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The top 4 most expensive cities for international students are all in the U.S. – but which one’s #1?

The most expensive city in the world to be an international student costs an average of US$5,810 per month, according to a new report by Savills, a global real estate services provider.

The report put Boston in the top spot, which comes as no surprise, as the bustling city is one of the most popular cities in the U.S. for graduates.

The average cost of renting a two-bedroom apartment in the Massachusetts capital comes up to a boggling US$2,821 per month, according to personal-finance site SmartAsset

Coming in second is New York (US$5,715), followed by San Francisco (US$5,626), Chicago (US$5,551), and London (US$4,672) to round off the top five.

Top 10 Most Expensive Cities for International Students
# City Total average cost (US$)
1. Boston (US) 5,810
2. New York (US) 5,715
3. San Francisco (US) 5,626
4. Chicago (US) 5,551
5. London (UK) 4,672
6. Sydney (AUS) 4,352
7. Melbourne (AUS) 3,752
8. Madrid (SPA) 3,721
9. Bristol (UK) 3,431
10. Manchester (UK) 2,982

However, Savills found that London has the most expensive purpose-built student accommodation in the world.

Out of all the cities on the list, only international students studying in Shanghai, Berlin, Beijing, and Munich pay the same amount in tuition fees as domestic students, as all students are charged the same rate.


Source: Savills.

Marcus Roberts, director of student investment and development at Savills, said in a statement: “Many students still choose to study in the U.S., UK, and Australia despite the expense due to the fact that courses are taught in English and that these locations are home to many institutions that appear at top of the rankings tables.

“The old order, however, is changing. With greater commercial focus, more courses taught in English and alignment to the bachelor system, European universities are on the rise.”

Paul Tostevin, associate director of Savills research, added: “Although at the moment the majority of students are still heading to more expensive institutions, we expect the trickle of students choosing value over traditional reputation to increase – particularly when so many of the universities in these cheaper cities now have the credentials to rival the old bastions of education.” 

Calculating the total based on the average cost of tuition, accommodation, and living expenses in each city, the report also compares the cost for domestic students to that of international students.

Image via Unsplash

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