Student Accommodation Blog

The Cost of Living in Adelaide as a Student

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Starting your life as a student in Adelaide involves understanding the costs of studying in Australia. From rent and groceries, to gym memberships and weekend activities with friends, there are lots of expenses to consider. It’s important to know what kind of expenses to expect so you’re prepared for the Adelaide living cost as a student. 

Housing Costs
For most students, housing expenses are the biggest cost to consider. Not only rent, but bond, appliances, and utility bills can all add up. It could be a smart idea to organise housing that comes pre-furnished, so you have fewer up-front costs when starting your studies. International students or students moving to a new city to study are particularly suited to furnished housing. 

Fortunately, rental prices in Adelaide are below the national average. estimates the average weekly rental price is around $375. Sharing with flatmates is a good way to take the pressure off you Adelaide living cost student budget. UniLodge housing comes furnished and bills are grouped together in one flat rate, covering rent, electricity, gas, internet, and water. If you're not experienced with handling multiple bills, UniLodge could be a great option. 

Course-Related Expenses
In addition to the cost of your degree, there are also course-related expenses you may encounter as a student living in Adelaide. Depending on the courses you’re taking, you’ll probably have to purchase textbooks. Most universities have spaces to buy second-hand textbooks to lower some of the costs, even if it’s just a community-run Facebook buy/sell/swap group. 

If you don’t already have a laptop, you may need to purchase one so you can study and complete assignments at home. As a backup plan, your university’s library will have plenty of computers you can use. If you require assistance with understanding your coursework, you may also need to include room in your budget for tutoring expenses. 

Transport Expenses
If you’re an international student, you’ll need to organise transportation from the airport to your accommodation. The University of Adelaide offers a pickup service, or you can order a taxi or use a ride-sharing app. When it comes to getting around the city, there’s plenty of public transport in Adelaide. Full-time students can apply for a Student metroCARD, which allows you to tap on and off public transport. Just remember to carry your student ID to prove your student status. Once you have your metroCARD, you’ll be able to hop onto trains, buses, and trams throughout Adelaide. Inner-city trams run regularly, and the broader network of trains extends beyond the city – ideal for day trips on your days off from uni.

ADE Public Transport

Food and Grocery Expenses
Along with rent, groceries can be one of the biggest expenses to consider when adding up Adelaide living costs for a student. According to the University of South Australia, the average grocery bill in Adelaide ranges from $90-$130 each week. There are many factors to cause such a large range of costs. For example, shopping at Aldi may result in a lower grocery bill than shopping at the two leading grocery stores, Woolworths and Coles. A fresh food market like the Adelaide Central Market is a great place to pick up some groceries for a bargain.
Meal planning and budgeting ahead of time can help prevent your grocery bill from climbing too high. 

Insurance Expenses
When planning your Adelaide living cost student budget, you might not initially consider insurance expenses. However, health insurance is vitally important. While Australian citizens have access to Medicare (a government-funded healthcare system), most international students won’t be able to access it. If you want healthcare insurance as an international student, you can access Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). OSHC covers most health issues (including ambulance services) and costs between $400 and $600 dollars a year ($30-$50 a month).

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Lifestyle Expenses
Being a student involves more than just studying. Depending on your lifestyle, you may need to budget for extra expenses such as a gym membership, trips to the cinema, nights out in the city, adventures to amusement parks and shopping. The average gym membership costs around $65 a month, the average cost of a movie ticket at the cinema is $15, the average dinner in Adelaide costs approximately $30-40, and nights out in the city can cost around $100 (depending on where you go). 

Visiting the popular local amusement park, The BeachHouse, will cost around $33 and when it comes to shopping, Adelaide’s biggest mall - Rundle Mall, has plenty of budget and luxury stores to choose from. It’s advisable to set aside a set amount in your budget for weekly lifestyle expenses so you have room for impromptu activities. 

Now that you have a better understanding of the cost of living in Adelaide, you’ll be able to make the most of your student lifestyle without stressing about money.

Check out all the UniLodge accommodation options in Adelaide to find your new home in the city.