As a UK Erasmus student, you are entitled to receive a grant for your time away at a a participating Erasmus institution (work or study). The grant is paid through your home institution and aims to subsidise part of your year abroad. You are still entitled to receive your usual financial support outside of this grant, as you need to bear in mind that it may not cover all of your costs. It is non-refundable and free, and as such, it is wise for all UK Erasmus students should apply for one!
As a UK Erasmus student, you are entitled to get €225 per month (2011/2012). However, with add-ons and various other instalments across the year, you may receive more. For example, UK students in the previous year received €378 a month. On average, over the past three years, UK students receive about €375 a month, from the EU.
Short-Term Work Placement: supplementary funding
Students who choose to work on a short-term work placement are entitled to additional supplementary funding:
- one supplementary grant of €250 can be paid to each student to help with accommodation costs.
- up to €300 can be paid to each student for expenses related to travel costs (keep your receipts).
These supplementary grants are only available to students who take out a short-term work placement for a minimum of two months up to a maximum of three months, carried out by students registered for short-term vocational higher education courses (foundation degree courses and HND-level qualifications).
Countries within the EU entitling you to more funding
Additionally, if you travel to the following countries in 2011/2012, you will receive a supplementary grant of €400 on top of what you would receive mentioned above;
Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Turkey.
Widening Participation Supplementary Funding
Additionally, there is a one-off extra grant of €500 open to students who are identified as eligible for the various widening participation premiums already operating at Higher Education level across the UK. The point of this supplement is to encourage students with financial constraints to become mobile across the EU.
Who is eligible to receive an Erasmus grant?
The Erasmus grant is not means-tested. To be eligible you must:
- be registered at a UK higher institution holding an EUC (Erasmus University Charter).
- spend an approved study or work period of between 3 to 12 months at an institution which holds an EUC in another EU, EEA or candidate country (for students on short-term higher vocational education courses, the minimum period on a work placement is 2 months).
- Students studying as part of the Erasmus scheme abroad do not have to pay university fees to the university they are visiting.
- Students currently benefit from the tuition fee waiver scheme. That is to say, if you spend a full academic year on Erasmus, you do not pay any UK tuition fees for that year. An academic year consists of 24 weeks, excluding weekends and holidays. Having said that, if you study abroad for a period of less than 24 weeks, you will have to pay the UK tuition fees of your home university. This fee-waiver option is reviewed annually by the UK Government.
Combined with the monthly grant that all Erasmus students receive, and the new additional one-off options, the year abroad is a really appealing option for Higher Education students looking to improve their CVs, make the most of their year abroad and stretch their finances as far as possible.
Cost of living abroad
This varies widely across Europe. In most countries, the cost of living (accommodation, food, etc) is less expensive than in the UK; however, some countries, such as Sweden, can seem more expensive. It’s a good idea to check out what your living costs will be before you leave. There are also many websites offering student discounts.
Additional advice on student finance
- Read up on on Student Finance related issues to find out more.
- If you are an Engineer and choose to work in the automobile industry abroad, make sure you apply for a FISITA grant.