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Where are the Cheapest Places to Live and Study Medicine in the UK?

Researchers at Arora Medical Education have analysed a variety of factors at 36 of the UK’s top medical schools, to find out the most and least expensive places to live and complete a medical degree in the country. 

Looking at everything from average on and off-campus rent prices, to the average price of a pint of milk in the local area, this report uses a variety of metrics to calculate and compare the cost of studying at the UK’s top medical schools and faculties. 

Please note, these calculations exclude tutorial costs.

The Total Cost of Living (Residents Living in Halls)

Calculated using recent estimates for average rent (on campus), utility bills and food. See breakdown sections below for more information about each measurement. Ordered as least-most and per week. 

University Name

Weekly Living Cost (£)

⭐University of Dundee

148

⭐University of Aberdeen

159.50

Queen’s University Belfast

189.10

University of Birmingham

190.70

⭐Swansea University

195.05

University of Warwick

196.85

University of Liverpool

197.15

⭐Keele University

199.80

University of Hull

200.15

University of Sunderland

203.15

Newcastle University

206.80

Edge Hill University

208

⭐University of Glasgow

208.30

University of Derby

211.20

University of Leicester

211.45

University of Sheffield

211.45

Lancaster University

212.65

⭐University of Edinburgh

212.70

Plymouth University

221.55

University of Nottingham

222.50

Cardiff University

224

University of St. Andrews

224.55

University of Southampton

228.65

University of Manchester

233

⭐University of Cambridge

233.30

Norwich Medical School

236.75

University of Bristol

237.40

University of Leeds

240.35

Kent and Medway

249.80

⭐University of Exeter

251.30

Brunel University

256.70

St. George’s University of London

261.70

University College London

261.70

⭐Queen Mary University 

263.70

⭐University of Oxford

266.75

Imperial College London

272.70

King’s College London

295.70

⭐- Universities recommended by Complete University Guide Rankings 2022

The Total Cost of Living per Week (Residents Living in Local Accommodation)

Calculated using recent estimates for average rent (taken from average rent on a three-bedroom house, per person), utility bills and food. See breakdown sections below for more information about each measurement. Ordered as least-most and per week. 

University Name

Weekly Living Cost (£)

Queen’s University Belfast

124.10

University of Sunderland

124.15

University of Hull

126.15

⭐Keele University

136.80

Newcastle University

136.80

⭐University of Dundee

141

⭐University of Aberdeen

141.70

University of Leicester

143.95

University of Liverpool

144.15

Lancaster University

147.65

University of Sheffield

148.65

University of Nottingham

149.50

⭐Swansea University

151.05

Norwich Medical School

151.75

⭐University of Glasgow

155.30

University of Derby

158.20

Plymouth University

158.55

University Birmingham 

161.70

University of Leeds

165.35

University of Warwick

166.85

University of Southampton

167.65

Edge Hill University

171

Cardiff University

171

University of Manchester

171

⭐University of Exeter

176.30

⭐University of Edinburgh

183.70

University of St. Andrews

188.55

⭐University of Cambridge

195.20

University of Bristol

195.40

Kent and Medway

210.80

⭐University of Oxford

219

Brunel University

275.70

St. George’s, University of London

275.70

University College London

275.70

⭐Queen Mary University of London

275.70

Imperial College London

275.70

King’s College London

275.70

⭐- Universities recommended by Complete University Guide Rankings 2022

More Information: Living Cost Estimates

Rent: The Cheapest On-campus Accommodation 

Median average based on cost of Undergraduate accommodation at each institution. Per person, per week. Ordered least-most.

University Name

Cost of Halls (Per Week) (£) 🏠

University of Dundee 

72

University of Aberdeen

96

Swansea University

106

University of Derby

109

University of Birmingham

110

University of Liverpool

112

University of Warwick

118

Edge Hill University

118

Keele University

119

Lancaster University 

121

University of Sunderland 

122

Queen’s University Belfast

124

University of Hull

125

University of Sheffield 

125

Newcastle University

126

University of Glasgow

127

University of Edinburgh

127

Cardiff University

128

University of Leicester 

128.50

Plymouth University

129

University of Nottingham

138

Kent and Medway

142

University of Manchester

143

University of Southampton

146

University of Bristol

147

University of Cambridge

148

University of Leeds

151

University of St. Andrews

152

Brunel University

152

Norwich Medical School

155

St George’s, University of London

157

University College London

157

Queen Mary University of London

159

University of Exeter

161

Imperial College London

168

University of Oxford

174

King’s College London

191

Rent: The Cheapest Off-campus Accommodation 

Based on average rent in the local area for a 3-bedroom house. Cost per person, per week. Ordered least-most. 

University Name

Cost of Rent (Per Person, Per Week) (£)🏡

University of Sunderland

43

University of Hull

51

University of Derby

56

Keele University

56

Lancaster University Medical School

56

Newcastle University

56

University of Liverpool

59

Queen’s University Belfast

59

University of Leicester

61

Swansea University

62

University of Sheffield

62

University of Dundee

65

University of Nottingham School of Medicine

65

Plymouth University

66

Norwich Medical School

70

University of Glasgow

74

Cardiff University

75

University of Leeds

76

University of Aberdeen

78

University of Birmingham

81

Edge Hill University

81

University of Manchester

81

University of Southampton

85

University of Exeter

86

University of Warwick

88

University of Edinburgh

98

Kent and Medway

103

University of Bristol

105

University of Cambridge

110

University of St. Andrews

116

University of Oxford

126

Brunel University

171

St George’s, University of London

171

University College London

171

Queen Mary University of London

171

Imperial College London

171

King’s College London

171

Cost of Utilities 

Median average of local utility cost rates: electricity and gas, water and internet, per household, divided by three people. Per week. Ordered least-most. 

