Check out our verified student discount codes and deals right here! Get money off your next order from top UK brands today.Read more…
Student spending statistics UK
Where are students spending their budgets?
With approximately 30% of the UK’s 18-year-olds being accepted to study through UCAS every year, tens of thousands of students will have to begin thinking about their finances and how they’ll manage them this school year. This includes using bank accounts specifically designed for students.
The cost of living as a student is often tight and differs drastically based on the location of your institution. We pooled together statistics on the most expensive universities, where students are spending their budgets and how they afford their lifestyles.
- The average student living costs come up to £810 per month.
- The average amount students pay for rent in the UK is £148 per week, or £641 a month.
- Household bills (£40) in 2022 have increased by £3 compared to 2020 (£37).
- Students at University of Greenwich pay the highest rent, £238 per week on average.
- 58% of students prefer to buy their groceries from Tesco compared to other supermarkets.
- 6 in 10 students (59%) would not buy an item that has been tested on animals.
Student living costs
Average student living costs 2022
Unsurprisingly, rent (£641 per month) is the largest expense for students and makes up 62% of the average student’s total expenses. Groceries (£101 per month) is the second biggest expense – a budget far from extravagant.
The next largest expenses are social events (£47), household bills (£40) and transport (£34). While one-off purchases, such as clothing (£34) and mobile phones (£15), are treated as luxury items.
|Clothes & Shopping||34|
|Gifts & Charity||13|
|Health & Well Being||15|
Average student living costs by university
Glasgow Caledonian University tops the list with the highest average amount students pay in living costs at £822 a month, excluding rent. Followed by SOAS university (£710). The list of top 10 also includes St Mary’s, Arts University Bournemouth, Aston, Kingston, East London, Bath Spa, Birbeck and Heriot-Watt.
See the breakdown below of over 100 universities, with the categories like transport, health & wellbeing, clothing & shopping.
Which university has the most expensive accomodation?
The University of Greenwich is the most expensive university for accommodation with the rent averaging £238 per week. Followed by the University of Edinburgh at an average of £222 weekly. London School of Economics (£200 weekly), Warwick (£197 weekly) and Imperial College London (£190 weekly) makes the top 5 most expensive universities for rent in the UK.
On the other hand, Staffordshire University is considerably cheap with an average weekly rent of £80. Followed by London Metropolitan (£108 weekly) and Brunel University (£110 weekly).
|University||Average amount on rent per week (£)|
|University of Greenwich||238|
|University of Edinburgh||222|
|London School of Economics||200|
|Glasgow Caledonian University||196|
|University of Warwick||197|
|Imperial College London||190|
|City, University of London||185|
|East London University||185|
Where do students go for their grocery shopping?
Tesco (58%) is the most popular grocery place among students, followed by Aldi (37%) and Lidl (37%), Sainsbury’s (35%) and Asda (30%). Interestingly, 3% of students saying they never buy groceries.
In 2022, students are slightly spending more on groceries (£101 to £100 last year) compared to last year in spite of shopping cheaper.
|Shop||Where students buy groceries (%)|
|Marks & Spencer||7|
|Local Green Grocer||3|
|Never shop for groceries||3|
How students fund themselves
71% of students worry about making ends meet, but luckily, over two-thirds (68%) are getting some extra funds from their parents. Most students get their income from the maintenance loan and part-time jobs. The majority of students will find themselves using a combination of sources, as the maintenance loan often does not cover all student living costs.
|Source of income||Percentage of students|
|Savings and investments||50%|
|Grants and funding||44%|
|Working for themselves||6%|
Main reasons students would not buy an item
The financial burden is not the only reason that students wouldn’t buy something, with just less than two-thirds (59%) of students would not buy an item that has been tested on animals. 54% would not buy when the workers face poor working conditions, with half (49%) of students not wanting to buy an item that is unsustainably produced.
|Why students would not buy an item||Percentage|
|Poor working conditions of staff||54|
|Not all packaging was recyclable||26|
Times Higher Education
Click here for more research. For all media enquiries, please contact:
Heading off to university for the first time? Read our ultimate checklist to ensure you’ve got everything covered.Read more…
With over 2 million people studying in UK higher education institutions, student shopping is a huge market. Here, we present student shopping habits.Read more…
Looking to save a few more pennies while at university? Check out a list of Amazon Prime Student benefits and find a way to become a Prime Student for free.Read more…
Make your student loan last longer with our top tips for money saving at uni. Learn practical ways to save money and get access to student discounts.Read more…
Get better-quality food and drinks at the cheapest prices with our working student vouchers and promotions.Read more…
More guides on Finder
GCSE and A level statistics
In 2020, over 4.7 million 16-year-olds entered into the GCSE exams in England. We unpacked the statistics to find out how they got on.
Read about key stats about the UK’s education system, like the expenditure, number of schools, exam results and apprenticeships.
International study statistics
If you are keen to get your degree while exploring life in a foreign country, studying abroad could be perfect for you. Learn how many of your fellow students are doing the same.
Ask an Expert