The UK’s Most Expensive Student Cities Revealed

Living on a budget is all part of the student lifestyle, but some university undergraduates have to count their pennies more than others. Now ParcelHero can exclusively reveal the cheapest and most expensive student towns in the UK, based on our own Student Cost of Living Index.

From Exeter to Aberdeen, we analyzed student costs including rent, transport, and food and drink, and indexed towns on a scale of 1-100, click on the image below to see the full results.

Uni graph

Our study found that living as a student in Guildford, Surrey, could cost as much as 21% more than the same lifestyle in Preston, Lancashire.

Lucy Haigh, Campaigns Officer for the University of Central Lancashire, Preston, said: “It’s fantastic to hear that Preston is the cheapest overall and students can get more for their money, especially with university being more expensive these days.

“I’m hoping in the long run this will increase our student experience.”

If your university is in one of the most expensive towns you may want to console yourself with a drink. However, this may just be another way of draining your student loan, as we uncovered the most expensive student towns in which to buy a pint:

Top 10 most expensive pint uni towns Average pint cost (£)
Guildford 5.25
Winchester 4.30
Oxford 4.00
High Wycombe 4.00
Bournemouth 3.90
London 3.70
Falmouth 3.55
Cambridge 3.50
Edinburgh 3.50
Brighton 3.45


Whereas in the cheapest student towns it can cost almost two-thirds less to raise a pint (surely something to celebrate?)…


Top 10 cheapest pint uni towns Average pint cost (£)
Luton 2.00
Durham 2.10
Preston 2.10
Perth 2.20
Carlisle 2.35
Worcester 2.40
Aberystwyth 2.40
Hull 2.40
Leeds 2.50
Coventry 2.50


And if all that investment in beer has left you needing a ride home, we found the cheapest and most expensive university towns to catch a cab in.


10 cheapest uni towns for taxis
10 most expensive uni towns for taxis
Swansea Chichester
Preston Wrexham
Huddersfield Loughborough
Bradford Worcester
Bolton Falmouth
Nottingham Bristol
Stirling Newport
Derby Wolverhampton
Cardiff Stoke-on-Trent
Liverpool Paisley


But it’s not all doom and gloom for cash-strapped students – using ParcelHero’s courier price comparison tool means that you can save up to 70% on posting your laundry home, compared to the Post Office.

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