Study Abroad for Sussex Students

Fees and finance

Find out about funding options for your studies abroad.

How much you pay for your year or semester abroad

You can add a study abroad element to your course and we're keen for as many eligible students as possible to take part.

If you study abroad for the full academic year, you will only have to pay 15% of your tuition fees.

If you choose to complete a single term abroad, you'll pay your normal tuition fees.

If you're a UK or EU student going abroad for the full academic year to undertake a Language Assistantship or approved work placement for, you will need to pay 20% of your normal Sussex annual tuition fee.

In all cases, fees for the year abroad are payable to Sussex, not to the host institution.

You will be expected to pay for your flight, insurance, visa (where required), vaccinations (if applicable), rent and other living expenses.

Living costs for studying abroad

North America

Students are understandably concerned about the cost of studying abroad in North America and although you will need to cover your airfare, accommodation, visa, medical and travel insurance, and other living costs, the most important part of your preparation for your study abroad is securing your US visa. Students will have to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds available before the visa can be issued, this is a mandatory part of the visa application process. The amount of money that has to be guaranteed varies according to which campus you attend. The California, George Washington, Georgetown and Brooklyn College campuses require a higher financial guarantee but all the universities will expect you to guarantee more than you receive from the Student Loan. This financial guarantee will need to be completed during your second year at Sussex, but the specific timeframe varies depending on the university you will be studying at. Everyone's personal situation is different, but starting to set money aside, from the moment you are determined to study abroad, will help when the time comes to do the financial guarantee.

Most students use their Government Student Loan as part of their guarantee, the remainder of the amount to be guaranteed can be made up from either personal funds or from funds guaranteed by your parents or members of your family. This money has to be in an account or various accounts as copies of original bank statements will be required.

More information about the financial guarantee is provided in this page below.

The other costly factor of studying in North America is the medical insurance, which you would normally purchase upon the start, if not before, of your year or semester abroad with the partner university. Premiums are determined by the insurance companies these partners work with, and can range from $1,000 to $4,000 per year, approximately. Unfortunately, there's no national health service and the cost of medical care is extremely high. You will also need extra cover for travel to and from the university (and for other costs not covered by the US insurance policy). Therefore, you will be required to have TWO INSURANCES, the health insurance with the US partner and the travel insurance. In very few occasions in the US, you may be able to apply for an insurance waiver, however, note that most of the time the travel insurance doesn't always satisfy the US college requirements for Affordable Care Act compliant benefits and therefore you may not be granted the waiver. For more information about purchasing travel insurance with Sussex please click here.

How much you will end up spending will depend on your own lifestyle. The financial guarantees set by the other universities can give you an estimation of how much may cost for a 9-month study period, but everyone has different needs, so the figure should only be used as a rough estimate. 

Europe

For full information about studying abroad in Europe, please visit our Erasmus+ Programme site.

Brexit update

With the UK due to leave the EU, many students will have questions around how this will affect their planned study abroad placements in Europe. Get updates on Brexit on the Erasmus+ website. and the Sussex Brexit hub.

Canada

Living costs in Canada will greatly vary depending on where you study. For example, Vancouver is one of the most expensive cities in the world, and therefore living costs could be much higher than other cities. You will need to be prepared to cover for airfare, visa (more information below), medical and travel insurance, accommodation, food and other living expenses - be ready to purchase proper winter clothing! 

It is difficult for us to say how much you will spend whilst in Canada, this depends on your own lifestyle! We have provided estimated costs on our destination webpage and we encourage you to research these as well. 

If you are studying in Canada for more than 6 months, you will need to apply for a Canadian Study Permit, this is your visa. Currently, the costs of this study permit are CAN$150. Similar to the US, you will require to provide proof of means of financial support that demonstrates that you can support yourself and any accompanying family members while you study in Canada. For example, proof of a bank account in your name, your bank statements for the past four months, a bank draft in convertible currency, or proof of payment of tuition and residence fees. The minimum amount you need to guarantee for the Canadian Study Permit is CAN$10,000. Most students will use the UK Government loan as part of this guarantee.

Unlike the US, the Canadian medical insurance premiums are not that high, and range from $600 to $800 Canadian Dollars approximately. Same as in the US, you will need two insurances. The one you purchase with the Canadian partner and the travel insurance, which you can purchase via Sussex. For more information about purchasing travel insurance with Sussex please click here. Please note that it's mandatory to have the Canadian medical insurance. 

