Students Expenses – Food and Lodging in USA

Raghuram Sukumar Student Stories 30 Comments

In a comment, Ayan asks about food and lodging expenses for students.

I want to know about the general expenses for food and lodging in the USA, for an average student’s standard of living. I’m applying for Fall 2010 Semester at 8 universities.

Food and Lodging Expenses

The cost of living in the U.S. is directly proportional to the city and State where you live in. It would cost around $400 per month or less to live in Texas, while it would cost $700 or more in up-scale places like Los Angeles (California) and New York (New York).

The figures $400 to $700 were calculated based on typical student from India, sharing apartment with other students. You can get more details from the following articles:

If you get a part time job in the university, your earnings will typically cover for your food and lodging expenses like:

  • Apartment rent
  • Food and groceries bill
  • Utilities (electricity, gas, internet, phone, etc.)
  • Transportation  (car, bus, car insurance, car gas, etc.)
  • Entertainment (travel, movies, cable TV at home, etc.)

If you get research or teaching assistant positions, you will be able to save money after all your monthly expenses. Some RA/TA positions pay around $1,500 per month.

There are students who send money back home to pay off the education loan.

Comments

  1. Please I have been admitted into Njit to study Electrical engineering. I want to know if room and board covers feeding, telephone bills and some other expenses. ALSO, pls how possible is it for one to get additional scholarships after the first year at Njit?

  2. Hi!
    I am planning to take the GRE next year. I would like to pursue MS, and my cousin wants to pursue MBA. He suggests that we both get the same university. If not same university, then the same city. If New York, the better, because his uncle lives in New York so he would be able to share our living expenses.
    Can you suggest some universities and the average GRE and GMAT scores that resolve our problem.

  3. hi,
    its dec.2011 and i wish to start my ms in us in fall 2012
    when should i go for GRE?
    up to which month u one should be ready with GRE scores n start applying for collages?
    plz rply…..

  4. Hi,
    I am a Nigerian and i just concluded my Bsc. in Communications and Im thinking of futhering my education in Canada. The thing is i dont know what master’s programme i want to study, but i know i want a proffessional course. I also would like a very good and well recognised school that is not too expensive. I have been searching online for clues but the list is just so endless, making it so difficult to make a decision. Could you kindly help me think of some nice courses and a rough estimation of the total expenses including tuition, feeding and accomodation. I’ll be glad to hear your suggestions.

  5. Hi,

    I am currently working in Detroit, I would like to pursue MS as part time.

    Any GRE, TOEFEL score are required for part time MS and any fee difference comparing with full time course.

    Appreciate your help.

    Thanks

    1. Depends on the university/college for GRE Requirements. Fees will be the same and you may get in-state based on residency requirement.

  6. Hello HSB,

    I've applied for NJIT. I wanted to know if it is good to go to NJIT or RUTGER'S?

    Is New Jersey a costly city, or cheaper one?

    Is it recommended to pursue under graduation in the US?

    Do Under grads get an RA/TA position?

    If yes please let me know.

    Can I pay My tution fee with what I earn with an RA/TA?

    After my first year of under graduation, will I be permitted to work off-campus?

    If yes, please let me know if I can cover my whole educational costs by earning myself?

    Please its urgent, or else my parent's are not gonna allow me to go….

  7. @mayukh

    undergrads usually earn less and pay more tuiotion fees as compared to grads. Grads usually earn a500-800 $ per month. Don’t count first semester.

  8. @mayur

    undergrads usually earn less and pay more tuiotion fees as compared to grads. Grads usually earn a500-800 $ per month. Don't count first semester.

  9. Hello sir,I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO GET ADMISSION IN NXT 2011 FALL IN A US UNIVERSITY STATE UNIVERSITY?AS I HAVE ACHIEVED 66% IN MY H.S EXAM DO I AM ELIGIBLE FOR ANY KIND OF SCHOLARSHIPS?AS I AM INTERESTED IN DOING BSC. IN ACCOUNTING I HAVE TO SIT FOR SAT OR KIND OF EXAMS?EVEN IF I COULDN'T FETCH SCHOLARSHIP WHILE I AM TAKING ADMISSION IS IT POSSIBLE TO FETCH SCHOLARSHIPS LATER BY ACHIEVING REQUIRED GRADES IN MY PROGRAM ?WIL THAT BE ENOUGH TO COVER MY EXPENSES(TUTION AND RELATED TO IT?)HOW MUCH A STUDENT CAN EARN ANNUALY BY WORKING PART-TIME?

