Budgeting Dilemma: How to Manage Your Money When Studying in India

Being a student is a challenge. However, being an international student in a different country is even more challenging. One of the crucial challenges that students face abroad is managing their money. While India is one of the cheapest countries for university education, expenditures can add up, especially when you are on a shoestring student budget.

To avoid this stress and to get their finances in order, students need to plan ahead and minimize their expenses. Here are a few financial planning tips for international students in India.

Finance for International Students in India

Open a Savings Bank Account

It’s easy to exchange most foreign currency and traveller cheques in India. However, if you’re planning to study in the country for more than six months, it’ advisable to open an NRO bank account. With the relaxation of KYC norms by RBI, it’s become easy for foreign students to have bank accounts in India. This not only eases your financial transactions but also allows to keep track of the expenses and not incur exorbitant charges on international card usage. Compare the various benefits provided by these banks and choose one that fits your needs.

Make a Budget

While making a budget, figure out how much you have and what you can do to avoid unexpected spending. Making your money last through the entire semester can be difficult, so it’s advisable to make a checklist that allows you to understand how much you’ve spent.

List expenses in order of their importance. This will allow you to distinguish between your needs and wants. Needs can include fixed expenditures such as books, rent, college fees, and conveyance while wants can include a second laptop, branded clothes, shoes, etc. Once you have paid for the needs, the remaining amount can be used for satisfying your wants.

Account for Unexpected Expenditure

Emergencies and sudden medical expenses can lead to a significant hole in your savings. Therefore, it’s important to save for a rainy day. Transfer a fixed amount of money into the emergency fund account to remain worry-free. Also, don’t forget to budget for the cost of travelling home.

Save Money When You Can

Whether it’s opting for secondhand books or finding accommodation close to college to avoid travel expenses, there are many ways that international students in India can save money. Take advantage of student discounts on products and services.

Students also spend a lot of time on socializing. While this is important, it’s also vital to stick to a budget while eating out and partying. After all, you do not want to end up a pauper in a
foreign land.

Look for Deals and Bargains

Learn how to bargain and haggle especially when you’re buying from roadside shops. Of course, this does not apply to fixed price goods and other items with an MRP on it. However, if there’s a bag or a scarf that you like, learning to negotiate like an Indian helps you save quite a bit of money. And if you have the energy, then it’s recommended that you shop around for good deals before making large purchases.

India has a plethora of the finest educational institutes in the world. Not only does it offer benefits like affordable accommodation and food, but the quality of education and the vibrant culture make it an affordable and attractive higher-education destination for international students in India.


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