How To Reduce Cost of Living As An International Student?


Studying abroad can be a wild fantasy for most of us all and the biggest hurdle facing us is – EXPENSE. We dream of pursuing higher studies in a foreign country but do not know whether this dream will ever come true or not. Expenditure attached to studying in a new country is, undoubtedly, the most dreadful aspect. The awful condition of the Indian currency and the ever increasing cost of living in countries with top institutes makes our dream even more distant from the bounds of possibility.

Since we already are a victim of our parents lecturing us about our lavish lifestyle and unnecessary expenses, living in another country to study is sacrificed.

But what if we tell you that you can reduce your cost by many folds and actually live your dream of studying abroad? There are multiple ways to shrink the size of your bills. Read on to know how.


First things first, while planning for further studies abroad, the primary thing is charting out your preferences of colleges and countries. Here, you need to evaluate your choice and match it to your budget.

For example, if you are planning to get into Nanyang University or the HEC with a limited budget then you surely need to do your research because Singapore and Paris are two of the most expensive cities in the world.

So, the initial requirement in order to be able to cut on costs, check on costs. From bread to beer and from cars to clothes, look out for the prices and then only make your choice. There are many universities like Saint Gallen and the University of Warsaw that are known for their excellent rankings and exceptional faculty but are cheaper places to live.


This is something that most of us are unaware of. Different sources to change currency give different results. To throw more light on this, when you convert your money through a bank, you are likely to be incurring hidden fees and charges. Also, to compare you can use Google’s currency converter, and you will get to know that $100 in the USA is almost equal to $145 in New Zealand.

To save money, look for service providers that are transparent about the conversion charges and this can also help you to decrease costs by a great deal.


Yes, you ignored them but they are all true. Your mom’s ideas are the best way to reduce costs once you are in a different nation. She is the finance minister of your home and she knows how to manage expenses like no one else. She keeps saying, switch off the electrical appliances when not in use, cancel extra magazine subscriptions, use public transport (works especially in cities like London, Bangkok and Dublin), stop eating out and we know what not!

Our suggestion is that you sit with your mom (or anyone who handles expenses in your home) a day before your flight and make a list of such small things which when added can save huge amounts of money.


Another trick to reduce the cost of living is to earn during your stay. We understand you were living like aristocrats while studying in your own country but to lighten your burden of expenses abroad, this is a tried and tested method. If you have classes in the morning then you can work in the evening hours and vice versa. But, if you have long and tiring hours of classes throughout the day then you can work on weekends.

This will help you expand your network and learn life while you study. You can dig deeper into the local culture and earn those much-needed bucks. Most countries with good schools for higher education do not forbid you from working while studying as an international student. Now the choice of a job depends on you.


Another low profile way to keep a check on your costs living abroad is student discounts. Most students who plan to enter into a foreign college are not aware of such cards but you will thank us later when you realize how useful these are. Few beneficial cards are:-

  1. The ISE card– This card offers students over 100,000 various types of discounts in many countries
  2. The ISIC card– It is a popular card used by more than 4 million students around the world.
  3. The StuCard– It is a green, travel insurance and a discount card for students and teachers and offers 100,000 discounts

There are many other cards that can help you to grab exciting discounts.

Cutting on costs is a tedious task and it will need calculated steps. To get a detailed counselling from comparing costs of living to discount cards and many other ways, you can contact a Leverage Edu expert and live your dream of studying abroad.

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