University ‘set to cost £54,000’

Undergraduates at Cambridge are not just at one of the world’s most prestigious universities – they are also at the most expensive place of learning in the UK, if the results of a survey of student finances are to be believed.
But further education is a cash-eating process in general, regardless of location. Someone starting a three-year course in 2014-15 can expect to graduate with a typical debt of £54,000, and that doesn’t even include student loans.
That figure includes average tuition fees of £8,600, according to stats produced by Santander, while a student can expect an outlay of about £9,500 a year on other expenses, including accommodation. That signifies an increase of 7% on last year’s figures.
Cambridge tops the table, with students there spending an average of nearly £10,800 on annual expenses, excluding their tuition fees.
It means that budgeting and seeking out the best student-finance deals are more important than ever.
“Going to university is not cheap, especially for those studying in major cities, so students need to have a firm grasp of budgeting in order to make their money stretch as far as possible,” said Steve Pateman, head of UK banking at Santander.
Other than tuition fees, which are paid back after graduation, accommodation is the biggest expense, costing an average of £4,169 a year, up from £3,882 in 2013. Food, travel and “socialising” are the next largest outgoings, according to the research.