If you have been looking for ways to save on school fees in UAE, then you are not alone. The cost of education in the Emirates is pretty high. Every year as the month of September approaches, the burden of paying hefty school fees weighs heavy on parents’ shoulders.

However, the educational costs can be a bit reduced with effective planning management. In this article, we will share tips, tricks, and ways to help parents manage and save on school fees in UAE.

So, let’s read on and take a look at strategies with the help of which you can somewhat lower the burden of education costs.

Tips and Effective Strategies to Save on School Fees in UAE

Around 70% of the UAE’s population is expats, who come here to work and live a quality life. While the salaries are tax-free, the cost of education takes up a big portion of the income. Children’s education is without any doubt the highest expense for parents in UAE.

On average, school fees take up 25% to 50% of the total income of a household. A lot of people struggle to manage their kids’ school fees and end up exhausting all their savings.

To help ease the burden, we have jotted down some effective and proven tips to save on school fees. If you too feel burdened when the date to submit the tuition fees looms, give these tips a shot and save a good amount of money.

  1. Academic Scholarships and Bursaries

Academic Scholarships are one of the most effective ways to save on school fees and reduce the cost of education. If you are sending your kids to private schools in UAE, acquiring scholarships might be the best solution to save on tuition fees. Academic scholarships usually waive the entire tuition fee or a portion of the fees to provide financial relaxation to parents and students.

In some cases, students are awarded stipends and allowances to carry on with their educational expenses and pursue higher education in the best way possible. Even if your school does not provide stipends, a scholarship that waives tuition fees can be a great way to cut down on school fees.

Academic scholarships serve as a financial reprieve, offering a tangible means to save money on school fees and, simultaneously, nurture the educational aspirations of deserving students. This type of financial assistance provides a direct reduction in the overall cost of education.

By recognizing and rewarding academic excellence, institutions often offer scholarships that cover a significant portion, if not the entirety, of tuition fees. This translates into palpable savings for parents, allowing them to allocate resources to other essential aspects of their children’s development.

Scholarships are of various types and may be available to students at different levels including primary, middle, and senior school. Most of the time scholarships are awarded based on merit and require students and applicants to provide proof of their exceptional academic standing.

If you are applying for a scholarship other than that of an academic category, then you must be able to provide the necessary documentation to verify your credibility as a potential candidate.

An important thing to remember here is that scholarships are awarded for one academic year only. In most of the cases, applicants have to renew their scholarships and keep up with their hard work to be able to secure a slot.

If you are interested to know more about scholarships available for expat students in UAE, click here.

  1. Siblings Discount

Sibling discounts in schools are a valuable strategy for parents in the UAE who struggle to tackle the financial challenges associated with tuition fees. This practice offers a tangible means for families with multiple children enrolled in the same educational institution to save substantially on education costs.

The premise is simple yet effective – schools extend a discount to families with more than one child enrolled, acknowledging the financial commitment associated with educating multiple siblings. Typically structured as a percentage reduction in tuition fees for each additional sibling, these discounts significantly alleviate the overall financial burden on parents.

In the context of the UAE, where the cost of education can be substantial, sibling discounts provide a welcome relief for families striving to provide quality education for each of their children. This strategy is especially effective for families who have two or more children studying in same educational institute.

Furthermore, these discounts play a pivotal role in making education more accessible, promoting inclusivity, and ensuring that families with multiple children can pursue quality education without compromising their financial stability.

If you are looking for ways to save on school fees, talk to your children’s school administration to check if they offer sibling discounts. Also if you haven’t enrolled your kids in schools yet, it’s better to look out for schools that offer fee concessions and discounts for siblings.

  1. Fee Discount for School Staff

Staff discounts in UAE schools and educational institutes are another effective strategy to save on school fees. This unique benefit comes into play when parents are directly affiliated with a school or, particularly, when one of the parents serves as a teacher within the educational institution.

In certain instances, parents who are part of the school’s staff may be eligible for a remarkable 100% tuition fee waiver for their children. This can translate into significant financial relief, essentially making quality education more accessible for educators and their families.

Even when a complete tuition fee waiver is not applicable, schools often extend generous discounts for the children of staff members. This discounted rate can range from a significant percentage reduction to other favorable terms, further contributing to parents’ financial well-being in the UAE.

