When you plan your education abroad participation, it is important for you to consider financial aspect of your program from the beginning. Make sure that you understand how much your program cost is, what it includes, what other expenses you should anticipate, and ways to fund your education abroad experience.

The following pages offer information and advice on financing your experience abroad, including:

Financial Aid

Here is a sample Budget Calculator provided by IFSA-Butler. Please use this for sample purposes only.

Choices Matter

Studying or doing an internship abroad doesn’t have to be an expensive venture, but where you go can dramatically impact the cost. In general, it’s important to be honest with yourself about whether there is another, less expensive place to accomplish your same goals. If your criteria are fairly rigid, you have to be the one to decide if it’s worth the price. Your advisor might have some great suggestions for less expensive options if you can be flexible! Answer the following questions before deciding on a program, and be sure to share your thoughts with your Education Abroad Advisor.

Why go abroad?  What do you hope to accomplish? 

“I would like to work with a Spanish-speaking population, so I need to make sure my Spanish is top notch before graduating.” 
You can look at a variety of options.  Spain is not the only place to learn Spanish, nor is every program in Spain priced similarly.

“My family came from [X country] and I’ve always wanted to see it.”
You’ve made a decision for personal reasons, so only you know if it’s financially ‘worthwhile’ to do it.  You might consider someplace cheaper that is nearby, and spend some time before, after, or during a break in your experience abroad touring the country of your heritage.

“I want to work internationally some day, so I want to gain cross-cultural experience.” 
This reason to study abroad allows for the most flexibility.   Location isn’t as important as the experience itself, so you have a lot to choose from, and have the freedom to make a decision based on cost.

What are your restrictions on going abroad?

“I can only go in the summer.” 
There are fewer options available during the summer, with varying price tags.  Generally, studying abroad in the summer is proportionally more expensive, although the final cost may be smaller because the time is shorter. There are also fewer scholarships available, and financial aid may be limited.  Remember that you may use financial aid on your experience abroad, even during the summer!

“I only speak English, so I have to go to England.”
This is false!  In addition to Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand, we offer programs in many places where you can start learning the language once you arrive. Select English as the language in our program finder to see all of your options!

“I can’t afford to go more than a couple of weeks.”
In many cases, the shortest programs often cost the most per day.  If you’re willing to pay $300/day for a four week program in France, why not $200/day for an entire term? 


It can be a challenge to find the total cost of attendance for your time abroad. Program costs can vary greatly, from less than attending OSU to more than private school tuition. Use program provider websites, read the fine print and be sure to compare programs accurately using the budget planning worksheet.  A few things to consider:

  • Is tuition included in the program fee?
  • Does the housing plan include some or all meals?
  • Will you need to travel to a consulate to obtain a student visa before leaving?

If you can’t find what you’re looking for, ask! Your Education Abroad Advisor or Program Coordinator can help you locate detailed information.

Account for additional and up-front fees such as

  • Application fee: $25-$100
  • Confirmation deposit: $250-$500
  • Housing deposit: $300-$500
  • Airfare: $500-$2,500
  • Visa fees & travel: $200-$1,000

Remember that it costs over $26,000/year to attend OSU as an Oregon resident, and over $46,000/year as a non-resident. OSU GO offers many programs that are competitive with the resident cost of attendance, and more affordable than non-resident cost of attendance.


Program costs and billing procedures vary by program. You may pay all of your program costs to OSU, all costs to an outside agency or foreign university, or pay tuition and fees to OSU and other costs such as room and board to a foreign university. Be sure to check with your Education Abroad Advisor or Program Coordinator to be sure you understand exactly what you will owe, to whom, and when it is due. View this diagram of how payments work for most study abroad programs.

Program fees or tuition billed to OSU student account:

  • OSU-administered study abroad programs
  • IE3 Global
  • $350 (one time) Education Abroad Administrative Fee for students participating on select OSU programs and all programs through API, CIEE, GEO, IE3 Global, IFSA-Butler, INTO China, Semester At Sea, SEA Semester, SFS, and SIT study abroad programs

Program providers that bill the student directly:

  • API
  • CIEE
  • GEO (formerly AHA)
  • IFSA-Butler
  • INTO China
  • SEA Semester
  • Semester At Sea
  • SFS
  • SIT

Most program providers offer a billing plan that takes into account your financial aid award and the date that aid will be released. Make arrangements before your program begins to enroll in a billing plan.

In addition to program costs, students participating in many of our education abroad programs will be charged an OSU GO administrative fee of $350 (listed above). Your OSU account will be charged this fee, which is non-refundable after the program start date. If you are paying your fees directly to a study abroad provider or host institution, you will still need to budget for the OSU administrative fee charged to your OSU account. If you intend to use financial aid to pay your program fee, remember the administrative fee will be paid out of your award before your refund is issued.

If you pay your education abroad program costs to OSU, the same OSU policies apply while you are overseas as if you were on campus.

  • Your OSU bill is due by July 31 for summer term, October 31 for fall term, January 31 for winter term, and April 30 for spring term. A 1% late charge will be assessed on any unpaid balance after that date.
  • You may pay in monthly installments if you wish; just be aware that you will be charged interest.
  • Currently, OSU accepts credit card payments only via the Web.
  • Your account balance must be under $2,200 or you will not be able to register for the following term, even if you are still abroad.

Accessing your OSU Account

A billing notification will be sent to your ONID account at the start of each month letting you know that you can log into the ebill system to view your OSU statement.  You can authorize someone (such as your parents) to have access to your OSU account by clicking on the "Authorized users" button once you are in the system and following the steps. If you have any questions about your account, please e-mail accounts.receivable@oregonstate.edu.

Due to federal privacy regulations, the OSU Student Accounts Office cannot discuss your account with anyone but you unless you sign a release form. If someone other than yourself (e.g., a parent, grandparent, bill payer) might need to inquire information about your OSU account, you must sign the release form or no information can be given. The student accounts release form is available at Window 13 on the first floor of Kerr Administration Building. Be sure to inform the Student Accounts Office that you will be abroad so that they will give you the correct form and be sure to list all of the terms you will be studying abroad. You should complete the Student Accounts Release Form at the window 13 so they can witness your signature. If you mail the form, you will need to have it notarized.

Paying your Bill

You can pay your OSU bill via the ebill system, with a credit card via the Student Online Services, or by mailing a check to:

OSU Business Office 
PO Box 1086
Corvallis, OR 97339

(Be sure to include your OSU ID number when mailing a payment.)

Financial Aid

Students may be able to access federal financial aid toward an OSU-approved education abroad program, including IE3 Global Internships. Here’s how financial aid works when you go abroad:

  1. File the FAFSA
  2. Your overall cost of attendance is updated to reflect the total education abroad program cost estimate (i.e. compared with regular OSU cost of attendance).
  3. OSU's Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships will re-evaluate your package, based on that updated cost.
  4. You will be notified by OSU Financial Aid & Scholarships by e-mail that your aid package has been adjusted.
  5. You will need to log into OSU online services and review your award letter.
  6. You must either accept (fully or partially) or decline various options in order to access those extra fundings.
  7. If you have any questions regarding these aid options, visit the Financial Aid website or contact Financial Aid office directly.
  8. If you have VA benefits, please contact veterans@oregonstate.edu for more information. (GI Bill website)

Remember that you can always turn money down, but if you never apply, you’ll never know your options!