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Cost of Living in the UK for International Students

Cost of Living in the UK

Cost of Living in the UK for International Students

The United Kingdom is a popular destination among thousands of study abroad aspirants. Home to some of the top-ranked universities around the world like Oxford & Cambridge, the UK is a great place for international students. However, most Indian and international students constantly worry about the expenses that they have to incur while studying in the UK. The average cost of living in the UK for international students comes to around £12,000 – £15,600 per year. This blog post discusses the Living Cost in the UK for International Students, and everything related to it. Let’s check out!

Cost of Living in the UK

ExpensesMonthly Costs (approx.)
Accommodation£500 – £800
Food£100 – £200
Gas and electricity£50
Stationary & Textbooks£20 – £50
Clothing£50 – £75
Travel (buses, trams, and trains)£30 – £40
Movie ticket£10

Housing Charges in the UK

Living Cost in the UK for International Students also includes accommodation charges. One of the best options for International students is to live on-campus offered by most universities in the UK. These halls of residence are located inside the campus. It will help you save travel charges. Another advantage of On-Campus is that the costs also include food and utility. You don’t have to worry about food, heating, and paying bills for electricity, gas, and water.

If you want to experience total freedom, then Private housing is the right choice for you. Students can choose from different accommodation options like halls of residence on their university campus, private apartments, shared housing, dorms or local homestays. Halls of residence are the most preferred type of accommodation among international students. Let’s see the average rent for different types of accommodation options for students.

Type of AccomodationAverage Rent
Halls of Residence£400 – £600/ month
Private apartments£800 – £1000/ month
Local homestays£10 – £60/ night

Transportation Charges

Cost of Living in the UK for Indian Students also involves commuting around the city. Especially if your apartment is far from your university, you’ll have to take care of transportation charges. But you needn’t worry at all! City transport also offers plenty of student discounts & concessions for students. These make the traveling costs very affordable. Try to procure a rail card also since hiring cabs will put a hole in your pocket. The  UK’s public transport system is very well connected and also very convenient. Using a bus, train or tube or simply cycling around the city can be a very affordable travel option for International students as compared to taxis. The most common modes of transport costs are-

Mode of TransportTicket Fare (approx.)
Train£12 – £13
Bus£1- £2
Taxi£10 – £90
Cycle£2 for 30 minutes

Food Prices

On an average, International students have to shell out £40-£60 per week for groceries.  Although staying on campus saves your food costs, Students living in private rentals have to consider the cost of food.  You may enjoy dining out once in a while, but the best way to save food costs is to cook your meals at home. International students can utilize affordable options at Supermarkets like Tesco, Sainsbury’s, and Asda.

ExpensesCosts (in £) (approx.)
Bread (1 pack)£0.90 – £0.95
1 litre Milk£0.95 – £1.00
Chicken£5.40 – £5.45
12 Eggs£1.50 – £1.60
Fruits£1.70 – £1.75
Vegetables£1.10 – £1.15
Rice£1.20 – £1.25

Entertainment Charges

The International student life is not limited to books, exams, and evaluations. The Cost of Living in the UK for Indian Students also includes entertainment charges. While studying abroad, you develop a social circle and you’ll need money to spend on your leisure time as well. Let’s see some form of Entertainment charges:

ActivitiesPrice (in £) (approx,)
Movie Tickets10-12
Restaurant Table for Two40-45

Mobile and Internet Charges

Mobile & Internet charges are also one of the important living expenses in the UK for international students. While studying abroad, an International student has to keep in touch with his family and friends back home. Foreign students have to purchase a SIM card with a call and data plan, Wi-Fi, and TV payments. To keep in touch with social media, these are all necessary investments. Look for the best cheap suppliers of telecom networks & saving deals. Compare the costs of different Wi-Fi connections.

ExpensesPrice (in £) (approx.)
Prepaid SIM Package10-12
TV + Wifi package50-55
Call Costs0.15-0.45

Miscellaneous Living Cost in UK for International Students

International students spend a good bucks on miscellaneous Cost of Living in the UK. These miscellaneous costs are also important and should also be considered.

Miscellaneous ExpensesOne-time costs (in £)  (approx.)
Household Items30-35


Studying in the UK can prove to be a little bit expensive. However, there are various ways to finance the cost, including scholarships & pursuing part-time jobs in the UK. Overall, International students shouldn’t miss the excellent Study Abroad Destination UK, in spite of High Cost of Living in the UK. UK is an excellent return on investment after completing your studies.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is studying in the UK expensive?

Studying in the UK can be expensive for Indian students, especially if you’re studying at one of the reputed universities in the UK. International undergraduate tuition fees vary from £11,400 – £38,000. The average cost is estimated to be around £22,200 per year. International postgraduate tuition fees vary from £9,000 – £30,000. The average cost is estimated to be around £17,109 per year. Comparing the cost of living in the UK with that of India, the Cost of Living in the UK appears expensive due to the cost of accommodation, food, and transportation. Despite the cost, studying abroad in the UK appears attractive to International students. You can also apply for Scholarships and bursaries to manage the cost of studying in the UK.

How much does it cost to live in the UK?

The average cost of living in the UK comes to around £12,000 per year. It all depends on the location and lifestyle of the individual. For an international student, the expense of studying an undergraduate program in the UK can cost anywhere between £8000 and £30,000  while pursuing a postgraduate course will cost you between £12000  and £35000. The cost to live in the UK also includes accommodation, food, and transportation. Let’ see a breakdown of some of the top spending areas: 

  • Rent – £400-500/month 
  • Groceries – £100-200/month 
  • Going out – £45-50/month 
  • Transportation– £45-50/month 
  • Household bills (like electricity and water) – £40-50/month

Is it expensive to live in the UK?

Yes, the UK is a little bit expensive for International students. The average living cost in the UK for Indian students is around 12,000 GBP per year. The cost of living will depend on location, accommodation, and lifestyle of the individual. However, International students can use many ways to save money such as eating home cooked meals, depending on public transport and utilizing student discounts. Scholarships are also available for financially needy students.

Read More- Cost of Living in Australia for Indian Students

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