Australia has fascinated students for a variety of reasons, the topmost being the lifestyle it promises. With one of the best higher education systems in the world, the Universities of Australia have seen an absolute increase in the numbers of international students in recent years. Knowing the average living costs of a country is an important part of your financial preparation. Parents and students should be aware that the expenses of studying in Australia will depend on your education provider, the level of study you choose, Bachelors or Masters, and the location of your university in Australia.
It is understood that an individual may need approximately $20,000 each year and an average family needs more than $50,000 a year to get by in Australia.

The cost of living may be higher or lower depending on where you live and this estimation doesn’t include the cost of any social, sporting or other recreational activities you might want to be part of, or any health or emergency costs not covered by your private health insurance or Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). For your reference, here are some of the costs associated with living and studying in Australia (all costs are in Australian dollars).

Tuition fees vary depending on the discipline you choose to study, the degree level, and the university in which you enrol.
Tuition for international students:
• Bachelor’s degrees: between 20,000 – 45,000 AUD/year
• Master’s and PhD degrees: between 22,000 – 50,000 AUD/year
• Doctoral Degree – 18,000 – 42,000 AUD/year
Most affordable universities in Australia:
• Flinders University – tuition fees start at 10,350 AUD/year
• IPAG Business School – tuition fees start at 13,000 AUD/year
• University of Wollongong – tuition fees start at 18,800 AUD/year
• University of New England – tuition fees start at 19,100 AUD/year
• Victoria University – tuition fees start at 21,800 AUD/year
Tuition fees at top-ranked universities:
• Australian National University – tuition between 28,000 and 48,500 AUD/year
• University of Sydney – tuition between 36,000 and 57,000 AUD/year
• University of Queensland – tuition between 2,500 and 46,000 AUD/year
At these top universities, some Business and Medicine programmes cost over 60,000 AUD/year.

Starting in October 2019, the 12-month living costs are:
• For students or guardians – AUD$21,041
• For partners coming with you – AUD$7,362
• For a child coming with you – AUD$3,152

Average budget you’ll need for some of the most popular student cities in Australia:
• Sydney: starting at 1,900 AUD/month
• Adelaide: starting at 1,300 AUD/month
• Brisbane: starting at 1,400 AUD/month
• Melbourne: starting at 1,500 AUD/month
• Canberra: starting at 1,400 AUD/month

• Hostels and Guesthouses – $90 to $150 per week
• Shared Rental – $85 to $215 per week
• On campus – $100 to $280 per week
• Homestay – $235 to $325 per week
• Rental – $175 to $450 per week

Other living expenses
• Groceries and eating out – $80 to $280 per week
• Gas, electricity – $35 to $150 per week
• Phone and Internet – $15 to $55 per week
• Public transport – $20 to $60 per week
• Car (after purchase) – $150 to $260 per week
• Entertainment – $80 to $150 per week

As compared to other countries, Australian Immigration Laws are comparatively easy when it comes to working while studying. The student visa enables you to work up to 40 hours per fortnight during the semester, which allows you to earn an income to cover your living expenditures while still leaving sufficient time for your studies. During semester breaks students are allowed to work for unlimited hours.

A fortnight refers to a period of 14 days starting on a Monday and ending on the Sunday of the following week. Ideally, a student looking for continuous part-time work must limit their working to about 20 hours a week. The hours can be divided as per student’s convenience. For instance, a student may work for 15 and 25 hours or 10 hours in week one and 30 hours in week 2 or respectively. Students must note that if a student works for 30 hours in week 2, then he/she can only work for 10 hours in the following week or else the condition of 40 hours in a fortnight would be violated – which in turn can lead to cancellation of Visas.

• The Australian Home Affairs website covers in more detail how to work out how much money you might need to cover the costs of your stay in Australia as an international student.
• The Insider Guides ‘Cost of Living Calculator’ is also a useful, practical tool to help estimate your cost of living in Australia
• If you experience financial trouble while in Australia, talk to your institution’s international student support and student accommodation services staff for assistance.

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