Living costs for dependants | University of Oxford
Family education in the NHM
A family education event in the Oxford University Museum of Natural History
(Image Credit: Min Wu / Graduate Photography Competition)

Living costs for dependants

The costs quoted on the Living costs page are for single students. If you are planning to bring family members or other dependants to Oxford, you will need to budget for additional costs. Please be aware that family members can only apply for visas as your dependants if your course is of at least 12 months duration and at postgraduate level, or you are a government-sponsored student and your course is of at least 6 months duration. Our Visas for your family page has further information.

Please see our Visas for your family page for further details of funds you may need to show to support your dependants.

When considering your budget, please take into account the following information:

  • Accommodation and utilities: There is some University accommodation available for couples and families. The Accommodation Office's Rents page provides details of the relevant costs. Local websites will also give some idea of what you can expect to pay in the private sector. Please check whether any utility bills are included in your rent, and consider how the size of your property and the number of people living there will affect your bills.
  • Council tax: A student living with non-students, whether they are family members or not, may need to pay council tax. More information is available on the website and Oxford City Council's website gives further information specifically for Oxford residents.
  • Food: Self-catering for a family can reduce the cost of food per person. Comparing food prices at some major supermarkets may help you plan and there are various price comparison websites which will assist you in doing this.
  • Childcare (up to age four): Childcare in Oxford is likely to be expensive and there may be high demand for places. For more information about the University's subsidised nurseries, see the Childcare Services page. Some UK government and limited University support may be available for (mainly British) student parents. You can find out more about free early learning opportunities on the website.
  • Education (for children aged four and over): Once children are of school age (the term after they turn four in Oxfordshire), they can attend a state school at no cost.
  • Health: If you require a visa to study at Oxford, then for information about health costs relating to you and your dependants, please see the Tier 4 Student Visa page.  
  • Other living costs: Please consider expenditure you may incur on other items such as clothes, books and entertainment for your dependants.

In working out the income that will be available to you, please consider the following:

  • If your partner is planning to work to help fund themselves whilst you study, check that they have the right to do so (ie that their UK visa permits it). Unless your partner has made arrangements in advance, it may take them some time to find a job in Oxford and you will need to budget for this period. Local websites advertise a number of short-term, part-time and casual jobs in Oxford.
  • If you are unfamiliar with tax arrangements in the UK, please check the information provided on the HM Revenue and Customs website.
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