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So, you want to be a savvy saver to be able to make studying abroad a reality. While traveling and studying abroad will be expensive and you probably will hit some unexpected costs, there are ways of how to save money while studying abroad. In this blog post, we show you how to become a well-informed traveler (the best kind of traveler) and give you tips that will keep your money in your pocket while you are learning Chinese in China.


What is travel without a little planning? Preparing for your trip beforehand will not only save you money, but you will have better peace of mind when you reach your new home. So, to start: plan, research, and then plan some more.

Get to know your new city. Scroll through news sites, travel forums, and your new school’s website.

Create an “Adventure” savings account, and with every paycheque until your trip, pay yourself first. Make sure the account can’t be touched with your debit card. That way, spending won’t happen. This would greatly help you save money when learning Mandarin Chinese in China.

While you’re at it, create an emergency or a “just in case” fund. The same as your abroad account, pay yourself every paycheque. This money will allow you to feel more comfortable heading overseas because, most likely, something will come up, and having an emergency fund will save you from going into debt.

Tip: Check online to see if you’re eligible for study abroad scholarships, grants or loans. These could be a good way of saving some money.


On top of paying yourself, you need to create a budget, stick to it and review it regularly. There are going to be unexpected costs when you’re traveling and living abroad. For example, when you study abroad in China and get sick, you need to pay for the hospital bills before getting reimbursed by the insurance company. By choosing Keats School, you can also save expenses on medical insurance. To get ready for your study abroad, you should also know how to see a doctor in China and more information about your medical insurance in China.

When selecting the language school to study with, you may choose those whose tuition fee covers most of your daily expenses to save some money. When studying Mandarin Chinese at Keats School, you may choose the most economical language program of the small group class. Or you can choose a language school that owns different branch locations in touring cities across China, such as Dali, Lijiang, Puzhehei, Yuanyang, Xishuangbanna, Tengchong, Jianshui, and Jingmai Tea Mountain, so you can enjoy touring while learning Chinese in these different locations, which allow you to save expense for traveling. Educate yourself on the many costs associated with travel and put them together to create a travel budget.

Sit down with someone to talk about your options to save the most money. Don’t forget that your bills in your home country won’t stop just because you’re living abroad.

Tip: Tell your banks and credit card companies that you will be abroad. Talk to them about fees associated with using your card overseas. Telling your banks you will be abroad will also allow them not to freeze your accounts for fraudulent activity, which could leave you stranded with no money.

The plan is to have enough money in your bank account when you head abroad. If you’re realistic and smart with your money, it’s possible.


There are many ways to slowly chip away at your current travel price tag/budget, bringing it down to a more reasonable number.

One of your biggest ticketed items will be your plane fare. You’re going to want to compare airplane costs to make sure you are getting the best deal.

Tip: Always clear your cache and browse in incognito mode to get the best prices every time you use a travel site.

The other big item you’re going to be saving for is your schooling. Choosing a school abroad is a big decision. To save money, pick a school that includes essentials like room and board, meals, internet services, laundry, etc.

Tip: Keats School in Kunming offers all of these services along with several different Chinese language courses at different price points, such as the intensive one-on-one Chinese program, small group class, HSK test preparation program and Online Chinese lessons. More than 10,000 students have picked Keats as their school abroad. Choosing to study Chinese in Kunming is a great way to save money in China because the tuition fee covers almost everything.

After those two large expenses, there are smaller ways to save money too.

Learn how to fully use free online Chinese lessons and resources to facilitate your self-study! Sufficient training out of the class can make you progress faster and help you save money on language learning.

Learn how to cook! If you’re not attending a school that includes meals, learn how to prepare healthy, hearty meals. It will be easy to fall back on readily available services like take-out food, but you will save a lot of money by cooking your own food. However, it is not expensive to try Chinese cuisines in local restaurants neither. Do you know what food to order in a Chinese restaurant?

Learn to navigate! Transit can be expensive, and taking a cab is more money out of your pocket. To save some cash, learn how to read a map and start walking more. Metro in Kunming or other cities in China is also an economical way to get around.

Tip: You can even use Google Maps to navigate offline, just remember to download map areas while connected to WiFi. Other apps in China such as Baidu Map or Gaode Map would work the best if you want to get around in China.

Start saying no to luxuries now while you’re saving for your trip. If you don’t have money for travel now, you probably won’t have it later when you are studying and not working.


Is it expensive to learn Chinese in China? The cost of living in every city is different. Putting in the time to research the average costs of items and living will allow you to prepare for your new home.

Take into consideration the exchange rate when saving and spending money. Ask and learn about the gratuity in your new country. Do they tip? If so, how much? And for which services?

In China, we do not tip. However, if you are really satisfied with the service, you can tip a little and people will feel very grateful. When you study abroad in China, you can try to learn bargining a little. Bargining is common at vendors, but not common in big shopping malls or supermarket.

