Cost of Studying in China
When preparing to study in China, it is important to calculate how much money you will need to cover for your expenses. Some Universities require students to provide a letter from whoever is paying the fees to guarantee that they can cover the cost of the program. It is in nobody’s interest for a student to drop out of the program because they haven’t budgeted properly.
The main categories of costs for studying in China are:
- Application Fee ($100-150 USD)
- Visa Application Fee: 500/900RMB
- Tuition Fee (varies according to each program)
- Books: prices are rarely above 50RMB
- Supplies: pens – 1-5RMB, notebooks – 10-15RMB
- Insurance – insurance is necessary and students can’t register without it, students can arrange it themselves, or it can be arranged when you arrive in China, Ping An has an insurance policy for students which costs 600 RMB per year.
- Accommodation – this depends on whether you are staying in campus or off campus. For example, in Beijing to rent one-room apartment you’ll need about 3000-4000RMB, two-bedroom apartment – 4000-6000RMB. Staying in dorms might be a bit cheaper. Double-room is about 1000-2000RMB, single room is about 2000-3000RMB.
- Flight Tickets – this will depend on which country you are flying from. You can find cheap flights on Orbitz.com
- Food / Eating out – this will depend on you and your habits, University food can be very affordable and can cost 6RMB-20RMB for each meal. Eating outside the University can also be cheap.
- Other Living Expenses – what other things do you like to do in your spare time? Playing sport, going out to bars or restaurants.
The good news is that the cost of studying and living in China is comparatively low to other countries, as an example, the subway in Beijing cost 3 RMB-9RMB(depends on distance), and you can buy a beer for the same price.
Before coming to China it is a good idea to use the above categories to make a budget for how much you expect to spend in each category. Try to add a little bit extra than you think in each category, and something to cover for emergencies. It is always better to have spent less than you expected than the other way around.
Then when you come to China, try to keep a record of your expenses every month so you can keep track of where your money is going.