Australia and New Zealand

How much you will spend in Australia or New Zealand will depend on where you will study and your own lifestyle, of course. Living costs differ greatly depending on the location! For example, Sydney, where the University of Sydney and the University of New South Wales are based, is one of the most expensive cities in the world, therefore in comparison, it'll cost you more to live and study in Sydney if you compare it with Adelaide. We have provided estimated costs on our destination webpage for you to look at, but it will require you to do some research as well!

Other costs to bear in mind are airfares, medical and travel insurance, accommodation, food, and other living expenses, such as commuting, books and supplies. Whilst in Australia, because there will be a long break in-between semesters, you may want to travel around the states and therefore you should also take into account additional costs if you are planning in doing so. 

Similar to the US and Canada, students who are planning to study in Australia and New Zealand, will need to be prepared to cover the costs of medical and travel insurance. The medical insurance is purchased via the partner university, and it's mandatory and part of your acceptance process with the other university. In other words, you will need to pay the premium of this insurance in order to receive your letter of acceptance. You won't be able to apply for your visa if you don't have this letter. The insurance premiums can range from AUD$650 - AUD$850 per calendar year approximately, depending on the university. The travel insurance can be purchased via Sussex. For more information about purchasing travel insurance with Sussex please click here. 

Asia

The cost of living in Asia varies as to the specific country where you will be studying. Generally Hong Kong, Japan and Korea will be more expensive than Malaysia and Thailand. However, campus accommodation at all destinations will be cheaper than private accommodation and tends to be very good value particularly in Hong Kong.

 

Financial Guarantee (US & Canada)

The below notes have been provided to help you understand what it is the financial guarantee and why you are asked to do this. Please ensure that you read the below information very carefully.

What is the Financial Guarantee?

The Financial Guarantee is basically an exercise in which you need to demonstrate to the other institution or Embassy (in the case of Canada) that you have access to certain amount of money.

This exercise is a mandatory part of your visa process.

Am I required to do the Financial Guarantee?

The Financial Guarantee is basically an exercise in which you need to demonstrate to the other institution or Embassy (in the case of Canada) that you have access to certain amount of money.

This exercise is a mandatory part of your visa process.

Why do I need to do this?

The Financial Guarantee is part of your study visa process. As you will be considered an international student studying abroad, the host country / university needs to see that you can support yourself during your studies. They need to see actual evidence that the money is available, so that they can ensure you will not seek unlawful employment and / or live off state funding.

Who determines the figure that has to be guaranteed?

USA: The amount of money that has to be guaranteed varies according to which campus you attend. Each campus will set the figure that they estimate you will need in order to live and study there. This amount is not necessarily what you will spend, but it gives you an estimation of the total costs. 

Canada: The figure is set by the Canadian government (CAN $10,000), but it is not a representation of the costs of studying and living in Canada. In fact, it is likely that you will spend more than that during your time in Canada.

What does the figure cover?

The figure set by the US partner is a representation of accommodation and meal plans, health insurance, books and supplies, etc. whilst living and studying abroad for 9 months.

When will I have to complete the Financial Guarantee?

This process happens whilst you are still at Sussex, during or just before Spring term (for students starting in Autumn of the following year) or Autumn (for students going during Spring semester only).

If you go to the USA will have to complete the financial guarantee at application stage (depending on the institution, it can be done in January – April).

If you go to Canada will be required to show proof of sufficient funds at the moment of applying for the Study Permit at the Embassy and not to the partner university.

Do I need to actually transfer the money? Will the money be deducted from my and/or my sponsor's bank account?

No. You are just asked to show evidence of funds available.

What constitutes sufficient evidence? How do I show I have the necessary funds?

The financial guarantee can be made up by several sources of capital. It can include a:

  • Recent statement from a bank account (yours or relative’s).
  • Recent statement from a savings account (yours or relative’s) – note that most institution will insist that the money in a savings account must be ‘liquid’, e.g. easily to withdraw.
  • Recent letter from bank stating the proposed sponsor or guarantor has £XXX available to them.
  • Student Government Loan for the following year (if you need to do the financial guarantee before you have applied for your next year’s loan, we can write a letter indicating how much you will receive and this is normally accepted by the other university).
  • Any other projected scholarship you will receive (e.g. First Generation Scholarship if you have started at Sussex in 2018 or before).

