Studying at university can be expensive, especially if you're not a local and don't have family and/or friends to help ease the financial pressures. Studying for a mining degree is no different but for wannabe mining engineers, a recent survey has found the most affordable cities around the globe for studying mining engineering. Students from the mining powerhouse economies may be surprised to learn that most of your cities didn't make the cut! 

The survey used the QS Best Student Cities 2019 ranking affordability indicator, which takes into consideration:
Tuition fees
Mercer Cost of Living Rankings
Big Mac Index
IPad Index

It also specifies where these universities rank in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2019 for mineral and mining engineering.

Number 10

Rounding out the top 10 most affordable cities in which to study Mining Engineering is Madrid, or more specifically, the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. This is one of 4 universities in the lovely capital city of Spain and its School of Mining and Energy Engineering is currently ranked at number 34 globally for similar courses. It's also popular with employers if the employer activity indicator is any guide. Tuition fees at the school will set you back an average of US$4,300, which is very reasonable. However, offsetting this is Madrid's 65th place affordability ranking in the QS Best Student Cities list. In other words, the tuition fees may be a bargain but be prepared for a fairly high cost of living.

Number 9

From Europe to Asia, our next most affordable (and eminently liveable) city to head to if you want to study mining engineering is the Chinese city of Nanjing. More specifically, Nanjing is the capital of Jiangsu province in mainland China and quite apart from its affordability for students, is a cultural, educational and historical mecca. The university you want to enroll in is Nanjing Uni, whose mineral and mining engineering course currently ranks 25th globally. Tuition fees here are ~US$5,000 whilst Nanjing's overall affordability ranking for students is 60th.

Number 8

Staying in Asia, but moving further west, we come to Mumbai, a populous Indian city. In fact, it is the most populous city in India and was once called Bombay. Mumbai is also famous for being India's answer to Hollywood so if your career as a Bollywood movie star doesn't pan out you can try your hand at a mining engineering degree instead! Along with Bollywood, Mumbai is the location of 2 top ranked Indian universities, one of which is the Indian Institute of Technology. If you choose to study mining engineering here, it will cost you in the order of US$4,500 in tuition fees and you'll also have the comfort of knowing that your course is ranked 38th globally for mining engineering courses. For student affordability, Mumbai ranks 57th and also makes the top 100 Best Student Cities list.

Number 7

From Asia right the way around the world to North America, where the highly rated University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, offers its 9th ranked mining engineering course. Employers in the industry also love candidates with a degree from this university so that's definitely something to consider. Tuition fees in this neck of the woods pan out at around US$5,300 but Vancouver does have a reasonably high cost of living and that may deter some students. On the plus side, you would have a world-class mining engineering degree from one of the top courses in the world.

Number 6

Staying on that side of the globe, we trek south to South America and Sao Paulo in Brazil for our next member of the top 10 places to study mining engineering. Brazil has a thriving mining industry so it's probably not surprising that the mining engineering course at the Universidade de São Paulo is amongst the best. It ranks 33rd in fact globally. Tuition fees in Sao Paulo are also a steal at just US$1,900 but according to the Mercer Cost of Living Index, Sao Paulo doesn't make the top 100 for most affordable cities to live in. However, those ridiculously low tuition fees may still make studying here worth your more expensive living expenses. It's also a culturally vibrant and exciting city to live in.

Number 5

For fifth place we head back to Asia, this time landing in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. This city is apparently the leading Asian contender on the 2019 Best Student Cities list largely due to its very affordable cost of living. There are 12 internationally acclaimed universities here but the one you want for a mining engineering degree is Waseda University. Their course ranks 40th globally. Unfortunately you may pay a bit more in tuition fees at Waseda than you would if you attended most of the other universities on this list but that oh so affordable cost of living will well and truly offset this.

Number 4

Fourth place on this list is a bit of surprise because one doesn't usually associate Moscow with being at the forefront of very much! However, not only is it a very affordable place to live from a retail perspective (the price of fast food here for example is about half what you'd pay elsewhere in Europe) but the mining engineering course offered by the internationally ranked Moscow National University of Science and Technology is amongst the top 50 (42nd) ME courses in the world. It's also very highly regarded by employers in the industry according to the employer reputation indicator. Tuition fees are around the US$5,500 mark but what you save on those cheap takeaway meals will help pay for it!

Number 3

We're back in South America for number 3 on the list. Mexico City, with its scrumptious food, colourful carnival culture, beautiful architecture and sense of history, also has one of Latin America's top universities. The mining engineering course at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México ranks 14th in the world, and you'll only pay around US$4,800 for the privilege of getting your degree here. Combine this with the city's very reasonable cost of living and Mexico City could be a perfect place to get a mining engineering degree without going into debt for the rest of your life.

Number 2

Mining is big business in South Africa and the University of The Witwatersrand in Johannesburg has one of the best mining engineering courses anywhere. The 4-year Bachelor of Science course comes in at 13th place, just above Mexico City. Jo-burg also makes the top 10 list of most affordable cities to live in generally, although it's only 78th on the Best Student City list. Combined, these factors make getting a mining engineering degree here a very attractive, and affordable, proposition. As an added bonus, the city oozes green living so not only will you get a first rate mining degree, you'll also probably learn a thing or three about sustainability as well.

Number 1

Russia has done it again! St Petersburg joins Moscow on the list of top 10 cities in which to study mining engineering. In fact, the city has a dedicated mining university in the St. Petersburg Mining University and its mining engineering degree course ranks 19th. Combine this with the city's top 5 affordability ranking on the Best Student Cities list and it's not hard to see why St Petersburg tops the list. When you're not busy studying, there are plenty of museums to visit, architectural wonders to gaze at, and live entertainment shows to attend. What's not to like about that.