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Cost of living

The UK’s best value student city

Belfast has won awards for its affordable living, and rent in the popular Queen’s Quarter is rarely more than £50-£60 a week.

In this exciting hub of music, food, shopping and culture, you’ll also pay less for things like travel, cinema tickets and going out.

Best value for money

Belfast has the lowest cost of living in the UK. (Mercer Cost of Living City Ranking 2021)

Save without compromise

Lowest student rent in the UK (NatWest Student Living Index, 2020)

Cost of living comparison

See how Queen’s compares with other Universities in key costs, including accommodation, weekly household bills, travel expenses and tuition fees.

As a guide we estimate you should allow a sum in the region of £5,500-£7,500 to cover your expenses for one academic year.

Overall cost comparisons
Queen's University Belfast English University Scottish University London University
Weekly cost of University Accommodation [1] £124 £164 £157 £231
Average Monthly Rent £252 £424 £373 £717
Tuition Fees for 2022/23 £4,630 (NI Students)
£9,250 (GB Students)
£9,250 £9,250 £9,250
Maximum Student Maintenance Loan Available £4,840 (NI Students)
£9,488 (GB Students)
£4,840 (NI Students)
£9,488(GB Students)
£4,840 (NI Students)
£9,488 (GB Students)
£6,780 (NI Students)
£12,382 (GB Students)
Scholarships UG Scholarships
GB Scholarships
Travel Costs (Flights/Trains) [2] N/A (NI Students)
Manchester - Belfast flight £43 return (GB Students)
£129 (NI Students)
London-Newcastle train £106 (GB Students)
£138 (NI Students)
London-Glasgow train £90.60 (GB Students)
£120 (NI Students)
Manchester-London train £100.50 (GB Students)
Total Cost [4] £9,342 (NI Students)
£13,962 (GB Students)
£16,138 £15,390 £18,243
  • Student maintenance grants and loans are available for NI students, both vary according to household income.
  • Based on comparable RG Universities (Manchester, Glasgow and UCL).
  • [1] Based on Single Ensuite accommodation, similar distance to Elms BT9 to campus
  • [2] Flights based on return tickets cheapest available in February 2022
  • [4] Based on University Accommodation (Min. contract) and Tuition Fees
Hear from our Students
My Weekly Budget as a Student in Belfast

Suhani Puneet Abrol, India

My Weekly Spend as a Student in Belfast

Olivia Watson, Northern Ireland

Student Budget in Belfast

Jesselyn Anastasya, Indonesia

Affordable Food and Drink

Affordable Social Life

"I was pleasantly surprised by the cost of living in Belfast. The student halls are very cheap in comparison to other UK universities accommodation. You can feed yourself for very little which means you’ve more money to do other things in Belfast."

Jacob Robinson, Newcastle

Watch: VIDEO: Free Things to do in Belfast

Read more: Day out in Belfast spending only $10

Read more: The Affordable Student Experience: Belfast vs London vs Manchester

Read more: Three Cheap day trips from Belfast

Queen's Film Theatre

Typical living expenses

A standard cinema ticket will cost you £3 less than in England and Scotland, and an incredible £5 less than London.

Gym membership is also significantly cheaper than England and if you choose to live in Queen’s Accommodation you will benefit from free off-peak gym membership.

Travel and Transport

Translink operates Metro bus services in Belfast and train services. Student Discount card is available for all 16-23 year olds and costs only £8.

It gives up to 1/3 off Translink bus and rail services within Northern Ireland, plus up to 50 per cent off Enterprise train service between Dublin and Belfast.

More details
Coming from Republic of Ireland?
Specific cost comparisons