However, these discounts are often only available for one child. Some schools offer fee concessions for more than one child of the school staff but generally, waive-offs apply to one kid only. Also, senior school staff and class teachers get more benefits and receive an educational allowance for all the children.

In a region where the cost of education is a significant consideration for families, staff discounts in schools and universities can be a valuable way to save on school fees.

  1. Discounts on Early or Full Payments

When searching for ways to save on school fees, a financial strategy worth considering is the option of paying fees early or in full. Many educational institutions extend a monetary incentive to parents who choose to settle the entire annual tuition amount in one prompt payment, providing a practical solution for families seeking to cut down on educational costs.

Typically, schools offer a percentage-based discount, commonly ranging from 4% to 5%, as a token of appreciation for early or lump-sum payments. While the percentage may seem modest, the cumulative impact can be substantial, resulting in noteworthy savings on overall school fees.

It’s better to explore offers at the beginning of the school term so that you can benefit from the available discount options and save on school fees for your kids. Paying in full might put pressure on you at first, but in the longer run, it will only bring in benefits and save you a good amount of money.

  1. Save On Fees Using Credit Cards

Leveraging credit card benefits can be a savvy and resourceful strategy to save on school fees in the UAE. Several banks including Standard Chartered, FAB, Mashreq, and ADIB have collaborated with educational institutions to offer exclusive discounts and promotions, providing a valuable avenue for parents to optimize their financial outlays.

Parents enjoy discounts and concessions on school fees when using specific credit cards for payment. These discounts can vary, and in some instances, banks run limited-time promotions that offer a one-time discount on school fees. This immediate reduction in expenses can be a welcome relief for families who struggle to manage educational costs.

Even in cases where a direct discount isn’t offered, credit card users may accumulate reward points with each transaction. These points often translate into tangible benefits, such as discounts on groceries, retail shopping, or even future school fees.

The flexibility of these reward systems provides parents with options to maximize the value of their credit card usage beyond the immediate school fee transaction.

Additionally, some credit cards offer cashback incentives for school fee payments. This means that a percentage of the transaction amount is returned to the cardholder, effectively reducing the overall financial burden associated with education expenses.

Furthermore, certain credit cards provide installment plans with 0% interest, enabling parents to spread the cost of school fees over several months. This not only eases the immediate financial strain but also offers a structured and manageable approach to handling educational expenses.

Here is an informative article on the best cash-back credit card offers to help save on school fees in UAE. However, always be mindful when using credit cards for making significant payments as increased debt can put a strain on your finances. Make sure you can pay on time for the installments to avoid fines and penalties.

  1. School Referral Programs

School referral programs are a proactive means for parents to contribute to the growth of their school community while enjoying tangible savings on tuition fees. These programs harness the power of word-of-mouth recommendations, creating a symbiotic relationship between existing school families and potential newcomers.

In many instances, schools initiate referral programs wherein current parents can refer new families to enroll in the school. The process often involves sharing a unique referral link or code. If the referred family successfully registers their children, both the referring parent (referrer) and the new family (referee) stand to benefit.

For the parent who made the referral, the benefits typically manifest in the form of a discount on the school tuition fee. This reduction can be a percentage off the total fee or may be structured as reward points that accumulate with each successful referral. These points, in turn, can be converted into tangible savings on future term fees, offering a flexible and enduring incentive.

Interestingly, some schools extend the advantages of the referral program to the newly enrolled family as well. In such cases, the referred family may receive a discount on their initial tuition fees, creating a win-win situation for both the existing and prospective school families.

Gems, Raffles World Academy, and Repton School in Dubai have refer-a-friend programs where parents can refer friends, family, and colleagues and earn points to save on school fees.

If you are in search of ways to save on school fees, you might consider these referral programs and see if any of these help you cut down on the educational expenses of your children.

Bottom Line:

In conclusion, the financial commitment required for education in the UAE demands thoughtful consideration and proactive planning from parents. With educational expenses claiming a significant portion of household income, implementing effective strategies becomes crucial to save on school fees.

By strategies such as sibling discounts, staff benefits, early payment incentives, and referral programs, parents can strategically cut down on school fees, making quality education more accessible. Embracing these proactive measures not only fosters financial stability but also underscores the importance of informed decision-making in securing a bright academic future for children.

In the pursuit of educational excellence, mindful planning emerges as a powerful ally, ensuring that families not only invest wisely but also manage the educational costs with confidence and peace of mind.


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