Study in China: Housing & Living Costs

One main reason to pick China as your next academic destination is the affordable housing and living costs, compared to countries like the UK or USA. The cost of living in China is student friendly as you will have the opportunity to choose among numerous cities depending on your budget, university preference and lifestyle. 

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The most popular student cities in China include Shanghai (the largest city), Beijing (the cultural center of the country), Shenzhen (The Asian Silicon Valley) or Hong Kong (The trade and investment center). Smaller cities such as Chengdu or Hangzhou are famous among international students as well. 

As a result, it would be good to plan your monthly budget ahead in order to be prepared. A popular option as an international student is to choose to stay in student dormitories offered by the university, where the cost ranges among 150-400 USD per month. Renting a flat in the city you are studying alone or with a roommate is also an option, but keep in mind that you are expected to pay more, from 300-1000 USD per month. 

The location of the apartment and the city plays a big role in your expenses. Another great option to reduce your cost of living in China would be to live with a Chinese family during your studies. The prices range from 300-550 USD per month and it would be a great opportunity to meet new people, indulge into Chinese culture and (why not?) practise your Chinese language skills!

The cost of living in China differs depending on the region you are living in and the cost of food, monthly rent, utilities and transportation is slightly higher in the bigger cities. For example, in metropolitan big cities, your monthly costs could be around 850 USD, while in smaller ones up to 550 USD. Take advantage of your student discount while using the great services of the Chinese public transport system which will only cost you around 20 USD per month.

Save some money in advance per semester for your study materials which will cost around 50 USD depending on your study major and also invest in a medical insurance program that meets your budget criteria and needs. 

Average living costs in China:


20.00 ¥


26.00 ¥


7.00 ¥

Cinema Ticket

45. 00 ¥

Monthly rent

from 1.900 ¥

Monthly Transport

from 121 ¥

Study in China - Overview

Thousands of international students choose China as their study abroad destination every year. Click here to learn why.

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Student Visas

Learn more about the Chinese student visa process, and all the information you need to enter the country, depending on your citizen status. You will also be required to bring certain documents with you in China, like your medical records, which we cover as well.

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Education System 

Want to learn more about how the higher education system works in China? China is becoming a popular destination for international students, given its top ranked universities, culture and ancient history. Find out more about the Chinese education system below!

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Tuition Fees & Scholarships

Tuition fees in China may vary, depending on the level of education. Both international and European students are expected to pay tuition fees in China. No worries though, there are plenty of scholarship opportunities available from the Chinese government.

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Language & Culture

China is known for its rich history, financial power and culture. Find out more about what the country offers in terms of language, culture, and many more!

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Application Process

All countries have specific admissions requirements for students to gain acceptance into a university. Learn more about the ins and outs of admission to programs in China, and what you need to apply, depending on your citizenship.

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Ready to look at education in China? Use our search engine to find and compare top programs in China today!

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Last update: 28 Jun 2021


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