6 Ways to Finance Your International Bachelor's Degree

Higher education is no longer for the few - it has become the norm. Now, what will put you ahead of others is having an international degree.

One challenge in getting an international Bachelor's degree might be the costs of studying abroad. Don't panic yet, because we're going to show plenty of ways to fund your studies.

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1. Scholarships - the most popular type of student funding 

The most convenient way to finance your Bachelor's programme abroad is through scholarships. There is such a wide range of scholarships out there, that we can confidently say that there's a scholarship for everyone. Some of the types of scholarships available are:

  • Merit-based scholarships
  • Sports scholarships
  • Targeted scholarships
  • International and independent organisations scholarships (also known as fellowships)

Some good scholarship options you can find in European countries, for example, are:

2. Student loans - the compromise most students choose

Seeking financial aid from banks and other financial institutions means you will have to pay it back, typically within up to 30 years after you graduate.

Beware though, these loans come with interest rates, so you will have to repay more money than the actual cost of your studies. The best student loans are those offered by government institutions, which have either flat or low-interest rates, and are easier to repay. Here's how student loans work in some countries:

  • The United Kingdom - The government typically offers student loans. To be eligible you need to have a residence permit and be enrolled at a credited university. A few private company loans are also available.
  • The Netherlands - To benefit from a government loan you have to be under 30, enrolled in a full-time Bachelor's, and apply for a residence permit.  
  • Hungary - You need to be a national of the country, refugee or have a permanent residence to be eligible for a state-funded loan. The age limit is 35 and you also need to study at a recognised university.
  • The United States - Federal and private student loans are available in the US. To qualify for a loan as an international student you need a co-signer which is a permanent US resident. The loans covering the total cost of education.
Finance your studies

3. Students Grants - opportunities for students without financial means

Student grants (or bursaries) are scholarships of some sorts, but they are only need-based. You do not have to repay them, but, to be granted such scholarships, you need to meet some financial conditions, such as very low or no income sources.

Their value varies greatly from one university to another. For instance, in the European Union, they can start at 150 EUR/month and reach as much as 800-1000 EUR/month. 

In the US, they are called federal grants and are usually offered to those who choose four-year studies at universities, community colleges, or vocational schools. Some very good four-year Bachelor's programmes in the US are:

4. Employment - work or study part-time to support yourself

When you run out of options for funding your studies, you can always try taking a job during your studies abroad. Most international students with a student residence permit are eligible to work, at least part-time.

This will enable you to attend most of your classes and to support part of the costs of living abroad. However, this will not be enough to cover tuition fees or all living expenses. Best to combine it with another type of funding.

5. Family bank - ask your parents for help

An all-time ideal way of financing your degree is the "family bank". If your family can afford it, you can ask them to finance your studies. You're their greatest asset and investment, after all.

But this also means you are likely to depend longer on them, which may clash with your need for independence.

And remember, always follow your dreams of doing a Bachelor's. Pick a funding alternative, because it will pay off in the end, and you will be so proud when you graduate. Believe in yourself, like we do!

6. Apply to Global Study Awards right now!

To prove it to you, every year, we help students worldwide by supporting part of the costs for their studies abroad.

The Global Study Awards are prizes you can win to cover your tuition fees and part of your living expenses. So go ahead and register on Global Study Awards, and you could be the lucky winner!

Strong candidates will be shortlisted and invited for an in-person interview. The 2 winners will be announced within 3 months after the application deadline. To apply you need to already have been accepted to a university abroad. Part of the application process will include writing a university review.

You can use one of the same 6 financing ways to study a Master's degree abroad as well.

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The Global Study Awards: get funded with up to £10,000 to study abroad

Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS, Studyportals offers you the chance to receive up to £10000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.

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