Almost six in ten (58%) Munster parents say they will be forced to cut spending on clothing and goods for other children in the family to cope with third level education costs.

The findings are the highest percentage of parents in the country saying they will be forced to do so, with the national average at 48%.

A new national survey by the Irish League of Credit Unions found that 84% of parents in the region help to fund their child’s college education – and this is impacting on the entire household.

These parents will not only slash spending on clothing and goods – over a third (34%) will also sacrifice spending on such staples as groceries and food in an effort to cover college costs. This is again higher than the national average of 31%.

Parents who help fund their child’s third level education estimated that they were paying €584 per month during the college term.


Students from Munster and are also feeling the strain of third level costs. More than two thirds (65%) are working throughout college in an effort to cope with costs. 21% work full-time.

More than three quarters (76%) work part-time. 21% say they skip lectures in order to work and earn money.

Students are also sacrificing spending on important items as they struggle with costs. A quarter say they’ll slash spending on medical or dental check-ups. More than a quarter – 27% – will cut the amount of money spent on food.

Those students living outside of home say they are paying almost double what those living at home spend for the college term – those renting accommodation estimate they are spending €1,229 per month during the third level year, whereas students staying at home say they are spending €667 each month.