An Insiders Guide to Studying Abroad in Australia

Studying in Australia

Lebenshaltungskosten in Australien

Cost of Living in Australia

Are you an international super excited student looking forward to commencing your studies in Australia, but feel intimidated about how you’re going to deal with financial demands? Worry no longer.

The cost of living in Australia is not that high. However, if you lack proper management skills with your finances, things may easily slip off your control. Such financial plan is only built upon genuine information about what to expect far from home in terms of living costs.

International students like you use to ask themselves loads of question relating to their financial demands while studying abroad in Australia, like how much money will I need for accommodation, how much I will be spending on utilities and so on.

If you feel stressed we suggest you don’t beat yourself up. Every student who’s on the verge of studying abroad adventure somehow naturally tends to become sort of predictive, trying to make estimations of what to expect there in the unknown.

To have more realistic expectations below is given a detailed picture of what the cost of living in Australia which will help you see upon this issue as it is: a no big deal at all.

How much does it cost to live in Australia as an international student?

According to the government’s calculations, a foreign student will need at least A$20,290 each year to live in Australia. In fact, this is how much you need to possess in your account in order to be given a student visa.

The total cost of living in Australia depends on several factors. In order to be come up with an averaged cost, we will focus only on those which account for the most part of it.

This includes:

  • Accommodation
  • Food
  • Utilities
  • Transportation
  • Other costs

Note that the following figures are approximations which may change to a small margin.

Accommodation is the highest spending one international student has to deal with while studying in Australia. There are countless apartments to rent in Australia, but since every single cent matters for you as a student, you need to choose wisely and carefully.

The cost of accommodation in Australia changes from place to place. Moreover, in big cities, you may encounter a huge contrast in terms of rent prices from an area to another within the same city. That in mind, it is very important you spend enough time searching for apartments which match your financial capacities.

As you’d expect, it is almost a rule of thumb that urban areas have higher rent prices than apartments located in peripheral areas. In addition to location, size and furnishing will also account for a higher cost. Surely a big apartment with expensive furnishes will have a higher rent price.

The table below shows the rent prices in some of the biggest cities in Australia

City 1-bedroom Apartment (City Center) 1-bedroom Apartment (Periphery) 3-bedroom Apartment (City Center) 3-bedroom Apartment (Periphery)
Sydney A$2,700 A$1,900 A$4,600 A$3,000
Canberra A$1,800 A$1,400 A$3,000 A$2,200
Melbourne A$1,800 A$1,400 A$3,500 A$2,100
Brisbane A$1,700 A$1,200 A$2,900 A$1,800
Adelaide A$1,400 A$1,000 A$2,200 A$1,500
Perth A$1,400 A$1,000 A$2,300 A$1,500

But you’re not left without options at this point. Most international students share apartments with other students, thus saving a lot of money by paying probably less than half of what they would be paying if they would occupy the apartment all by themselves. Join online student forums or read local magazines to see if there are students searching for roommates.

Food

If you’re convinced you cannot cook a single thing you better change your mindset because you’re going to need it while studying in Australia. Surely, you can have a burger at the cost of a few euros but if you want to have a delicious meal at a local restaurant then get ready to unload your wallet. Regularly eating at a restaurant is just beyond the reach of a student’s finances.

On average a meal for one person in an inexpensive restaurant in Australia will cost you A$19. With a bit of luck, you can find a place where the same meal will cost you A$15 (which again is high for a student) while on the other side you can end up eating at a restaurant where you’re going to pay as high as A$25.

If there’s another person joining you at the table the cost of your meal will jump higher. On average, a meal for two persons in a restaurant in Australia costs A$80, ranging from A$60 to A$110. If you decide to have a drink along with that the price will still climb higher. For example, to get a 0.5liter bottle of beer you will need to pay on average A$8 and for a cappuccino, you will have to add around A$4.

We guess that by now you’re convinced that cooking sometimes by yourself is inevitable to you as a student. Don’t worry because most students get used fast to this.

Below is a list of food items and their corresponding prices in Australia

Food Item Averaged Price
White Bread (500g) A$2.50
Milk (1 Liter) A$1.50
Eggs (12) A$4.20
Tomato (1kg) A$4.90
Potato (1kg) A$3.10
Onion (1kg) A$2.50
White Rice (1kg) A$2.60
Chicken Breasts (1kg) A$10.2
Cheese (1kg) A$8.90

Utilities

You will also have to cover utility costs while studying in Australia. On average you will have to pay around A$200 each month for utilities if the apartment you’re renting covers 85 square meters.

Furthermore, you will need to stay connected to the internet in which case you will have to pay around A$70 each month. Normally this will change in a range from A$60 to A$100 depending on the operator and the location where you reside.

Transportation

As a student, you will always be on the move. There are classes and social events you will have to take part and none of them will be adjacent to your house.

Public transportation is not that expensive in Australia. Currently, you can purchase a one-way ticket in local public transport for A$4 on average. If you decide to get a monthly pass it will cost you around A$145 on average.

Traveling on a taxi will surely provide more comfort but it will normally cost you more. On average, taxi’s in Australia charge around A$4 as initial fare and around A$2 per each kilometer.

Biking is yet another brilliant opportunity for you to save some money. In Australia, there is a highly developed system of bike-dedicated streets where you can move easily and safely.

Other costs

There are other living costs to deal with while studying in Australia.

Just to mention a few:

  • Clothes
  • Social Life
  • Sports activities

No matter how much you try you cannot pack everything with yourself. During your time in Australia, the weather may change or your clothes may get old, thus you need to buy new clothes. Clothing in Australia is a bit expensive, but we encourage you to search for much cheaper options.

Below are given the averaged prices for some clothes

Product Averaged Price
1 Pair of Jeans A$97
1 Summer Dress A$60
1 Nike Running Shoes A$130
1 Pair Men Business Shoes A$140

Studying abroad should not be all about getting that degree. Apart from exams and regular classes, students have to relieve the pressure by making a proactive social life or participating in other extracurricular activities.

Australia has a lot to offer to expats and really, it’s a shame if you don’t take advantage of its offerings. There are a lot of activities and social events which worth the cost.

For example, you can decide to spend a weekend outside the city you’re located and this will come at a certain price. Or you can attend a party night with your mates or visit a remarkable place in Australia.

Also, you must always find time for your health by doing sports. If your daily schedule is loaded find at least 30 minutes to spend at the gym. A monthly fee for a gym membership in Australia is around A$60.