Funding Overview

Financing your Studies in Ireland

Known for its high level of university education, Ireland is one of the most attractive countries for studying. The tuition fees are among the highest in Europe and the cost of living is also high. In case you decide to study in Ireland, you can profit from several programmes of public support, but just from few scholarships.
Get financial support to deal with high living costs
Get financial support to deal with high living costs

Cost of your studies

Tuition fees

All students, including those with free tuition, are required to pay the Student Contribution Charge for each institute. This is a yearly fee of 2,750 € meant to cover the cost of clubs, library use, and other student facilities. All students also have to pay a registration fee, which can be up to 2,250 €. Ireland is part of the Free Fee Scheme, which waives the tuition costs for qualifying first-cycle students. For those who do have to pay fees, typically non-EU students, the cost can vary by institute and length of study. Students in engineering may have to pay 9,100 to 20,300 € per year. The highest cost is for those studying medicine, which can cost up to 49,000 €. Each individual institute should be contacted for a more precise estimate.

Cost of living

Ireland has a reputation for high living costs. Despite this, the high minimum wage offsets the cost of living. However, if you are a student, you may not have the luxury of a part-time or full-time job. The average cost of living in Ireland for a student is about 7,480 € a year. This includes food costs (which can be between 70 and 100 € a month), rent (300 to 600 €), and travel. A bus in Dublin costs about 2.30 € per trip. For a general idea of Ireland’s cost of living, Dublin is ranked as the 42nd most expensive city in the world.

Financing your studies

Public support

Student grants are the main source of aid available from the Republic. The grants also apply to most colleges in Northern Ireland, the UK, and other EU nations. The Student Assistance Fund acts as a supplement to the grant and is for other costs, like books, bills, childcare, and medical needs. The Maintenance Grant is essentially the same. The Special Support Grant is for students with disabilities, have children, or have a partner who is also a student.


The Government of Ireland Scholarships supports a one-year study session for international students and is managed by the Higher Education Authority (HEA). The Mitchell Scholars programme is connected with the US-Ireland Alliance and is for American students studying in Ireland. For students with a low income, the All Ireland Scholarship Scheme gives 5,500 € a year to qualifying applicants. Lastly, the Erasmus Mundus scholarships are for students throughout the EU who are studying abroad, and many Irish universities and colleges are part of the programme. In addition to the governmental scholarships there exist a huge variety of scholarships in Ireland that can be unusual and also need or activity-independent.

Students loans

In addition or instead of scholarships, students can also apply for a variety of loans to finance their studies. Credit union loans are bank loans that are very popular as they are insured. There is a Contribution Loan that goes directly to the university.

Student jobs

Many students work through college. If you are a resident of Ireland or student from the EU, you are free to work. If you are an international student, the programme you are with needs to be included on a list (the Register of Programmes) in order for you to get a job. Unemployment in Ireland has been increasing, making the job market very competitive.