And, don’t forget… you’re in bartering culture. Don’t end up paying far more than a reasonable price. Get comfortable bartering for goods.

Understanding these basics will allow you to feel more “at home” when you arrive.


Cha-Ching! Your comfort level abroad will depend on how much you plan and prepare while you’re home. Keep an eye on your daily expenses and learn as much as possible about your new country before jet-setting.

Lastly, live like a local, and you will get the real experience. You won’t get stuck in any tourist money traps, and you will be thankful later when you’re calculating how much money you spent (and saved) studying abroad in China.


How to save money while studying abroad?

Firstly, do some research about learning abroad and make a budget plan on the statistics you found.

Secondly, selecting language programs at a reasonable price covers most daily essentials such as meals, housing, events after classes, and other activities. It can help you save lots of unnecessary spending daily.

Thirdly, studying at a touring spot may help you save money on traveling and sightseeing. Keats School has set up a well-connected net of schooling locations across China. Most of these locations are popular touring spots, which allow you to enjoy Mandarin learning and sightseeing simultaneously.

How much does it cost to study Mandarin in China?

Except for the fixed tuition fee for Mandarin learning, the answer to this question depends on what kind of cost items are included in your daily expense. Besides that, which city are you living in, and what your lifestyle should be considered.  The truth is that the living cost of learning Chinese in China could be very cheap or economical once you can mix these cost items smartly. The most economical city for living in is Kunming, and the most economical language program is the small group class at Keats School.

Is it possible for me to involve in internship when study in China?

Yes, it is possible. Keats School has set up well collaboration projects with local groups and companies, which provides internship opportunities to teach Keats students when they study Mandarin in China. This is also a good chance for the students to better understand Chinese culture and better communication with local people. You can choose to enroll in the Chinese language Study + Internship program.

Is there any special offer or discounted price of the Keats language program?

There is a discounted price for each language program. You may check out the details on each information page of the introduction of language programs.

What is the average flat-renting price and utilities in Kunming?

If you’re living in the Keats Dormitory, there is no need to worry about these issues, for all of the expenses are covered in your tuition fee already.  It’s also straightforward and cheap to ask for a room cleaning and drinking water supply service at Keats Dormitory.

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Sanny | USA

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I have to say it’s tons of fun. I have been here for 2 weeks. Not knowing what it was gonna be like, I was more than surprised at how great it is. The teachers are great, they are understanding. They do a Chinese language program that suits just you. The location is perfect for learning Chinese in China.


Joep | Netherlands

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I have been to Keats School to learn Chinese for 4 times now. The reason for coming back to this school is pretty much that the teachers I did work with were very good Chinese teachers. I make it a 5-year plan or even a 10-year plan to come back to this school.  All the teachers have methods of looking at what your skills are. They are aware of at what level you are. I think it is worth for everyone.

Dr. Med. Beatrice

Dr. Med. Beatrice | Austria

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I decided to learn Chinese in Kunming because I like smaller cities and I like the climate here. We had four hours a day study here and my dear teacher taught me very much and never lost her patience with me. It was a really wonderful experience to be here and I recommend Keats school and the teachers here to everyone who likes to learn Chinese in China.


Robert | Netherlands

Small Group Chinese Class

Since last semester, we started studying Chinese at Keats. It was the best choice we can ever make. It is a really good school. The classes are a lot of fun, you learn a lot, but very interactive, so you talk a lot which means it is not just books and writing. Kunming is a really pleasant city to live in, especially if you compare it to other cities in the east. If you like to travel, if you like to study Chinese in a fun way, Keats has the best Chinese language program for you.


Paul | UK

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

All teachers are really lovely. The teaching level at Keats is so much higher. I really love the city. It is very comfortable to get around. I fully recommend Keats. It is a great place to study Chinese in China. We are looking forward to coming back again later this year.


SJOERD | Netherlands

Small Group Chinese Class

We use a lot of games to learn grammar and new words. We have really good teachers, really patient. She helps us a lot. Our class is really nice and we have people from all over the world, different countries. We often discuss topics in Chinese in our class. I live in the dorm of Keats. It is very convenient. I don’t have to spend time traveling. You can just focus on learning Chinese.


Stew | UK

Small Group Chinese Class

The place is very cool. I am with a great group of people in my class, so coming to classes is very enjoyable. It is fun, we have a lot of discussions, games, activities. Our teachers are also very good, very supportive. Learning Chinese is intimidating at the start because you have so many questions. But I would advise coming to Keats because the atmosphere for learning is great. It is very relaxing. I would recommend the school.


Hilary | USA

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I’ve had a really great time here. I’ve studied a lot with my teacher who was fantastic. Keats School tried very hard to match its students with really good teachers that their personality works very well together. I really enjoy studying Chinese at Keats and I will definitely come back.

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