The most popular destination for international students in the world, the USA is home to many of the best universities in the world. Over a million students from around the world travel to the USA to attend its many universities.

However, attending higher education in the US, especially in the Ivy League, the best colleges in the country, is extremely expensive. Tuition alone can easily cost over 100,000 dollars in total. As well to tuition, there are many other costs to consider such as rent, transport, etc. In this article, we will examine just some of these expenses of studying and living in the United States.

Cost of Studying in the United States for International Students

As mentioned above, the cost of studying in the US can be incredibly expensive. While there is some variance between states and colleges, international students can expect to pay at least 10,000 dollars per year. International students are also exempt from many grants and scholarships that can help reduce this cost.

Some examples of tuition fees for international students in the USA include:

Check Also: Available Programs for International Students

Cost of Living in the United States for International Students

1. Atlanta

One of the largest cities in the southern United States, Atlanta is home to many museums and cultural centers. For international students, living in this city is a surprisingly affordable option. For example, rent can cost less than 1,000 dollars if you know where to look – a rarity in the US. Even the average rent of 1,700 in the city center is relatively affordable when compared to other cities. Childcare, a consideration for some students, usually costs above 1,100 dollars per month per child. As well as this, utilities in Atlanta cost around 180 dollars per month for water, electricity, and garbage.

2. New York

Far and away the largest city in the country, New York City is home to many of the nation’s most famous sites such as the Statue of Liberty and Broadway. However, for students that want to study at one of the city’s many universities, there are many high costs to consider.

Rent in New York is perhaps the highest in the country, easily reaching over 3,300 dollars per month for an apartment in the city. Even outside the city, prices rarely dip below 2,200 USD per month. Groceries are also surprisingly expensive in the city – you can expect to spend nearly 500 dollars per month on groceries. Eating out is very popular in New York but is also quite costly. Even a regular cappuccino can cost nearly 5 dollars.

3. Washington D.C.

The capital of the United States, Washington D.C. is a hub of politics and business. Due to this fact, living in this place is quite costly and this capital is one of the most expensive cities in the world. Rent in Washington D.C. is prohibitively expensive, especially for students. An average one-bedroom apartment can easily cost over 2,200 dollars per month. Utilities can cost over 150 dollars per month, only adding to the cost of living in the city. Finally, even public transport can be expensive. For example, a monthly pass for public transport can cost over 100 dollars.

4. Portland

Portland, Oregon is regarded by many as one of the coolest cities in the country, with a thriving and eclectic music scene. It is one of the best places in the country for international students that want to explore the wilderness of America, as it is within walking distance of many great national parks.

While rent may not be as high as in other cities mentioned, students can expect to pay between 1,300 and 1,700 dollars per month for a one-bedroom apartment. Internet access can cost up to 70 dollars per month, while other utilities usually can also cost upwards of 200 dollars.

5. Austin

Austin is rapidly becoming one of the United States’ most important technology hubs. Some also compare the city to Portland, given its unique local culture. For international students, Austin is certainly an exciting city to live in.

As well as this, living in this city is still relatively affordable, at least when compared to other universities we have discussed. Rent can be as low as 1,100 dollars per month outside the city center. Even within the city proper, rent averages around 2,000 dollars per month – about the average for major American cities. Transport is much cheaper than in other locations, with a monthly pass for public options costing only around 40 dollars. Finally, restaurants in Austin are also affordable, with mid-range meals available for around $15.

As is evident from the list above, the cost of living varies depending on which city you are interested in living in. Even so, rent remains expensive across the largest cities in the nation.

In conclusion, while there are many fantastic universities in the United States, including the best in the world, the costs associated with studying and living at them can be a large barrier for many international students. We hope this article gives you some insight into the challenges and opportunities that come with studying in the USA.


We hope that this article on the Cost of Studying and Living in the United States for International Students was helpful. To know more information on studying abroad, check out the Available Programs for International Students.

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hyun is the founder at Global Scholarships. He has received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College as well as $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for his undergraduate degree and has been offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. Read more about his scholarship journey here.

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