Germany is one of the most famous destinations for foreign students. If you study in Germany, you will have access to quality education and lots of Bachelor’s and Master’s programs taught in English. Most study programs are also free for all international students.
Below you will find all the details you require to calculate your budget for your study in Germany. Check out information about tuition fees, living expenses and scholarship award opportunities.
1. Tuition fees in Germany – Study in Germany
If you wish to study in Germany, you’ll be happy to know that state-owned universities do not require tuition fees for Bachelor’s and Master’s programs (except if you plan to study a Master’s degree that concentrates on a different subject than the one you did as a Bachelor’s student). The German free tuition system is obtainable for all foreign students, irrespective of their nation of origin.
The only exclusion is the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg, which, at the end of 2017, reinstated tuition fees of 3,000 EUR per year for non-EU/EEA students.
Most German schools are public, so you will only need to pay an administration fee, which typically costs between 100 – 350 EUR per semester. This fee covers the expenses of student organisation services and your enlistment.
Tuition fees at private universities
At German private universities, tuition expenses can reach 26,000 EUR per year for a Bachelor’s degree and 40,000 EUR per year for a Master’s degree. Programs in Engineering and Business & Management are the costliest.
Tuition-free universities for international students
Examples of free universities in Germany:
- University of Stuttgart
- University of Mannheim
- University of Bremen
- University of Cologne
- University of Hamburg
Tuition fees at top-ranked universities in Germany
Below is a list of average tuition fees at the top-ranked German schools:
- Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich – average tuition fees 258 EUR/year
- Heidelberg University – average tuition costs 20,000 EUR per year
- Technical University of Munich – average tuition costs 258 EUR per year
- Humboldt University of Berlin – no tuition fees
2. Cost of living in Germany for students – Study in Germany
Not only can you study in Germany for free, but it is also a pretty affordable country. The average living costs for students span between 700 – 1,000 EUR per month, comprising accommodation.
- Larger cities: Frankfurt, Berlin, or Dusseldorf – total living expenses of 900 – 1,500 EUR per month
- Smaller cities: Leipzig, Freiburg, or Hannover – you will need around 750 – 1,100 EUR per month
Discover more about expenses (including health insurance) for students in Germany.
Student accommodation costs in Germany
When it comes to residing in Germany, accommodation is the highest monthly expenditure you will have. Cheaper options for foreign students are residence halls or sharing a privately leased apartment. You can also lease a one-room apartment (also referred to as a studio). Below you will find the average housing expenses for a student in Germany:
- Living alone in a studio: 390 EUR/month
- Sharing a privately rented flat: 365 EUR/month
- Living in a student residence: 250 EUR/month
Lodgings in student residence halls are one of the most famous housing options. As stated by the DAAD, over 40% of foreign students live in a student residence. The second most famous option is sharing a flat, with 30% of scholars selecting this type of accommodation.
Monthly utilities like electricity, heating, gas, and internet can add around 100 – 200 EUR to your total living expenses.
Food costs for international students in Germany
If you study in Germany, as a student you will pay about 170 EUR/month on food. If you’re looking for lesser prices, try low-priced supermarkets like Lidl, Aldi, and Netto.
If you want to have dinner in a restaurant every now and then you will pay 10 EUR for food in a cheap one. A three-course meal for two in an average restaurant costs 45 EUR and an extra light drink will be 3 EUR.
As stated by a DAAD study, about 10% of the total monthly student budget is spent on transport.
- A public transport pass for scholars is between 25 and 200 EUR per month. However, at lots of universities, the cost of the monthly transport pass is added in the administration fee that you are required to pay every semester.
- You can easily get around with a bicycle throughout any city in Germany. Rates for leasing a bicycle are around 15-20 EUR per day.
- Make use of Germany’s Deutsche Bahn train system and go to any German city you want; fares are between 20 and 70 EUR.
You can also make use of the Numbeo website to check out other prices and expenses in Germany.
Funding & student support
The German state strongly backs higher education and funds universities by providing tuition fees. Furthermore, the German government also provides financial support programs for students that study in Germany.
- The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is a financial aid programme that focuses on German and international students and researchers.
- Deutschlandstipendium – provides awards of 300 EUR per month for talented students for a minimum of two semesters.
Find more scholarship opportunities in Germany.
German student visa
Now that you have an overview of tuition fees and living costs in Germany, you can start applying to universities if you wish to study in Germany. While you do that, don’t forget to also check the German student visa requirements if you are from outside the EU/EEA.
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