How Should An International Student Work Out Their Budget?

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When an international student is planning to make the move to study in Australia, there will always be a lot of considerations to make before they come over, with many of these decisions are in fact tied to one big decision: budget. Working out a budget is a very important step, as it can help dictate what is spent where in a way that allows the time stayed in Australia to be as carefree and pleasant as possible. In this article, we take a look at a few things you need to keep in mind when creating your budget to ensure you have all bases covered.

Australian international student budget basics

If you’re already stressed about your budget due to your expensive University of Melbourne on campus accommodation, you’re certainly not the only one! A budget for international students can vary wildly, but it’s good to think about it costing between $350 and $400 a week, so if this also includes your accommodation, you should be in the clear. Ideally, your accommodation should cost anywhere between $100 and $220 a week, with the latter being quite common in private student accommodation, which leaves a few hundred dollars for food, transport, and any phone and internet costs you might have. What you spend can vary wildly depending on location and lifestyle, so you shouldn’t take anecdotal advice too close to heart, though. It’s also worth touching on the tax system in Australia – here we use a Goods and Services Tax (GST), which is a 10% Value Added Tax that is added on top of the majority of goods and services sold in Australia. If you’re only in Australia for a little bit or are planning to travel back home to visit friends and family for a bit, it’s useful to keep in mind that the 10% GST can be refunded at the airport through the Tourist Refund Scheme.

Getting your banking set up

Banking is something you’ll certainly have to keep in mind while studying in Australia, so opening a bank account before you travel over can help you get accustomed to finances in Australia quicker than you otherwise would. For this, you will often just need your passport, particularly if you’ve only been in Australia for six weeks, and one of Australia’s major banks will be happy to set up the account for you or let you withdraw money from one you set up prior to entering the country. As to how much you actually have before you enter the country, that will often depend entirely on your circumstances and budgetary needs, but having a minimum of $1500 to $2000 can help you manage most issues that you encounter upon arrival, whether they be things like food, temporary accommodation or transport.

Making the most of your budget in Australia

If you’re planning on studying in Australia, working out your budget and things like bank account before you make the long voyage over can be extremely beneficial. Understanding how much you need every week can also be very useful in your understanding of how much money is generally required for typical things in Australia, and this information can help make your time here a lot simpler than it might have otherwise been.