Planning to send your child to uni overseas? Here’s what you need to know

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With uni on the horizon, it’s time to start researching about all the important things (like tuition fees) you’ll need on your radar…

With so much to think about, sending your kids off to university can seem like a minefield of decisions and worries. Where should you send them? How much is it going to cost? How will they cope leaving home? It can get a bit much and lead to many a sleepless night. That’s where the good people from HSBC come in…

When it comes to planning for university, they know exactly what to expect. You’ve got questions, they got the answers!

Anurag Mathur, Head of Retail Banking and Wealth Management, HSBC Bank (Singapore) said: “Singaporeans in particular place a premium on their children receiving a university education, and they’re prepared to pay for it. We have been building our platforms, solutions and capabilities to help Singapore and expats parents as well as students fund their future – and more is to come.”

Currently, HSBC supports parents across their children’s entire education journey including education savings plans; access to overseas banking and on-the-ground relationship managers across 66 territories; and the ability to internationally transfer money to their children’s domestic and overseas accounts in real-time.

Here’s a quick insight into what you need to know about planning for the next part of your child’s learning journey.

Should I send my child overseas?

Living in a highly globalised society makes it natural for parents to want to send their kids to university overseas. Not only does an overseas education broaden a child’s horizons, it also gives them new perspectives, it can also give them an edge over their peers who have only experienced life in just one country.

When should I start planning?  

Based on the 2018 HSBC’s Value of Education research, 47% of Singaporean parents wish they had started saving earlier for their children’s education while one in two parents (46%) worry they do not have the financial resources to support them.

This means it’s never too early to start planning! In fact, starting early means you’ll have more time to save so that you can more easily afford your teenager’s overseas stay. Here’s what you need to think about:

Tuition fees: The costs of studying overseas can really add up! Just to give you an example, Australian universities costs an average of between S$15,000- S$33,000 per year for a Bachelor’s degree.

Living expenses: You’ll also need to factor in living costs, which includes accommodation, food and social activities. Depending on the country your child lives in, a realistic sum would be around $1,500 to $2,500 per month.

Schools: Apart from a university’s reputation and accreditation, you’ll also want to think about the school’s admission process and the length of its degree programmes. For example, a Bachelor’s degree in the US usually takes four years to complete, while in Australia it takes three years. Knowing that in advance will help you better plan for your child’s stay and the related expenses.

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Studying overseas is way less scary when you’re prepared!

Where should they go?

For students residing in Singapore, studies show that the most popular destinations are Australia, the UK and the US.

Obviously of these choices, Australia is the closest to sunny Singapore, and it also happens to have a more affordable fees range (apx. S$15,000- S$30,000 per year). Its top universities include Australian National University (Canberra), University of Melbourne (Melbourne), Monash University (Melbourne), University of Sydney (Sydney), University of New South Wales (Sydney), University of Queensland (Brisbane). Hot tip: The Singapore dollar is expected to remain strong against the Australian dollar this year, which means better exchange rates – yay!

The United Kingdom offers world-class education with internationally respected qualifications. Four of the top ten universities in the world – the University of Cambridge, Oxford University, University College London, and Imperial College London – are found in the UK. Although it’s quite the trip from Singapore, it’s a great country for kids to experience seasonal weather and historic architecture. Tuition fees will likely form the bulk of your expenses and you can expect to pay around S$18,000 to S$63,000 annually. The cost of living in the UK is very much subjective to the location your child chooses to live in.

Got kids keen to try life in the US? The Land of the Free with its huge-scale landscapes, cool sports, college culture and enormous burgers definitely makes it appealing as a university location: but it could also cost you a pretty penny tuition-wise. You can expect to spend around S$75,000 a year, so best start saving early! Cost aside, the US is also where you’ll find some of the best universities around the globe, including Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, Harvard University and Princeton University.

Too much to think about?

Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry, the folks over at HSBC are experts when it comes to planning for overseas education. They’ll help you come up with an effective financial plan that makes securing your child’s future as easy as ABC, and help you with international banking services as your child moves abroad. HSBC customers also enjoy a complimentary (and mind soothing) consultation on overseas education so find out more about HSBC privileges at the HoneyKids Asia International School Fair on 16 March 2019!

This post is sponsored by HSBC.