How to Study in Thailand for Free (7 Steps)

What comes to mind when you think about Thailand? Fresh fruits, incredible nature, vivid colors, vibrant city life – near endless list of reasons to visit the country as a tourist. The Land of Smiles, Thailand has been permanently engraved onto the list of the most desired travel destinations. However, it also offers a wide variety of opportunities for international students seeking higher education in Asia. Few other countries in the world can compare to Thailand in terms of the overall level and affordability of the local universities. In this article, we will be looking at how you can study in Thailand for free.

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Study in Thailand for Free

1. Great Application is the Key to Success

Whenever considering studying in a university, the first thought that comes to mind is that of how to design a perfect application. Every single aspect of the documentation has to be thought through in great detail. The applicant must understand that the admission committee will take into consideration every single nuance, and the difference between getting the desired spot or not lies in the finest features. External and internal examination results, additional achievements the applicant may hold, – the committee will examine everything. Having a great application is essential for you to be able to study in Thailand for free.

2. Start to Prepare Early

While a certain sense of unknowingness is a unique trait many soon-to-be freshmen share, it never hurts to take control of your preparatory work in advance. If you are planning to apply for an undergraduate degree program, start to mind your marks during the final year of high school. Research which grades matter most and ensure that you are on top of your game when it comes to all the main subjects. Do not forget: the application process is blind. The university staff will not look at your personality or character traits, as, during the application process, only the test scores you present and your overall formal readiness to attend the selected school will matter.

3. Check if Universities in Thailand Offer Scholarships

Keep in mind that there are financial aids offered by most Thai universities. Asian Institute of Technology website lists several scholarships, both internal and external, available to international students of all programs. Depending on the type of monetary support, it may cover the entirety of your potential tuition fee or a certain percent of the cost. Getting scholarships from Thai universities is one of the best ways for international students to study in Thailand for free. Mahidol University also provides a list of financial aids that can be received both by Thai and overseas students. You can find more information here.

Please keep in mind that every scholarship comes with a list of requirements, and it is highly recommended to get familiar with it first and apply on time.

4. Scholarships Offered by the Government of Your Country

A plethora of countries has their own scholarship programs to aid the citizens pursuing a degree abroad. Thailand is only one of many countries that has an ongoing Study Abroad program, allowing Thai citizens to travel overseas and receive financial support from the government. Some other examples include Denmark, France, Canada, and many more authorities. It is recommended to check if your country facilitates a similar system.

5. Take a Look at External Scholarships

On top of the options listed above, we can outline a number of international organizations, which have made it their goal to allow the students in need to receive the education they desire. Sustainability Scholarship and the British Council IELTS Award are just a couple of examples of such monetary support.

While some of the external scholarships may be bound to a specific region of the world or have a strict list of requirements, it is worth researching and familiarizing yourself with all the opportunities available.

6. Choose Affordable Universities in Thailand

Thailand has never been considered to be an expensive country. The living expenses are relatively low and the tuition fees for undergraduate studies rarely surpassing $4,000 per year. However, educational institutions such as Chiang Mai University or Bangkok International University offer even lower tuition costs. If you want, definitely take a look at Affordable Universities in Thailand for International Students. Attending these affordable universities can be a way to study in Thailand for free combined with other steps. Prior to the application, you should research Thai universities heavily and make sure that the program that you have chosen cannot be obtained from another educational institution for a lower price. In most cases, you shall be able to find the golden ratio and save a substantial amount of money.

7. Keep the Costs of Living Low

If you choose to study in Thailand, you have to take into consideration the living costs. Most universities’ dormitories cost $50-100 per month. For about double or triple the amount, $150-300 per month, an international student is able to rent a one-bedroom apartment in the city, which is often more convenient and provides a wider range of opportunities not only for accessing the university but also enjoying the attractions available locally.

General expenses will not seem that high compared to other countries in the world, with average food cost being around $150 per month and water & electricity bills not exceeding $30 per month. If you have to get to the university by the means of public transport such as buses or tuk-tuks, you may have to spend another $10-20.


I hope that this article was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Scholarships Page.