Europe is a dream destination for many students who want to pursue higher education abroad. It offers a rich cultural diversity, a high quality of education, and a wide range of academic options. However, studying in Europe can also be expensive, especially for international students from developing countries. If you are one of them, you might be wondering how to study in Europe on a 5 million naira budget.
The good news is that it is possible to study in Europe on a low budget, if you plan carefully and choose wisely. In this article, we will share some tips and tricks on how to save money and find affordable opportunities to study in Europe.
Choose a cheap destination
One of the most important factors that affect your budget is the country and city where you want to study. Some European countries are more expensive than others, and even within the same country, the cost of living can vary significantly depending on the location. Therefore, you should do some research and compare the prices of different destinations before making your decision.
According to EDUopinions, some of the most affordable countries to study in Europe are Portugal, Poland, Hungary, Germany, and Italy. These countries offer low tuition fees (or even free tuition for some students), cheap accommodation, food, and transportation, and generous scholarships and grants for international students. You can also find many English-taught programs in these countries, which can save you the hassle of learning a new language.
For example, in Portugal, you can expect to spend around 800 euros per month for your living expenses. In Poland, you can live comfortably with 500 euros per month1. In Hungary, you can get by with 450 euros per month1. In Germany, you can manage with 867 euros per month1. And in Italy, you can survive with 1,500 euros per month.
Of course, these are just average estimates, and your actual expenses will depend on your lifestyle and preferences. But as you can see, these countries are much cheaper than other popular destinations like France, the UK, or the Netherlands.
Apply for scholarships and grants
Another way to reduce your costs is to apply for scholarships and grants that can cover your tuition fees and/or living expenses. There are many sources of funding available for international students who want to study in Europe, such as the European Union (EU), the Erasmus+ program, individual universities, foundations, organizations, and governments.
Some of the most prestigious scholarships and grants for studying in Europe are:
• The Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degrees (EMJMDs), which offer full scholarships for students from all over the world to pursue a master’s degree in two or more European countries.
• The European Research Council (ERC) Grants, which provide generous funding for researchers from any country to conduct cutting-edge research in Europe.
• The Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA), which support researchers at all stages of their careers to enhance their skills and mobility in Europe and beyond.
• The DAAD Scholarships, which offer various opportunities for students and researchers from developing countries to study or conduct research in Germany.
• The Fulbright Program, which is a US government-sponsored program that awards grants for students, scholars, teachers, and professionals from all over the world to study, teach, or conduct research in the US or other countries.
These are just some examples of the many scholarships and grants that you can apply for if you want to study in Europe. You can find more information and opportunities on websites like Scholarship Portal, Study.EU, or Study in Europe.
Find cheap accommodation
One of the biggest expenses that you will face when studying in Europe is accommodation. Depending on where you live and what type of housing you choose, you can spend anywhere from 200 to 1,000 euros per month on rent alone. Therefore, finding cheap accommodation is crucial for saving money.
Some of the options that you have for finding cheap accommodation are:
• Student dormitories: These are usually the cheapest option for students who want to live on campus or near their university. They offer basic facilities and services, such as a bed, a desk, a wardrobe, a shared bathroom, and sometimes a kitchen. They also provide a social environment where you can meet other students and make friends. However, they can also be noisy, crowded, and lack privacy. The average cost of a student dormitory in Europe is around 300 euros per month.
• Shared apartments: These are a good option for students who want to live off campus and have more independence and comfort. They involve renting a room in an apartment with other students or young professionals, and sharing the common areas, such as the kitchen, the living room, and the bathroom. They offer more space and amenities than dormitories, but they also require more responsibility and cooperation. The average cost of a shared apartment in Europe is around 400 euros per month.
• Homestays: These are a great option for students who want to immerse themselves in the local culture and language. They involve living with a host family who provides you with a room, meals, and sometimes other services, such as laundry or transportation. They offer a warm and friendly atmosphere where you can learn from your hosts and experience their way of life. However, they can also be restrictive, as you have to follow their rules and schedules. The average cost of a homestay in Europe is around 500 euros per month.
Save on food and transportation
Another way to save money when studying in Europe is to be smart about your food and transportation choices. These are some of the tips that you can follow to reduce your expenses on these items:
• Cook your own meals: Eating out can be tempting, but it can also be expensive. If you have access to a kitchen, you can save a lot of money by cooking your own meals at home. You can buy groceries at local markets or discount supermarkets, where you can find fresh and cheap ingredients. You can also prepare your own snacks and lunches to take with you to school or work. Cooking your own meals can also be healthier and more fun than eating out.
• Use public transportation: Public transportation is usually the cheapest and most convenient way to get around in most European cities. You can use buses, trams, subways, trains, or bikes to travel within or between cities. You can also buy monthly or yearly passes that give you unlimited access to public transportation for a reduced price. Alternatively, you can walk or cycle whenever possible, which is not only free but also good for your health and the environment.
• Take advantage of student discounts: As a student, you can benefit from many discounts and offers that are available for various goods and services in Europe. You can get discounts on museums, cinemas, theaters, concerts, festivals, restaurants, cafes, bars, shops, gyms, and more. All you need is a valid student ID card or an International Student Identity Card (ISIC), which is recognized worldwide and gives you access to over 150,000 discounts in more than 130 countries.
Studying in Europe on a 5 million naira budget is not impossible if you plan ahead and make smart choices. By choosing a cheap destination, applying for scholarships and grants, finding cheap accommodation, saving on food and transportation, and taking advantage of student discounts, you can make your dream of studying in Europe come true without breaking the bank.
According to the current exchange rate, 5 million naira is equivalent to 6,130 euros. This means that you can study in Europe for one year with this budget if you follow the tips above. Of course, this is just an estimate based on averages and assumptions, and your actual costs will depend on many factors.
Therefore, we recommend that you do your own research and calculations before applying to any program or university in Europe. You can use websites like Numbeo or Expatistan to compare the cost of living in different cities and countries.
We hope that this article has inspired you and given you some useful information on how to study in Europe on a 5 million naira budget. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to send Japafora a message on our platforms. We wish you all the best in your academic journey!