It is important that students budget accurately and have sufficient funds to support themselves and fully participate on an exchange program. The following information is meant to provide you with a better understanding of what costs you will likely incur so that you may better prepare for a term abroad.

There are also several potential scholarships, awards and bursaries open to students participating on various exchange programs, which may help you in financing your term abroad. For more information, please view the Funding page.


Participation in an official exchange program allows you to pay home institution tuition and fees instead of paying at the host institution. You remain registered at the UofA for the duration of your exchange and pay fees at the University of Alberta. Tuition and fees for a single exchange term at the UofA will be based on a standard 15-credit semester for undergraduate students. This will not change regardless of the number of courses you take at your host institution or the number of credits you transfer back to your UofA degree after the exchange. You can therefore expect to pay whatever you currently pay for 5 courses in tuition and fees at the UofA.* Student Academic Support, Student Union/GSA fees, Health & Wellness and other noninstructional fees will be assessed as per usual in addition to regular tuition charges. BCom students are not, however, charged the Business Market Modifier, which significantly reduces the overall costs of tuition. International students continue to pay the International Differential Fees as part of their UofA tuition. Participating on an off-campus exchange program also makes you exempt from fees such as U-Pass, Athletics & Recreation and the PAW Centre Fee, as well as allows to pay less for certain other registration fees. Tuition & fees will be due according to the regular University of Alberta payment deadlines and you may pay in the same way as you normally do for tuition and fees while at the UofA.
* Some exceptions apply for summer & graduate programs


These are all the responsibility of each individual participant and will vary greatly according to your exchange destination and personal habits. It is important to research your destination thoroughly and plan accurately in order to get a sense of how much your exchange might cost. More information on accommodations and estimated living expenses can be found on the host institution websites, in past student reports and from the exchange coordinator and former participants. 

Please be aware that you will also be responsible for any visa/immigration expenses as well as insurance, vaccinations and any other preparatory measures that might be required.


Total fees for participating on an Alberta School of Business exchange program are $250. This includes a $75 non-refundable application fee for all students who submit an application and a $175 administration/coordination fee for successful applicants who go abroad. Please review the application procedures for more information.

The overall cost of participating on an exchange will vary depending on a number of factors, including destination (cost of living in Sweden, for example, is much higher than in Thailand) and what kind of lifestyle you maintain while there (how much you eat out, travel, drink, shop, etc.). However, participating on an exchange is probably not as expensive as you think and the cost of a semester abroad can actually be comparable to (or even less than!) what you might pay for a semester in Edmonton at the UofA. 

The following is a sample budget comparing the basic costs of studying at the Alberta School of Business for a single semester versus studying on exchange in Vienna, Austria or Hong Kong for 4 months.

Cost  Edmonton
(Alberta School of Business)
(Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien - WU)
Hong Kong 
Tuition & Fees 1   $4,627.69  $3,191.44  $3,191.44
Books & Materials  $500 - $800  $100 - $250  $100 - $240
 $500 - $1500/month  $500 - $900/month  $225 - $325/month
Food/Living Expenses  $300/month  $200 - $400/month  $300 - $600/month
Transit Pass  $129 (U-Pass)  $225 (Semesterkarte)  $125 (student Octopus Card)
Roundtrip Airfare  N/A  $1,000 - $1,600  $1,200 - $2,000
Exchange Fees   N/A  $250  $250
BEA Travel Award   N/A  -$1,000  -$1,000
4-month Total  $8,295.92 - $12,595.92  $6,710.84 - $9,860.84 2
 $6,110.84 - $8,875.84 3

1 Based on a full 15-credit course load in Fall 2016 term for a domestic Bachelor of Commerce student and including SU Dental & Health Plan fees. Participants pay reduced fees for Student Academic Support, Health & Wellness and Student Union Fees and are not charged the Business Market Modifier, Athletics & Recreation, Health Service, U-Pass or PAW Centre fees as part of their UofA tuition and fees while registered in a formal exchange program. 

2 2014 Estimates, calculated at an approx. exchange rate of CAD$1.5/€1. Does not include expenses for personal travel, shopping, entertainment or leisure activities. 

3 2014 Estimates, calculated at an approx. exchange rate of CAD$0.159/HK$1. Does not include expenses for personal travel, shopping, entertainment or leisure activities.