These Are The UK’s Most & Least Expensive Cities For Students

Photographed by Kieran Boswell
Cardiff has been named the UK's least expensive city for students, while Edinburgh has been named the most expensive.
According to the Natwest Student Living Index 2022, Edinburgh is the only city where student spending actually outweighs their income. Students in the Scottish capital shell out an average of £950 a month on rent and other living costs, but their income is only £935 a month, leaving a £15 shortfall.
In Cardiff, students spend an average of £1,040 per month on rent and other living costs, but their income is £2,240, meaning they have a lot more financial leeway.
Check out the 10 least expensive cities for students below.
1. Cardiff
2. Cambridge
3. Southampton
4. Sheffield
5. Coventry
6. York
7. Durham
8. Oxford
9. Bristol
10. Birmingham
After Edinburgh, the most expensive cities for students are Glasgow, Leeds, Canterbury and London. Last year, London was named the most expensive place to study, so it's at least moving in the right direction.
Across the UK as a whole, the average student derives nearly half (49%) of their income from student loans. Students in Manchester and London are most reliant on parental support to make ends meet.
The average student rent is now £455 a month, which is down 12% on last year, thankfully. Manchester and Coventry have the highest student rents of anywhere in the country.
Laura Behan, Head of NatWest Student Accounts, said in response to the results: "Despite the cost of living increasing dramatically, we’ve not seen that hit students quite as hard as may have been expected this year.
“Rents were set well in advance of the academic year and inflation increased much later into the academic year. However, with the cost of living increasing, especially as we look towards the start of the new university year in September, it is vital that students properly manage their finances."
Indeed, more than a third of students (35%) said they find themselves running out of money by the end of term, which is 8% higher than in 2021. Meanwhile, 88% of students said they have changed their lifestyle to make sure they stay within their budget: another example of Gen Z being very financially prudent.

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