About Budgets | International Study Award
Career Strategy Fellowships Study Abroad Summer Session MyCIPE

About Budgets

You are here

Tip: The ISA is intended to cover a percentage of a program's set budget. It will not cover all expenses of a student's experience abroad. Even after careful planning and budgeting, please be aware that unexpected costs may arise. All students – even students with 100% need – should plan to contribute at least some of their own money toward program and related expenses.

TOC: About Budgets

What is covered?

Note: New for Summer 2024: The ISA will be disbursed in two lump sums. Travel Expenses are disbursed as a flat stipend directly to students via Zelle. Program Expenses are disbursed into students' Yale accounts and will appear as credit.

Tip: Students must request a refund via direct deposit from their Yale accounts into a personal bank account in order to receive the Program portion of their ISA funds. The ISA does not send payments directly to programs.

The ISA includes stipends for the anticipated cost of travel and the study abroad program, and is disbursed in two lump sums. Travel Expenses are disbursed as a flat stipend by region of travel directly to students via Zelle. Program Expenses are disbursed in proportion to the student's financial aid percentage as a lump sum into the student's Yale Account. Please refer to Program Budgets to see the exact budgeted totals for these categories for study abroad programs.

FAQ: What are the ISA Program Expense Categories?

ISA Program Expenses are study abroad expenses associated with attending a specific study abroad program. These expenses include tuition, room (housing), board (meals), books, and local transportation.

FAQ: What are the ISA Travel Expense Categories?

ISA Travel Expenses are costs associated with travel to the study abroad program and other expenses not specific to the program. These expenses include airfare, health, and visa/miscellaneous fees. Travel Expenses are disbursed as a flat stipend by region directly to students via Zelle early in the application cycle.

ISA budgets can be broken down into the following categories:


A flat regional stipend based on averages of economy flights from multiple US departure sites and departure/return dates. Airfare is calculated for a roundtrip flight from and to the United States.


Includes student fees, course fees, and deposits that are deducted from total tuition owed. Students not able to cover a deposit before ISA funds disburse should contact Student Financial Services (yss.funding@yale.edu) to request a deferral of payment letter.  APPLICATION FEES ARE THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE STUDENT AND ARE NOT COVERED BY THE ISA. 


If the ISA Team can identify course materials (including required text books but not including general supplies like notebooks) from available program materials, these will be included in the program budget. Otherwise, a flat stipend will be provided for books.


For programs with available housing options, the budget accounts for the most expensive option, though students are not obligated to select this option for themselves. For programs with no set housing options, housing is calculated based on an average of available data for short-term rentals.

Board (food)

For programs with available meal options, the budget accounts for the most expensive option, though students are not obligated to select this option for themselves. For programs with no set meal options, or programs where only some meals are provided, food budgets are calculated as a flat regional stipend based on the best available cost of living and per diem rate data. Students should plan to spend some money out of pocket on food, especially if they plan to eat out multiple times per week instead of cooking.

Local transportation

Local transportation (such as train fare for required class trips) is factored into program budgets as a flat regional stipend based on length of program.


This category includes a flat stipend for (non-expedited) visa fees, certain health expenses, and $100 to defray incidental expenses. The health costs covered are required vaccinations (not recommended vaccinations) for "all" and "most travellers" by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as well as any health costs required by specific programs (e.g. a program in a tropical location which requires students to take anti-malarial pills to participate).

If your costs significantly exceed the budgeted amount for Health related expenses, please see Petitioning for budget adjustments section.

How are budgets created?

Budgets are set by the ISA Team working in collaboration with Yale Study Abroad. 

Point: The maximum ISA funding amount for the Summer 2024 cycle is capped at $17,000.00, even for programs with costs beyond the cap amount.

Airfare is determined based on averages from the best available flight information, using data from a variety of US departure cities and departure/return dates. Airfare budgets are set as an average and prices will rise as the program start date approaches, so students should be aware that their actual airfare expense may be more (or less) than the amount noted in their program budget. Except in extreme extenuating circumstances, these overages are the responsibility of the student.

