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Cost of Living in Italy for Int’l Students

Cost of Living in Italy for Int’l Students
Shishant KumarMay 26, 2023

Cost of Living in Italy for Int'l Students in 2023

Italy, with its rich cultural heritage, picturesque landscapes, and renowned academic institutions, has long been a popular destination for international students seeking a high-quality education and a vibrant cultural experience. As of recent statistics, the country hosts over 60,000 international students from a diverse range of nationalities. The Italian education system is famous for offering compelling programs, particularly in the field of medicine, that rival the best in the world. Notably, these programs include Medical Studies, Dentistry, Nursing, etc. 

Other popular areas of study among international students include fashion and design, business and management, architecture, engineering, humanities, arts, and culinary programs. In particular, Italy’s reputation in the arts, history, and architecture draws many students interested in these fields to further their studies in the country. 

With a significant influx of students from around the world, the country has developed a robust infrastructure to cater to their needs. From affordable student housing options and discounted transportation passes to student-friendly entertainment venues and cultural activities, Italy’s economy thrives on the vibrant student community.

In this article, we hope to provide a comprehensive guide to the cost of living in Italy. We will explore the various expenses incurred by students and offer insights and practical tips to help students plan and budget effectively. 

Whether you’re considering pursuing your studies in Rome, Florence, Milan, or any other Italian city, this article aims to equip you with the necessary knowledge to make informed decisions about your financial commitments during your time in Italy. 

Cost of Living in Italy: Overview 

Generally, the average cost of living in Italy for international students ranges from 10000 – 20000 EUR per year and can vary depending on factors such as location, accommodation choices, and personal lifestyle. Popular student cities in Italy like Rome, Milan, Florence, and Bologna tend to have higher living expenses compared to smaller towns or rural areas. Accommodation costs, including rent and utilities, can be a significant portion of the budget. Food expenses can be managed by cooking at home rather than eating out frequently. Transportation costs can be reasonable, with options like public transport passes available.

Here are some of the basic expenses incurred monthly by the average international student in Italy: 

Expense Category  Estimated Monthly Expense 
Accommodation  200 – 1000 EUR 
Food (Groceries) 150 – 300 EUR 
Dining in a Restaurant  70 – 90 EUR 
Utilities (Water, Electricity, Gasoline, etc. ) 50 – 200 EUR 
Internet  20 – 50 EUR 
Transportation  35 – 50 EUR 
Entertainment  50 – 100 EUR 
Misc. Expenses  100 – 150 EUR 
Health Insurance  50 – 150
Total Monthly Expenses  750 – 1800 EUR 

On Campus vs Off Campus Cost of Living in Italy for International Students

The cost of living for international students in Italy can vary depending on whether they choose to live off-campus or on campus. Here’s a comparison of the two options:

On-Campus Cost of Living:

Accommodation: On-campus housing typically includes dormitories or student residences, but can be very hard to obtain due to high demand.  The cost of on-campus accommodation varies depending on the university and the type of room. On average, monthly costs for on-campus housing range from 200 to 600 EUR, depending on the university. 

Meal Plans: Many on-campus accommodations offer meal plans, which provide access to dining halls or cafeteria facilities. The cost of meal plans varies depending on the university and the level of service. On average, monthly meal plan costs range from 150 to 300 EUR. Many universities also offer subsidized meals for most students and special plans for students on scholarships. 

Utilities: Utilities such as electricity, water, heating, and internet are usually included in the on-campus housing costs.

Total Monthly Cost: Taking all expenses into account, the total monthly cost of living on campus in Italy for an international student can range from 400 to 900 EUR. 

Off-Campus Cost of Living:

Accommodation: Renting an apartment off campus gives you more options but also more responsibilities. The cost also invariably goes up and varies greatly depending on the location, size, and quality of the apartment. On average, monthly rent for a shared apartment can range from 300 to 600 EUR, while a studio or one-bedroom apartment can cost between 500 to 1000 EUR.

Utilities: When renting off campus, you will have to pay for utilities separately. These costs can range from 100 to 200 EUR per month, depending on the apartment size and consumption.

Food: The cost of groceries and eating out remains relatively the same regardless of whether students live on or off campus. On average, monthly food costs range from 200 to 300 EUR.

Total Monthly Cost: Considering accommodation, utilities, and food, the total monthly cost of living off-campus in Italy for an international student can range from 600 to 1,500 EUR. 

Cost of Living in Major Italian Cities 

Major cities in Italy vary in terms of cost of living, with some being more expensive than others. Rome, the capital city, and Milan, the financial hub, tend to have higher living expenses, including housing, dining, and transportation. On the other hand, Florence and Bologna offer slightly more affordable options.

