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Living Cost in UK

Budget-Friendly Accommodation Options

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Living Cost in UK

An Introduction to Living Costs in the UK

The cost of living abroad is never cheap. One of the biggest hubs for international students to study in the UK . While the UK offers many scholarships and welcomes students from different origins, getting a breakdown of the total cost is always helpful.

If you are wondering what areas affect expenses then the living expenses greatly depend on the lifestyle, choices, courses, food, accommodation, etc. To give you an idea of the overall cost involved, here we will state all the different aspects of living in the UK and the estimated amount it would cost.

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Accommodation Costs

Students living in the UK will have tons of accommodation options for them. One can opt to live in private places like apartments, while others can choose to live in college dorms. The cost of the latter is less than the prior one obviously.

If students want their parents to accommodate them, they can also opt for that however, one needs to put these requests ahead or later it might be too late. If not booked accommodation soon one can have trouble finding suitable and affordable options.

Also, the prices involved depend a lot on the cSity in which a student decides to dwell. For example, living in London is much more expensive the living in Manchester. Prices of living in the north of the UK are quite affordable.

Accommodation Type Average Monthly Cost Range (in GBP)
University Halls of Residence £400 - £900
Private Halls of Residence £600 - £1,200
Shared Student Houses £300 - £600
Homestay £400 - £800
Private Rented Flats/Apartments £800 - £1,500

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Tips for Finding Affordable Housing

Staying at rent in the UK is one of the most expensive options. Most people say that half of their salary goes on rent. Students can share flats and rentals with others to reduce the cost and share the bills. This is one of the cheapest ways of living in the UK. Also, one can opt to stay in college dorms, which reduces the utility bills for water, gas, and electricity because the college pays for them. Also, comparing the prices of living in a dorm to rentals, one can easily find the difference in how staying in college dorms is much cheaper.

Transportation Expenses

Transportation and communication are never a problem in the UK. There are buses, cycles, cabs, and airports linking different cities in the UK. When it comes to students, they can easily opt for buses and trains, which are much cheaper than other options. However, most of the public transportation in the UK is owned by private companies with no interference from the government.

A public bus ride will cost €1.50 while the monthly communication proves up to as high as €186, which is higher than any other city. When traveling in the city, they can also opt for quite budget-friendly bikes.

And if you think that buying a personal car will end your hassle for once and all then let us break down its prices as well. The car fuel for petrol-owned cars comes to around €1272, and that of diesel is about €1683. The car insurance costs come to around €500 per year, and the maintenance and service costs stand at around €270.

Note: prices vary depending on a person's age, city, car mole, driving record, etc. 

Food and Groceries

The UK has a lot of meal options for people preferring multiple cuisines. You can find Chinese, Indian, Spanish, and Italian too. However, opting for meals outside is never a cheap option for a student. The cost of dining outside can be around €12 and even more expensive in a fancy location.

Students can always rely on cooking at home which not only saves a lot of bucks but is also healthier and gives a special kind of warmth rather the spending coins over a one-time meal in a single afternoon.

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Affordable Tips for Dining Out in the UK as a Student

One of the most affordable dining options is having a big breakfast. This will keep you full until lunch. Use your student’s discounts or coupon cards to get some money off.  One might not benefit at the moment, but it brings the overall price lower by a large amount annually. Don’t get intimated and avoid tourist sports to save money. Many local restaurants serve good food. You can also try Indian and Thai food from local places at lower rates. Take your friends with you to split the bill and have a good meal at an affordable rate.

Also, plan and avoid busy times and days like weekends the prices are a bit high. So eat on unusual days and at unusual times to have a good meal but within your range.

Healthcare and Insurance

National health insurance is the plan students get with their visa application if their course is longer than 6 months. It comes for a price of an additional €470 and offers a wide range of facilities in it. It also covers psychical, mental, accidents, emergency services, and services for COVID-19.

Students who are an option for NHS do not need any private services as it covers the prices of everything at reduced costs. Being one of the advanced countries, the UK pays a lot of attention to the welfare and health of international students.

Most UK top colleges come with consultants and welfare officers to talk and share about mental issues and need them once and for all.

Education and Tuition Fees

The UK has one of the best, top-class, and most prestigious universities in the world, which is why there is a high influx of international students every year. But this comes with a price which is a lot. Depending upon the area of colleges, the tuition fees can go as high as €23.750-€40,600 in London, while in South Wales, it can be as low as €13,500-14,500

Apart from just fees, €30 is the minimum amount that is spent on books, study abroad, and project supplies every month.

Going for scholarships and financial aid options to save money is always advised. Students willing to study in the UK can easily fulfill their dream by getting in through scholarships. Multiple kinds of scholarships are offered in UK colleges and universities to acknowledge and encourage diversity.  Military, athletic, financial, and academic are namely few of them. Many scholarships cover the entire educational expense and some also pay for accommodation.

Students also get students discounts on transportation too. These numerous aids can offer immense support during desperate times and can offer a financial and safety net to students while living abroad. 

Utilities and Bills

In the UK, the average cost of electricity is around €34 while the fuel cost is around €1,131. The water bill varies depending on the city, lifestyle, and place of residency.

