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Postgraduate Study Living Costs

Newcastle upon Tyne offers fantastic value for money and is very student friendly. We have created this guide to help you budget and get an idea of your monthly expenditure as a postgraduate student.

  • In addition to your tuition fees, you should allow enough funds to cover living expenses for the duration of your studies.

The amount you will need depends on your lifestyle, but we estimate that the minimum amount required by a single student to cover basic living expenses (e.g. accommodation, heating, food) is around £1,015 per month in Newcastle.

If you are an international student and will be applying for a Tier 4 Visa to the UK, please also refer to the information on maintenance requirements to support your visa. 

Newcastle upon Tyne offers fantastic value for money and is very student friendly, with many retailers, services and travel operators offering discounts for students. To help you budget and get an idea of your monthly expenditure as a postgraduate student we have highlighted the main costs below. We have also included tips on how to reduce the costs to suit your budget.


*Royal Bank of Scotland Student Living Index 2016


Northumbria University offers a range of accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets starting from £74.90 per week. Many of these are on or very close to the campus which could also reduce your travel costs. If you choose to stay in a University accommodation flat you will be able to self-select your residence, flat and room number. To aid in this selection you are given basic information about your flatmates, such as their gender, age and whether they are an undergraduate or postgraduate student.

If you would like to look into staying in private rented accommodation, we recommend that you enquire to or visit our Students’ Union’s own independent lettings agency NU: LETS. They have an extensive range of accommodation available and you will not be charged any fees for using their service.

Please find further information about all accommodation options available to you on our accommodation webpages

Personal Expenses

The amount you budget for personal expenses will depend on your lifestyle and preferences. Registering with UNIDAYS and StudentBeans will give you access to a large number of student discounts for clothing, food and services. Purchasing a TOTUM card for £14.99 will also provide you with access to various discounts, as well as providing you with a free proof of age ID.


Homewares and Toiletries

The amount you will need to budget for homewares and toiletries will vary depending on your lifestyle. Some items however are essential. Save the student provides a detailed checklist of the must have homewares and toiletries for students. Newcastle is a fantastic city for students with many shops who offer high quality homewares and toiletries at affordable prices within close range of the university and accommodations.

A few of the key shops to visit include:


  • B&M (1.7 miles from university)
  • Home Bargains (1.4 miles from university)
  • Wilko (1.7 miles from university)
  • Superdrug (0.5 miles from university)
  • Boots (0.4 miles from university)
  • Asda (1.7 miles from university)
  • Sainsbury's (0.4 miles from university)
  • Morrison's (1.1 miles from university)
  • Tesco (0.5 miles from university)


  • B&M (1.7 miles from university)
  • Home Bargains (1.4 miles from university)
  • Wilko (1.7 miles from university)
  • Superdrug (0.5 miles from university)
  • Boots (0.4 miles from university)
  • Asda (1.7 miles from university)
  • Sainsbury’s (0.4 miles from university)
  • Morrisons (1.1 miles from university)
  • Tesco (0.5 miles from university)


Food expenditure will take up a large part of your monthly budget. Northumbria University does have one catered hall of residence, Claude Gibb Hall (but you will still need to buy lunches during the week), and some supermarkets do offer student discount. Our current students can offer you advice on how to make your budget stretch further. Here is a blog post that one of our students has written on how to eat healthy in Newcastle on a budget.

If you choose to eat out we have a great range of food and drink at student friendly prices on campus. Newcastle also has an ever growing number of restaurants, many of which offer student discount, food and drink happy hours and early evening offers to keep the costs down.

Utility Bills

All of Northumbria University’s accommodation costs include utility bills, and fast 100 MB broadband. If you will be staying in non-University accommodation the cost of utility bills will be approximately £43 per month (Natwest Student Living Index 2018).

Mobile Phone

The cost of monthly mobile bills will vary depending on your preferences. Some networks offer rates especially for students. It is therefore worthwhile shopping around to find a deal to best suit your needs at the best price. Save the Student provide a price comparison of various mobile phone and SIM deals to help you make the right decision.

TV Licence

By law you need to be covered by a TV Licence to watch or record live TV programmes on any channel or device and/or download or watch BBC programmes on demand, including catch up TV, on iPlayer. The cost of this is approximately £13 per month.


If you choose to live in University accommodation, student possession insurance is included in the rent. If you are living in non-University accommodation away from home we recommend that you take out insurance to cover your belongings. The cost of this will depend on the value of your possessions. To help you make the right decision, Money Maxim provides price comparison for Specialist Student Contents and Possessions Insurance.


You may need to budget for daily bus or Metro journey’s to Northumbria University, depending on where you live. You can travel between our city campus and coach lane campus for free using Stagecoach’s number 1 bus.

Newcastle’s city centre is very compact making it very easy to explore by foot but there are also regular metros and buses servicing the city centre and surrounding areas. Students get a 30% discount on the price of Metro travel across Tyne and Wear, with unlimited travel from £26.90 a month. Please visit our Travelling to the University webpage for further information.

For travel further afield, a Young Person’s Railcard can get you up to a third off rail travel across the UK. 

Social Activities

Northumbria’s Students' Union offers a great social scene on the campus with three award-winning bars and clubs as well as a venue for performance and live music. They also have over 100 societies which you can get involved in to meet people with the same interests as yourself. The societies regularly organise trips, shows, and socials.

In addition, our Sports Central facility has a swimming pool, climbing wall and gym. Membership for unlimited access to the facilities and group exercise classes is a discounted rate of £24 a month for students. 

Course Materials

It is worth enquiring to see if your course has any additional costs that you will need to factor in to your budget. This could include specialist clothing and materials, field trips and books.

Keep in mind that our city campus Library is open 24 hours a day during term time giving you access to over 1.2 million books. Buying books second hand could also save you money. Blackwell's in Newcastle provides a fantastic service to students, selling used books with a price match guarantee, ensuring you will nt find cheaper books anywhere else.


If you have childcare costs to consider, Northumbria University has an on campus purpose-built nursery. There are almost 100 places available to the young children of Northumbria students, staff and parents working at some of the University's partner organisations in Newcastle city centre and beyond. Prices start at £34.61 for a half day.


Students studying for full-time or part-time course on campus can also take advantage of our interest free easy payment scheme and may be eligible to apply for a Postgraduate Loan of up to £10k to cover the cost of fees and provide some support towards living costs whilst studying. Alumni discounts and international academic discounts are also available. Please visit our finance pages for further information.



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