The ILCU 3rd Level Costs Survey was released with some interesting results. The survey was carried out by iReach Insights in April 2019. 445 third level students were surveyed.
- A quarter (24%) say finance/debt is their biggest worry.
- Almost three quarters (74%) say they have to work during the college term to cope with costs.
- 55% say they are missing their lectures in favour of paid work, up significantly on 22% in 2017 with six in ten saying having to work has a negative impact on their studies during busier college times.
- Of the three quarters saying they have to work to cope with costs, seven in ten are working part-time. 14% work full-time and 15% work ad-hoc hours. On average, students are working almost 15 hours a week (14.8 hours) and earning just over €10 an hour (€10.14).
- Students say their biggest monthly expense is, unsurprisingly, rent at an average of €318 a month.
- This is followed by food at €116.
- Students are spending €88 each month on travel costs and €74 on utility bills.
- In the main, students will cut spending on social life (40%) and buying clothes (18%) to cope with costs.
- However, worryingly, 15% will cut down on buying food and 11% say medical check-ups will get the cut.
- Over a third of all students surveyed (34%) said they expect that their third level education costs will leave them and/or their family in debt after graduation.
- The vast majority admit to having no monthly budget. 57% said they didn’t have a financial plan or a budget to help manage third level costs.
- Of these students with no financial plan, three in ten admit to needing one but say they just haven’t got around to it. 22% say they need a budget, but just don’t know where to start. 16% say that while they need a budget, they will never stick to it so there is no point.
- The majority of students (42%) rely on parents and family to fund their third level education.
- 29% rely on the government grant.
- 13% on paid employment.
- 6% can fund their education from their savings.
- Just over half of students say they receive a monthly allowance from their parents or family to help cover costs they incur.
- On average, they receive €202 per month.
- Almost half however (45%) say this is insufficient to cover their costs.
- Of those saying it’s not enough, a quarter say they would never ask for more money (26%).
- 19% however say they constantly have to ask for more money.
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