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Costs of Living

Living expenses in the UK might be higher than what you are used to, but with some planning and a sensible budget, you will find that living in the UK can be affordable. In addition to tuition fees, you will need to budget for living expenses such as accommodation, food and travel. We recommend you budget about £7,200 per year to cover these costs. Please take note of your visa requirements regarding how much money you need in your account before you receive your CAS.

From the moment you accept your offer to study with us it is important to start thinking about money and how you will support yourself whilst in the UK. The earlier you start saving money for your studies, the better! On this page we will try to provide a bit of information about money and finances, so hopefully there will not be any unpleasant surprises once you arrive in York.


Can I work while studying?

If you are on a degree programme and have a Tier 4 visa, you will normally be able to work 20 hours per week during term time and 40 hours per week during holidays only (Christmas, Easter, and summer breaks). You must not work more than your visa specifies, doing so is illegal and could cause you serious problems.

If you are in the UK on a Student Visitor visa for less than 6 months, then NO, you will not be able to work at all. This means you must have access to funds to support yourself while you are in the UK.

For the reasons above, you must not rely on work to support yourself. Even if you are allowed to work, it may take time to find a job, so it is very important that you have enough money to support yourself without working.

You must always remember that studying is your main priority! You must make sure your job fits AROUND your studies. It is not acceptable to miss class because of a job. Students' attendance is monitored, especially if you have a Tier 4 Visa!


Cost of Living

University accommodation prices vary depending on whether you live in an accommodation with an en-suite or shared bathroom, the size of the room and so on. Private accommodation is also available locally, with rent generally averaging approximately £70 per week.

York is a tourist city, so there is a huge variety of choice when it comes to things to see and do and especially with places to eat and drink! There is everything from coffee shops and fast food to many sit-down, gourmet restaurants, so it's always a good idea to read menus before you go into a restaurant.  A meal for 2 people at an average sit-down restaurant can easily come to about £50 if you have a starter, drinks, and a main course. Pub meals are often around £7-£9 each, so a bit cheaper.

Cinema tickets cost around £7 per person now. Theatre tickets can cost from £8-£20, depending on where you sit.

Train travel can be very expensive for longer trips (to London or to Edinburgh, for example) but you can get cheaper tickets if you purchase them as far in advance as possible. Plus, you can apply for a Young Person's Railcard when you arrive, and that will save you up to 33% on train fare! Commuting on a train or bus every day for class can get VERY expensive, so it is important to find accommodation IN YORK for your studies!

York is easy to walk around, but there is also a good bus network which can take you to places like shopping centres outside the city. There are weekly and month passes and student discounts, all of which can save you money on bus travel.

You should plan to spend at least £25 per week on food and groceries, depending on where you shop. Sainsburys and Morrisons are 2 of the large supermarket chains which are located near the University campus. Netto is a smaller discount supermarket. ASDA (discount) and Tesco are the other large chains, but you have to take a bus to get to those shops. There are also many specialist food shops available serving oriental and halal food at varying prices.

You will need to cover the cost of contacting home, which can vary greatly depending on your phone/internet package and where you are contacting. Comparison sites such as Cable.co.uk offer information on the best student internet deals and guidance on making cheap international calls.

There are shops like Boyes and Poundland where you can get very cheap household items like clothes hangers, so many students choose to visit these shops during their first few days in York!

Remember that there are student discounts available for many things. You can apply for an NUS card from the Students' Union, plus many tourist locations and restaurants offer student discounts, so just remember to ask! You will receive more detailed information about shops, restaurants, and things around York in your Arrival Pack at the start of Welcome Week.