7 Steps to Study in Germany for Free for International Students

7 Steps to Study in Germany for Free for International Students

7 mins read1.4L Views 51 Comments
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Mar 24, 2022 01:30 IST

Study in Germany for Free

Study in Germany for Free – Often described as a land of ideas and opportunities, Germany is one of the most sought-after study destinations for international students for its access to free education among the Public Universities in Germany. Studying in Germany for free is one of the major factors that has put Germany on the global education map for it sees a large number of international students wanting to study in Germany.  

The majority of state-funded universities offer free of charge higher education programs. Some highly specialized courses, however, might attract tuition fees. Candidates are only required to pay an administration fee at the start of each year when admitted to a Public University in Germany. As of October 2014, all public universities across the country have been asked to abolish tuition fees for their undergraduate and graduate courses. Almost all universities in Germany are state-owned educational institutions, offering candidates the same advantage of no tuition fee, even as an international aspirant.

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Why study in Germany?

Apart from the obvious fact that the tuition fee is waived off for candidates, thus allowing students to study in Germany for free. Studying in Germany would also allow students to have access to high-quality education, affordable courses, and reap the benefits of a robust economy. Students looking to pursue higher education in Germany have the benefit of being able to choose from a large pool of programmes and schools. Students can choose from hundreds of UG courses, offered in the country by all kinds of institutions of higher education such as business schools, art schools, colleges, technical colleges, universities, and universities of technology which are both private-run and state-funded.

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Steps to Studying in Germany for Free

Students wanting to study in Germany for free are required to adhere to the following steps to be able to achieve the same.

  1. Course Selection
  2. University/College Selection
  3. Tuition Costs (if any) and Blocked Account
  4. Living and accommodation costs
  5. Apply
  6. Get your German Student Visa
  7. Taking off and life in Germany

Selecting the course of your choice

It is very important for students wanting to study in Germany to be able to select the course of their choice. The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) has a database of over 17,000 programs for candidates to choose from and these are being offered by the top universities in Germany. Of these, around 88 programs are taught in the English language. Hence, it is always advisable for a candidate wanting to study in the Public Universities in Germany to have a working knowledge of the German language before applying. Candidates can check the course content and university details from the official websites of the colleges and apply accordingly. The universities in Germany have dual in-takes in one calendar year, i.e. in the months of January and September. However, there are very limited admissions for the January session.

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When to start applying to universities in Germany?

Once you have selected your course, the next thing is to start looking at German Universities and enrolling in your school of choice. While every college would have different admission eligibility, it is important for candidates to have their academic transcripts, work experience (depending on the course), GRE/GMAT Scores, English test scorecards, LOR, and SOP ready before applying to the German universities. Since this article talks about studying in Germany for free, students should note that this is most prevalent across public universities in the country. Hence, candidates would be required to have a basic understanding of the German language because applicants would require it in general during their tenure in Germany and also during the visa process. There are standardized language tests of German proficiency for non-native German speakers such as (TestDAF) as well as university level (DSH) exams, which applicants may be required to appear for to prove their German Language skills. 

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What is the cost of studying in Germany?

The cost of studying in Germany is free in Public Universities. However, students would be required to pay an administration fee at the start of every year/ semester. This is a negligible amount. The Germans take their education system very seriously and have everything calculated to the last cent. Every year, according to the prevailing economic conditions as well as the relevant fees structure, every university would request that a monthly sum be provided for the student to facilitate their living expenses in the country as well as for completing his education, this money is deposited in a Blocked Account. This usually varies from state to state and is about €853 a month, which would roughly amount to €10,236 for an entire academic session. This would include their accommodation, living expenses, and even travel pass costs.

Students wanting to apply for financial aid or assistance can apply for the various scholarships for studying in Germany and also apply for an education loan to study in Germany. Students can also apply for part-time jobs in Germany and benefit from their noteworthy post-study work options in Germany in place for the benefit of international students.

What are the living and accommodation costs in Germany?

The cost of living in Germany would depend largely on where the student is residing in Germany. If the candidate opts for one of the famous cities of Germany, then the accommodation in Germany could vary greatly and can go as high as €400 per month for a single room accommodation in cities like Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt, or even the famous university towns of Heidelberg. These cities do have cheaper options available in terms of Residence Halls for students but being the country with the third-largest International student population, it does have its shortcomings.

In other words, finding a place in residence halls would be a challenge. The idea, hence, to curtail your cost of living in Germany is to either find a university in the lesser-known cities or start early and aim to find a place in one of the cheaper accommodations. The rest of the expenses and overheads are fairly similar across Germany. Adding to the expense of studying in Germany are the mandatory Health Insurance as well as miscellaneous expenses that are uniform. 


Once, you have successfully decided on your university of choice and zeroed in on the course of your liking and sorted your expenses. Your next step would be to apply. It is highly recommended to start the application process weeks before the official application deadline, as this would provide the aspirant ample time to fill in his application form and avoid any last-minute hassle. Candidates who are looking for an education loan to study in Germany are required to keep all extra documents in place for ease of application submission. Candidates are requested to furnish all information as accurately as possible for a smooth application transaction. Read: Study in Germany: Timeline for German university intake

How to apply for a German Student Visa?

To stay in Germany for more than 90 days as a student, candidates are required to get a residence permit or a student visa for Germany. Candidates would be required to prove to the visa officer that they have finances for one year in a Blocked Account as mentioned previously. The amount would be €861 per month or €10,332 per annum. A residence permit issued to students is valid for a maximum of two years. It needs to be renewed if the duration of the course is longer than the stated two years. Once your university admit letter has reached you and you have successfully applied for a German Student Visa, the next and final step is leaving for Germany to pursue your dreams.

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How is Life in Germany?

Once the application has been accepted and VISA stamped, candidates, have to only fly out and reach their dream destination of studying in Germany. It would be a little difficult for students who would be flying out to a foreign land for the first time, however, the warm nature of the Germans would make students feel at home, the moment they land. Beautiful landscapes, extra-curricular activities, and robust nightlife would keep students far from feeling lonely in a foreign land. Germany has a robust industry and fresh graduates can benefit from jobs in Germany in their related fields.

Popular Courses in Germany

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Written by
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert

Rahul Singha is a seasoned editor with Shiksha Study Abroad, specializing in overseas education. With over 8 years of domain experience, he has made a significant impact in contributing to the study abroad industry ... Read Full Bio

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MBA, MS & UG in Europe

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Gopi krishna

5 months ago

sir. I had completed my B.Tech in the stream of mechanical engineering I want study Masters in germany which college is better to study with no tution fee sir

Reply to Gopi krishna


Rahul SinghaStudy Abroad Expert

3 months ago

Hello Gopi. You can get in touch with our counsellors for assistance with German university admissions, here: https://www.shiksha.com/studyabroad/apply As far as studying in Germany without a tuition fee is concerned, all public universities in Germany do not charge a tuition fee and only require st



Prashant Panoli

9 months ago

My son is doing his 12th CBSE here in Bangalore. Just would like to know the procedures to apply for a scholarship program for higher studies in Germany.

Reply to Prashant Panoli


Rahul SinghaStudy Abroad Expert

8 months ago

Hello Prashant. Every university would have its very own scholarship page which would outline the scholarships available at the university. Students can also look at our comprehensive study abroad scholarship here: https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/scholarships For assistance with university admissio


Sania Khanum

10 months ago

Hello Sir, my name is Sania, currently I'm working in a BPO Company, I wanted to do my masters in Germany, as I've completed my graduation in 2019, since it has been a long gap is it possible for me to get admission for MBA?

Reply to Sania Khanum


Rahul SinghaStudy Abroad Expert

8 months ago

Hello Sania. Most universities in Germany would look at gaps on a case-to-case basis. While some universities could have an issue with your gap others may overlook the same given that you have proof of relevant employment in your area of study. You can get in touch with our Shiksha Study Abroad cou


Sir i completed my plus two -science with 96.35 percentage.I am studying german language now. Can you suggest best public universities to study nursing in Germany . sir can I do mbbs after nursing or dropping it in 2 year

Reply to Akshaya Ann Francis


Rahul SinghaStudy Abroad Expert

a year ago

Hello Akshaya. You can take a look at popular universities in Germany here: https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/germany You can also get in touch with our counsellors here: https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/apply


Cheenu Rana

a year ago

Sir i have completed my +2 from commerce background so I would like to do business administration in Germany for English so tell me about the free education provided by which university

Reply to Cheenu Rana


Rahul SinghaStudy Abroad Expert

a year ago

Hello Cheenu. Th article talks about public universities in Germany that do not charge tuition fees. You can know more about popular universities in Germany here: https://studyabroad.shiksha.com/germany you can also get in touch with our Shiksha counsellors for assistance with admission here: https


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