Have you thought of easy ways to organize money while studying abroad? Indian students are more eager than ever to study at prestigious institutions like Harvard and Stanford. But when it comes to pursuing studies abroad, students have to bear a wide range of expenses. As an international student, you will have to pay school materials, tuition fees, food bills, etc. from time to time.
From passing tough exams to adjusting to foreign cultures, studying abroad comes with its own set of challenges. Fortunately, students also have the opportunity to indulge in fun activities alongside their studies. Since students have to focus on academics, lack of funds can become a serious impediment to academic progress.
Plus, there’s nothing worse than being stranded overseas with no money at your disposal. That is why all expense-related issues should be sorted out at the earliest so that students can stay focused on their studies. Here are the top 5 ways students can organize funds for their expenses while pursuing their studies in a foreign country.
- Make a bank-to-bank transfer
Getting a bank-to-bank transfer has long been the traditional approach to arranging finances. You can ask a trusted family member or friend to initiate a bank-to-bank transfer. But the main problem with banks is that they offer the lowest exchange rates on the market. Moreover, their long transfer times can be a major source of inconvenience, especially in times of financial emergency.
On average, international bank transfers can take 5-7 days to clear. In addition to overcharging you on the exchange, private banks make money with exorbitant transfer fees. It is always best to find out about the fees associated with the international transfer in advance to avoid any last-minute confusion.
If the bank has special offers in store, being a student can do wonders to exempt you from high transfer fees.
- Trust a forex chart
Forex charts can come to the rescue of international students, especially when they are in dire need of money. You can ask your parents to top up your forex card with the desired amount of money. As surprising as it may seem, the charge for reloading forex charts is absolutely zero. With forex cards, students abroad can maximize their savings up to 6.5% compared to debit cards and 2.5% compared to banknotes.
The good news is that your parents won’t have to go to a physical branch to top up the forex card. Notable forex providers allow you to top up your card from any corner of the world provided you have a decent internet connection. Students who are in dire straits can always opt for emergency financial aid, no matter what part of the world they are in.
What is a forex chart?
Accepted at over 30 million outlets, forex cards are the most secure and technologically advanced way to carry virtual money in today’s era. A the forex chart can be purchased at the exact interbank rates without any additional margin. What is remarkable is that the card can hold 16 foreign currencies simultaneously.
It has an expense tracking mechanism to help you control expenses as well as free insurance coverage for added security. You can claim many discounts and cashback offers by swiping your card at stores, bookstores, restaurants, etc.
- Withdraw money from an international ATM
Withdrawing money from an international ATM is another way to get out of financial difficulties in difficult times. If you have a debit card powered by Visa or Mastercard, you can use it for ATM withdrawals in the corresponding networks. Charges for using debit cards abroad involves a 3.5% cross-currency markup on top of an additional 3% ATM withdrawal fee.
Since you are a student with a small budget, all these charges can further increase your financial difficulties. If you decide to use a prepaid forex card for overseas ATM withdrawal purposes, you could actually save up to 7%.
- Use the bank transfer service
If you’re in a financial dilemma and don’t have much time on your hands, you can ask your parents to use a notable wire transfer service. To place a wire transfer order, your parents will need to share information such as the purpose of the transfer, beneficiary details, etc. Everything from submitting to signing the required documents will happen online.
Documents needed to make wire transfers include copies of PAN card, proof of address and passport. The best part is that money sent via bank transfer takes no more than 2 days to appear in the recipient’s account.
- Pay with your credit card
If you’re lucky enough to have a credit card on you, it might come in handy for transacting temporarily until you find an affordable alternative. Note that credit card transactions are subject to an exorbitant surcharge each time you make a payment abroad. In fact, currency conversion fees will be charged each time you transact with your credit card while abroad.
The fees charged by most in-network payment processors are usually in the range of 1-2% of the amount of currency exchanged. Avoid using your credit card at ATMs as international withdrawal fees can be up to 4%.
To take with
The number of students traveling abroad for study purposes is increasing year by year. Enrolling in prestigious institutions abroad is a dream come true for students looking to build successful careers in their respective fields. Staying abroad entails considerable expenses and therefore students must have enough money to avoid unnecessary trouble.
While studying in a foreign country broadens your horizons, running out of funds can prove to be a fly in the ointment. For convenience and savings, students should always keep a forex card handy to pay for overseas expenses. Not only is a forex card easy to top up, but it also comes with strong chip protection, making it ideal for international use.