  10. hello sir! i am studying btech 1st year i wanna do ms in top universities of america what to do and how to do how much gre and tofel score is necessary for that please reply mee soon..

  11. can any 1 help me plz.. i m confused about how to apply for MBA in US universities because i have heard that GRE is for masters in non business programs…. and is GRE right for applying masters in accounting and finance?

  12. hi…..m a 2nd yr b.tech engg studnt..i wanna do ms in informatn technology…plz tell me how i shud start…wat r the basic requirements for it….how shud start mu preparation..????

  13. i completed my mca in india. i want to do ms in us but my frnds and brothers are saying that MCA is equals to Ms in US because both are PG courses. but i want to do MS in US is it better for me or not.

  14. hey im jst plannin to do mba from us so if u can help me by giving all the details how about going for it and im from india

  15. pls i would like to know if one can apply for admission without having money to pay for tuition fees,and if the school can provide work for the student in which he can use to pay his fees…

    1. No, one cannot apply for admission without having money to pay for tuition fee, for the first year, let someone bear your costs and you work for the whole year to save those money. The next year you can pay what you've earned in the first year.

  16. iam 4m a middle class family..recently i joined in Gre…i was planin cmplete money frm bank loan…..initialy hw much money i need including turion fee for the first sem?

    1. first sem tuition fee + $3000.00(goes up for cities like LA,NY) extra for food lodging, new house deposit other expenses. once you find oncampus job or assistantship you should be able to manage

  17. hiii sir…

    thnks a lot for such a worthful forum..really doing a best job..

    My GRE score- Q-740, V-330, AW-3/6

    B.Pharm 64%, 2national and 3 international publications as coauthor.

    i wanna know that can i get admit at texas uni as i desire for it..

    also pls suggest me some more uni which are nt hving high fees..

    i wanna pursue M.S.in Analytical Che…

    Thnk u in anticipation…a quick rply is highly solicited sr…

  18. How do i make my chances of getting a graduate assistantship better? I dont have any publication though i am in the process of getting one, but wont be able to get it done by the time i apply. I have a 800 on quant nd 590 on verbal in my GRE, and 112 on my TOEFL. Is a publication really important to get an assistantship?

    1. Select schools well below the GRE Score. It will increase the chances to get aid.

  19. Hi !

    I am applying in 15 world ranking US universities as International freshman for Computer Engineering major. My SAT – I score is 1890 ( Math 760) and IELTS grade is 7.5. What are my chances to get admitted in Cornell, UPENNS, DUKE, YALE, etc with maximum financial aid. I am from India.

  20. hi..i am planning for fall 2010..i have a question for u…can we do jobs outside the campus?

  21. Living expenses of a student can range from 700$ to 2000$.

    2000$ is the maximum you can expect living lavishly. (Excluding partying, clubbing and having girlfriends)

  22. Cost of living in the city of Los Angeles:

    Food: Atleast 10$ a day

    Clothing: Depends upon the person but the weather being very nice here… u need summer clothes and very few winter clothes. Winters are not very cold.

    Lodging: U can find shared apartement starting 300$ to whatever maximum you want to spend. For private room in house, you gotta spend minimum 600$.

    Transport: In Los Angeles, transport is tough because every body prefer car. If you don't have car then you can use bus using TAP cards (monthly pass) ranging from 65$ to 80$. Buses are not frequent and travel during weekends can be very tough.

    * Cities like New York have best transport.

    1. thanks varun. i am flying 2 LA this fall. i want 2 knowabout offcampus jobs around Northridge. i ll be studying in CSUN.

      1. CSUN lies in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. A student may work on campus after completing their first successful semester but they may not accept employment off-campus without authorization by the Immigration Service. This authorization may only be obtained at times of extreme economic necessity or for practical training at the end of the educational program.

        International students are eligible to apply for "tax BUDGET" jobs ONLY. There are no jobs specifically for international students. You must apply for positions just as an American student would by submitting an application and interviewing

        A student in F-1 status experiencing extreme financial difficulties which were unforeseen when beginning the academic program may be able to apply for off-campus work permission from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). With DHS permission, it is possible to work up to twenty hours a week during the academic year and full-time during the summer and vacation periods.

        To apply, you must have been in F-1 status for at least one full academic year and must be a degree candidate in good academic standing. In your application, you must establish and document the fact that unforeseen changes that severely affect your financial resources have occurred.

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