Sources NOT accepted:

  • Credit card statements
  • Statement from an ATM
  • Premium bonds and some ISAs
  • Letters from employers or wage slips
  • Mortgage or company ownership statements
  • Share certificates

 

Financial Support

Student Finance England
Student Loan - Overseas Rate
For 2021/22 the non-means tested student loan is (all students get this part) £5,253
The means tested student loan is (some students get this part) £5,613
Full loan is £10,866
You may be eligible for a means tested loan of £141 per week for the extra 3 weeks of study in some US universities £423
TOTAL £11,289

The table above gives the basic rates for the student loan. 

In the event you have already studied at another Higher Education Institution where you received funding from Student Finance, you should check with them how many years of funding you have left.

For example, with Student Finance England you have a maximum of five years of eligibility; if you received two years of funding prior to starting your degree at Sussex (even if one of them was half-completed), you would only be eligible for another three. This would mean, if you were to study abroad for a full additional year, you would need to self-fund your year abroad.

Other financial support available

The UK government offers a means-tested Travel Grant to cover airfares and medical insurance, immunisations and visas. For more information please visit: https://www.gov.uk/travel-grants-students-england/overview.

There are other UK Student Finance companies offering travel grant with different criteria:

When you apply for your student loan for the study abroad period, you should be informed if you are eligible for the grant. If you think you are eligible for the grant and you do not receive any information regarding this, please contact the relevant agency.

First Generation Scholars: If you are a First Generation Scholar and started your Sussex degree in 2018 you receive £2,000 in your year abroad, paid in two instalments of £1,000 in September and March. If you started in 2019, there's no funding available for the year abroad. Information about this can be found here

Please also visit our 'Scholarships' webpage to find out whether there are any other support available.

Brexit update

With the UK due to leave the EU, many students will have questions around how this will affect their planned study abroad placements in Europe. Get updates on Brexit on the Erasmus+ website. and the Sussex Brexit hub.

For students planning to study abroad in Europe in 2020/21

If there is a 'no deal' Brexit, we will have to agree alternative student exchange agreements with European partners. Without these, we would not be able to continue to exchange students. We are currently working closely with our partner universities in Europe on these agreements. However, we cannot yet confirm which universities will definitely be available in 2020/21. With the UK due to leave the EU, we do not expect that UK universities will be able to offer their students Erasmus funding to study or work abroad in 2020/21.

If you are hoping to study abroad in Europe in 2020/21, you should complete and submit your application in the usual way. We will confirm your university allocation as soon as we are able to.

Erasmus Grant for students currently abroad

Students are likely to be eligible for the Erasmus grant if they are registered at a UK institution of higher education and are spending an approved study period abroad or carrying out an approved work placement (including language assistantship) as part of their degree programme. The study placement should last between three and 12 months in another EU, EEA or 'partner' country; the work placement can last a minimum of two months. Students should not have received an Erasmus grant for the same type of placement (study, work or postgraduate) in a previous year.

The Erasmus Grant is inteded to be a contribution towards the extra costs of studying abroad. Students still need to have their normal adequate funds for daily living, including travel and accommodation. The cost of living varies considerably accross Europe and students are advised to find out how much their year abroad is likely to cost them before they leave.

The Erasmus Grant is calculated according to the length of the study/work placement period. It usually consist of two instalments, the first payable in October / November and the balance at the end of the academic year. The source of Erasmus funding is the European Commission, which distributes funds to institutions across Europe through each country's National Agency. In the UK the National Agency is the British Council. The amount that student receive varies in accordance with funds received from the National Agency. In 2016-2017, students received up to €280/330 per month according to which country they would be studying/working in.

Study placement students whose household income is less than £25,000 may be entitled to an additional Widening Participation payment of €100/month. If you think that you should be receiving this, email David Brimage: d.brimage@sussex.ac.uk.

Receipt of the Erasmus Grant does not affect a student's entitlement to their normal student loan for the period of their stay abroad.

Rates for students currently completing a study placement
CountryStudent study mobility
Monthly grantMonthly supplement for students from disadvantaged backgrounds

Group 1 countries (high cost of living)

Denmark, Ireland, France, Italy, Austria, Finland, Sweden, Liechtenstein, Norway

€330 €100

Group 2 countries (medium cost of living)

Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Spain, Croatia, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Iceland, Turkey

€280

Group 3 countries (low cost of living)

Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Rates for students completing a work placement
CountryMonthly grant

Group 1 countries (high cost of living)

Denmark, Ireland, France, Italy, Austria, Finland, Sweden, Liechtenstein, Norway

€430

Group 2 countries (medium cost of living)

Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Spain, Croatia, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Iceland, Turkey

€380

Group 3 countries (low cost of living)

Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia