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Reasons for Studying in Germany

There are many great advantages for studying in Germany. Excellent universities offer a wide range of courses, many taught in English. Most courses have no tuition fees, and students should find the cost of living affordable. There is a lot of support available for international students, who will feel welcomed into this fascinating, cosmopolitan country.

We will take a look at some of the top reasons for studying in Germany and the benefits that students can enjoy.

No tuition fees

One of the biggest advantages of studying in Germany is that there aren't any tuition fees to pay for most university courses

This is a huge benefit, as financing a degree can be a major problem in many other countries. Expensive fees in the UK and the US, which are among the highest in the world, prevent many people from applying to university at all or burden students with debt for years to come.

Without the barrier of high fees, students can select their university and courses more freely. Due to the excellent level of education, range of courses available and lack of tuition fees, there is usually a high number of applicants for every course. The competition and level of entry requirements can be very high in top universities.

Less than 10% of universities in Germany are private universities. They offer excellent courses and a high rate of acceptance. Although they do have fees, they are still lower than many universities in other countries; between €2,000 and €20,000 per year. Courses at Applied Sciences universities tend to cost more due to the extra funding that is needed for equipment and facilities.

Even though you may not have fees to pay for your degree course, there are still options available to help with funding your studies in Germany. Check out DAAD and the foreign exchange services on offer.

Enjoy the advantages of a student visa

With a Student Visa for Germany you have a lot of advantages all over Europe

If you are from a non-EU or non-EEA country, you will need to apply for a student visa before you travel to Germany to study. While there can be a lot of paperwork to deal with and it can take a few months for your visa application to be processed, once you receive it you are able to travel and start your studies.

You don't normally have to pay for a student visa and they usually last for three months initially. Once you get to Germany you can apply for a residence permit which will allow you to stay for up to two years. This can be extended, if required, to study for longer.

What’s it like to study in Germany?

There are over 350,000 international students in Germany and that number rises every year. It's fair to say that this is a popular location for foreign students. The International Office and Studentenwerk at your university can offer assistance for your studies and living arrangements.

When you receive your residence permit you are then granted the freedom to travel around the Schengen area. This area includes many countries in Europe, giving you the opportunity to see all the famous sights and experience a variety of cultures.

Are you thinking about studying abroad?

This video covers five education-related reasons why you should choose Germany as your study destination!

Affordable cost of living

International students usually find that the cost of living in Germany is relatively affordable

It is estimated that students will need an average of around €861 per month to cover living expenses. Rent is normally the biggest expense, which can be shared by finding accommodation with roommates.

While there may not be any tuition fees to pay for your course, you may still need to pay some fees to the university. This can include a fixed fee for certain university services, such as bus travel, administrative assistance, sports facilities and cafeterias.

You'll need to maintain health insurance coverage during your entire stay in Germany. Expatrio can help you to get coverage from partner Techniker Krankenkasse (TK), as well as assist with opening a blocked bank account, which is also required for international students in Germany.

Other regular expenses you will need to consider are food, transport, phone, internet and utilities. These all vary depending on where you are in the country. Finally, leisure activities and study materials depend on your personal preferences and course.

See our Cost of Living in Germany page for more information. Generally, the south and west of Germany tend to have higher living costs, while the north and east tend to be cheaper.

Working as a student

Foreign students are permitted to work for up to 20 hours per week or a total of 120 full days per year. Popular jobs with students include babysitting, bartending and tutoring.

A wide range of courses on offer

German universities and colleges offer over one thousand courses that are taught in English

Technical universities may focus on mathematics, natural sciences, engineering and technology courses, while others may focus on language, literature and the arts.

It is recommended to take a few months in order to fully research the courses on offer in your area of interest and find the universities that you would like to apply to. There are various types of courses to choose from, including:

  • Bachelor's degrees
  • Master's degrees
  • PhD/doctorates cross-faculty graduate
  • Research short courses
  • Online courses
  • Prep courses
  • Language courses

You can then select your course from several different fields, such as Agriculture, Forestry and Nutritional Sciences, Law, Economics and Social Sciences, and Veterinary Medicine.