Here is a breakdown of the monthly expenses for an international student in major Italian cities, compiled according to data from 

City  Accommodation (Dorms/On-Campus) Accommodation (Single Apartment) Groceries  Transportation  Utilities  Entertainment
Rome  350 – 640 EUR 900 – 1200 EUR  200 – 225 EUR 35 – 50 EUR 190 – 200 EUR 80 – 100 EUR
Milan  400 – 550 EUR  1000 – 1500 EUR 200 – 250 EUR 40 – 60 EUR  200 – 220 EUR 80 – 120 EUR
Florence  280 – 450 EUR  700 – 850 EUR  150 – 200 EUR 35 – 50 EUR 200- 225 EUR 50 – 80 EUR
Bologna  300 – 450 EUR  650 – 750 EUR  150 – 200 EUR 35 – 50 EUR 150 – 200 EUR 50 – 80 EUR 
Turin 200 – 480 EUR  500 – 600 EUR  100 – 150 EUR  30 – 40 EUR 150 -200 EUR 40 – 60 EUR

Tips to Reduce the Cost of Living in Italy for international students

As an international student, it is crucial to budget and control expenses during your time in Italy. Many students take up part-time jobs or internships while studying in Italy to offset their living costs. By managing your finances wisely and seeking opportunities for additional income, you can have a more financially secure and rewarding experience as an international student in Italy. Here are some pointers to reduce living expenses as an international student. 

  • Consider shared housing or student residences: Sharing an apartment with other students can significantly lower the cost of rent and utilities.
  • Explore housing options outside the city center: Accommodation prices tend to be higher in city centers. Look for housing in the suburbs or areas with good transportation connections to save money.
  • Cook at home: Eating out can be expensive. Cooking your meals at home or with roommates can help save money. Take advantage of local markets and grocery stores for affordable ingredients.
  • Pack your lunches: Prepare your lunch to take with you to the university instead of buying food on campus or at restaurants.
  • Use public transportation: Utilize monthly or weekly public transport passes, which are usually cheaper than individual tickets.
  • Walk or bike: Opt for walking or cycling whenever possible, especially for shorter distances. It not only saves money but also promotes a healthy lifestyle.
  • Take advantage of student discounts: Many attractions, museums, theaters, and cinemas offer discounted rates for students. Carry your student ID with you and ask for student discounts wherever applicable.
  • Explore free or low-cost activities: Look for free events, festivals, parks, and cultural activities that entertain without the need for spending a lot of money.
  • Make use of student organizations: Join student organizations or clubs that organize affordable social events and activities for students.
  • Compare prices: Before making a purchase, compare prices at different stores or online platforms to find the best deals.
  • Buy second-hand items: Consider buying second-hand furniture, electronics, and textbooks to save money.
  • Use budgeting apps or tools: Utilize budgeting apps or spreadsheets to track your expenses and identify areas where you can cut back.


In conclusion, while studying in Italy as an international student can be an enriching experience, it’s essential to consider the cost of living. Understanding and managing expenses can help ensure a comfortable stay without putting excessive strain on your finances. By researching affordable accommodation options, being mindful of food expenses, utilizing public transportation, and taking advantage of student discounts, you can reduce the overall cost of living. Planning and budgeting wisely will enable you to make the most of your time in Italy while maintaining financial stability. If you are interested, do check out our comprehensive guides to living costs in other European countries including the cost of living in Ireland, the cost of living in the Netherlands, and Living expenses in Germany

To know more about the universities, courses, and living costs in Italy, contact our admission experts. 

Find Related Blogs


The cost of living in Italy as an international student depends on various factors such as location, type of accommodation, lifestyle, etc. However, on average, an international student spends around 10000 to 20000 EUR in a year.

International students in Italy usually work part-time while studying. The earnings for part-time jobs can vary depending on the nature of the work and industry, with hourly wages typically ranging from 7 to 12 EUR. Additionally, some students may secure paid internships related to their field of study, which might offer significantly more wages, depending on the type of internship.

Italy has several cities known for their affordability, making them attractive options for students on a budget. Some of the most affordable cities for students in Italy include Bologna, Turin, Catania, Naples, and Bari. These cities offer a lower cost of living compared to major metropolitan areas like Rome or Milan.

The choice between staying on-campus or off-campus ultimately depends on individual preferences. Although, on-campus accommodation offers the features of convenience, proximity to university facilities, a supportive community, etc, along with subsidized meals and rent. On-campus accommodation is certainly the cheaper and more convenient option for many, but it can be hard to obtain due to high demand. On the other hand, off-campus options provide more flexibility, independence, and the opportunity to experience the local culture.

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