leganes, Madrid-Puerta de Toledo, Colmenarejo|
Here are some universities in Spain offering scholarships to international students:
- Barcelona School of Economics (BSE)
- University of Granada
- University of Salamanca
- Universidad de Sevilla
- University of Barcelona - CETT
- University of Alicante
You should focus on housing since it can be one of the largest expenses in your experience as a study abroad student — the rest of the expenses can be avoided if you’re careful. The average monthly cost should be around €900 – €1,000.
Useful tips on saving money before you start your studies in Spain:
- Discounts. Cultural activities such as cinemas, museums, and similar activities usually include student discounts.
- Outings. Spain restaurants do not usually practice the culture of tipping so you can be able to find affordable eating and drinking options. Clubs do not usually open until midnight.
- Food. Restaurants that serve mainly traditional food are cheaper than the rest.
- Shopping and getting around. Valencia and Seville are two cheap options to shop at a low cost. You have easy access to transportation which is also very convenient and cheap.
Below you can see the monthly average cost of the living expenses as an international student in Spain:
|Accommodation||Residence Halls: €350 – €1,000. Shared Rental Apartments: €330 – €350. Studio Apartments: €650. Host Families: €1,000.|
|Food and groceries||€70 – €200|
|Transportation||€20 – €50|
Number of international students: 176,500.
The average cost of living for international students: €7,000 to €12,000 per year.
Ireland is known for being the 13th most expensive study abroad destination in the world. Aside from the living expenses that can easily exceed your expectations, studying abroad in Ireland is also costly with tuition fees ranging from €9,000 – €45,000 per year in Bachelor programs and €9,150 – €37,000 per year in Master programs. Additionally, most universities require international students to pay extra student fees at around €2,500 per year.
Here are some of the best universities in Ireland for international students and the tuition fees per year:
- University College Cork: €16,400 – €49,900.
- Cork Institute of Technology: €12,000 for all education levels.
- Trinity College Dublin: €6,850 – €37,600 for undergraduate studies and €4,970 – €35,800 and €10,000– €29,000 for graduate studies.
- University College Dublin: €16,800 – €54,630 for undergraduate studies and €16,800 – €26,400 for graduate studies.
- National University of Ireland, Galway: €16,800 – €24,140 for undergraduate studies and €14,750 – €17,440 for graduate studies.
Below you can find scholarships available for international students, offered by the Irish government or private providers:
- The Government of Ireland International Education Scholarship
- The Walsh Fellowship
- Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship 2020
- FDC Group Scholarships for EU Students at University College Cork in Ireland, 2020
- IAA Geoffrey O’Byrne White Memorial funding for International Students in Ireland
- Full MSc Food Security Policy and Management Scholarships in Ireland
- Global Business Program funding for Non-EU Students at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
- National College of Ireland International Higher Diploma Scholarship, 2020
Depending on the city, the average cost of living in Ireland for international students can range from €2,500 to €2,700 per month.
Here is a list of some of the monthly expenses for living in Ireland:
|Food and Groceries||€250 – €350|
|Other Expenses||€60 – €100|
Number of international students: 150,643.
The average cost of living for international students: €7,200 – €10,000.
Denmark is an expensive study abroad destination, however, the lifestyle and living standard make up for most of it. Most universities offer free tuition for EU/EEA, Switzerland citizens, but fees for international students can vary depending on the university location and other factors such as courses, level, and duration of the study.
- The average tuition fee for international students is around €8,000 to €16,000 per year.
- The best universities (within that cost range) to study abroad in Denmark include Aalborg University, Aarhus University, Technical University of Denmark, University of Copenhagen, University of Southern Denmark.
- State Educational Grant and Loan Scheme (SU) are agencies that help to support international students in the financial struggle while finishing their studies in Denmark.
- Other scholarships for international students include the Danish Government Scholarships under the Cultural Agreements, Danish government scholarships.
- The monthly living cost for the average student in Denmark ranges from €750 to €900. In Copenhagen (as the capital) the living expenses can cost up to €1,500 per month.
Here is a detailed list of the monthly expenses for the average study abroad student in Denmark:
|Accommodation||Student housing: €250 – €450 Rent: €300 – €500 in small cities and up to €800 in Copenhagen.|
|Food and Groceries||€200 – €270|
|Public Transport*||€50 per month|
|Utilities||€20 – €30 (usually included in the rent)|
|Other expenses||€200 – €260|
Number of international students: 80,000.
