How much does it cost to live and study in the UK?

How much does it cost to study and live in the UK?


We've calculated all the costs, including education fees for international students and living expenses in the UK

Last updated: March 2016  

Getting a world class education and a degree from one of the oldest universities in England is a dream for many. How much does it actually cost to make the dream come true?

How much do studies at a UK university cost?

First of all, you will need to estimate the amount you are going to spend on tuition fees themselves. Those can vary significantly, depending on the university you go to and the subject of your interest. Here are the average costs of study per year. Bear in mind that bachelor’s courses are usually three years long, and most master’s programmes last for 12 months.

  • Bachelor’s degrees cost £11,000 - £14,000 per year.
  • Master’s degrees cost £11,000 - £17,000 per year.
  • If you are planning to study for a laboratory or a clinical degree, however, the costs of your education will be significantly higher: Clinical courses: £24,000 - £30,000 average but can be up to £34,800 at top universities per year.
  • MBA: £6,000 - £60,000 per year.

*Source: Top Universities

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Is it possible to study in the UK cheaper?

Yes. You can get higher education not only at a university but also at a private or a government funded college.

Colleges don’t conduct research and only offer programmes that are most popular among international students, such as business, finance, law and tourism. This way lower costs enable colleges to keep their international tuition fees down.

How much does education in a college cost?

Annual tuition fees in colleges vary between £6,000 and £11,000. Bachelor’s programmes are three years long (some colleges offer accelerated two year courses); master’s courses are typically 12 months long.

What is the price of accommodation in the UK?

Students have several options where to live: they can rent a room in a student hall of residence, a room in a shared house (flatshare) or a flat. Prices for London accommodation are significantly higher than those in the rest of the country.

London, per month   Outside London, per month
Studio £800 – 1000 £500-600
Room in a hall of residence £600–700 £400 – 500
Flat share £500-600 £350-450
Living in a family £650 – 800 £500 – 600
How much will your monthly expenditures be?

You can expect to spend not less than £500 per month in London and £400 outside of London on your living expenses such as food, clothing, transport costs and bills. This amount doesn’t include student nights out!

For more information on the costs of living in the UK, please have a look at the latest research by the National Union of Students in the UK. Their calculations show that your living costs in London (accommodation and monthly expenditures) will be 13,388 per year and £12,056 outside of London

How much money do I need to get a UK student visa?

To obtain a visa you need to show a set amount of money available to you on a bank account.

First, you are required to have sufficient maintenance funds. If your course lasts more than 9 months, you need to show £11,385 to study in London and £9,135 for universities outside of London.

Second, you need to pay the first year tuition fees to your university in full. If you only pay a deposit, the remaining tuition fees for the first year must be shown on your bank account on top of the maintenance funds.

If your course of education is less than 6 months long or you are coming to study English, the financial requirements will differ.

How much do I need to have in total?

Costs of education in the UK vary significantly depending on the education institution and the comfort of living you would like to have. Here are two examples of total costs for two different students:

Student 1studies in a large university and rents a studio flat with his own kitchen and bathroom. His total costs are £30,000 per year.

Student 2 prefers a more budget option and tries to save some money. Although he studies in a large college in central London, he lives in a flat share where he shares kitchen and bathroom with two flatmates. His total costs are £20,000 per year.

You can also use the International Students Calculator and enter your specific requirements.


In addition to the information about the prices that we have given you, don’t forget to take into consideration that there are mechanisms in place that will help you to get some of the money back. Most students in the UK work part time and your visa will give you such opportunity. Depending on the country you come from you might also be entitled to a student loan. To find out more please read our article on student loans.

Should you have any questions, please do contact our consultants who are always happy to help you.

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