Be sure to carefully check the entry requirements for all courses you are interested in, as these can vary between courses and universities. You may be required to learn some German or take an aptitude test as part of your university application.

World-class education

Education in Germany ranks highly in Europe and around the world

Many of the country's 400 higher education institutes are placed in the top 20 in Europe and the top 100 globally. Five of the highest-ranking universities in Germany are the Technical University of Munich (TUM), Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) Munich, Heidelberg University, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and Humboldt University Berlin.

Germany as a whole places great value on education and this is reflected in the high-quality teaching seen in the country. International students can experience the excellent quality of the education on offer through English-language courses.

Degree courses are constantly updated to meet the changing business world. Students are given the opportunity to utilize cutting-edge technology and the latest research to ensure they are ready to enter the world of work after graduation.

Get one step ahead with your career

A degree from a university in Germany is globally recognized and a real asset to hold when it comes to applying for jobs. The high standard of education in Germany is known throughout the world, which will give you an advantage no matter where you intend to work.

You can study every subject in English

You don't necessarily need to be able to speak German to study in Germany

Of course, it is still important to learn some German, as you will be living in the country for a few years. There is a wide range of courses available that are taught in English. So, as long as you can speak and understand a reasonable amount of English, there are plenty of courses to choose from.

By studying in English your language skills will automatically improve as you learn. You will also start to pick up the German language as you speak to other students and staff at the university. It is a good idea to take some German lessons too, as it is always useful to be able to communicate with people and understand the writing you'll come across in everyday life.

Studying in Germany is an excellent way to meet people from all different countries and cultures. Courses are popular with international students from all around the world, so whether you are studying medicine, engineering or history, you will find friends with lots in common.

Germany is an interesting country

There are so many benefits of studying in Germany in addition to the education you will receive

The unique culture of Germany offers visitors incredible new experiences and the chance to join in with festivals and special celebrations. You can learn about the country's history and explore the diverse modern society of today.

Most universities are located in or around cities with all the modern amenities you would expect, restaurants, bars, cafes and stores. With excellent transport links, you can travel around and see much more than just the area surrounding your university.

Living in Germany is probably unlike what you are used to in your home country. Take every chance you get to explore this unique country and you will learn so much.

The varied architecture seen throughout Germany tells of the different eras that the country has seen. You can find Roman ruins, Gothic cathedrals, Renaissance castles, palaces in the state of Baden Württemberg and other cities in Germany.

In addition to the fascinating history and culture, Germany offers breathtaking landscapes. There are 16 national parks located throughout the country so that no matter where you live you are never far from a place of outstanding natural beauty.

Check out our Value Package

To make applying for a student visa easier, Expatrio can help you with the required paperwork for Health Insurance and a free Blocked Account (for a limited time only*), which are needed as part of your visa application. With our Value Package it is easier than ever to apply!


FAQ: Reasons for Studying in Germany

How much does it cost to study in Germany?

For most courses at public German universities, there are no tuition fees that need to be paid. Depending on your choice of university (either public or private) costs might range between €350 and €20,000 per year. Courses at Universities of Applied Sciences tend to be more costly as you might need further equipment, which could increase the costs of studying. Other than the actual cost of study, living costs international students' stays in Germany. Broadly speaking, you should consider an average of €861 per month for your financial planning.

Is Germany good for international students?

International students, in general, agree that Germany is a good study destination. Living in Germany is relatively affordable compared to other European countries. In addition, the country offers a wide range of programs in English. In fact, you don't need to speak German to study at a German university.

Is it hard to study in Germany?

In Germany, you can take advantage of world-class education while at the same time having realistic chances to actually be accepted for most of the courses. Admission requirements differ from program to program though in many cases the so-called numerus clausus (NC) will be taken as the foundation of the decision process. If you want to study in Germany, first check which German universities offer the program you are most interested in.