The average cost of living for international students: €10,000 to €11,000 per year.
Whether studying on a scholarship or working while studying, half of the students’ income will go to the accommodation cost in the Netherlands. Additionally, tuition fees can be costly for foreigners, the average cost ranging from €10,000 to €19,000 per year.
- Eindhoven University of Technology is one of the top universities with program tuition fees reaching €13,000 per year.
- Utrecht University cost around €10,000 to €13,000 per year for undergraduate non-EU students, and €6,000 to €20,000 for graduate students.
Some other low tuition universities in the Netherlands include the below mentioned:
- Delft University of Technology: €17,000 – €19,000 per year (all levels).
- University of Groningen: €9,000 – €17,000 per year (all levels).
- University of Amsterdam: €8,100 – €14,100 per year (all levels).
- University of Twente: €9,000 – €16,000 per year (all levels).
- Wageningen University and Research: €16,000 – €19,000 per year (all levels).
Almost 84% of students studying in the Netherlands receive a scholarship, loan, or a type of grant, and sometimes all three.
- The two most popular government scholarship programs are the Netherland Fellowship Programme and the Erasmus Mundus Scholarships.
- Collegegeldkredie is a monthly loan option for EU students to finance their complete studies, and upon completion, the loan receivers have up to 15 years to repay.
Here is the average monthly cost of living as an international student in the Netherlands:
|Accommodation||Rent: €600 – €1000. Student housing: €340 – €550. Shared apartments: €350 – €700.|
|Food and groceries||€170|
|Transportation||€35 – €40|
|Other expenses||€50 – €100|
United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Number of international students: 65,447.
The average cost of living for international students: $5,850 to $11,700 per year.
Studying abroad in the United Arab Emirates is around 14% cheaper than in the US. The tuition fees in UAE universities for international students start from $10,209 to $19,000 per year.
- Getting a student visa for studying in UAE costs around $816.
- Tuition fees for postgraduate studies range from $14,970 – $20,420.
Here are different types of UAE scholarship and funding options for international students:
|Government Scholarships||College Scholarships||Other Dubai Scholarships|
|The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships.||The Marie Wright Scholarship for Non-Traditional Locations.||Financial Hardship Scholarship 2021.|
|The David L. Boren Scholarships.||The American University in Dubai.||Outstanding Academic Excellence Scholarships.|
|The Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Fellowships.||HH Sheikh Hamdan Scholarships.|
|William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Scholarships.||The Indian High School Dubai Scholarships.|
The monthly living expenses range from $650 to $1,300.
Here is an average of how much an international student spends per month while studying abroad in UAE.
|Accommodation||On-campus housing - USD $1,633. Rent - USD $860 – $2,450.|
|Food||Groceries: USD $50 – $80. Restaurant: USD $8 – $10 per person (one meal).|
Here is the average living cost per month In the top cities of United Arab Emirates:
- Ajman: $2,230
- Dubai: $2,750
- Abu Dhabi: $2,500
Number of international students: 50,000.
The average cost of living for international students: $2,500 to $4,500 per year.
Public higher education in Argentina is tuition-free for international students, whereas private universities' tuition costs for international students range from $3,000 to $20,000 per year for undergraduate and graduate studies. Ph.D. studies cost around $2,300 to $27,000 per year.
Some of the most popular universities in Argentina:
- University of Buenos Aires: free tuition.
- Universidad Nacional de la Plata: free tuition.
- Universidad Nacional de Cuyo: free tuition.
- Universidad Nacional de Quilmes: free tuition.
- Universidad Nacional de General San Martín: free tuition.
- Universidad Tecnológica Nacional – Facultad Regional Córdoba: From $50.
- Universidad del Cema: From $3,000.
- Universidad Católica de Córdoba: From $5,000.
- Universidad de San Andres: From $8,000.
- Torcuato Di Tella University: From $13,400.
