College student flies two hours to class twice a week because it's cheaper than paying rent

vt-author-image

By James Kay

Article saved!Article saved!

A college student has resorted to flying to attend his classes because it's cheaper than renting near his campus.

Renting isn't cheap, especially for a student who is carrying bags of debt and just trying to make ends meet - usually resulting in eating the cheapest food possible.

While a lot of students will blow their money on having the time of their lives, others are a bit more financially responsible... even if that means a long commute.

Tim Chen, a final-year economics student at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver, Canada, has a fairly unique way of avoiding paying rent.

size-full wp-image-1263250254
The student flies to attend his classes each week. Credit: Greg Bajor/Getty

He undertakes a nearly two-hour flight to attend classes at UBC due to soaring off-campus housing prices.

"I thought, why don't I just stay at Calgary and then just fly here, it's like a one-hour flight, that's like the same as taking a bus," Chen shared with CTV News.

Describing his unique approach as super-commuting, according to a Reddit post, Chen manages just two on-campus classes per week. His unconventional choice stems from the extortionate rent he encountered in Vancouver when he returned from vacation last fall.

"When I checked the house price I thought, oh shoot, there was a big increase! I need to pay like $2,500 for the rent, so I don't feel like it's viable," he explained.

Opting for a nonstop round-trip flight from Calgary to Vancouver, costing roughly $111, Chen calculates he spends approximately $890 monthly while residing at his parents' home in Calgary.

This alternative proves significantly cheaper compared to the average $1,550 rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Vancouver, known as the country's most expensive city to live in.

"I've got three hours of class in total, after the class, I go back to the bus and go back to the airport," Chen said.

Despite the distance - Vancouver lies approximately 430 miles west of Calgary - air travel reduces his commute to a mere one hour and 40 minutes.

The soaring rent prices in Vancouver have forced some students to take extreme measures when thinking about accommodation, with a few opting to live in vans.

size-full wp-image-1263250253
Vancouver is Canada's most expensive city for rent. Credit: Christine Nanji/Getty

"This was the only financially viable option as I couldn't afford a bachelor suite by myself," remarked Xelian Louw, another UBC student, to CTV News in October 2022.

UBC, with an enrollment of 58,590 students, provides guaranteed housing for first-year students, with options available for returning undergraduates and graduate students, according to US News and World Report.

While it may not be great for the environment, it certainly saves on rent!

Featured image credit: Greg Bajor/Getty

College student flies two hours to class twice a week because it's cheaper than paying rent

vt-author-image

By James Kay

Article saved!Article saved!

A college student has resorted to flying to attend his classes because it's cheaper than renting near his campus.

Renting isn't cheap, especially for a student who is carrying bags of debt and just trying to make ends meet - usually resulting in eating the cheapest food possible.

While a lot of students will blow their money on having the time of their lives, others are a bit more financially responsible... even if that means a long commute.

Tim Chen, a final-year economics student at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver, Canada, has a fairly unique way of avoiding paying rent.

size-full wp-image-1263250254
The student flies to attend his classes each week. Credit: Greg Bajor/Getty

He undertakes a nearly two-hour flight to attend classes at UBC due to soaring off-campus housing prices.

"I thought, why don't I just stay at Calgary and then just fly here, it's like a one-hour flight, that's like the same as taking a bus," Chen shared with CTV News.

Describing his unique approach as super-commuting, according to a Reddit post, Chen manages just two on-campus classes per week. His unconventional choice stems from the extortionate rent he encountered in Vancouver when he returned from vacation last fall.

"When I checked the house price I thought, oh shoot, there was a big increase! I need to pay like $2,500 for the rent, so I don't feel like it's viable," he explained.

Opting for a nonstop round-trip flight from Calgary to Vancouver, costing roughly $111, Chen calculates he spends approximately $890 monthly while residing at his parents' home in Calgary.

This alternative proves significantly cheaper compared to the average $1,550 rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Vancouver, known as the country's most expensive city to live in.

"I've got three hours of class in total, after the class, I go back to the bus and go back to the airport," Chen said.

Despite the distance - Vancouver lies approximately 430 miles west of Calgary - air travel reduces his commute to a mere one hour and 40 minutes.

The soaring rent prices in Vancouver have forced some students to take extreme measures when thinking about accommodation, with a few opting to live in vans.

size-full wp-image-1263250253
Vancouver is Canada's most expensive city for rent. Credit: Christine Nanji/Getty

"This was the only financially viable option as I couldn't afford a bachelor suite by myself," remarked Xelian Louw, another UBC student, to CTV News in October 2022.

UBC, with an enrollment of 58,590 students, provides guaranteed housing for first-year students, with options available for returning undergraduates and graduate students, according to US News and World Report.

While it may not be great for the environment, it certainly saves on rent!

Featured image credit: Greg Bajor/Getty