Top 10 countries with the most expensive university education

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The debate whether college degree is worth the investment is not new. While some believe that earning a college degree is a must to get well paid job, others argue that college degree is waste of time and money. The latter argument is mainly due to the high university tuition fees that ultimately ends up as debt for the student if he fails to score a well paid job. Getting a well paid job is not the only benefit of a college degree. A good college makes the students think, ask questions, and explore new ideas, which allows for additional overall growth and development. Also students gets the opportunity to make connections with fellow students which would expand their horizons. Having said that, college today is more expensive than ever before and the costs are only shooting upwards. The cost of university education also varies across various countries around the world. In the present blog we present to you “Top 10 countries with the most expensive university education”

It is easy to guess that US and UK would be on top of the list for the most expensive university education. Estimates by Times education group revealed more than half of the world’s top 200 universities are located in either the US or the UK. As the countries move from manufacturing based economies to knowledge based economies, the demand for quality college education increases. The cost of education in both these countries is by no means cheap.

However, the UK and the US have fairly generous wages when compared with other nations, but enormous fees which reach tens of thousands of dollars per year makes it a difficult task to pay tuition fees. To compound this, what seems to be happening now is that fees continue to rise each year but wages do not, so higher education is becoming something which only the elite can afford.

The situation is even worse in other countries where the tuition fees is low but the incomes of families are even lower.

So it is reasonable to take “percentage of salary spent on tuition fees” as the estimate for comparison. Based on this estimate here goes our list.


1. Hungary


Hungarian parents spend the equivalent of nearly a whole average salary on higher education each year. This means quality university education is accessible only to high income groups, those with savings and students willing to take loan. However, the government does allow students to gain a free university education – as long as they stay in the country for 10 years after they graduate or face paying back their tuition fees.

For Scholarships to study in Hungary, Click here

See More: 5 basic points to consider if planning to study in Europe for free


2. Romania


Romania has a huge concentration of students in the sciences, especially medicine, within their higher education system. However, since the average person only earns 2563 Romanian new leu (£429, $651), only the rich are able to afford the expensive university education for their children.

For Scholarships to study in Romania, Click here


3. Estonia


The Estonian government made the development of science and technology a national priority in the year 2011 after the proportion of students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects declined in the 1990s. While uptake has risen over the last few years, these degrees carry the highest cost burdens in fees.

For Scholarships to study in Estonia, Click here

See More: The Skills We All Need But College Does not Teach


4. Chile


A massive wave of student protests between 2011-2013, dubbed the “Chilean Winter”  tried to end the existence of for-profit higher education institutions as poorer families are unable to afford to send their kids to university.

The OECD shows that the average household income in Chile is only $17,773 (£11,718) meaning that domestically families have to financially cripple themselves for tuition fees.

For Scholarships to study in Chile, Click here

students protested as part of "Chilean Winter"

Students protested as part of “Chilean Winter”

5. Malaysia


The country has around 20 universities and fees are competitive compared to the rest of the world. However, domestically, the average wage is still only RM 2,052 (£310, $470) per month. This means without scholarships or loans, parents will lose over half their wages in tuition fees.

For Scholarships to study in Malaysia, Click here

See more: 8 Reasons Why Studying Abroad Will Make You Smarter


6. The United States


The US is famous for its eye-wateringly high tuition fees. While that figure above is the average cost for a bachelor’s degree in the States, tuition fees from the country’s (and the world’s) most prestigious universities can be around $45,278 (£29,834).

For example Columbia University, ranked 4th among best universities in US charges $53,523 as tuition fees.If you include other room and board expenses it amounts to $66,383.

For Scholarships to study in the USA, Click here

Columbia University

Columbia University, USA

See More: Academic Requirements for Engineering Candidates in US


7. Ukraine


At one point, Ukraine had more universities than Italy, France, Germany, Poland and Belgium combined. The country pared down its 900 universities to just under 200 over the last three years. A number of these have specialised military institutes within the university so graduates can immediately go into the army.

For Scholarships to study in Ukraine, Click here


8. Lithuania


Back in 2009, students protested across the capital of Vilnius against educational reforms because they thought that it would result in expensive university education. It ended up being true as student’s parents hive off nearly half of their salaries to pay for higher education.

For Scholarships to study in Lithuania, Click here

See more:Pros and Cons of studying in Europe


9. Britain


Britain’s university fees are so high that they account for nearly half the average household’s earnings. However, it is still only ninth on the list due to the country’s higher wages. Tuition fees in Britain can cost up to £9,000 ($13,654) a year depending on the subject and university.

One such university is London School of Economics which costs you £59,152 ($89740) should you decide to pursue your college at this world famous university.

For Scholarships to study in the UK, Click here

London School of Economics (LSE)

London School of Economics (LSE), UK

See More: Where do you want to see yourself in the next 5 years?

10. Singapore


The island nation of Singapore only has five public universities and fees for medical and science-based subjects are naturally very high. However, Singapore is the third richest country in the world and high income levels mean parents spend just over a third of their salaries on making sure their children get at least a bachelor’s degree.

For Scholarships to study in Singapore, Click here


You might have started wondering how to fund your expensive university education when you step out of high school. Most top-ranked universities offer scholarships based on merit and need. Make sure you use our resources at which has all the latest information about scholarships from around the world.

You are most welcome to share your views on the tuition fees in your country.Please use the comments section below.

Statistics about countries are contributed by Lianna Brinded, Editor at Business Insider. Title Image adapted from





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I blog about simple things in life. Interests in Finance,Technology,Contemporary issues in the world.


2 thoughts on “Top 10 countries with the most expensive university education

  1. Very informative post, thank you. Europe is always a cheaper option for U.S. students, with the possibility to benefit from a top-notch education and amazing student-life. Beyond the States can help you with your application process and getting settled so you will enjoy your university experience.

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