Here are some funding opportunities for international students:
|Scholarship||Average Amount Awarded (USD)||Eligibility|
|Organization of American States (OAS) Scholarship Program||$10,000 per one to two years.||Current undergraduate student.|
|Organization of American States (OAS) Scholarship – Graduate Studies or Research||$10,000||Current graduate or postgraduate student.|
|In-Region Scholarship at the National University of San Juan in Argentina||Depending on the program.||Current graduate or postgraduate student.|
|University of Buenos Aires (UBA) International Scholarships||Depending on the program.||Current graduate or postgraduate student.|
|Kleinhans Fellowship for Community Forestry Research||$20,000 per one to two years.||Current graduate or postgraduate student.|
Monthly living costs for international students:
|Accommodation||Rent: $50 – $75.Host families: $45.Student dormitory: $25 – $35.|
|Food and Groceries||$195|
|Outings||$7–$10 per meal; $2- $5 per drink|
Number of international students: 49,348.
The average cost of living for international students: $3,200 - $4,000 per year.
The average tuition fees in India range from $3,300 to $7,800 including undergraduate and graduate studies. Getting a Ph.D. in India is free of charge, and the student gets a minimum stipend of $340 per month. The average monthly living cost for international students in India is around $2,600.
Here are some of the most affordable universities in India for international students:
|University||Average Tuition Fee per year (USD)|
|Jamia Islamia University||$600|
|Jawaharlal Nehru University||$750|
|National Institute of Technology, Delhi||$3,500|
The Indian government offers financial support for international students who can prove monetary need, but only after three years of studying in the country.
- The Study in India Scholarship is one of the most popular funding options available for international students, and it includes monthly payments for living expenses. The scholarship provides free tuition for up to five years.
- The Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) also awards numerous scholarships for international students depending on the study level.
Life in India is increasingly becoming more expensive, however, international students can still afford to live a comfortable life while studying.
Here are some average monthly costs of living in India:
|Accommodation||$450 in rent; $66 – $132 In-campus|
|Food and Outings||$108 – $250|
Number of international students: 45,000.
The average cost of living for international students: $6,400 per year.
Life as an international student in Mexico is very affordable compared to popular study abroad destinations in Europe and United States.
- The average cost of university tuition ranges from $4,000 to $6,500 per year at the undergraduate level in public institutions.
- Private universities usually charge around $1,636 to $16,353 per year.
- The cost of living as a study abroad student in Mexico can range between $150 - $200 per month.
- Affordable universities for international students:
Metropolitan Autonomous University (UAM) - $400 - $1,000 per year.
Autonomous University of Nuevo León (UANL) - $400 - $1,000 per year.
University of Guadalajara (UdeG) - $800 - $1,000 per year.
Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) - $5,000 per year.
Ibero-American University (IBERO) - $5,000 per year.
University of Monterrey (UDEM) - $8,500 - $14,000 per year.
Study abroad programs:
- The International Studies Abroad offers scholarships as the connection between the host university and the student.
- Dr. Carlos E. Castañeda Memorial Scholarships awards scholarships of excellence starting from $1,000 in summer tuition; $2,500 for an academic year.
- International Educational Exchange (CIEE) offers the GAIN Scholarships to study abroad in Mexico with the amount ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.
The average monthly expenses for studying abroad in Mexico:
|Accommodation||$80 to $200 depending on the city|
|Utilities||$80 to $150|
|Transportation||$50 for gas (if car owner); $2 bus fares|
|Food and Groceries||$150 – $200|
|Outings||$100 per meal|
Number of international students: 32,000.
The average cost of living for international students: €9,000 – €13,000 per year.
As one of the favorite European countries for tourists, Italy is also in the top five study abroad destinations for international students. Benefits of studying abroad in Italy include the affordable tuition fees, a plethora of programs taught in English and it has one of the best higher education systems. The average cost of tuition for international students in Italian universities ranges from €500 – €4,000 per year.
Below you can find some universities in Italy that offer programs for international students and their tuition fees per year:
- Ca’ Foscari University of Venice: €700 – €2,100.
- IULM Milan: €3,600 – €13.000.
- Politecnico di Milano: €3,800.
- Sapienza University of Rome: €500 – €1,000.
- Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore: €3,600 – €8,700.
- University of Padua: €2,500 – €2,900.
- University of Pavia: €0 – €4,463.
Most tuition fees in Italian universities vary depending on the family or independent income of the prospective students. The average tuition fee is considered cheaper than other European countries and they offer tuition waivers or scholarships offered by the government (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) or independent university scholarships.
Here are some of the most popular scholarships for international students:
- Italian government scholarships for international students. This scholarship is available for all higher education levels and can last from three to nine months, depending on the students’ needs.
