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Costs Overview

Just like studying at a university in the United States, there are many factors that influence the cost of a program abroad. Before you dive deep into program costs, consider what is important to you and your education abroad experience. The following is list of factors that typically influence the overall cost of a program.


Students holding Spartan flag in front of Buckingham Palace in London, EnglandBig City vs. Smaller Town

Large cities or country capitals will automatically drive up the cost of living (i.e. New York City vs. East Lansing). If cost is a concern for you, consider a program in a smaller city or town. Location will influence everything from housing to transportation, meals and even the cost of your morning coffee.

Student throwing coin in Trevi Fountain in Rome, ItalyExchange Rates

If you are looking to make your money stretch further, consider locations where the U.S. dollar is stronger than the host currency. This will save you tons on everyday living expenses and will save you more money overall.


Group of students holding Spartan flag in front of cathedral in ItalyShort-term Programs

Programs with shorter durations are typically less expensive overall than longer programs. The longer you are abroad, the more cost you will incur. However, some long-term programs can cost the same or less than a semester in East Lansing.

Student holding Spartan flag on Great Wall of ChinaScholarship Requirements

If you are looking to apply for scholarships, keep in mind that many have duration requirements. Generally, you will have access to more opportunities for programs with longer durations.

On-Site Costs

Photo looking out into the sky from airplane windowAirfare

Airfare costs will vary significantly depending on your destination. Be sure to research the cost of getting to and from your destination ahead of time. This will be one of the biggest up-front expenses you will have when you study abroad.

Group of students cooking in ItalyHousing & Meals

If your program gives you a choice, consider the most economical housing option. This is usually an on-campus shared accommodation. Additionally, consider preparing meals at home if your program offers this option.

When You Travel

Sydney, Australia at nightPeak Travel Seasons

Already know where you want to go? If your program is situated in a tourist destination, consider going during the off-season. This will save you money on daily living expenses and housing, plus you will not have as many crowds.

Student Services building on MSU campusFinancial Aid Eligibility

The time of year in which you choose to study can also have an impact on the financial aid you may be eligible to receive. We strongly encourage discussing your available options with MSU's Office of Financial Aid.

Number of Credits

Students doing Chinese calligraphyAvailable Credits

When comparing programs, it is sometimes helpful to determine how many credits you can earn on each program. Not all programs offer the same academic opportunities.

Included Program Fees

Students on beach holding surfboards in Sydney, AustraliaResearch Program Fees

Carefully review the budget for each program and be aware of what each program fee includes. On the program profile page you can find an itemized breakdown of what is included within the fee and what other out of pocket expenses to anticipate. Not all programs include the same services.