The opportunity to learn while immersed in another culture at a still impressionable age is perhaps the best education you can receive. A great way to experience just that is to be part of a study abroad program. If it sounds like an expensive endeavor, don’t worry. Thanks to the Internet there is no shortage of cheap international flights, and by doing some research you can find the right program in the right country that won’t come with a hefty price tag.

Here’s our look at some of the most affordable countries in the world where you can study abroad.


Studying in the heart of Europe in the country that brought some of western philosophy’s greatest hits is an ideal and relatively inexpensive way to achieve an amazing education. Many local universities epitomize higher learning and the list of colleges with programs in Germany is certainly long. As reported by QS World University Rankings, there are no tuition fees for undergraduate and Ph.D. level classes, and there are very few public universities. The cost of living in most German cities is low for Europeans; this is especially true in thriving and youthful Berlin.


ruins in mexico

Mexico has a rich cultural heritage, amazing local universities and countless American schools offering programs for international students. Affordable and nearby Mexico is an excellent country to consider for studying abroad, especially if you’re keen to brush up on your Español. A survey conducted in 2019 by Educations Media Group of more than 20,000 international students saw Mexico ranked in fifth place for “Top 10 Study Abroad Countries in the World.” Currently, 12,000 international students are receiving a quality education and having the time of their lives across Mexico.

South Africa

Girl holding a South African flag
If you want your education to include a mix of great outdoors and vibrant urban culture at a reasonable price, give a good long thought to studying in South Africa. Cost of living is low and some of the country’s best universities rank impressively well compared to most countries. During breaks and weekends, you can go for a safari, tour the wine country or get to know the bars, club, and restaurants of exciting cities like Johannesburg, Durban, and gorgeous Cape Town. U.S. News & World Reports places South Africa in the eighth position in its 2019 list of “Best Countries to Study Abroad.”


One of East Asia’s best-valued countries to visit is also one of its most affordable for college students looking to study abroad. The national university and the many American universities with programs in Taiwan rank high internationally. One of year of tuition for a liberal arts program at Taiwan’s leading university (National Taiwan University) is just under a quarter of the average annual tuition for a liberal arts degree at a public university in America. Classes are available in English, and there’s the opportunity to study Mandarin with native speakers. Plus, the cost of living is exceptionally low and the food scene is among the most amazing in the world!


The world’s biggest democracy offers a huge value to students looking for an affordable and fascinating cultural education. The mountains and national landmarks are extraordinary such as the Himalayas and the Taj Mahal, and the food is famously phenomenal! Of course, the best argument for studying in India probably is that a growing number of universities place high in world rankings. A number of top institutions from the US and elsewhere have a foothold in India as well. U.S. News & World Report ranks India as the third best country overall for studying abroad.

RELATED: 5 Tips on How You Can Make the Most of Your Study Abroad Experience


woman tourist in Poland

Seeking to study abroad in a culturally rich country with a strong tradition of higher learning and an even stronger work hard/play hard(er) ethics? Then you should seek Poland! A stellar education in one of the European Union’s largest member states can be had here at an unbelievably low price relative to what you’d have to pay elsewhere in Europe or in North America. The OECD (Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development) ranks Poland fifth in Europe and 11th in the world for international education. Plus, vibrant cities like Warsaw and Krakow are underrated gems for lovers of nightlife and urban adventure.

When planning a study abroad experience, the cost is the first big obstacle that comes to mind. But, with some careful planning and proper research, you’ll be able to easily secure cheap international flights to one of these amazing countries without leaving a huge dent in your savings.

Thinking about studying abroad? What destinations are your considering? If you have studied abroad, do you have any tips for students today?

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About The Author

Chris Osburn

Chris Osburn is a freelance writer, photographer, consultant, curator, and the driving force behind the long running and award winning blog, Originally from the American Deep South, Chris has lived and worked all over the world. He's called London home since 2001.