- The following universities offer scholarships for international students (from €5,000 up to €12,000 per year):
- Bologna University
- University of Padova
- Politecnico di Milano
- Bocconi University
The average living cost for international students studying abroad in Italy can range from €1,000 to €1,500 per month. However, it depends on the city you are planning to study in — touristic cities such as Rome, Milan, Venice can be expensive for students— and on your budgeting plans. This average includes accommodation/rent, food, outings, and other essential expenses.
Below you can find the average monthly cost for the expenses mentioned above:
|Rome||€350 – €500||€150 – €200||€30 – €35|
|Milan||€300 – €500||€150 – €180||€35 – €40|
|Venice||€200 – €250||€180 – €200||€35 – €40|
|Pisa||€200 – €400||€160 – €180||€30 – €35|
|Bologna||€300 – €400||€160 – €180||€36 – €40|
Number of international students: 27,329.
The average cost of living for international students: €6,300 – €11,000.
International students living in Sweden usually find it an expensive destination, however, with smart budgeting, the majority of students make a comfortable living. The tuition fees for non-EU/EEA students range from €7,500 to €25,500, in comparison to EU/EEA, Nordic, and Switzerland citizens who are exempt from paying tuition fees.
The average cost of university tuition in Sweden by education level and field of study ranges from €12,100 per year for undergraduate students to €20,650 – €27,670 per year for postgraduate education.
Here are some of the most popular courses to study abroad in Sweden and their cost:
|Social Science and Humanities||€7,500 – €10,320 per year|
|Technical and Natural Sciences||€11,260 – €13,600 per year|
|Architecture and Design||€17,820 – €27,680 per year|
- International students usually spend €70 on a monthly average to buy their textbooks and other study materials.
- The average cost of living in Sweden ranges from €750 to €1,250 per month with more expensive fees in popular cities such as Gothenburg and Stockholm.
- The average monthly rent in Sweden can range from €250 to €600.
Here are the monthly expenses for the average international student living in Sweden:
- Food/Groceries: €190.
- Accommodation: €400.
- Transportation: €50.
- Personal Bills: €30
- Other expenses: €145.
Note: Mecenat and Studentkortet are national student cards for deals and discounts on and off-campus.
Number of international students: 20,000.
The average cost of living for international students: €6,000 – €10,000 per year.
As part of the Nordic countries, Finland is known for its high living and education costs compared to other European countries. However, there are discounts and scholarship opportunities for international students to finish their studies in Finland.
- The monthly living expenses in Finland can range from €700 - €1,000.
- The tuition fees are around €10,000 to €16,000 per year depending on the level of study and the university’s reputation.
- Tuition fees of some of the top-ranked universities such as Tampere University, University of Oulu, University of Helsinki, and Aalto University range from €10,000 to €15,000 per year.
- Specific university scholarships for international students include the two most popular: the University of Helsinki scholarships program and the University of Oulu Scholarship Foundation.
The average monthly living expenses including accommodation and entertainment are listed below:
|Accommodation||Student housing: €320; Rent: €650 – €1,100.|
|Food and Groceries||€200 – €250|
|Utilities||€20 – €25|
|Health Insurance||€200 – €300|
|Student Residence Permit||€350|
|Entertainment and Other Expenses||€100 – €150|
Number of international students: Over 20,000.
The average cost of living for international students: $18,900 per year.
International students do not have to pay tuition fees for public institutions in Brazil. Private universities on the other hand can vary drastically since each university has different tuition fees. It can range from $1,800 to $10,000.
- Bachelor’s degrees in private universities can cost around $1,980 to $7,900 per year.
- Tuition fees for master’s degrees in private universities range from $2,000 to $10,000.
- Getting a Ph.D. in private universities ranges from $370 to $640 per month.
Some scholarships for international students studying in Brazil:
- Visiting Scholarships at Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC)
- 400+ OAS-GCUB Scholarship Program
- PAEC OAS Scholarships in Brazil
- 2018 TWAS-CNPq Postdoctoral Fellowship in Brazil
- University of Sao Paulo Postdoctoral Fellowships in Brazil
- ITS Fellowship Program for International Students in Brazil
- UNICAMP, Postdoctoral Position in Biochemistry in Brazil
Average monthly living expenses in Brazil include:
- Rent: $194 – $400.
