Billable & Out of Pocket Expenses

Expenses for study away will fall into one of two categories: items billed by Macalester and those that you should be prepared to pay for out of pocket. We have listed the expenses you can anticipate being related to study away below.

Some costs will need to be paid directly to the program sponsor and/or a vendor, and these costs may be due before your financial aid is disbursed. This situation may cause cash flow concerns in cases where your financial aid is covering the majority of the program costs. Discuss this with the Financial Aid Office and your study away advisor. You will likely need to purchase airfare and pay visa costs well in advance and will need to have access to funds other than your financial aid.


You will be billed Macalester tuition for the semester you are studying away. Macalester will then pay your program or host university for educational expenses. If your program tuition is greater than Macalester tuition you will be billed the higher tuition cost.

Room & Board

Whether a particular program provides room and board, just room, or some partial room and/or board varies greatly. In many cases, the room and/or board charges are billed through Macalester. There are programs where students will need to pay for these costs directly to the overseas institutions, this is true of most of our direct­-enroll and exchange programs.

See the program-­specific budget sheets on the individual program pages for the most recent billed and out­-of­-pocket cost estimates to determine if room and board is billed by Macalester or paid directly to your host institution.

All Programs

Application Fees & Deposits

All application fees or refundable deposits (housing damage, etc) will be your responsibility to pay. However, any program/tuition/enrollment deposit or acceptance/confirmation fee should be paid by Macalester on your behalf.


You will need to plan to pay for airfare in advance of your program departure. Some programs arrange airfare and will bill you for it separately, others will expect you to arrange your own airfare. Either way, this is an out-of-pocket expense for you. If paying for your ticket in advance is a concern, the Center for Study Away can provide advice on ways to defer the expense of purchasing an airline ticket until you receive your financial aid disbursement.

Visa, Passport, and Other Fees

You are responsible for paying out-of-pocket expenses associated with acquiring appropriate travel documentation such as your passport, visa, residency permits, etc. These expenses are personal, and you should budget accordingly.

Miscellaneous On­site Expenses

You will want to plan ahead for additional expenses that you may encounter while studying away. These might include local transportation, meals, books, security deposits, personal travel, optional program activities, and personal purchases. Most programs provide estimates of such expenses on their websites to help you plan your budget effectively.