Set expenses, such as tuition and room & board fees set by individual programs, are determined based on available information from those programs. In cases where there are multiple housing options for a given program, the budget accounts for the most expensive option (though students are not obligated to select that option for themselves). If a student is participating in a program with additional fees (such as costs associated with a mandatory field trip), it is the students' responsibility to provide that information and documentation to isa@yale.edu at the time of their ISA request.

For programs where housing and/or meals are not provided in whole or in part (e.g. academic programs that only provide breakfast), budgets are determined based on a flat weekly regional stipend determined by cost of living data gathered from the State Department and several housing resources. Food budgets are not meant to account for eating out at every meal; students are expected to eat at least some meals at home. 

Petitioning for Health budget adjustments

Students may petition for budget adjustments in extenuating circumstances related to Health expenses required for participation in a study abroad programs that are not incuded in their original budget. This could include required Rabies vaccinations or country-specific health requirements that are not covered under the flat regional ISA stipend.

Students wishing to petition for an adjustment to their budget should fill out the Budget Petition Form by the final ISA request deadline. You will be asked for the following information:

  • Program
  • Explanation of cost in excess of budget
  • Supporting documentation (e.g. link to program requirements, helath considerations for the specific country as provided by the CDC, etc.)

Requests not containing all pertinent information will not be considered. Decisions regarding ISA adjustments will be made by the ISA committee. Students can expect a decision in early June. 

Please keep in mind that the ISA will not cover all expenses of a student's experience abroad. Even after careful planning and budgeting, please be aware that unexpected costs may arise. All students–even students with 100% need–should plan to contribute at least some of their own money toward program and related expenses.

Student​s Receiving Scholarships or Fellowships

Students cannot receive more than 100% of the total program budget as outlined in the Budgets Database. In situations where ISA and fellowship, and/or scholarship funding exceed 100% of the total program cost, the ISA amount will be reduced so that the student does not receive from all sources more than 100% of the program budget. If students elect to use any part of their ISA, even if their budget has been reduced due to scholarship or fellowship funding, they are not eligible to use an ISA in a future summer.

Point: Example: A student is participating in a $10,000 ISA-eligible program and is on 70% aid, so their ISA funding is calculated to be $7,000. If this student receives a $5,000 fellowship to help fund their experience, their ISA will be reduced to $5,000 so that their total funding does not exceed the $10,000 budget. They will receive a $5,000 ISA and their $5,000 fellowship.

If a student is named the recipient of a fellowship or scholarship after they've requested ISA funding, it is the obligation of the student to inform the ISA Committee of this additional funding via email, even if the student does not believe that the amount of funding received will impact their final ISA amount.

If a student is receiving summer funding for an experience separate from their ISA-funded experience, it is in the student's best interest to inform the ISA Committee via email in order to prevent delays in the disbursal of ISA funds to the student.

Required Use of Funds

Students who receive an ISA are required to use the money for the purposes for which it was granted. Students who withdraw from funded programs and activities will be required to repay Yale the amount of their award. Likewise, federal funds received for summer programs may also have to be returned in accordance with federal regulations.

Students whose summer course or courses are funded entirely or in part by the International Study Award (ISA) may not elect to withhold or suppress from their Yale transcript either the credits or the grades earned from the course or courses abroad. ISA recipients who withhold or suppress the credit or grade from their Yale transcript will be asked to return their ISA funds and the case may be sent to ExComm.


Under federal tax law, a scholarship or fellowship provided to a student in a degree granting program is generally taxable. If you are a candidate for a degree, however, you can exclude from taxable income that part of the award used to pay the costs of tuition, required fees, books, equipment and supplies (required fees, books, equipment and supplies are limited to those specifically required of all students in a course). You cannot exclude from taxable income any part of the grant used for other purposes, such as room and board. Please refer to IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Higher Education, Section 1, Scholarship, Fellowships, Grants and Tuition Reductions and the IRS tax guide for students, Taxable Income for Students. While CIPE cannot offer tax advice, the IRS Tax Office on Court Street does offer free tax advice to students.

Additional tax requirement for international students

Please note that you must complete certain forms at the International Tax Office before receiving the ISA. If you have not already done so, please make an appointment at Yale's International Tax Office.