Cost of Living in Australia vs UK: A Comprehensive Guide
24 July, 2023
350 mins read
Before deciding to study abroad, you must consider the cost of living, which will determine how much you can spend. You should also consider scholarships both in the UK and Australia, as well as how to live on a budget; for that, you can check out the following helpful links provided by Casita: How to Apply to A Scholarship in the UK, Reduce Your Cost of Living in Australia, and the Benefits and Discounts for Students in Australia guide.
When looking at Australia and the UK, we need to consider various factors, including the quality of education, the benefits of studying in both countries and the costs in Australia and the UK.
Regarding the quality of education, both the UK and Australia have some of the highest-ranked student cities in the world according to the QS rankings of 2023, with the UK having London and Edinburgh as the first and tenth-best student cities respectively, and Australia having Melbourne and Sydney in the fifth and ninth-best student cities respectively.
That being said, what sets both countries apart is the average living costs, living standards, average salaries, local purchasing power, and more. This is why we will present a comprehensive guide comparing the cost of living in Australia vs the UK.
General Cost Overview
The UK and Australia have a wide range of costs ranging from major cities, which have a high cost, to lower cities which have lower prices. In this general comparison, we will compile the average living costs and give a general overview of the cost of living in Australia vs the UK.
When comparing both countries by doing a cost of living comparison, we have found the average cost of living was the following:
International tuition fees Bachelor’s
AUD $20,000 to AUD $45,000 per year
£11,400 to £38,000 per year
International tuition fees
AUD $22,000 to AUD $50,000 per year
£9,000 to £30,000 per year
AUD $440 to AUD $1,100 per month
£400 – £600 per month
Private Lets (One-bedroom apartment)
AUD $1,807 to AUD $2,308 per month
£610 to £740 per month
Utilities (Gas, water, electricity, internet)
AUD $270 to AUD $320 per month
£80 to £140 per month (includes TV license)
AUD $500 to AUD $1,000 per month
£464 to £620 per month
AUD $30 to AUD $70 per month
£54 to £103 per month
This table presents a general overview of Australia’s cost of living vs the UK. Next, we will compare the two most expensive cities in both countries.
Please note that prices in Sydney, Australia, and London, UK, may be much higher than the rest of the average costs mentioned above.
When comparing Australia vs the UK, we must consider the differences between the cities in terms of living standards and expenses. In this section, we will present a quick comparison between some major cities in the UK and Australia.
In Australia, you’ll need to have the following budgets for the cities of Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Canberra, including living expenses and housing:
To move to Sydney, you will need a minimum amount of AUD $1,900 per month
To move to Melbourne, you will need a minimum amount of AUD $1,500 per month
To move to Canberra, you will need a minimum amount of AUD $1,400 per month
To move to Brisbane, you will need a minimum amount of AUD $1,400 per month
To move to Adelaide, you will need a minimum amount of AUD $1,300 per month
In the UK, as a general requirement, and according to the UK government, you will be required to have at least the following:
£1,334 per month for up to nine months if you study in London
£1,023 per month for up to nine months if you study outside London
Most Expensive Cities Comparison (Cost of Living Australia vs UK)
When looking at the most expensive cities in the UK and Australia, the comparison will be between the city of London, which is the most expensive city in the UK and Sydney in Australia. Note that costs also depend on lifestyle choices and spending habits.
AUD 770 per month
£848 per month
Private Lets (One-bedroom apartment)
AUD 2,803 per month
£1,780 per month
Utilities (Gas, water, electricity, internet)
AUD 353 per month
£340 per month
AUD 536 per month
£360 per month
Public Transport (Monthly Pass)
AUD 217 per month
£170 per month
Our Top Housing Options in Sydney
Western Sydney UV Penrith (Most Affordable): This Sydney student accommodation offers various en-suite student housing options. The building has a laundry facility, an outdoor barbecue area, a game area, a large screen, and various other amenities.
Link2 Sydney (Closest to the city centre): This Sydney student accommodation is currently one of our closest available options, so experience all the city has to offer and enjoy the various building benefits, which include different communal areas such as lounges where you can meet up with friends as well as shared facilities which includes kitchens and laundry facilities.