University Name

Average Utility Costs (Electricity/Gas, Water, Internet) Per Week (£) 💡

Queen’s University Belfast

24.5

University of Aberdeen

31.5

University of St. Andrews

34.75

University of Nottingham

35.5

University of Dundee

37.5

University of Hull

38.75

Norwich Medical School

39.75

University of Birmingham

41.50

University of Cambridge

42.50

University of Southampton

42.75

Keele University

43

Newcastle University

43

University of Edinburgh

43

University of Glasgow

43.5

University of Oxford

43.75

Swansea University

44.25

University of Sunderland

44.75

University of Liverpool

45.25

University of Warwick

45.25

University of Sheffield

46.75

University of Leicester

47.25

Edge Hill University

48

University of Manchester

48

University of Leeds

48.75

University of Bristol

50.50

Plymouth University

51.25

Lancaster University

51.75

University of Exeter

52.50

Cardiff University

57.50

Brunel University

58.50

St George’s, University of London

58.50

University College London

58.50

Queen Mary University of London

58.50

Imperial College London 

58.50

King’s College London

58.50

University of Derby

59.50

Kent and Medway

63

Cost of Food 

Calculated using local median averages for the cost of the following items: Loaf of Fresh White Bread (500g); Rice (white); (1kg), Pasta (white, dry) (1kg); Eggs (regular) (12); Cheese (1kg); 

Chicken Fillets (1kg); Beef Mince (1kg); Tuna (tinned) (2); Apples (1kg); Banana (1kg); Oranges (1kg); Tomato (1kg); Potato (1kg); Onion (1kg); Lettuce (1 head); Water (1.5 litre bottle); Bottle of Wine (Mid-Range).

University Name

Average Weekly Food Shop Cost (£) 🛒

University of Aberdeen

32.20

University of Warwick

33.60

University of Leicester

35.70

University of Hull

36.40

University of Sunderland

36.40

University of St. Andrews

37.80

Keele University

37.80

Newcastle University

37.80

University of Glasgow

37.80

University of Exeter

37.80

University of Dundee

38.50

Cardiff University

38.50

University of Birmingham

39.20

University of Southampton

39.90

University of Liverpool

39.90

University of Sheffield

39.90

University of Bristol

39.90

Lancaster University

39.90

Queen’s University Belfast

40.60

University of Leeds

40.60

Plymouth University

41.30

Norwich Medical School

42

Edge Hill University

42

University of Manchester

42

University of Cambridge

42.70

University of Edinburgh

42.70

University of Derby

42.70

Swansea University

44.80

Kent and Medway

44.80

Brunel University

46.20

St George’s, University of London

46.20

University College London

46.20

Queen Mary University of London

46.20

Imperial College London

46.20

King’s College London

46.2-

University of Nottingham 

49

University of Oxford

49

Methodology

To calculate the rental costs per institution, we used information from the 2021-2022 academic year for each university or medical school. We found the median average for all listed prices of accomodation for each institution, and worked out the total cost per week based on this. 

To calculate the rental costs per institution we used Zoopla.co.uk information, taken in March 2022. For every location, we created averages for three bedroom houses, and worked out the weekly rent cost per person based on these. 

To calculate the cost of utilities, we used local data from Numbeo.co.uk. This gave us an average household cost for each location. We then divided this by three (based on the same scenario as above) and worked out the average weekly cost per person. 

Finally, to calculate food prices for each location, we used Numbeo.co.uk’s Cost of Living resource. This indicated average prices for each food item, which we used to create an estimate for the cost of our shopping bag (detailed above).

About Dr Aman and Dr Pooja

Dr Aman Arora is a GP who is now 100% committed to transforming medical education, helping doctors across the globe to ace their exams and enhance their careers. He is proud to hold FRCGP (Fellow of Royal College of General Practitioners). Previous roles include:

  • GP Training Programme Director
  • NHS GP Appraiser
  • GMC PLAB 2 Examiner
  • GP Recruitment Examiner
  • GP Recruitment Question-writer
  • HEWM IMG Board Member
  • HEWM Advanced MRCGP AKT Trainer

Dr Pooja Arora is a GP with a background in Medical Politics, passionately focusing on improving the opportunities and working conditions for junior doctors. Previous roles include:

  • Vice Chair Birmingham LMC
  • BMA Council Member
  • BMA General Practitioners Committee elected representative 
  • BMA Sessional GP Committee elected representative 
  • BMA National Deputy Policy lead for working at scale
  • HEE GP Ambassador
  • HEE GP Stage 3 Assessor
  • RCGP Midland Faculty AiT representative

* Blogs written on our website are not for professional, financial or medical advice. Please seek appropriate professional, legal or financial advice where appropriate * 

 

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