- Food and groceries: $131.
- Transportation: $41
- Utilities: $70.
- Other expenses: $50 – $100.
Number of international students: 19,191.
The average cost of living for international students: $15,000 to $18,000 per year.
The tuition fees for undergraduate students range from $14,900 to $21,700. Programs such as medicine and science charge higher tuition fees.
- Undergraduate tuition fees: $14,900 to $21,700.
- Postgraduate tuition fees: $17,660 to $25,100.
- Students who are enrolled in public institutions for more than two years can work 20 hours per week while studying (full-time jobs are available during university holidays).
- The StudentCard offers students discount on any on and off-campus activities during their studies.
- Government-funded scholarships:
- Fulbright New Zealand US Graduate Awards.
- New Zealand Foreign Affairs and Trade Scholarships.
- New Zealand International Doctoral Research Scholarships.
- University scholarships:
- Auckland University of Technology (AUT). Awards undergraduates with scholarships to study for free.
- University of Auckland International Student Scholarships. Offers scholarships of excellence in the amount of $6,630 for the tuition fees.
- Lincoln University. Awards the International Taught Master Merit Scholarships in the amount of $6,630 in tuition grants.
- Massey University Doctoral Scholarship.
- Victoria University of Wellington. Offers Ph.D. candidates an average of $17,900 stipend per year.
The average monthly living costs in New Zealand include the following:
Accommodation: $200 – $300.
Food and Groceries: $100 – $150
Public Transportation: $50 – $55.
Entertainment and Other Expenses: $50.
Number of international students: 13,533.
The average cost of living for international students: €12,200 – €15,000 per year.
Norway is one of the most expensive countries in Northern Europe, and as such, it makes it a not so common study abroad destination for foreign students. Most public higher education institutions in Norway offer free tuition programs, however, the living expenses can still be costly, ranging from €700 to €900 per month.
Here are some of the best universities for international students:
- University of Bergen (UiB)
- UiT The Arctic University of Norway (UiT)
- University of Oslo (UiO)
- Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)
- Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)
- University of South-Eastern Norway (USN)
- University of Stavanger (UiS)
- University of Agder (UiA)
Here are some scholarships and grants offered by the Norwegian government:
- American Scandinavian Foundation
- Exchange Iceland-Norway
- Fulbright- Grants for US students and Scholars
- Government of Canada International Scholarship Programs
- Lakselaget Foundation Scholarship
- Mobility grants for Norwegian Language, Literature and Culture
- Nordic Research Opportunity Norway-America Association
Here are some of the basic living costs per month in Norway:
- Accommodation: €300 – €700.
- Food and Groceries: €250 – €400; and €20 to €70 for a meal in a restaurant depending on the rating.
- Transportation: €50 – €70 on public transport and bike rentals from €10 – €20 per day.
- Other Expenses: €50 – €100.
Note: The majority of public universities in Norway offer students the opportunity to work 20 hours per week while studying.
The average cost of living for international students: $6,000 – $10,000 per year.
The cost of studying abroad in Uruguay can differ drastically depending on the university’s tuition fee, location, and student lifestyle. The tuition cost for bachelor programs is around $2,000 to $6,000 per semester for international students. The average monthly expenses for a person in Uruguay are around $600, excluding tuition fees.
Here are some of the most affordable universities for international students:
|University||Undergraduate Tuition Fees (USD)||Graduate Tuition Fees (USD)|
|Instituto Universitario Francisco de Asís||$1,280 per year.||$1,280 per year.|
|Politecnico de Punta del Este||$2,940 – $6,140 per year.||$2,940 – $6,150 per year.|
|Universidad de la República||$2,940 – $6,140 per year.||$2,940 – $6,140 per year.|
|Catholic University of Uruguay||$4,400 per year.||$3,380 per year.|
|Universidad de la Empresa||$5,830 per year.||$5,830 per year.|
|Universidad ORT Uruguay||$6,600 – $11,800 per year.||$5,320 per year.|
|University of Montevideo||$10,920 per year.||$10,920 per year.|
Scholarship opportunities for international students:
- Carlos Quijano Scholarship (for graduate studies).
- Solidarity Fund.
- Julio Castro Scholarships.
- Scholarships by Uruguayan Higher Education Institutions.
