The costs of an MBA vary across different business schools, different programmes, and different countries. In this article, we want to examine what makes up these costs and how you should do your calculations if you are considering starting an MBA.
Tuition fees for MBAs
The tuition fees for an MBA start at around 3.000 and can go up to 70.000 EUR per year.
The differences are huge and it is very hard to assess the quality of the programme by the tuition fee. A low tuition fee does not necessarily indicate a low quality of education, just as a high one does not guarantee it. A good idea is to check the accreditation of the programme from institutes like AACSB, AMBA and EQUIS. Accreditation from two or even all 3 of these institutions is a good indicator of high quality.
Worldwide, the average tuition fee for an MBA is around 25.000 - 30.000 EUR per year, for good quality MBA degrees from well-regarded Universities and Business Schools.
Computer or laptop, software, books, subscriptions to journals, travel costs for study-related trips are all study-related costs that can occur while doing an MBA. It is important to check what exactly the tuition fee comprises: sometimes the study material (like books, papers, etc.) is included in the tuition fee and sometimes not. These costs can easily go up to 10.000 EUR per year for certain programmes and it is in your own interest to know that in advance.
You can find it out from the website of the programme or by inquiring about it from students or alumni of the MBA programme you are interested in. On average, these costs are around 3.000 EUR per year.
Accommodation and food
These costs are most of the time not included in the tuition fee. You have a choice between on-campus or off-campus accommodation, with on-campus being more convenient, but most of the times also more expensive.
Off-campus accommodation can also be harder to find and you have to search for yourself, which can be quite time-consuming. This depends very much on the country and the city where you are doing your MBA and is on average 11.000 EUR per year.
As most of the MBA students are young professionals, you have to consider the lost salary. For a 2-year MBA programme, a student loses a net of 48.000 EUR on average.
So, considering MBA averages, the costs are around 25.000 + 3.000 + 11.000 = 39.000 EUR per year for a student, and 39.000 + 24.000 = 63.000 EUR per year for a young professional.
Luckily, there are ways to cut these costs down or to find financial support. See the article on how to finance an MBA for more details.
Online MBAs are a good alternative
A very good way to save costs is to do a distance MBA. This can be partially or completely online. From tuition fee and study-related costs perspective, there is not much difference, but there is a difference when it comes to accommodation, food and opportunity costs. It usually is even more challenging to keep working while studying an MBA, but it is possible and highly appreciated by the employer market, as it denotes excellent multi-tasking capability, great time management skills and exceptional focus and learning aptitude. Check out a few international universities offering online MBAs:
Ready to apply to an MBA abroad?
You can now apply with Studyportals to MBAs from our partner universities. You can apply whenever you want, and it won't cost you anything.
Check the available Masters and see which of the degrees match your background and interests. Start the application process by filling in your student profile. You will soon get contacted by one of our application counsellors who will assist you further. We’ll then apply on your behalf.