Acclimatizing to a new place is a daunting task
It can already be quite stressful for international students who have moved to a new country to attend an Australian university. There is the study load, finding accommodation, using English (which is often a second language) and on top of all that, there is the cost of living.
Knowing your cost of living in advance help a lot
The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) guides that international students require approximately $20,000 per year for the cost of living while attending an Australian university.
There are a variety of ways international students can stay within this cost of a living guideline and can focus on their studies rather than worrying about their financial needs.
The unavoidable cost items you need to figure out in advance
The cost of living for international students attending an Australian university includes accommodation costs, groceries and eating out, gas, water and electricity, phone and internet, public transport and/or car purchases and expenses and entertainment.
The cost of accommodation is higher than any other cost items
One way to reduce the costs of living is to reduce the costs of accommodation. There are several cheap options you can choose from. The cheapest options for international students are often shared houses, hostels or guesthouses and renting, however, many accommodation types require a bond and first month’s rent in advance.
Another idea for reducing the cost of living is by finding accommodation that is already furnished so the cost of household items does not need to be factored into the budget.
Larger and busier cities are more expensive than regional areas
Yet another great way to reduce the cost of living is by consciously choosing what location the Australian university of choice is going to be in.
Accommodation is more expensive in larger and busier cities so it may be wise for international students to consider more rural/regional area to attend an Australian university in order to reduce the cost of living.
Working part time while studying is a great way to reduce your cost of living.
Many international students who attend Australian universities reduce the cost of living by working while studying. Depending on what visa a student may have, many can work up to 40 hours a fortnight and many Australian universities have job help features on their websites or on campus. Most Australian universities encourage students to reduce their cost of living by starting a budget and even have example budgets on their websites.
Other small ways to improve the cost of living is by using the internet to Skype back home rather than making international phone calls, cooking meals at home rather than eating out and using public transport rather than buying a car.
Knowing all possible cost in advance and be prepared accordingly make your life better
It is important for international students who wish to attend an Australian university to fully be aware of all of the costs of living. As an example, all students must have health insurance before attending an Australian university and also must cover any study related costs such as textbooks.
While budgeting and financing can seem daunting, all Australian universities offer help to ensure the transition is as easy as possible and the cost of living is as stress-free as can be.