Cost Of Living In London For Students [Updated Prices 2024]

cost of living in London

The world out of our comfort zone has always either fascinated or scared us. Nonetheless, we have always dreamed about visiting, studying and living in other countries all by ourselves. Whenever studying abroad is mentioned, students usually have London in their top 5 cities to live in. Something about London has always fascinated beings from around the world. While we’re aware that London is the international city of choice for many students, it’s also important to know how expensive is the city.

Cost Of Living Calculator

DescriptionCost (£)
Total Cost of Accommodation100
Total Cost of Transport50
Total Cost of Utilities30
Total Cost of Food70
Total Estimated Cost250

On average, the cost of living in London for students ranges between £2,300 and £2,500 per month. There are a variety of ways to save money and stick to your budget, which is why it is essential to know your expenses and see what consumes most of your budget. The cost of living in London for students can vary depending on lifestyle and accommodation choices. However, international students can expect to pay an average of £27,600 – £30,000 yearly to cover other miscellaneous expenses apart from the fees.

London living costs breakdown

Average Living Cost in London For Students

As a student seeking to pursue education in London, here is a brief understanding of the various expenses that you will have to keep in mind:

ExpenseMonthly Cost (£)
Off Campus Accommodation£1220
On Campus Accommodation£1200
Total Cost of Living with Off-Campus Accommodation£2,216
Total Cost of Living with On-Campus Accommodation£2,196

Below is a breakdown of the cost of living in the London for Indian Students

ExpenseMonthly Cost (INR)
Off Campus Accommodation₹128,238
On Campus Accommodation₹126,136
Total Cost of Living with Off-Campus Accommodation₹232,931
Total Cost of Living with On-Campus Accommodation₹230,829

*The accommodation costs are dynamic in nature and are based on property availability

London Accommodation

ParticularStudent AccommodationPrivate AccommodationUniversity Accommodation
Cost305 GBP/Per Week375 GBP/Per Week + Utility bills (∼ 69 GBP per week)300 GBP/Per week
SafetyThese are gated communities with utmost safety & all facilities included like CCTV , biometric entrance, etcDepends on the landlord and areaThese are on the university campus with all the safety precautions
Utility BillsIncludedNot IncludedIncluded
Home InsuranceIncluded in rent200 GBP per yearIncluded in rent
Proximity UniversityWalking distance to campusDepends on areaInside/nearby Universities
Other AmenitiesMostly all amenities are included like wifi, microwave, electric Stove, fridge etc.Based on landlord/locationMostly all amenities are included like wifi, microwave, electric Stove, fridge etc.

Note – Student housing is budget-friendly as it covers utilities, which is priced at £276 to £300 per month. That is around 10-15% of total living costs.

Cost Of Accommodation In London 

The cost of accommodation in London can vary widely based on factors such as location, type of housing, and amenities provided. Off-campus accommodation will cost you around £760, while on-campus accommodation will cost around £1200. Central London tends to be more expensive compared to the outskirts. Students can choose from options like university halls, shared apartments, or private rentals. Rent constitutes a significant portion of the overall expenses, and it’s essential to consider proximity to the university, transportation costs, and local amenities when making housing decisions. Additionally, the type of housing – whether it’s a studio, shared flat, or a room in a student residence – influences the overall cost. While some students prefer the convenience of living closer to the city centre, others may opt for more affordable options in the suburbs. It’s crucial for students to carefully weigh their preferences and budget constraints when navigating the diverse accommodation landscape in London.

Is It Expensive In London For International Students?

The cost of living in London for students is expensive and any frivolity in money management can have consequences. It is called a walking city because cab fares are high. If you are living as a couple in London and want to go on a date, then two movie tickets will cost you £25, play tickets will cost you around £100, dinner for two at a pub will cost you £33 and a nice Italian restaurant dinner in the ex-pat area £63. If you are a student who happens to be a gym buff, you will have to consider the cost of a gym membership, special requirements of any diet and any extra proteins you require in your monthly cost of living in London for students. Gym membership in London will cost around £74 monthly in the business district. Pursuing any hobbies or activities needs to be thoroughly thought out and planned because they tend to be a significant setback on your budget.

Why Is London Expensive?

London is expensive because it is the financial capital of the world and has the headquarters of many major businesses. One of the reasons for London being the financial capital of the world is that its market captures both eastern and western time zones, which makes it very profitable to businesses. The booming industry market and the number of visitors every year make the companies flock to London, which increases the cost of properties in the city and the cost of living in London for students.

Depending on where a student lives in the city, the cost of living in London for students changes accordingly. The cost of living in central London is higher than that of living further away from the city centre. Student housing in London is relatively cheaper so around £408 to £480 per month is often enough. There are many benefits to living in PBSAs. Generally, all the utility cost is included in the rent, and some also offer laundry service, further reducing your monthly expense.

