Financing an Education

Education is an investment for the future. Planning to finance an education can start today. Preparation is key!

Use the Cost of Living Calculator

Will your youth need to move to attend post-secondary or to get a job? Compare the cost of living in over 150 communities across B.C. and discover labour market information for these places with the Cost of Living Calculator.

Make post-secondary education more affordable

StudentAid BC helps British Columbian students with the cost of post-secondary education through student grants, loans and other financial aid programs.
  • Grants = money that students will not have to pay back.
  • Loans = money that students will have to repay but are interest and payment-free while students are in school full-time. As of 2019, there is no interest on B.C. Government issued student loans.
  • Other financial aid programs = specific supports for students with permanent disabilities, former youth in care, low- and middle-income students, as well as repayment assistance programs.
StudentAid BC funding is calculated by comparing a student’s educational costs and their financial resources. The amount of funding a student may be eligible for depends on their financial need. 

Students are encouraged to contact the financial aid office at their post-secondary institution to learn about other types of non-repayable financial assistance, such as scholarships and bursaries.

For more information about the eligibility requirements and how to apply for student financial assistance, visit StudentAid BC.

Make a budget

Talking about money can be challenging. However, by creating and sticking to a budget, your youth can meet their goals.

Your youth can plan their finances by detailing income (such as earnings), help from family and expected expenses. The budget is a tool to help your youth determine if financial assistance is needed.

Have your youth start by reducing their expenses:

  • Reduce extras like daily coffee and eating out. These things can add up and throw off a budget.
  • Cut phone and transportation costs by switching to the minimum package.
  • Buy used books instead of new.
  • Use debit instead of credit. Pay off the credit card balance each month or use a low-interest credit card.
  • Switch to a student-banking package with no monthly fees and unlimited transactions.
  • Use student discounts and coupons for products and services, on and off campus.
Check for more information and resources for helpful budgeting tips.  


Invite your youth to complete a budget to determine what it will cost to attend post-secondary school. They can use the education budget worksheet (PDF) from StudentAid BC to start detailing their expenses.