Our Top Housing Options in London
Arch View House (Most Affordable): This London student accommodation offers ensuites, studios, and two and three-bedroom flats. The facilities available include a laundry facility, a gym, a cinema room, and security through CCTV.
Piccadilly Court (Close to the centre and moderately priced): Despite having closer options to the city centre, Piccadilly Court, the London student accommodation, is both near the city centre and moderately priced compared to the much closer options.
Cheapest Universities (Recommendations)
In this section, we’ll be breaking down some of the most affordable options when considering whether you should move to Australia for your studies or the UK. Some of the most affordable university options for international students include
Charles Sturt University – Bachelor’s starts at AUD 21,680 per year.
University of Southern Queensland – Bachelor start at AUD 3,337 per year
Federation University Australia – Bachelors start at AUD 21,900 per year
Victoria University – Bachelor start at AUD 22,660 per year
Engineering Institute of Technology – Bachelors start at AUD 23,500 per year
University of Sunshine Coast – Bachelors start at AUD 24,000 per year
Australian Catholic University – Bachelor start at AUD 24,105 AUD per year
Excelsia College – Masters start at AUD 15,000 per year
University of Tasmania – Masters start at AUD 15,725 per year
Monash University – Masters start at AUD 17,500 per year
Charles Sturt University – Masters start at AUD 20,800 per year
Torrens University Australia – Masters start at AUD 21,700 per year
University of Chester – £9,250 per year
University of Cumbria – £10,500 per year
University of Bedfordshire – £11,500 per year
Wrexham Glyndwr University – £11,750 per year
Teesside University – £11,825 per year
University of Cumbria – £3,500 to £15,500 per year
Teesside University –£5,875 to £17,000 per year
University of Chester – £12,000 per year
University of Bedfordshire – £12,000 per year
Wrexham Glyndwr University – £12,500 per year
The Final Verdict (Cost of Living Australia vs UK)
Despite Australia’s most expensive city being cheaper than the UK capital of London, Australia is generally regarded as more costly than London; here we’ll break down why the UK is viewed as a cheaper option than Australia.
Cost of Education (Cost of living Australia vs the UK)
Even though some Australian universities are more expensive than the UK, education in Australia can get cheaper than in the UK. With that said, the cost of education in Australia can get more affordable compared to the UK despite having various institutions which are pricier than the UK.
Food and Grocery Costs (Cost of Living Australia vs the UK)
Grocery costs in Australia are more expensive than in the UK; some of the grocery expenses will be laid down below:
Australia Cost (In euros)
UK Cost (In euros)
Meal, Cheap Restaurant
Milk 1 L
Loaf of Bread 500 g
Local Cheese 1kg
Eggs 12 eggs
Food and grocery costs in Australia are generally higher than in the UK.
Accommodation (Cost of Living Australia vs the UK)
Student housing, including private lets in Australia, is generally more expensive than in the UK; according to aggregate compiled data, the average range of accommodation (One-bedroom apartment) in Australia is anywhere between € 1,096.75 to € 1,401.07 depending on proximity to the city centre and in the UK generally ranges between € 830.66 to € 1,060.83 depending on proximity to the city centre.
In conclusion, both the UK and Australia are desirable destinations for students. However, they differ in terms of costs, with the UK being generally more affordable on average, however, there are various ways that you can save up money in both countries, including looking for scholarships, grants, and discounted travel products.
At Casita, we highly recommend that our students look up the average cost of living and all the ways you can save up money abroad. Looking at the prices will help you better plan ahead and budget for your studies; you can also look for side job opportunities to generate income to support your studies and living expenses.
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Frequently Asked Questions:
Which is better, living in UK or Australia?
Australia has a higher standard of living compared to the UK and a 28% higher median salary compared to the UK.
Which is better, the UK or Australia, for international students?
Australia and the UK both have excellent educational systems, with some of the world’s highest educational institutions, with the UK ranking higher than Australia. The costs of living and prices in Australia are also among the highest and are higher than in the UK. Australia, however, offers a comparable education system to the UK, higher living standards, and higher salaries.
Is London or Melbourne more expensive?
Melbourne is reported to be 25% cheaper than the UK. London is much more expensive than other UK cities and is also more expensive than Australia’s most expensive city, which is Sydney.