University of Leicester cheapest for undergraduates

14 August 2014

The University of Leicester is the cheapest university to study at for first and second-year students, according to HSBC.

With one in six students running out of money by the end of each month, according to Lloyds Bank, it's never been more important to consider the wider costs of studying.

First-year students at the University of Leicester can expect to spend £196 on average each week. This can be broken down to: £91 on rent for halls, £68 on essentials (food, university supplies etc), £15 for five pints of beer, £14 for two bottles of wine, and £8 for a bus pass.

For second-year students and those living off-campus, the average overall cost falls to just under £169 as the rent for a room in a student house is £27 cheaper than halls at £64 a week.

Following behind Leicester in the low-cost stakes are the Universities of Nottingham and Cardiff for first years, where the weekly costs are £207 and £227 respectively. While for those living off-campus, the Universities of Liverpool and Nottingham come in second and third place at £174 and £184 respectively.

Unsurprisingly, the most expensive universities for students can be found in London - UCL and Imperial - which will cost first-years living in halls a whopping £315 a week (60% more than the University of Leicester) and those living off-campus £353.

According to Lloyds, some 34% of first-year undergraduates said the cost of tuition fees was a factor in their decision about which university to attend, with 10% saying it was a key factor.

Meanwhile, the average student debt topped £19,000 in the last academic year, up 14% on the year before.

The average debt is estimated to be £19,217 but the figure for first- or second-year students is much higher, at £22,050 and £23,173 respectively.

Almost half of students are concerned about the extent of their borrowing and some 17% of those studying full-time have considered quitting to start a full-time job instead, Lloyds found.

Phillip Robinson, director of current accounts for Lloyds Bank, said: "Student current accounts are in place to help ease the financial burden of university. Students should look for accounts that offer an interest and fee-free planned overdraft, as well as discounts and cashback offers. Money management tools are also in place for students, together with banking apps to help them manage their money on the go and feel more in control of their finances."

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