196 Student Accommodation Options in London Starting from £140/week!

How To Save Money As A Student In London?

Saving money as a student in London can be challenging, given the city’s relatively high cost of living. However, with careful planning and budgeting, it’s possible to manage expenses and even save some money. Here are some tips:


Consider living in student halls or affordable student accommodations closer to your university.


Take advantage of student discounts on public transportation. Walk or cycle when possible to save on transportation costs. Explore monthly or annual travel passes for additional savings.

Food and Groceries

Cook at home instead of dining out frequently. Plan meals, make shopping lists, and take advantage of discounts and sales at supermarkets. Consider joining a local food co-op or purchasing groceries in bulk to save money.

Books and Study Materials

Buy used or digital textbooks instead of new ones. Utilize the university library and online resources to access study materials for free.


Be mindful of energy consumption to reduce utility bills. Consider sharing utility costs with flatmates to save money. Go for UniAcco’s student accommodations as these student residences include utility bills inclusive of the property pricing to save additional costs.

Part-Time Work

Explore part-time job opportunities that fit with your academic schedule. Look for on-campus jobs or positions that offer flexible hours.

Cost Of Transport In London

The cost of living in London for students in terms of transport is approximately £100 to £200 monthly for the tube and overground rail in London and about £60 for a bus and tram pass. You can buy an oyster card which is widely used in the city, recharge the card swipe and go. If you want to explore the UK, you can also invest in a card for national rails. Cab fares in London are on the higher spectrum, the base fare is £4, and it costs £2.55 for every km.

For students in London, managing transportation costs is an essential aspect of budgeting, with expenses cost of transport in london typically ranging from £1,200 to £2,400 Yearly. To address this, the Student Oyster card presents a cost-effective solution, offering a 30% discount on adult-rate fares for travelcards and bus & tram pass season tickets. This card not only facilitates easier budget management but also promotes convenient and contactless travel. Applying for the Student Oyster card is a simple process and, apart from financial savings, it also brings additional discounts and contributes to environmental sustainability by encouraging public transport use.

For Indian students studying in London, managing transportation costs is a crucial part of their budgeting. The annual expenses for transportation in London typically range from ₹8,984 to ₹12,683 making it important to plan and allocate funds accordingly.

Cost Of Food In London

London’s living cost for international students varies when it comes to food; depending on your choice of either cooking on your own or eating out. If you choose to cook, you will need approximately £40 weekly for essential groceries. If you decide to eat out, a meal at an inexpensive restaurant will cost you around £15, a meal at Mcdonald’s or a similar franchise will cost you about £6 and a three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant will cost you about £55, in addition to daily essentials like milk, water, and some munchies. A regular cappuccino will cost you around £2.83.

The monthly cost of food for students in London can fluctuate based on their lifestyle and preferences, but typically fall within the £300 to £500 range. To cut costs, students can opt for home-cooked meals, shop at affordable supermarkets, make use of student discounts, and strategically plan their meals.

Taxes In The UK

Income tax and National Insurance apply to students too. Still, a certain amount of money needs to be earned before that. The income-tax-free amount for a student is called personal allowance and any money earned above it is taxable, which is 20% for earnings between £12500 to £50000 yearly and 40% for any earnings above £46350. National Insurance is 12% for incomes between £166 and £962 per week and 2% above £892.

Cost Of Studying In London

Studying in London, a vibrant hub of knowledge and history can be an enriching experience, but it comes with a price tag. In 2024, expect tuition fees to be between £10,000 and £38,000 per year, depending on your chosen subject and university. Humanities and social sciences are generally less expensive, while medical and specialized fields like arts take a bigger bite out of your budget. Accommodation, your biggest hurdle, can be tackled by sharing flats, opting for university halls, or venturing further zones for cheaper rents. Groceries, transport, and social outings add to the equation, so budgeting and smart spending become crucial allies. However, don’t let the numbers deter you. Scholarships, bursaries, and part-time work opportunities can ease the financial burden. Remember, London offers invaluable internships, a diverse cultural tapestry, and world-class education. Weigh the costs against the potential rewards, and if London calls to your intellect and spirit, craft a realistic budget and embrace the adventure.

Cost Of Health Insurance In London

If you have a student visa for a course lasting six months or longer, you’ll only need the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS), which currently costs £352.50 per year for students. This grants you access to the NHS for the duration of your visa. If your course is shorter than six months or you’re not a student, you’ll need private health insurance. The cost of health insurance in London can vary based on factors such as the type of coverage, your age, health condition, and the insurance provider. 

Factors Influencing Cost Of Living In London

The cost of living in London for students can be influenced by various factors. Here are some key factors that contribute to the overall expenses:


The cost of housing is a significant portion of the overall expenses. It varies depending on the location, type of accommodation (student halls, shared apartments, or private rentals), and the facilities provided.


