McMaster University

McMaster University

Budgeting for your Trip

Cost of Living Worksheet

What are your estimated expenses compared to your total available resources?

Living Costs

Estimated Expenses$ (CAD)Financial Resources$ (CAD)

(Include flight and transportation to and from airport)

(if negative your expenses are greater that your resources)

In creating your Cost of Living worksheet, keep in mind the following:

  1. International tuition fees for students studying abroad (with the exception of exchange students) may be 2 to 3 times higher than local tuition rates.
  2. Housing rates and availability may rise and fall. Students should budget conservatively in the case that they may not secure housing at their preferred rate.
  3. The value of the Canadian currency may change before or during your trip abroad making the cost of living increase.
  4. Scholarships offered previously may not be offered in subsequent years. Students may receive less financial aid from scholarship awards than previously hoped for.
  5. Flights are best booked 3-4 months in advance. Travel deals are often advertised on major airlines and routes. Look for main airport hubs and play around with days of the week to get the cheapest rates.
  6. Travel and Health Insurance is mandatory for all students, regardless of international program. Your health insurance should cover you from the moment you leave Canada to your date of return. Read more about health insurance in our Before you Go section.
  7. Miscellaneous fees: Every student should try to maintain a miscellaneous budget of at least $500 per month that they will be away. For a student leaving for a 4 month period, they should try to maintain a miscellaneous budget of $2,000 on top of what they have already estimated to spend.
  8. Working abroad as part of a study or international experience is sometimes an option if your immigration documents allow it. However, students should not count on this alternative as a major way to fund their experience, only to supplement it.
  9. The cost of a study or work visa to go abroad for a certain duration of time can cost between $0 and $500. Be sure to look into costs of immigration documents prior to application.