Managing Money Abroad
It can be very easy to mismanage your money and overspend while studying abroad, which can lead to consequences and unpleasant difficulties. It is important to make and stick to a financial plan to ensure that you manage your money wisely, and that you are prepared for any unexpected expenses that may occur.
Before you Apply
Meet with the Financial Aid Office:
Students who receive Seton Hall or federal financial aid should meet with the Office of Financial Aid before applying for any programs to discuss how their aid package will apply to any programs that they are considering applying to.
Learn About the Cost of Living in Different Locations:
It is important to consider that different areas of the world have different costs of living while looking for a program that’s right for you. Note that Western Europe, Australia, and Japan tend to have higher costs of living than other areas of the world, and large cities and urban areas tend to have higher costs of living than rural areas.
To learn more about the costs of living in different countries, consult guidebooks or online resources such as Expatistan or Numbeo, which compare the costs of living in cities around the world. Study abroad program pages may also contain information on how much you can expect to spend on necessities such as food, housing, and entertainment.
Consider Pre-Departure Expenses:
There will likely be costs associated with your study abroad program not included in the listed program fee.
Before you Go:
Create a Budget:
In order to ensure that you don’t overspend while abroad, create a budget for your trip before you leave and stick to it while you’re abroad. Though the amount that you spend while abroad may vary, having a budget is a great way to ensure that you are aware of what you are spending and don’t run out of money. Because this may be the first time that you’re creating a budget, here are some tips:
- Consider using an online budget worksheet or checklist to help plan your budget. These are helpful tools to make sure that you’re considering all budget categories.
- Regularly use a currency converter app both while planning your budget and while abroad to ensure that you know the true cost of what you are purchasing. While the Euro and the British Pound have historically been worth slightly more than a U.S. Dollar and most other currencies tend to be worth less, these rates change constantly.
- Leave some buffer in your budget. When creating a budget for the first time, combined with living in a new place, it can be very easy to underestimate the amount of money that you are going to spend, or to encounter unexpected expenses that may push you over your budget. Make sure to account for this by budgeting a certain amount each month for emergencies or overcharges.
Apply for Scholarships:
Many study abroad scholarships will help pay for additional travel expenses on top of tuition and housing. For a list of scholarships through both Seton Hall and outside organizations, click here.