Understanding Your Semester Bill

There are several items you can expect to see on your Penn State bursar bill the semester you study abroad (Billable). There are other items you can expect to have to pay for your study abroad experience that are not paid to Penn State directly (Non-Billable). These costs vary widely from program to program.

Billable Costs

Billable costs are items that will appear on your Penn State bursar bill. You will pay for these items as you normally do through your LionPATH account. 

Penn State Tuition

The semester tuition for participation on program abroad offered through Education Abroad is generally the same tuition rate as Penn State because you are enrolled at Penn State while abroad. Out-of-state students going abroad on an approved IES, CIEE, and Arcadia program receive an in-state tuition credit for fall and spring semester programs. Out-of-state students on any summer program will also receive an in-state tuition credit. Please note that programs that are offered university-wide will assess the standard University Park tuition rate regardless of your current campus (e.g. an Altoona student studying abroad would be assessed University Park tuition for the term spent overseas). 

Education Abroad Program Fee

Unless otherwise noted, the Education Abroad Program fee includes orientation, cultural activities, and some local excursions and field trips. Depending on the program, this may also include room and board. Be sure to read the notes section of your program's budget sheet for more detailed information about what the program fee does and does not include. 

Education Abroad Administration Fee

This is a non-refundable fee for all students participating in an Education Abroad program. ($150 for summer programs, $250 for semester programs)

Information Technology Fee

The IT fee provides you with an Access Account, your digital identity while you are a Penn State student. You can use Webmail to read, send, and file your email from anywhere in the world. Your Access Account allows you to use LionPATH course information, class assignments, grades, student bills and more. All Penn State students are assessed this fee whether they are studying in the U.S. or abroad. 

Non-Billable Costs

Non-billable costs are items that will not appear on your Penn State bursar bill, but that we estimate you will still have to pay at some point in the study abroad process. 


Housing type and availability vary by program and in some cases, the cost may be included in the Education Abroad Program Fee.  In other cases housing will be billed to the student directly by the host institution. 


The cost of some meals may in some cases be included in the Education Abroad Program Fee, but you may also need to budget for additional meals that are not provided. Details are included in the notes section of the online program budget sheet.

Health Insurance

In some cases, the host institution or host country may require additional insurance. Regardless, all participants have international health insurance coverage as part of the Penn State Education Abroad program. 


The cost of airfare depends on the destination, carrier, and travel season and is not included in any fees billed by Penn State. 

Books and Supplies

The cost of books and supplies varies, but is often less than at Penn State. 

Travel and Excursions

Schedules may permit domestic and international travel while you are abroad. Budgeting and early planning is necessary to control costs.

Daily Transport

Your daily means of transportation may include train, bus, subway, bicycle, etc. Costs of public transportation will vary by location. Discounts may be available for student commuters. 

Passport and Visa

A passport is issued by your country of citizenship and allows you to travel internationally. If you do not have a passport you should begin the application process immediately. A student visa is an immigration document issued by the host government that is needed for many Education Abroad programs. Though some instructions for how to process the necessary paperwork will be discussed during pre-departure orientation, it is your responsibility to acquire final documentation. Learn more about passports and visas necessary for studying abroad. 

Personal Expenses

Consider what personal expenses you currently have as a student at Penn State. Living like a student of the host country will help you integrate and save money while abroad. Learn more about keeping it affordable while studying abroad.