“It’s an investment” – The Whopping Cost of Applying to Medical School

It’s known that the cost of applying to medical school is more than what can be paid for by your birthday money. I’m talking somewhere in the thousands. But how can it be that expensive? Well, if you figure in AMCAS fee for applying to each individual school, plus the secondary application fee of each school, as well as the travel and hotel accommodations for you interviews, you can approximate it to be, well, ALOT. Let me break it down for you to give you an idea, so that you can start planning ahead and save up that chump change! This is how much I spent on applying to medical school:

AMCAS Application Processing fee: $160 (includes 1 medical school designation)

AMCAS fee for each additional school: $36

Secondary Application fee of each school (average): ~$100

Travel expense to interview at ONE school (out of state): $600

Hotel accommodations to interview at ONE school (out of state): $200

Approximate total (I applied to 28 schools) :$160 + ($36 x 27) + ($100 x 28) + $600 + $200 = $4,732!!


  • This varies from person to person. Some people only apply to a few schools, like 5, and that is much cheaper. People have their reasons for doing so. However, I would not recommend it because the chances of gaining admission to medical school is close to nil anyways, so you would want to maximize your chances by applying to more schools (and the right ones).
  • I’m not even factoring in the cost of studying for and taking the MCAT, which theoretically is a part of applying to medical school. It can easily add $1,000 – $2,000 to the cost of applying.
  • You might not receive a secondary from each school (but I nearly did), so you don’t necessarily have to factor in the cost of submitting each school’s secondary.
  • If you interview at a school in your home state, the travel accommodations would obviously be cheaper (i.e., drive to the school instead of flying, no hotel accommodations, etc.).

So if the cost of applying to medical school itself is daunting to you, just remember that this is an investment into your future.¬†Every doctor needs to go to medical school, so it is an unavoidable cost. And if you’re truly passionate and determined to become a doctor, then in 10 years this cost won’t matter (this will not be the cost that will break the bank- save it for the medical school debt).


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