As an international student, it’s vital that you organise your finances well in advance of your course start date so that your funding is in place before you arrive in the UK – both for your study costs and your living expenses.
After you have left your home country, it will be difficult to arrange financial support, and you cannot rely on being able to organise additional funding from the UK.
Remember that the UKVI/Home Office will only give you permission to enter the country, or extend your existing visa, if you can show that you have the required funds to cover your annual course tuition fee and your maintenance and living costs. In addition, you will need a CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance of Study) to make your Tier 4 visa application and in most cases the University will want to see proof that you have the correct level of money needed for your Tier 4 visa application in the correct format before issuing you with a CAS. If you are starting a new course, in most cases a CAS will also only be issued once you have made a £4000 deposit towards your course tuition fee.
For information about making a Tier 4 visa application and the requirements you must meet, visit our Visa pages.
For information about fee deposits, visit the international student deposits page.
For more information about general living costs in London, visit our Affordable London page.
Our tuition fees vary depending on the level of study, subject and study options, and are subject to annual change. They can also depend on where you were living and what you were doing prior to studying at Westminster, as well as your nationality. All undergraduate courses and some of our postgraduate courses have Home and Overseas tuition fee levels. Every applicant is assessed to find out which they should pay.
Most Home fee payers are residents of UK and other countries in the European Union. Most Overseas fee-payers are from outside of the European Union.
Will my fee status be Home or Overseas?
We use the information you supply when you apply for your course to work out if you should pay Home or Overseas fees. The criteria we use for assessing your fee status are set by the UK government. You can get more information on your fee status by visiting the UK Council for International Student Affairs.
University of Westminster scholarships
The University of Westminster offers a generous scholarship scheme for international students.
Our scholarships are normally awarded on the basis of three criteria: academic excellence, development potential and financial need. Competition is high for our scholarships and we receive many more applications than we can fund, so make sure you have explored other ways to fund your studies too.
For full details of our scholarships, visit our scholarships pages.
Note that you must have an offer of a place at the University before you can apply for any of our scholarships.
What other funding could I get?
UK funding options are extremely limited and we suggest you research options available in your home country.
US federal loans
US students interested in applying for Federal Student Aid will find more information on our US loans page.
If you are coming to study a course of six months or longer, you must get a Tier 4 General Student Visa from your home country before travelling to the UK.
If you are coming to study on a course lasting less than six months, you may be able to apply for a short-term study visa. Please be aware that this visa has greater restrictions than a Tier 4 visa.
Working in the UK during your course
Working part-time during your studies can provide much-needed extra income, as well as valuable work experience and skills development. But when planning your finances, bear in mind that you cannot rely on earnings from work to cover all your costs and you cannot rely on this income as proof of funds for a Tier 4 visa application.
If you are in the UK on a Tier 4 student visa and you are attending a degree level course, you will normally have permission to work up to 20 hours per week during term time and full-time during course vacations. This includes paid or unpaid work.
If you have a Tier 4 visa issued to attend a pre-sessional course only, you cannot work more than 10 hours per week in paid or unpaid work.
Your Tier 4 visa should specify the maximum number of working hours allowed. Check the work condition on your visa as soon as you get it. If you think it is wrong, contact Student Advice immediately for information about how to get it corrected.
If you have a short-term study visa, you are not allowed to do any work at all, paid or unpaid.
Working in the UK after your course
You may be able to apply for a Tier 2 (General) work visa if you have a job offer and the employer is able to sponsor you. If you are near to completing a PhD, you could consider applying for the Doctorate Extension Scheme. If you are interesting in starting your own business in the UK, the University of Westminster can offer a small number of students the option to obtain the Start Up Visa. This visa has replaced the Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa. There are other types of Tier 1 and Tier 5 options available too. The Tier 5 Government Authorised Exchange visa is useful if you want to stay in the UK to do a period of work experience, internship, or a short period of training.
Before coming to the UK, you will need to organise your money to ensure you have enough for the length of your course - working part-time when you get here will not provide enough money to fund your studies. You'll also need to investigate the best ways to transfer money into the UK. The visa requirements stipulate certain amounts that you'll need before you can get a visa to come to the UK.
In addition to tuition fees, you will need to factor in your living costs for your time with us. This will typically include the costs of accommodation, travel, food and drink, social activities, etc. If you are applying for an international student visa you will need to show that in addition to your course fees, you also have enough money to cover these living costs.
Visit our Affordable London living costs page for more information.
Will I have to pay Council Tax?
It depends on your circumstances, who you live with and the type of accommodation you live in.
You do not normally have to pay while living in Student halls.
If you study part-time, your student status will not exempt you and you could be liable to pay Council Tax.
If you study full–time and rent private accommodation and your tenancy starts before your course begins, you will be liable to pay the Council Tax from the date your tenancy begins up until the start your full-time degree level course. This includes any time spent attending the pre-sessional English Language course as this is a short course and does not exempt you from paying. From the start of your full-time degree level course onwards, you should be exempt from paying because you are a full-time student but once your course ends, you become liable to pay the Council Tax again.