International Students’ Cost of Studying in the UK: Tuition, Living Expenses, and Other Expenses

Numerous international students consider the United Kingdom to be their ideal study destination because of the country’s outstanding academic reputation and vibrant student community. Although there is no question about the quality of education, one aspect that is particularly concerning is the cost of studying in the UK for International students.


Let’s face it: studying in the UK can be expensive, which is why it frequently ranks among the top five most expensive study abroad locations. If you look on the plus side, the majority of courses in the UK have a very short duration, which lowers the overall cost.


With prices for home students (UK/EU) having climbed to eye-watering levels recently, UK tuition fees are usually a cause of debate. We will give you a thorough overview of the cost of studying in the UK for international students in this post to help you budget and manage your finances. You can additionally check for How to Apply for a UK Student Visa.



An Overview of the Cost of Studying in the UK for International Students

Private and public universities in the UK charge between £4,180 to £29,259 a year as an approximate cost of attendance. Additionally, you will be required to pay a variety of fees and levies while studying in the UK as an international student. Therefore, it becomes essential to carefully organize your budget. In detail, let’s briefly discuss the cost of studying in the UK in 3 various parts such as:

  • Cost of Education in the UK
  • Living Expenses in the UK
  • Other Essential Expenses in the UK


The Cost of Education in the UK 

The largest living expense for international students in the UK is their tuition. It may differ significantly depending on the university, the location, and the course you select.

Compared to the tuition costs for degrees in the arts and social sciences, the UK charges international students more for MBAs and medical degrees. See the following table to understand the typical tuition costs in the UK for various degree levels:

Degree Type Average Annual Tuition Fee in the UK
Bachelors £10,000 – £38,000
Masters £11,000 – £30,000
PhD Up to £18,000

Additionally, the cost of UK study programs varies greatly amongst universities. Here is a brief overview of the typical tuition costs at some of the best UK universities:

University Average Annual Tuition Fees
University of Oxford £28,950 – £44,240
University of Cambridge £23,340- £60,942
Imperial College London £32,000- £46,650
University College London £22,200- £34,000
London School of Economics and Political Science £23,330- £35,000

Student’s cost of living in the UK

Living costs make up a significant portion of the overall cost of studying in the UK from abroad. Paying for housing, food, transportation, household bills, shopping, and other leisure activities are all examples of living expenses. In the UK, the average monthly cost of living is between £1100 and £1300.

Similar to tuition costs at UK colleges, living costs might differ depending on an international student’s lifestyle, housing preferences, etc. For instance, rent is more expensive in cities like London or Brighton than it is in Aberdeen or Manchester.

See also  Top Tuition Free Universities in the World
Factors Average Monthly Cost
Accommodation £400- £700
Food & Groceries £100 – £200
Transportation £30- £40
Household Bills £40 – £50
Entertainment £40- £50
Miscellaneous £200

Other Basic Costs in the UK

Students are curious about the cost of studying in the UK, excluding tuition. They must also spend money on other things while studying in the UK. Let’s explore them!

Fees for student visas

Depending on the sort of visa you apply for, your UK student visa cost may differ. Look at the many visa categories and associated application costs that are available to international students.

Visa Type Application Fee
Short-term study student visa  £97 for 6 months;  £186 for 11 months
Tier 4 student visa (General)  £348
Tier 4 student visa (Child)  £348

Immigration Health Surcharge

Through the National Health Service, the UK is renowned for having one of the top healthcare systems in the world (NHS). Along with your visa fee, you must pay a health insurance fee if you are an international student. As an international student, you must pay about £470 a year to have access to the NHS. At NHS health centres, students will have access to free medical care as well as discounted dental care.

Other associated living costs in the UK as a student

  • A meal in a bar or restaurant can cost around £12, and your weekly food buy will probably cost you around £30.
  • You should budget at least £30 each month for books and other course materials, depending on your course.
  • Your monthly mobile phone cost is probably going to be at least £15.
  • Monthly gym membership costs about £32, although you might be eligible for a student discount.
  • Outside of London, a normal night out will cost you roughly £30 in total.
  • You require a TV license, which costs £147  a year if you wish to watch TV in your room for entertainment purposes. A movie ticket costs approximately £10.
  • Based on your buying habits, you may spend about £35–55  per month on clothing.


Total Cost for Studying in UK

What does it cost to study in the UK then? We can estimate that an international student will need to pay anything between £24,484 and £55,041 to study in the UK after adding up all the costs before and after departure. This price is only a rough guess that may change depending on a number of variables.

Here is a short breakdown of how much it will cost international students to study in the UK overall:

Factors Average Cost in GBP
Entrance Exam Fees £137 – £185
University Application fees £20-90
Student Visa Fees £348
Healthcare (Immigration Health Surcharge) £470
Flight Tickets (One way) £279 – £318
University Tuition Fees £10,000 – £38,000/ year
Living Expenses £13,200 – £15,600/ year
Other Extra Expenses £500
TOTAL EXPENSES £24,484 – £55,041


We can all agree that the cost of studying in the UK is high but there are other options to pay for it, such as scholarships for international students and part-time jobs in the UK. In general, because the UK is a top choice for academics, student life, and job opportunities, it is important to take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad there. After completing your education in the UK, you can be confident that you will see a significant return on your investment.


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