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Payment Plans

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This is phase one of an ongoing effort to improve payment options. Research and discovery efforts are currently underway to provide the best possible payment experience for all student audiences.

What is a payment plan?

A payment plan allows undergraduate students and authorized payers to pay during – rather than before the start of – a quarter. This means you have the flexibility to pay tuition and fees in smaller amounts, over time, rather than one lump sum before the first quarter’s billing due date.

The best part? You don't have to manually track your remaining payment amounts. This new feature will automatically rebalance installments prior to each bill to reflect additional charges (rebalance up) or aid/funding (rebalance down) and let you know when your next payment is due.

Did we mention it’s free to sign up? Enjoy the benefits of this service with no additional charges. As long as you are paying the installments on time, you will avoid any late fees.

Am I eligible?

To qualify for the payment plan feature, you must meet the following criteria:

  • A matriculated, undergraduate student*
  • Enrolled in the current term
  • Have no prior-term balances
  • Can set up a US/Domestic checking or savings account for automatic payments

*Coterm students on undergraduate billing are also included.

When can I sign up for a payment plan?

As long as you meet the eligibility criteria listed above, you will receive a payment plan offer email after the first bill of the quarter is posted. Please review the dates and deadlines below for additional information. 

Payment Plan Important Dates

TermDates to sign-up for a payment planDue dates by quarter
AutumnAugust 25 - October 19 (except September 20)September 20, October 20, November 20
WinterNovember 27 - January 19 (except December 20)December 20, January 20, February 20
SpringFebruary 26 - April 19 (except March 20)March 20, April 20, May 20
SummerPayment plans are not available for Summer 2024. 

If you are offered a payment plan your account may be assessed late fees if you do not sign up for a plan and do not pay your balance in full by the due date.


How do I set up my payment plan?

View the step-by-step instructions to set yourself up for a payment plan.

View How-To Help Guide »

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Am I eligible to enroll in the payment plan if I receive financial aid?
    • Yes, if you receive financial aid, you are eligible to enroll in the payment plan. If your financial aid will not cover your charges entirely, the payment plan will help split the payments throughout the term. 

      Please contact Financial Aid during the payment plan sign-up period if you have questions regarding the anticipated aid that appears on your student financial account.

  • What if I have outstanding balances from previous terms?
    • If you have balances due in any prior terms, you are not eligible for a payment plan. Payment plans cannot be used to consolidate or bring your financial account into good standing. 

      You will need to resolve prior-term debt in order to take advantage of this new payment benefit. If you pay your past due balances and are still in a payment plan enrollment period, you can submit a help request to get help signing up for a plan.

  • What if I want to cancel my enrollment in the plan?
    • Sometimes plans or circumstances change and you may realize you no longer need a payment plan. In this case, please submit a help request.  

      • It can take up to three days for a request to process, so it’s important to submit this request as soon as you’re able. If it’s nearing a payment date, we cannot guarantee it will be processed due to timing.
      • Payment Plan cancellations cannot be done on a due date or withdrawal/deduction date.
  • What happens if there is an error in my automatic deduction and the payment is not made?
    • Automatic deductions will result in an error if there are insufficient funds in your account or if incorrect payment information is supplied (such as wrong bank account number, incorrect routing number, etc.). The system will notify you via email of the error, and give you time to review and update your payment details, before finally reattempting the payment. If you fail to update your payment information and two consecutive payments are missed, the payment system will automatically notify you via email and cancel a current, active payment plan. This may affect eligibility for future payment plans.

      Notifications about payments will be sent to the Stanford email address on file. Please ensure that your email address is listed correctly in Axess.

  • What happens if I miss the enrollment date?
    • Payment plans are offered quarterly and you’ll be presented with another opportunity each term (Autumn, Winter, and Spring) — as long as you are eligible. 

      If you miss the enrollment period for a three-part plan, you may be offered other options throughout the quarter.

  • What happens if I don't sign up for a payment plan before the billing due date?
    • Payment plan due dates (or deduction/withdrawal dates) are aligned with the monthly billing due dates to try to simplify your bill payment process.

    • If you want to take advantage of a payment plan, make sure you enroll during the published payment plan sign-up dates so you can avoid late fees. Any balances that remain unpaid or are not classified under a payment plan may result in the assessment of late fees.

  • Can I prepay for my next payment installment?
    • No: payment plan deductions will happen on the scheduled payment dates, unless you pay your entire balance in full. Making a payment in advance will not substitute for future deductions. Rather, the amount of each deduction will be smaller.

  • Why aren’t payment plans available to graduate or international students?
    • Stanford strives to provide easy and accommodating payment options for all students. Research and discovery efforts are currently underway to provide the best possible payment experience for all student audiences. Keep in mind the following options that are available now:

      • Graduate students on assistantship can pay their bill over several months on a Payroll Deduction Plan
      • International students can use a variety of international payment processors (Flywire, Western Union) where most international payment options are available.