Affording Study Abroad: Part One


October 29, 2021

Like all things worthwhile, study abroad is an investment, which means you have to put time, effort, and ... yes, funds, toward it. Not all the funds you put toward it have to be actual out-of-pocket dollars and cents coming from your (or your parents'/guardians') pockets immediately, however. 

Here is a quick rundown of helpful terms as you become an expert on affording study abroad.


  •   COST OF ATTENDANCE: this comprises billed (i.e. things you’ll receive an invoice for) and non-billed (i.e. out of pocket expenses along the way).
    • Billed items include program fee (tuition, room and some services) and potential additional fees (costs that aren’t passed on to you depending on program and course of study – like meal plans and special course fees).
    • Non-billed items include things like airfare, food, and living expenses, amongst others.
  •   A quality study abroad program will tell you all of this up front. For Arcadia program students, this information is estimated on our website and updated and posted in each student’s Application Portal in enough time for you to budget for the upcoming semester, year or summer. As always, if you have questions, we’re here.
  •  UNIQUENESS NOTE. Your home school may have a specific payment arrangement with your chosen study abroad program. Check with them first!
  • NICKELS AND DIMES: HOW MANY? Although Arcadia provides out of pocket expense estimates, these are just that, estimates. Think about your own spending habits, cooking proficiency (or lack thereof), and supplemental travel plans. Go online and price these items out. Better to overestimate than have a surprise later on.


  1.       FINANCIAL AID CAN BE APPLIED TO STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS. This is generally filed by your current school although Arcadia can file on your behalf. Please check with us for clarification in your case if you’re unsure.
  2.       FINANCIAL AID comprises:
    1.  Federal Aid (with the exception of Federal Work Study Funds);
    2. possibly State Aid (this depends on your school’s billing arrangement with Arcadia);
    3. possibly Institutional Aid (this depends on your school’s policy); and
    4. Private Student Aid (including scholarships and loans – this transfers if your credit requirements are met).

Each one of the scholarships listed below has specific criteria you must meet: refer to Arcadia’s site which can direct you to individual websites.


Here are a few to consider.

  •         Arcadia Scholarships
  •         US Study Abroad Scholarships: Gilman, Fund for Education Abroad, BUTEX, Go Overseas, Insight into Diversity
  •         Overseas Scholarships: University of Melbourne, Trinity College Dublin, Education New Zealand
  •         Scholarships from church and community organizations 
  • DUE DILIGENCE: We also encourage you to visit the State Department Website (USA Study Abroad) and Sallie Mae’s website for general scholarship information.

Check into whether you have any access to VA Benefits or a 529 Plan. Arcadia also offers a convenient monthly payment plan so program fee payments can be spread out over time.

    With a little help and planning, study abroad is possible. Talk to your home school, check out our website, and get the appropriate paperwork filed.
  • Enroll in adequate credits overseas, commit to saving as much money as you can for your next adventure, and check out: AFFORDING STUDY ABROAD PART TWO.