Different areas in London have varying costs associated with them. Central London tends to be more expensive than the outskirts. Consider proximity to your university, transportation costs, and local amenities when choosing accommodation.


The cost of travel within London, whether by bus, tube, or train, can add up. Students often benefit from discounted transportation passes, but it’s still an important factor to consider. Choosing accommodation closer to the university can reduce transportation costs.

Food and Groceries

The cost of dining out in London can be high, so cooking at home or opting for budget-friendly eateries can help manage expenses.The cost of groceries can vary, and shopping at affordable supermarkets can make a difference.


Gas, electricity, water, and internet bills contribute to the overall cost. Consider the energy efficiency of your accommodation and shared responsibilities with flatmates.

Tuition Fees

The cost of education itself, including tuition fees and any additional academic expenses, is a significant factor. Be aware of the financial requirements and potential sources of funding.


International students may need to pay for health insurance, and even if you’re eligible for the National Health Service (NHS), there might be additional costs for certain medical services.

Entertainment and Socializing

Budget for leisure activities, social events, and occasional entertainment. London offers a vibrant social scene, but costs can vary.

Books and Study Materials

The cost of textbooks and other study materials should be considered in your budget.

Personal Expenses

Miscellaneous expenses such as clothing, toiletries, and other personal items should be factored into your budget.

Job Opportunities In London

London offers a diverse job market with opportunities in various sectors. Some popular job opportunities in London include:

Finance and Banking

London is a global financial hub, home to numerous banks, investment firms, and financial institutions. Opportunities exist in areas such as investment banking, asset management, and financial consulting.

Technology and IT

The city has a thriving technology sector with opportunities in software development, data analysis, cybersecurity, and IT consulting. Tech hubs like Shoreditch and Stratford attract many startups and established tech companies.

Professional Services

London has a strong presence of professional services firms, including law firms, accounting companies, and consultancy firms. Job opportunities exist for lawyers, accountants, consultants, and other professionals.

Healthcare and Life Sciences

The healthcare sector in London is diverse, encompassing hospitals, research institutions, and pharmaceutical companies. Job opportunities range from healthcare professionals to researchers and administrators.

Media and Creative Industries

London is a global centre for media and creative industries, including film, television, advertising, and design. Opportunities exist for journalists, editors, designers, and creative professionals.

Hospitality and Tourism

With its vibrant cultural scene and historical landmarks, London attracts millions of tourists each year. Job opportunities can be found in hotels, restaurants, event management, and tourism-related services.


London has a bustling retail sector with opportunities in high-end fashion, department stores, and speciality shops. Retail jobs range from sales and customer service roles to management positions.

Education and Academia

The city is home to numerous universities and educational institutions, providing opportunities for academics, researchers, and administrative staff.

Construction and Real Estate

London’s ever-changing skyline and urban development create opportunities in construction, architecture, and real estate. Roles include architects, engineers, project managers, and real estate agents.

Transport and Logistics

With its extensive public transportation system and global connectivity, there are opportunities in logistics, supply chain management, and transportation services.

FAQs on Cost of Living in London

Q1. How expensive is it to study in London?

Ans: London is considered to be fairly expensive for international students in particular when compared to other cities in the UK. However, with good planning comes good management of finances. Tuition fees aside, overseas students also have to look at rent, utility bills, travel & transport, food & living, and other miscellaneous expenses.

Q2. Where do students live in London?

Ans: Camden, Tower Bridge, Bermondsey, and Shoreditch are amongst the most common places in London flocked by international students.

Q3. Can international students work in London?

Ans: If you are an international student enrolled in a full-time undergraduate or postgraduate degree programme, you are permitted to work for a total of 20 hours per week during term time. This limit is increased to full-time hours during your university’s registered holiday days.

Q4. Is public transport easily available in London?

Ans: The London Underground, or Tube, is the city’s metro system.  eleven Tube lines totally, that connect plenty of the city’s neighbourhoods and are especially useful in central London. With simplistic transfers, it’s a relatively easy way to get around.

Q5. How much is student accommodation cost in London?

Ans: The student accommodation costs in London can vary depending on whether students choose off-campus or on-campus options. Off-campus accommodation typically costs around £408 per month, while on-campus accommodation is slightly higher at £480 per month.

Q6. How much money do you need to live comfortably in London?

The amount of money needed to live comfortably in London can vary widely depending on individual preferences, lifestyle, and circumstances. London is known for its relatively high cost of living, including expenses such as accommodation, transportation, food, and entertainment.

Q7. Is 1200 pounds enough to live in London?

The adequacy of £1,200 per month for living in London depends on several factors, including your lifestyle, accommodation choices, spending habits, and any specific financial obligations you may have. While £1,200 is considered a modest budget for living in London, it is still possible to cover essential expenses with careful planning.

We hope you enjoyed this blog on the ‘Cost Of Living In London For Students – Complete Guide 2022.’ To know more about related fields do check out our other blogs –

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