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A Complete Overview of the Cost of Higher Education in Singapore

Dec 14, 2023

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A dynamic Southeast Asian country and a leading financial hub with a highly capitalized economy, Singapore is also globally renowned for its higher education. This top study destination in Asia provides a transformative experience that offers world-class education, a multicultural environment, and suitable job prospects. With prestigious national institutions like the National University of Singapore (NUS) topping the QS World University Rankings, Singapore remains a top choice for international students seeking academic excellence. In addition to this, the country also hosts a lot of foreign university campuses. Thus, providing quality education at a budgeted cost as the cost of living in Singapore is relatively economical than many other leading study destinations.

When it comes to studying abroad, we understand that the first question that arises in every aspirant's mind is the cost of education. Understanding the intricate financial aspects of studying in Singapore involves meticulous research as it encompasses numerous pre-arrival and post-arrival costs.  So, to save your precious time and energy, here’s a detailed guide to the cost of Study in Singapore. Keep reading to find out all the financial aspects and their estimated costs that an international student might encounter. 

Cost of Education in Singapore for International Students 

The cost of education in Singapore can broadly be classified into two categories: Pre-arrival Costs and Post-arrival Costs. There are several components involved in these categories. Let’s discuss them individually ahead.

Pre-Arrival Costs

1. Language Proficiency and Standardised Test Fees

Scores of English proficiency tests and standardised tests are essential for the application process. Widely accepted English language proficiency tests in Singaporean institutions are IELTS & TOEFL. Whereas, for standardised tests, GRE or GMAT scores are required depending upon the course specialization. So, you will have to incorporate these test fees and their coaching costs (if required) in your pre-arrival expenses.  

2. University Application Fees

Depending on the university and institution, the university application fees vary from SGD 25 to SGD 489 per application.

3. Initial Tuition Fee Deposit

As per the guidelines given in your university offer letter, you will have to pay a part of your annual tuition fees to secure your seat and apply for your student visa. You will be delighted to know that Singapore offers cheaper tuition fee options than many other countries, this also includes MBA in Singapore.

4. Visa Application Fees

For a Singaporean student visa, you will have to pay an application fee of SGD 90.

5. Travel Expenses to Singapore

Flight costs vary but can range from SGD 200 to SGD 1,000 depending on the country of origin.

These are the important pre-arrival costs, that you will have to pay before reaching your study destination. But this is the end, there are numerous post-arrival costs as well. So, let’s discuss them individually ahead in the article. 

Post-Arrival Expenses

1. Accommodation

When it comes to the cost of living, accommodation is a major expense that you will have to bear when it comes to living in Singapore. However, you will find numerous options as per your budget and living preferences.  Accommodation options that you can explore in Singapore are on-campus accommodation, university hostels, off-campus hostels or PGs, rented apartments, and homestays. The cost range for these options can be anywhere between SGD 400 to SGD 2,000 per month.

2. Food Expenses

Monthly groceries might on average cost you SGD 200 to SGD 400, while dining out can cost SGD 10 to SGD 30 per meal.

3. Daily Transportation

Singapore has a very well-connect transportation system. Public transport passes for students can cost around SGD 80 to SGD 120 per month.

4. Utility Bills

Utilities like electricity, water, internet bills, etc can sum up to SGD 100 to SGD 250 monthly.

5. Study Materials & Related Expenses

Even though universities provide adequate study materials, access to libraries and other resources, you will still have to pay for stationeries, books beyond the campus and study tours. Approximately SGD 50 to SGD 150 per semester will be needed for books and supplies.

6. Miscellaneous Expenses: 

Apart from all the anticipated expenses, you will also come across some unexpected expenses. Additionally, there will also be some personal expenses that they have to take care of while living in the country. Allowance for contingencies and personal expenses should be kept from SGD 200 to SGD 500 monthly.

Effective Ways to Reduce the Cost of Studying in Singapore 

  • Scholarships and Grants: Explore university scholarships and external grants.
  • Part-Time Work: Permissible part-time jobs can contribute to your living expenses.
  • Financial Planning: Create a detailed budget, track expenses meticulously and adhere to your budget.
  • Use Student Discounts: Utilize student discounts for transport, entertainment, and other services.
  • Economical Living Choices: Consider shared accommodations and budget-friendly lifestyle choices.

This is everything that you must know about the financial aspects of studying in Singapore. Understanding the financial intricacies of studying in Singapore demands meticulous planning and resourcefulness. Initially, the cost might seem daunting but strategic budgeting and utilising available opportunities can significantly ease the financial burden for international students seeking academic excellence in Singapore, one of the best Asian countries to study.

In the pursuit of your academic dreams in Singapore, KC Overseas Education can be your comprehensive support system. Our suite of services, encompassing counselling, university selection, application guidance, visa assistance, and pre-arrival support, ensures a smooth transition for students aspiring to study in Singapore. So, if you are planning to study in Singapore for the upcoming academic intake, then we recommend you to get started with your application process at the earliest to make the most of your higher education in the country. Connect with our team today!

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