Intent and Wi-Fi are essential for anyone right now. And the average price of getting a broadband connection in the UK is around €27.50, which is quite expensive. Mobile bills are also around €15 for a plan.

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Strategies for Reducing Utility Bills

A lot can be saved by reducing water, gas, and electricity prices. One of the ways to keep the prices under means for students is by living in shared apartments. This helps in splitting the price. Also, choosing cheap cities to live in, like Manchester, Liverpool, Nottingham, Birmingham, and Durham, can offer suitable accommodations which lowers the utility prices.

Entertainment and Recreation

Even though students are pressured to study all the time, we all need a break from it at some time. But just like everything else, recreation in the UK is quite costly too. The price of movie tickets comes at €10, and for an average club, it is €15. And the prices only go up if you want to go somewhere fancy.

If you are a fitness freak, you would definitely need an idea of the gyms, which are around €40 monthly depending on location, membership, and amenities.

Free or low-cost activities for leisure

If you have a lot of free time and want to have fun but at cheap prices, then go sightseeing. You can go hiking, golf, and even visit fancy museums like Hyde Park, the National Museum, Camden Market, and much more at low prices.

If going out is not an activity for you, you can pick up recreational activities like gardening, reading, and listening to music at home to have fun within your means.

Taxes and Personal Finance

If a person is an individual is a resident of the UK, then they will be taxed based on worldwide gains and income.

If a person is not a resident of the UK, then they will be charged based on UK source income.

Students who are working part-time, full-time, or left employed have to pay a certain amount of tax in the UK. However, if the students have paid too much in taxes or stop working midway, they can claim a refund.

If you are a student in the UK but work abroad on holidays, then you have to pay anything above your personal allowance and national allowance only if you have a UK employer.

Most students are unaware but get they also get charged to withdraw foreign cash or use foreign debit cards. Most of the banks have a charge of 3% while others cut off around €1- €3 for each transaction.

Since even €1 means a lot when staying abroad, here are personal finance tips to keep your spending under check.

  • Get a UK bank account. This will save money on transfers.
  • Avoid hefty broadband and utility fees.
  • Credit cards sound cool but don’t get them.
  • See if your parent's health insurance will cover you in the UK.
  • Don’t get intimidated by fancy mobile plans.
  • Have a budget sheet to plan and monitor expenses.
  • Create income sources.
  • Have savings and emergency funds separate.
  • Know the full benefits of your scholarships.

And that covers our expenditure guide in the UK. Hopefully, this will help you plan better and in time without facing any financial constraints.

In addition to Accommodation costs, we offer a range of additional services to help you succeed. We provide Duolingo coaching online, TOEFL exam preparation in Noida, and PTE exam preparation to help you improve your language skills and achieve your desired test scores.

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Frequently Asked Questions By Students

The UK offers the best of everything, so it is quite costly. However, the prices fluctuate depending on the city one resides. There are cheap options like Birmingham, Manchester, etc., which are quite cheap compared to London and Brighton.

The average price in the UK varies deepening on where you live. It can range from €758 in the city and €180 if living outside the city. To keep the prices minimum, most students choose to live in college dorms where the prices are lower than flats.

Students who want to live in affordable conditions in the UK can opt for living in dorms or shared apartments. They're much cheaper than renting out a flat in the UK.

For a single person living in the UK, the average price spent on groceries should be around €140-€ 150, meaning it should be €35 weekly. However, prices do fluctuate depending on where the students are residing. Also, to lower the prices uses discounts and student cards.

Since private organizations govern UK transportation facilities and not the government commute costs are quite high. The cost of the single bus ride is 1.80

UK is quite expensive but don’t get disheartened as there are loads of students discounts available. One can get discounts on dining out, sightseeing, health, buying items, and even transportation. Do your research and find areas where you can get coupons, which will help you save a lot of money.

Many top universities offer guaranteed accommodation for first-year international students, especially those from outside the EU. However, it's essential to apply for accommodation early to secure your spot.

Accommodation options include university-owned halls of residence, private halls, shared student houses, homestays, and private rented flats/apartments.

The cost of accommodation varies depending on the type, location, and facilities. On average, university-owned halls can range from £400 to £900 per month, while private accommodations may be around £600 to £1,500 per month.

Some universities may provide the option to choose your housemates, but in most cases, it's a luck-of-the-draw situation. However, you can usually request to live with specific friends or acquaintances if they are also attending the same university.

After accepting your university offer, you'll typically receive information on how to apply for accommodation. The process may involve filling out an application form, selecting preferences, and making any necessary payments.

Consider factors like proximity to campus, transport links, safety, costs, facilities, and whether you prefer a more social or quieter living environment.

University-owned halls often offer accommodations during holidays, but you may need to inform them in advance if you plan to stay.

In some cases, utility costs like electricity, water, and internet may be included in the accommodation fees. However, it's essential to clarify this with the accommodation provider.

Yes, but you may still be liable to pay for the entire contract period unless you find a replacement tenant to take over your room.

If you encounter issues with your accommodation, such as maintenance problems or concerns about housemates, reach out to the accommodation office or relevant support services at your university for assistance.

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