Understand the Finances

Financial Implications of Study Abroad

  • Does study abroad cost more than a semester on campus?
  • How am I going to pay for study abroad?
  • Can I use my financial aid?

The answers to these questions depend on you and your family’s financial situation and the program you choose. 

Basic facts about study abroad finances:  

  • You don’t pay regular UMass tuition and fees to UMass when abroad; you’ll pay an Education Abroad fee to UMass, and your study abroad program or exchange program costs.  
  • You can use your regular financial aid, except some tuition credits, for any study abroad expenses, including out-of-pocket costs like meals and airfare.  
  • You can apply for alternative loans to cover study abroad expenses.
  • Scholarships for study abroad are available.
  • Study abroad partner programs (API, CIS Abroad, CET, etc), bill for program fee 60 to 90 days before program start dates. (Learn how to use financial aid to pay program fees.)

Before you choose a program, be sure you understand:

  • Your financial situation, including your financial aid package.
  • The cost of the programs:  
    • which costs will be included in the program fee, and which are considered out-of-pocket or paid directly by you;
    • payment dates, and withdrawal and refund policies;
    • any scholarship opportunities or discounts offered by the partner program.

Pro tip: When comparing program options, especially in different countries, be sure to compare all types of expenses – include airfare, visa expenses, and cost of living to get a full and accurate picture of your costs.

If you are particularly cost-conscious, consider the following:  

  • Studying in places with a higher cost of living (London, Copenhagen, Australia) is generally more expensive than study in other parts of the world.  Consider using a Cost of Living Comparison Tool to start your research.
  • For students who pay in state tuition rates at UMass, exchanges can be more affordable than partner programs. Do you know the differences?
  • Scholarship funding organizations tend to want to support students from diverse backgrounds (academic, personal, etc) and study in diverse locations (not Western Europe!)  
  • Begin your scholarship research at least one year in advance
  • Deals and Discounts for UMass students
  • Choose a program with an internship or research component for two-for-one benefits!

» Now that you understand how finances work for study abroad, you are ready to choose your program! »

No matter where you are in your journey to Be UMass Abroad, here are some resources to help you plan:

Still have questions? We’re here for you!