Poland can be an incredibly affordable place to study, particularly when compared to countries such as the UK, US, and Australia. Students from certain countries may even be able to go to university there without paying fees. We look at how much you’ll need to study and live in Poland.
All prices quoted are in Polish zloty (PLN). At the time of writing, 10 PLN equals £1.99 or $2.63.
Polish nationals get their university education for free at government-funded universities. Private institutions have fees even for local students, although these generally tend to be lower than in many other parts of Europe.
Students from EU and EEA (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway), can also qualify for free tuition at public universities Poland. However, to do so, you must sit the same entrance exam that Polish students do and study in Polish. Essentially, this means that you’ll need to speak Polish to a very high level.
For students who don’t qualify to study on equal terms as Polish citizens, the fees will vary depending on the type of institution, the university itself, and the programme you choose. Below, we’ve outlined some examples:
There are some opportunities for students to get funding for their studies in Poland, although they aren’t extensive. The Polish National Agency for Academic Exchange (NAWA) is the main government-based provider of scholarships. However, universities often have their own programmes that you may be eligible for. It’s worthwhile checking with the universities you’re applying to as to whether you’re entitled to any funding and how you can apply for it.
If you’re an international student of Polish descent, your chances of gaining a scholarship are greatly improved. Universities such as the University of Warsaw have links to several funds that you could benefit from.
Poland is often a much cheaper place to live than other countries in Europe. Alongside Romania and Bulgaria, it’s the cheapest places to live inside the EU. Although prices vary across the country and are significantly different between cities and rural areas, it’s still an affordable place to live and study.
Overall consumer prices (including rent) are around 45% lower in Poland than in the UK. When compared to the US, they’re around 80% lower. You can enjoy these low prices while you study in Poland, and still enjoy a good quality of life.
As for general costs, a meal in an inexpensive restaurant will cost around 20 PLN, a litre of milk is roughly 2.37 PLN, and a local beer is around 3 PLN in a store.
Costs here will depend on a variety of factors such as location and type of rental. Most universities in Poland offer dormitories that you can rent and can start from around 345-645 PLN per month depending on the institution.
Private accommodation is usually more expensive and can range significantly depending on the type of housing and the number of people you live with. For example, the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in a city centre is around 1828 PLN per month, and a three-bedroom is around 2968 PLN per month.
Working while you study
International students in Poland can undertake part-time work while they study. This applies to both EU students and non-EU nationals who hold a residency permit. You can work for up to twenty hours per week while your programme is running, and for up to three months full-time during holidays. However, the student job market can be competitive, and you’ll likely need to have some of the basics of the Polish language to access the full spectrum of jobs.
The average minimum wage for students is around 10.76 - 16.13 PLN per hour. Although this may seem low, don’t forget your study and living costs are also not as high as elsewhere.
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