Living in the UK
Cost of living in London varies greatly, depending on lifestyle and choices. There are many articles on the internet regarding this. The breakdown below is based on typical questions asked by and experiences made by our students.
The average rent for a room in a shared house or flat varies between 70GBP and 120GBP per week, though depending on the quality of the accommodation it can be higher. When getting information on rooms for rent, remember that every month is 4.333 weeks in duration. This means that you must to multiple the cost per week by 4.333 to get the exact price of the monthly rent due.
You can expect to pay around 7GBP to 12GBP per week for utilities such as water, electricity and gas, although they may be included in the monthly rent, if the rent is quoted as 'inclusive' or 'incl'.
Please note that a deposit is usually paid alongside the initial month's rent and it is usually the equivalent to one month's rent. It can be totally or partially refunded at the end of the contract, since the landlord may keep back some of it for repairs / cleaning to be done to the flat /house.
Full-time students do not pay Council Tax in most councils. However, it is paid by each person living in the flat/house who is not a full-time student.
A TV Licence costs around 100GBP a year per household. It is illegal to have a Television in a house without a valid TV Licence, and if caught the people living in the house are forced to pay a heavy fine.
Remember, if there is no washing machine in your rented house or flat, you will need to budget to take your clothes and linen to the Laundrette.
Costs for transport in London vary depending on the number of zones covered in the journey. You can buy tickets for one or more zones, either for the journey or daily/weekly/monthly Travelcards. Full time students can apply for a Student Rate Photocard, which means you can then buy discounted Travelcards.
Food costs vary significantly among places. A light lunch of a sandwich and drink may cost around 3GBP but a hot lunch may cost around 4GBP. Other cafes and restaurants will be more expensive. Food and household items may cost around 80GBP per person per month.
You can find many different activities to do and places to visit in London. However, the most popular activity is meeting friends to drink beer in a pub. The following are some costs related to entertainment and tourism:
- Pint of Beer/Glass of Wine: £3GBP
- Cinema: 4GBP-8GBP depending on where the cinema is and what time you go.
- Museums: free entry
For more information about entertainment and tourism in London and the UK, visit
Please note that London residents, including full-time students, are covered by the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK. This service is free and does not include dental care. It is important to register with a Medical Centre / GP, in case of illness whilst studying in the UK.
Based on the various expenses in living in London whilst studying, the estimated total living expenses for students is around 700 GBP per month. Obviously, any expensive purchases or nights out on the town will increase this.