4 in 5 parents would consider sending children to university overseas

4 in 5 parents would consider sending children to university overseas

About four in five parents will consider sending their children abroad for university education.

According to HSBC's survey The Value of Education: Springboard for success, Singaporean parents viewed independence, international work experience and confidence as the key benefits of studying abroad.

Over 4,500 parents were surveyed across 15 countries worldwide.

Over half of Singaporean parents (51 per cent) felt that the US offered the highest quality of education. This was followed by the UK (38 per cent), Germany (27 per cent), Australia (25 per cent) and Japan (25 per cent).

However, the results also revealed confidence in local education options, with three quarters of Singaporean parents agreeing that the quality of education here is better than other countries.

Mr Matthew Colebrook, Head of Retail Banking and Wealth Management at HSBC Singapore, said: "Our survey shows that parents know the value of a good education and they tend to take full responsibility for funding it."

The survey showed that Singapore, with average annual costs of US$39,000 (S$49,200), was the second most expensive option for international students pursuing tertiary education. Australia was the most expensive at US$42,000.

The annual total cost is the sum of the average annual university fee and the average annual cost of living for an international undergraduate student.

"The reality is that education costs are high, no matter in Singapore or overseas," says Colebrook, "but with proper planning and an astute investment plan, most of the financial uncertainties can be eliminated."

According to the survey, more than half (53 per cent) of Singapore parents believe that paying for a child's education is the best investment, and would allocate an average of 53 per cent of their future child financial support funds to it. Most assume that funding will come from savings (71 per cent) or their current income (55 per cent).

Singaporean parents are also more open to funding education at a later stage, with just 23 per cent that would consider paying for their child's primary education, 36 per cent for secondary education and 70 per cent for university.

According to Colebrook, relying too heavily on current income and savings to fund university education could be risky, and that a financial advisor could help parents discuss goals, project total amounts required and map our the most suitable financial solutions.

"Parents should also ensure protection to continue funding school fees should something unexpected happen to them." he added.

seanyap@sph.com.sg

Cost Rank
CountryUniversity fees per year (US$)Cost of living per year (US$)Cost Total per year (US$)
1Australia24,08118,01242,093
2Singapore18,93720,29239,229
3United States24,91411,65136,564
4United Kingdom21,36513,68035,045
5Hong Kong13,44418,69632,140
6Canada16,74613,20129,947
7France24716,53016,777
8Malaysia2,45310,48812,941
9Indonesia4,3788,52712,905
10Brazil5912,56912,627
11Taiwan3,3388,57311,911
12Turkey1,27610,08911,365
13China3,8446,88610,729
14Mexico 7508,7109,640
15India5815,0625,642

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