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  • Official comment
    Stilt Team

    Student loans are extremely difficult for international people in the US.

    A few reasons why banks and other lenders don’t offer student loans to people on visas:

    1. These loans have special provisions so borrowers can’t default on them (even if the borrower declares bankruptcy). It is difficult to enforce this for international people.
    2. Risk of leaving the country before paying back the loan. As student loans are usually $50,000 - $400,000 and it takes people 5 years–15 years to pay them back, it is difficult to predict if an international person will get the visa to stay in the country for that long.
    3. There is almost zero credit history for the applicant to determine their creditworthiness for a loan. US students get their parents to cosign a loan, but international students don’t have that luxury.

    There are definitely loans offered by some banks depending on the school and major, but these options are few and far in between.

    One of the best things you can do is to take a personal loan and use it to fund your education. The challenge is that you will have to start repayments soon after the loan is disbursed and interest rates will be higher than a student loan in the US. It is still far better than taking a student loan in your home country. There is no currency conversion fees, no currency fluctuation risk, you can build your credit history, and save wire transfer costs between international bank accounts.

    About Stilt:

    Stilt provides loans to international students and working professionals in the U.S. at rates lower than any other lender. Visit us at If you have any questions, send us an email at

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