Finances & Financial Aid
The cost of study abroad is comprised of tuition, administrative fees, housing, meals, air and ground transportation, passport and visa fees, vacation period travel, and personal costs. If you are not sure if you can afford studying abroad, please consider the following factors:
- Many study abroad programs are the same cost as a semester at UMaine. Find programs in countries which are affordable to live to lower the cost of your program. Think of locations you may not have considered yet, such as Bulgaria, India, Thailand, South Korea, Chile, Peru, Argentina, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, etc.
- Talk to your family. They will be your key allies in funding your semester abroad. Ask your family and friends for cash contributions to your “study abroad savings account” for birthdays and major holidays. You will be surprised how much you will save in a few semesters.
- Meet with your financial aid advisor to discuss your financial aid package and explore options for additional funding.
- Apply for all UMaine, state, national and other scholarships available to you. Start your study abroad process early to meet all scholarship deadlines.
- Re-evaluate all your monthly expenses prior to going abroad. The late Friday night pizza will be as much as a budget airline ticket for a weekend trip.
- Create your own crowdsourcing campaign and fundraise through bottle drives, craft sales, etc.
- UMaine financial aid funds can be used for study abroad programs which are approved by the Office of International Programs.
- Students must maintain full-time status before they study abroad and while they are abroad (the local equivalent of at least 12 UMaine credit hours per semester).
- Complete your FAFSA application for the academic year as usual and based on UMaine costs. Do not include any information about your study abroad program on your FAFSA application. Once your FAFSA is approved and financial aid awarded, UMaine will internally approve the release of your financial aid for your specific study abroad program.
- The Office of Financial Aid can increase your loan eligibility to accommodate the higher cost for the semester. To do this you need to provide an official complete program budget which includes travel costs/estimates as part of completing the International Study Away Registration form.
- Study abroad students cannot utilize their Federal Work Study award while overseas, but they may be converted to loans you can apply for. You will need to request cancellation or reduction of the Work Study funds.
- Students may also be able to apply for an alternative loan through the Office of Financial Aid. For more information, visit Direct Parent PLUS Loan and Alternative Student Loans. Once you apply for these loans, it may take up to four weeks before funds are received by UMaine and disbursed to you. The earliest they will disburse is the week before UMaine classes begin.
- Be aware of the cost of your program and be sure you have enough funding to participate. Airfare, visas and housing deposits are usually paid before UMaine financial aid is disbursed for the abroad program. You will need a plan to pay them.
- Financial aid funds are released in the week before classes start at UMaine regardless of the start date of the study abroad program.
- Summer Financial Aid is applied for and awarded separately than the regular academic year aid. The process begins after spring break each year. Summer aid is disbursed at the beginning of the summer term. All required study abroad pre-departure forms must be completed in order for financial aid to be released.
- Financial Aid is disbursed through direct deposit (different than direct deposit through the Payroll Office for working on campus).
- Students must budget appropriately to make travel plans, pay program deposits and apply for a visa prior to financial aid disbursement.
- Inform the Office of Financial Aid about any study abroad scholarships you are awarded.
- Students are encouraged to speak with a Financial Aid Advisor to discuss their aid and study abroad plans. The Office of Financial Aid is located in Wingate Hall.
|Type of Financial Aid||Applicable to Study Abroad?|
|Pell Grant||Yes, all approved programs|
|Federal Supplemental Grant||Yes, all approved programs|
|Federal Direct Stafford Loan||Yes, all approved programs|
|Federal Perkins Loan||Yes, all approved programs|
|Federal Parent PLUS Loan||Yes, all approved programs|
|State of Maine Grant||Yes, all approved programs|
|University of Maine Grant||Yes, all approved programs|
|Maine’s Top Scholar||Yes, all approved programs|
|UMaine Presidential Scholarship||Yes, all approved programs|
|UMaine Flagship Scholarship||Yes, all approved programs|
|UMaine Black Bear Scholarship||Yes, all approved programs|
|Transfer Merit Award||Yes, all approved programs|
|Department/College Scholarship||Yes, all approved programs|
|WorkStudy Funds||NO, can be converted to loans|
|International Student Scholarship||Applies to direct exchange only|
|Employee Dependent Tuition Benefit||Applies to direct exchange only|
|Native American Waiver||Applies to direct exchange only|
|Veteran Tuition Scholarship||Applies to direct exchange only|
|Veterans Dependent Education Benefit||All approved programs|