What are the Estimated Living Costs in UK for International Students

Living Costs in UK for International Students

An Overview of Living Costs in UK for International Students

The estimated annual living costs in UK for international students is generally GBP 12,000. Living in the United Kingdom as a student can be a rewarding and enriching experience, but it’s important to have a good understanding of the monthly living costs you can expect to incur. In this article, we’ll break down the various expenses you’ll need to budget for and provide some tips on how to save money while studying in the UK.

FactorsAverage Cost Per Month
Accommodation£500 – £700
Food & Groceries£100 – £200
Transportation£30- £40
Household Bills£40 – £50
Entertainment£40- £50
Miscellaneous£200 -£300

Note: These costs are just ballpark estimates and may vary depending on a lot of factors like your lifestyle, the city you live in, university etc.


Housing is likely to be one of your biggest monthly expenses while studying in the UK. The cost of accommodation will depend on a variety of factors, including the location of your school, the type of housing you choose, and whether you opt to live on or off campus. Accommodation expense is the major living costs in UK for international students

On-campus housing is generally more convenient and may be cheaper than off-campus options, but availability is often limited. If you’re unable to secure a spot in on-campus housing, you may need to look for a place to rent off-campus.

Rental prices in the UK can vary significantly depending on the location. In cities like London and Oxford, for example, rent can be quite expensive, while in smaller towns and rural areas, it may be more affordable. You can expect to pay anywhere from £300 to £1,000 per month for a single room in a shared house or apartment, depending on the location and amenities.

Let’s take a look at the average rent for different types of accommodation options for students in UK.

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

Besides, the type of accommodation, your monthly cost of living in UK may also vary depending on the city you live in. For example, living cost in London will be expensive than the living cost in Edinburgh.

Let’s take a look at the average rent in various popular cities for students in the UK:

CityAverage Cost of Living Per Month
London£1200- 1300
Brighton£838 – 1300
Manchester£860 – 1100
Oxford£1100 – 1700
Birmingham£700 – 1200
Glasgow£800 – 1000
Edinburgh£700 – 1000

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Utilities and bills

In addition to rent, you’ll also need to budget for utility bills, which can include electricity, gas, water, and internet. These costs will vary depending on your usage and the size of your living space, but you can expect to pay around £50 to £100 per month for utilities in a shared house or apartment.

BillsAverage Cost Per Month
Mobile & Internet£15-50
Gas/ water/ Electricity£40-50
TV License£12

Food and groceries

Food and groceries are another important expense to consider when budgeting for your monthly living costs in the UK. The cost of groceries can vary significantly depending on where you shop and the types of food you buy, but you can expect to spend around £30 to £50 per week on food and groceries as a student.

If you’re looking to save money on groceries, consider shopping at discount supermarkets like Aldi and Lidl, which tend to have lower prices than larger chain stores. You can also save money by cooking at home rather than eating out, and by buying in bulk and freezing items that have a longer shelf life.

The price of basic grocery and food items in the UK is mentioned below:

Bread (1 pack)£0.97
1 litre Milk£0.92
12 Eggs£1.93
1 meal at an affordable restaurant£12.50


Transportation costs will also be a factor in your monthly budget. If you’re studying in a city, you may be able to get by without a car and instead rely on public transportation. In the UK, public transportation costs can vary depending on the region and the mode of transportation you choose. For example, a monthly bus pass in London may cost around £80, while a monthly train pass in a smaller town may be closer to £50.

If you do choose to drive, you’ll need to budget for fuel, insurance, and possibly parking fees. These costs can add up quickly, so it’s a good idea to compare prices and shop around for the best deals.

The usual modes of transport and ticket prices are given below:

Mode of TransportTicket Fare
Train£12 – £13
Bus£1- £2
Taxi£6 – £90
Cycle£2 for 30 minutes

Entertainment and personal expenses

In addition to your basic living expenses, you’ll also need to budget for entertainment and personal expenses. These may include things like movies, concerts, and social outings with friends. The cost of these activities will depend on your personal preferences and lifestyle, but you can expect to spend around £100 to £200 per month on entertainment and personal expenses as a student.

Let’s have a look at some of the most common entertainment choices and costs for the same.

Entertainment OptionsAverage Cost
Movie Tickets£9-10
Sports£10-20 / month
Dinner at a restaurant£40-50
Concert tickets£40-50
Amusement Park tickets£40

Tips for saving money

While studying in the UK can be expensive, there are a few things you can do to help save money on your monthly living costs:

  • Consider living with roommates to split the cost of rent and utilities.
  • Shop around for the best deals on groceries and transportation.
  • Take benefit of student discounts and offers. Many businesses offer discounts to students on everything from food and entertainment to clothing and electronics.
  • Use a budgeting app or spreadsheet to track your spending and stick to a budget.
  • Consider getting a part-time job to help cover your living expenses.
  • Look into scholarships, grants, and financial aid to help offset the cost of tuition and living expenses.
  • Consider living in a less expensive area or opting for less expensive housing options, such as a shared apartment or house rather than a private studio or one-bedroom apartment.


Living in the UK as a student can be an exciting and rewarding experience, but it’s important to have a good understanding of the monthly living costs you can expect to incur. By budgeting carefully and looking for ways to save money, you can make your time as a student in the UK more affordable and enjoyable.

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