facebook icon twitter youtube

What to Expect

Initial Expenses Roommates
Weather Mailing Address and Mail Services
Clothing & Shopping Phones
Transportation Electronics
University Housing Textbooks & School Supplies

Initial Expenses

Students should be prepared to have enough money when they arrive to cover costs of textbooks, school supplies, phone/phone cards, toiletries, items for your residence hall room (bedding, pillows, toilet paper), as well as other items you may not have thought to bring.  Here is Sample Shopping List for International Students to give you an idea of what you may need to buy when you get to Coastal.


The weather is generally mild, but there will be a few days of cold temperatures during the winter months. You may want to bring sandals, a rain coat, umbrella, shorts, jeans, short sleeve shirts, comfortable shoes for walking, as well as a light winter coat and warm hat and gloves, etc.  You may also purchase these items here.

The average temperature in the spring is 76°F (24°C), summer is 89°F (32°C), fall is 77°F (25°C) and winter is 59°F (15°C). The region rarely has snow. There are 215 days of sun.

Clothing & Shopping

Students dress informally (jeans, sneakers, etc.), however, you may have presentations or be invited to dinners or receptions and need more formal clothing. 

Many American and international students purchase Coastal Carolina University apparel when they arrive on campus at the university bookstore.

Students can also purchase clothes from nearby retailers, such as Walmart, Target, Banana Republic, Gap, GUESS, Coach, Polo Ralph Lauren, Ann Taylor, Under Armour, J. Crew, and many others.


On-campus Shuttle Service
Coastal Carolina University provides free shuttle service for its students around campus, and includes routes from University housing located at University Place, main campus, and the east campus.  All shuttles and shuttle stop areas are handicapped accessible.

To learn more about the shuttle, visit: http://www.coastal.edu/chant411/transportation/

Local Public Transportation
Transportation to select off-campus locations is available using Coast RTA buses.

Coastal Cycles Bike Program
The Campus Recreation department oversees the University's FREE campus bike program.  This program offers an affordable and environmentally sustainable form of transportation to Coastal students. This program provides an alternative to driving and promotes campus community. Campus Recreation has a fleet of cruiser and mountain bikes adorned with Coastal Cycles branding. All bikes come with a helmet and lock. If you plan on being at Coastal for more than a semester, you may want to consider buying a bike when you arrive.

To rent a bike, follow these steps: http://www.coastal.edu/recreation/cycles.html

For more information, e-mail recreation@coastal.edu

Taxis are available but can be quite expensive, even when going short distances.  Unlike taxis in major cities, the best way to hire a taxi is to call the company ahead of time and schedule a pick up.  You can, however, pick up a taxi at the airport without calling in advance and taxis are available at all hours of the day. For a list of taxi services that provide discounts to Coastal students, please click here.

Getting a Driver’s License
Students are allowed to have cars on campus. The cost of a parking permit is $75 per academic year.  As an international student, you will need to get a South Carolina Driver's License if you plan on renting or driving a car.  Click here for more information about how to get a license. 

University Housing

All new freshmen and sophomores are required to live in campus residence halls for their first two years. National statistics show that college students who live in residence halls are more likely to complete their degree than those who live off campus, largely because they are more engaged in campus life and activities. Students may qualify for an exemption if they are over 22 years old, are veterans, live fewer than 50 miles (80 km) from campus, are married or are parents, or if they have significant medical restrictions.

Exchange students and double degree students are not eligible to live off-campus per our agreement with your institution. You can, however, live on-campus.  Living in the residence halls is one of the most significant experiences students will have at Coastal Carolina University. Traditionally, students spend more time in their residence hall than anywhere else on campus.  In their new homes they are challenged and educated by the diversity in thought as well as the cultural and intellectual exchange that surrounds them daily.  Resident students will have the opportunity to make new friends, develop an appreciation and respect for differences and learn important skills that will help personal and professional relationships through college and beyond.

Students also have access to range of on-campus housing options, including apartment style housing.  Here is what you need to do to apply to live on campus: click here.


Sharing a dorm room or suite with another person is a common practice at U.S. colleges and universities.  Having a roommate is not always easy – it’s a good idea to find out as much as you can about your U.S. living arrangements before leaving home.  Students can look-up their housing assignments on the Internet several weeks before the start of classes. We suggest contacting your prospective roommates as early as possible to get a sense of their personalities and expectations.

Students may request specific roommates and requests will be honored as much as possible; however, requests must be mutual and roommate preferences will take priority over building requests.

Mailing Address & Mail Services

Each student has their own mailing address.  It will look like the following:  

107 Founders Drive
Conway, SC 29526

*Student box numbers will be assigned at the start of the semester. Please check your WebAdvisor account, which can accessed using your CCU username and password, which you should have received in your acceptance packet.

For additional information about Coastal's mail services, click here.


Unfortunately, your phone will most likely not work in the United States. However, there are some exceptions. Most of our incoming students should be prepared to purchase a U.S. phone or phone card. We will be happy to assist you in this when you arrive. Consider talking to your family and friends about keeping in touch through Skype, Google Hangout or other similar online tools. You will have access to free high-speed WiFi on campus and in your residence hall. 


Electrical outlets in the United States are different from those in many other countries. Please be prepared to purchase adaptors when you arrive. Many of our international students have chosen to purchase their electronics after they arrive in the U.S. because they are typically less expensive to buy here.

Textbooks & School Supplies

Textbooks are expensive in the U.S. and can cost from $50-$250 each.  Students can expect to spend approximately $600 per semester on their books.  There are less expensive options available for some books - renting, sharing with classmates, purchasing an e-book, online retailers, and others. Coastal's on campus bookstore will stock all books that professors require for classes.

For math and science majors, if you have a scientific calculator, remember to bring it with you.