City revealed as UK’s cheapest for students

College bosses and students have given a cautious welome to a survey suggesting Wolverhampton is the cheapest UK city to study.

The City of Wolverhampton College's Paget Road Campus. Photo: Google Street View
The City of Wolverhampton College's Paget Road Campus. Photo: Google Street View

Based on cost of living factors such as the average price of student accommodation, money spent on alcohol, meals, coffee and taxi fares, the city came out ahead of any other major town or city, costing £120.90 a week.

According to the research, conducted by an online tutor group, the study found that weekly costs for students in Wolverhampton were £120.90 on average, with rent accounting for £81.

However, not everyone living the student life in the city agreed with the survey’s findings – and say steep inflation is having an impact.

Rose Urkovskis, head of student entitlement at the City of Wolverhampton College, said: “Many of the students I speak to are definitely struggling with financial pressures – some of them have even told us they have to choose between buying their bus fare and eating.

“We’ve started to see more students utilise our financial support services than ever before, such as the Discretionary Learner Support fund – which provides free travel passes, lunch and equipment for their studies – and bursaries which support those who are 16-18 and living independently.”

Kyle Pugh, an Access to HE (Higher Education) student at the college, said: “I don’t think that Wolverhampton is necessarily much cheaper than anywhere else in the country, apart from the fact that it’s a small city which makes travelling easy and more cost effective.

“I’d always encourage students to look into the financial support available through their college/university, as that really helps to alleviate many of the pressures.”

Harjot Bawal, a sport student, added: “Having moved here from Scotland, I find the prices aren’t too bad. The rise in fuel costs has been difficult though, as I rely on my car to get me to and from college.

“A lot of my money is spent on food and drink so I’ll always make use of the free breakfast offered at college where I can.

“I’m going to university soon which I know can be expensive, but I’m not too worried as I’m hoping I should be able to get grants and I’ll only pay my loan back when I’m earning good money.”

Unsurprisingly, London topped the poll as the priciest city to be a student with an average weekly cost of £284.10 – more than double that of Wolverhampton.

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