Russia, while not one of the most popular destinations for international students, does have a number of things going for it. Russia is one of the most historically important nations in the world, with a rich culture and many beautiful sites to see. As such, over 300,000 students have chosen to study at Russian universities – making up nearly 10% of the student population.

Given that Russia is not the most popular destination for international students, the country is quite affordable compared to other European and Asian countries. Tuition fees and the cost of living are generally much lower when compared to its neighbors to the west and to the east. In this article, we will analyze some of the costs that come with studying in Russia, as well as what it costs to live in some of the biggest cities in the country!

Cost of Studying in Russia

In line with many other universities in the world, Russian universities charge different fees for different courses. These fees also depend on the quality of the university, the distance of the university from a major city, as well as the actual degree a student is taking. Due to these many factors, the prices of each degree can be very different.

Just a few examples of tuition fees and costs of studying at Russian universities include:

Check Also: Available Programs in Europe for International Students

Cost of Living in Russia

1. Saint Petersburg

One of the largest and most important cities in Russia, Saint Petersburg has historically been the nation’s capital and, even today, it is one of the most important centers of commerce and industry. Students of history, in particular, are spoilt for choice – the State Hermitage Museum, Palace Square, and Cruiser Aurora are some of the nation’s most treasured pieces of history. The cost of living in Russia varies depending on some aspects.

Rent is not too high, compared to other European cities. For 460 dollars a month, a student can rent a one-bedroom apartment in the city center. As well as this, utilities are quite affordable at 8,566.70 rubles or around 84 dollars. Finally, even childcare is cheap compared to other European countries at only 30,000 rubles or 294 dollars.

2. Ufa

Ufa is one of the most important industrial cities in the nation. It is also home to many great universities, especially for prospective engineering students. Bashkir State University, Ural State Law University, and Ufa State Petroleum Technological University are all great choices for students of many different fields.

Start knowing the cost of living in Russia with housing. Housing in Ufa is affordable, especially when compared to St. Petersburg. A single-bedroom apartment can be rented for 32,900 rubles, less than 330 dollars. Even a three-bedroom apartment in the city center only costs, on average, 50500 rubles. In dollars, this is less than 500 per month. Leisure, especially sports activities, are affordable and plentiful. For example, the average fitness club costs 2,900 rubles to attend every month – less than 30 dollars per month. Finally, utilities in Ufa are also relatively inexpensive. Electricity, gas, heating, and water can all be bought for less than 8,400 rubles or 82 USD.

3. Moscow

Transportation can be affordable in Moscow, depending on what service you use. A one-way ticket can cost 55 rubles, which is less than a dollar. Even a monthly pass costs less than 25 dollars at 2,300 rubles. While rent in Moscow is cheap compared to other capital cities, it is still the most expensive in the country. A one-bedroom apartment in the city center usually costs around 77,800 rubles per month, about 750 USD. For students willing to look outside the city, cheaper apartments can be found for less than 45,000 rubles or 440 dollars. Meals at restaurants are also relatively inexpensive barely costing more than 850 rubles or 8 dollars.

The capital and most populous city in Russia is home to a huge variety of sights worth exploring. Saint Basil’s Cathedral and the Red Square are iconic symbols of Russia and just some of the best sights the city has to offer.

4. Kazan

Located on the banks of the Volga, Kazan is one of the largest regional capitals in the country. Bauman Street, the Agricultural Palace, and the Natural History of Tatarstan Museum are all worth exploring while in the city.

In Kazan, the cost of living is quite affordable because of the transportation. Gasoline only costs 51 rubles – 50 cents per liter in dollars. Taxis are also cheap, with the initial fare costing less than a dollar. Utilities in the city cost, on average, around 6,800 rubles, which costs around 67 American dollars. This means that electricity, garbage, and water, are all affordable for students. Even rent in the city is reasonable for most students, costing around 25,000 rubles per month, or less than 250 dollars per month for an apartment in the city center.

5. Samara

Samara is another major city located on the Volga River. You can start off knowing the cost of living in this city by knowing the average amount of renting. Rent costs between 18,000 and 25,000 rubles per month, or between 175 and 245 USD. Aside from rent, childcare, usually a major cost in European cities, is around 14,600 rubles which comes to only 140 dollars. These factors, among others, make Samara one of the cheapest cities to live in Russia.

In conclusion, there are many things you should keep in mind before deciding to study in Russia. While the country is more affordable than others in Europe, it is very different and can be challenging to adapt to. Even so, many great experiences can be had in this country, and we hope this guide was useful in showing you what it will cost to have them.


We hope that this article on the Cost of Studying and Living in Russia for International Students was helpful. Make sure to also check out the Available Programs in Europe!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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