Depending on where you come from, living in Marshall, TX, may seem relatively cheap or fairly expensive to you. Use the following information to make your own spending budget.
You will be required to purchase a meal plan at ETBU, so you may not be concerned about the food expenses other than what you pay for the meal plan. If you do prefer to dine out, an average meal at Marshall fast food restaurants (such as McDonalds) will cost you 5 to 6 U.S. dollars.
Clothes and Shoes
Marshall's Wal-Mart and other stores in town offer a comprehensive choice of clothes and shoes for a good price. A pair of jeans, for instance, may cost you about $20-$100 U.S. dollars. Shoes usually cost $30-$50 U.S. dollars.
There is very limited public transportation in Marshall, Texas, and most local students have automobiles. The Office of International Education provides transportation to WalMart, the bank, post office, etc. once each week. A bicycle may be useful. Purchasing a car has many hidden costs such as insurance, repairs, regular maintance, and more.
Local calls are free. However, if you plan to call home, you may need to shop around for a good international calling plan. Getting a calling card may be a good alternative. You can buy pre-paid international phone cards at nearby gas stations, but this may not be the best price option. Per minute rates differ greatly depending on the country you are calling. Calling Europe is usually cheaper, while calling to Asia, Africa, and the CIS countries is much more expensive. Since ETBU is wired to the Internet, you may want to make prior arrangements with your family and friends about staying in touch over the Internet.
Medical services in the United States are very expensive. While at ETBU, you will be required to purchase a student insurance policy or show proof of insurance from home which may help you cover some of the expenses in case you need medical assistance. However, the student insurance is limited and will not cover all expenses. Include some medical costs in your budget planning.