Average monthlyexpenses for an international student in Uruguay:
- Accommodation: $355 – $445.
- Food and groceries: $360 – $400.
- Utilities: $115.
- Transportation: $40.
Comparing Europe and Asia: A Case Study
Overall, the study abroad experience in European countries has proven to be more expensive since it is home to some of the most popular universities in the world. Most European universities do not offer free tuition for international students, however, their tuition fees are slightly more affordable than in Asian countries, depending on the educational level.
- India offers free Ph.D. tuition for international students, along with a monthly stipend of around $340.
- Italy is also an affordable study abroad destination, and the scholarship offers to cover up to €12,000 per year.
- The average living expenses for international students in the United Arab Emirates can cost up to $11,700 per year. In comparison, as one of the most popular study abroad destinations in Europe, Spain costs around €8,000 per year in living expenses.
- A student visa for the United Arab Emirates costs around $816.
- Tuition fees in Japan range from $12,000 to $18,000, whereas in Ireland they cost around €9,000 – €45,000, and they charge international students extra student fees (€2,500 per year).
- On the other hand, the living costs in Japan are around $10,800 per year, and in Ireland, students can live comfortably from €7,000 to €8,000 per year.
- Since Turkey has universities located in both the European and Asian regions, the tuition fees can range from $3,000 – $19,000 per year, being cheaper in the Middle East region.
Comparing the US and UK: A Case Study
The equally ranked universities in UK and US differ significantly in tuition fees, with the UK charging more affordable fees for international students.
- Tuition fees in the US range from $32,000 to $60,000 per year, and in the UK the average tuition cost is $14,300.
- The average monthly living expenses in the UK range from $1,300- $1,600, whereas in the US they can reach up to $3,000 per month. What makes this comparison stand out is that international students usually stay up to 9 months in the US, whereas in the UK they stay for the whole calendar year (12 months).
- The accommodation costs in the US range from $1,600 to $3,000 per month, whereas in the UK the average rent is around $850– $1000 per month.
Analysis: Is Budgeting Possible While Studying Abroad?
Saving to continue higher education studies is always a good idea. Studying abroad can be more expensive than studying in your home country, however, it is possible to complete your studies within a budget.
- Student discounts. The majority of countries offer student discounts on daily expenses such as supermarkets, grocery stores, cinemas, restaurants, shopping malls, and other entertainment and essential services.
- Monthly tickets. Services such as public transportation, food courts in-campus, and off-campus, offer a monthly subscription for both domestic and international students.
- Tours. Museums and other cultural attractions usually offer student discounts for all educational levels. In most countries, the student card can even be used to enter for free.
- Outings. Student bars and restaurants are usually close to the campus, and usually cheaper than in the city center.
Analysis: Do Online Study Abroad Programs Measure Up?
Traveling to another country for study abroad purposes can prove to be costly and unaffordable for some nationalities. Virtual higher education courses include the benefits of cheaper studies, flexible schedules, and easy access.
- After COVID-19, there was an increase of 45% in the number of international students interested in online degrees.
- During a survey conducted by UK universities, 65% of international students claimed they would rather get a degree online since they could also work in the meantime.
- During online learning, there is the option of pre-recorded lectures which results in a high-quality learning experience.
- In the last two years, more than 95% of universities in the world have moved to online learning mode almost completely.
- 50% of worldwide professors have supported online learning.
Analysis: Is Studying Abroad Worth It?
Almost all countries worldwide have continuously been upgrading their education system and making it as attractive as possible for international students to apply. In the last ten years, there has been an increase in the number of higher education enrollment from all nationalities. As such, the importance of studying abroad has increased alongside.
What makes studying abroad a worthwhile experience?
- Learn about new cultures. While studying abroad in any country for the first time, students incorporate new cultures in their everyday lives, learn new languages and understand the lifestyle and living standards of other nationalities.
- Start a career. Developing countries are constantly encouraging the youth to get educated and contribute to the society and the economic state of the country.
- Expand your network. The benefits of networking with other international students include new job opportunities, internships, future partnerships, and socializing.
- Increase employability chances. Recent studies have shown that around 80% of international students claimed that the job interviews resulted more successful after studying abroad.
Disclaimer: This article does not exclude any country as an adequate study abroad destination. However, it refers to some of the most popular study abroad destinations to draw a conclusion on how much studying abroad can cost.