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Cost of Studying and Living in Canada for International Students

Tuition Fees

The biggest expense for international students are the tuition fees. Depending on whether you choose a college or university in Canada, this
will drastically change how much you’ll be paying for tuition fees every year on average. If you want to go to a college, you’ll be paying about $13,000 to $17,000 per year as an international student. Though if you want to go to university and take an undergrad program, you’d be paying around $20,000 to $35,000 a year on average.

If for instance you attend one of the top schools in Canada, let’s say the University of British Columbia or the University of Toronto, you’ll be paying about $50,000 a year or more and regardless of whether you choose to go to a college or university, you’d need to pay about $200 for a language exam just to submit an application as it typically requires a language exam like IELTS. On top of that, you’d be paying about $100 to $200 for an application, just to apply.

If you’re wondering on whether to attend college or university in Canada, why don’t you spend the next 10 seconds deciding.

College or University in Canada?
1. college is 30% to 50% cheaper than a typical university.
2. College gets you to your goals faster. A 2 year college diploma has the same level of preparation as a four-year university degree.
3. College makes you understand whether you’ve chosen the right career without a huge time commitment but of course you have to go to university if you’re interested in something super regulated like being a doctor or a lawyer. But if you’re interested in it marketing, business, design, college is more than enough for you.

If you want to take a master’s or a PhD program in Canada, you might be able to get funding. Though it’s really challenging and the competition is fierce, but you still will be able to get funding.

There is one big situation that some people don’t consider and get trapped in. But before we explain, we need to ask you three questions.
Do you want to cover your living expenses while studying in Canada by working?

Do you want to become a permanent resident in Canada after your studies?

Do you want to build a thriving career or business beyond your permanent residency?

Let’s explain why these colleges, some of them not all might put all of the things we just listed out of your reach. The biggest issue here is the location. Say you attend a small school somewhere in Prince Edward island, there’s going to be very little opportunities for you to find part-time jobs and then full-time jobs after studies. And for you to become a permanent resident, you need to find employment.

Also, for you to become successful, thrive and have a good business, it might be just challenging to find the right people, opportunities and the right network for you to grow. That’s why we recommend if you want to choose a school in Canada, do not let that school be in a city with a population smaller than 300,000 people.

Living expenses
This is very different and personal to everybody depending on your standards. Some people can survive off $350 a month and that’s everything from food to accommodation. Say you rent a two bedroom apartment in Halifax for $1200 a month and you split it with my friends so it comes down to $600 and you pay $55 a month for wi-fi that’s also shared.

Next, you pay about $20 to $25 a month for electricity and other utilities like heating and water. Sometimes they are included in the rent. Price of food is another expense that you have to take into consideration. Say you pay about $300 a month for food and if you want to save money, go to Costco once a month and just buy food in bulk. It saves me time and money as you don’t need to go grocery shopping every week and be tempted to buy more.

The third pillar of your living expenses is going out and there are two big factors as to why you need keep yourself entertained, first is your mental health. It’s just healthier to see other people and have fun.
Second, it’s networking. Typically, to get opportunities, you need to learn how to connect with other people. To do that, you meet them in informal settings like at restaurants, coffee shops. So typically if you are on a budget, you should spend about $200 to $300 a month on restaurants and coffee

Fourth most important part of your living expenses is your health insurance. Typically, you need to pay for the first year and once you’ve lived in your province for over a year, you can get free medical insurance. All you need do is you would just need to pay for dental costs and your eye doctor. But for the
whole thing, it’s $800 a year which is about $70 a month.

In total, you should be spending about $1200 to $1500 per month on your living expenses. Honestly, this is very little compared to some other people, but if you are on a budget, this should work perfectly for you.

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