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How much does it cost to study in Canada


The Cost of Studying in Canada


Canada has made a name for itself as one of the top locations for international students looking for a top-notch education and exposure to a variety of cultures. So naturally, Canada draws thousands of students from around the world each year. Over a quarter of a million actually!!


But how much, on average, are all these students paying to pursue this Canadian Dream? Well, Thrivve decided to do a breakdown just for you ๐Ÿ˜‰. We included as much information as possible for you to have a better idea of all the expenses, and we mean ALL of them, not just the academic expenses. Take a look!


๐Ÿซ Tuition Fees

The cost of tuition varies greatly based on the program, university, level of study, province of your choosing, etc. However, we can tell you for a fact that tuition costs for international students will be greater than for domestic students.

Graduate programs can cost between CAD 25,000 and CAD 45,000 annually, while undergraduate programs typically cost between CAD 20,000 and CAD 35,000. However, tuition costs for professional programs like medical, engineering, or business may be significantly more. If you want a more economical option, try looking for a Co-Op program in a private college, price ranges average usually between CAD 9,000 and CAD 14,000 a year.

๐Ÿ›๏ธ Accommodation

An international student's budget includes a sizeable portion of housing expenses. The costs vary according to the institution's location and the type of housing selected.

While on-campus residence halls may be more convenient, they can also be more expensive, with annual costs ranging from CAD 8,000 to CAD 15,000. Off-campus housing choices, such as shared apartments or homestays, can offer more economical options, costing between CAD 700 and CAD 1,800 per month. This varies a lot depending on which city you are located in, so keep that in mind.

๐Ÿ“š Books and Supplies

When it comes to educational materials, you should prepare to spend between CAD 1,000 and CAD 2,000 on books and supplies per academic year, although this depends on the program of your choosing.

๐Ÿฅ Health insurance

This is a must for all international students. Like, it is literally a requirement for you to be able to get a study permit. You need to have health insurance. Some universities offer their own plans but you can always opt to go for private insurance. The cost? Around 600 to 800 CAD per year.

๐Ÿ” Food and Personal Expenses

Depending on one's preferences and eating routines, the typical monthly cost for shopping and eating out might range from 300 to 600 CAD (even more if you live in Toronto or Vancouver). So make sure to include personal spending in your budgets, such as clothing, entertainment, and other little purchases.

๐ŸšŒ Transportation

Although some universities offer their own transportation services, most international students need to rely on public transit to move around. Depending on the location, you can expect to spend around 600 to 1,500 CAD per year.

๐Ÿช™ Miscellaneous fees

International students may also encounter various incidental fees related to student services, student unions, and facility access. These fees can add up to approximately 500 to 1,000 CAD per academic year.

โœˆ๏ธ Flights

This weโ€™ll leave as homework for you ๐Ÿ˜‰ as prices for flights are constantly changing. However, we wanted to mention it for you to consider when planning your budget. Are you going back home for the holidays? Are your friends getting married? There are always reasons why youโ€™ll need to buy a round trip. But, as a tip, try to book your flight at least 6 months in advance.

So whatโ€™s the grand total? Letโ€™s put together an example:

  • Tuition Fees: 16,000 CAD (Co-Op program)

  • Accommodation: 18,000 CAD (Private suite, off campus)

  • Health Insurance: 600 CAD

  • Books and Supplies: 1,200 CAD

  • Transportation: 1,500 CAD

  • Food and Personal Expenses: 8,000 CAD

  • Miscellaneous Fees: 1,000 CAD

Grand TOTAL: 46,300 CAD per year


Although this number might be scary to look at, remember that there are thousands of us who have gone through this experience and successfully reached the other side. You can do it! We are cheering for you and will support you along the way.


Join our Slack community to meet other students or future students like you!


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