Cheap and Affordable Universities in Germany

Cheap and Affordable Universities in Germany

12 mins read29.3K Views Comment
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Sep 25, 2023 07:05 IST

Cheap Universities in Germany for International Students: Germany is one of the most sought-after study-abroad destinations for international students for providing quality education, an internationally recognized curriculum and above all for providing free education across all public universities in the country. 

Cheap Universities in Germany

Germany has always been a frontrunner in the field of providing quality education. Every year their government allocates a significant share of their budget to the enhancement of their education sector. Today, Public Universities in Germany are known the world over for providing free education to both domestic as well as international students. The country believes that education should be free and accessible to all and hence, all measures are taken to ensure that quality education is available at no cost.

In today's article, we are going to be looking at the cheap universities in Germany for International students. Highly regarded as a nation of academic proficiency, Germany is often defined as a country of possibilities by students and globetrotters from around the world. Today, we are going to focus on a curated list of some of the most affordable and cheap universities across Germany for Indian and international students looking to Germany to pursue their higher education. 

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Germany is often considered the mecca of engineering studies. Every year thousands of Indian students flock to the country to pursue their dreams of studying abroad and to have a chance at a better standard of living. However, one of the biggest deterrents is the high cost that studying abroad is usually associated with. However, Germany is home to some of the cheapest universities in the world as most public universities provide education to international and domestic students minus the tuition fee. However, they are required to pay an administration fee which is close to 300 euros/semester.

The education system in Germany is broadly divided into public and private universities. The public universities in Germany clearly dominate the education market in the country with over 240 functional public universities offering programmes for everyone. The private universities are much smaller in number and offer specialized programmes.

Public Universities in Germany

Before we delve into the most affordable and cheap universities in Germany, let us get to understand public universities in Germany better. In 2014, international tuition fees in Public Universities were done away with. Instead, international students were required to pay an administration fee at the beginning of every semester which could cost you around €150-€250 a semester.  

However, while undergraduate universities are devoid of tuition fees only select postgraduate courses are tuition-free. Candidates should note that postgraduate studies (Master’s) at German universities are usually free if they are categorized as “consecutive” – i.e. following directly on from a related bachelor’s degree gained in Germany. Tuition fees for “non-consecutive” master’s degrees, for those who have gained their bachelor’s degree elsewhere in the world, vary between universities and maybe around €20,000 for a year. Hence, candidates should note that while undergraduate studies in Germany are free, the majority of postgraduate studies would require tuition fees, unless upon cases when the student has been awarded a scholarship.

List of Cheap and Affordable Public Universities in Germany

Here is a list of affordable and cheap public universities in Germany for the benefit of Indian students wanting to pursue their higher education in Germany.

  • Humboldt University of Berlin
  • University of Bremen
  • University of Cologne
  • Heidelberg University
  • Ludwig Maximilians University
  • University of Gottingen
  • Technical University of Berlin
  • Technische Universität Darmstadt (TU Darmstadt)
  • Technical University of Munich
  • University of Stuttgart

Let us know about the universities in detail here

Humboldt University of Berlin

Established in 1801, Humboldt University of Berlin is a public research university that started with four faculties medicine, law, theology, and philosophy. Currently, the Humboldt University of Berlin offers 189-degree courses in various fields of education like agriculture, biology, biophysics, business, chemistry, computer science, mathematics, economics, horticulture, theology, management, psychology, medicine, social sciences, and sports. Readers would be thrilled to know that, Albert Einstein - Theoretical Physicist and Karl Marx - Philosopher, Political Theorist, and Socialist Revolutionary are among the most renowned alumni of this age-old university. Read: Humboldt University of Berlin (Germany) Courses & Fees

University of Bremen

Established in 1971, the University of Bremen is an open research university known to be under the Institutional Strategies category. The curriculum of the university includes 12 faculties. Some of them are the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science, Faculty of Biology & Chemistry, Faculty of Production Engineering, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Health Sciences, and Faculty of Cultural Studies. The courses are taught by experienced faculty members. Read: University of Bremen (Germany) Courses & Fees

University of Cologne

One of the largest universities in Germany, the University of Cologne is a well-recognized university in Germany that started with the Faculty of Economics, Business, Social Sciences, and Medicine. Currently, divided into six faculties, the university, which is located in Cologne, features 200 fields of study. These include the Faculty of Management, Economics and Social Sciences, the Faculty of Medicine, the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, the Faculty of Law, and the Faculty of Human Sciences. The university is also home to 16 research centres and 658 professors. The study programs of the university are known to prepare graduates for brilliant career opportunities. Read: University of Cologne (Germany) Courses & Fees

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Heidelberg University

Established in 1836, Heidelberg University is an open research university and Germany's oldest university founded in 1836. The university offers courses in twelve subjects’ behavioral and cultural studies, philosophy, modern languages, economics, and social sciences, biosciences, physics and astronomy, chemistry and earth sciences, math and computer science, theology, law, and two medical faculties. The university follows a semester-based academic calendar and the main language of instruction is German. Also, some of the popular programs such as Economics, American Studies, International Health, and American Studies are taught in English. Read: Heidelberg University - Germany (Germany) Courses & Fees

Ludwig Maximilians University

Established in 1472, Ludwig Maximilians University Munich (LMU) is also known as the University of Munich.  It is an open research university that is associated with the LERU, Europaeum, and the German Excellence Universities. The campus of the university is home to various institutes and research centers. Some notable research centers along with the eighteen faculties at the campus are the Carson Centre for Environment and Society, Research for Integrated Protein Science, Parmenides Research Centre, Nanosystem Initiative Munich, and the Human Science Centre of Munich. The major faculties include the Faculty of Law, Faculty of Economics, Faculty of Business Administration, Faculty of Theology, Faculty of Social Sciences, Faculty of History, Faculty of Educational Sciences, and the Faculty of Language and Literature. Read: Ludwig Maximilians University Munich (Germany) Courses & Fees

Other affordable and cheap public universities in Germany include:

List of Cheap and Affordable Private Universities in Germany

Move over public universities and let us take a look at some of the popular private universities in Germany.

  • New European College
  • Berlin School of Business and Innovation
  • GISMA - Business School
  • Arden University Berlin
  • IU

Let us learn about the universities and their courses in detail.

New European College

Established in 2014, the New European College is a private college located in Munich. The majority of the programmes at the college are for a year and tuition fees are set at 12,000 Euros for a single academic year, tuition only. Candidates can learn more about the courses at the New European College, here.  

Berlin School of Business & Innovation (BSBI)

Founded in 2005, the Berlin School of Business & Innovation (BSBI) is located in the heart of Berlin and focuses on helping graduates to become exceptional leaders in their chosen fields. The school is run on three concepts Enterprise, Leadership, and Success. Know more about the courses available at the Berlin School of Business & Innovation (BSBI).

GISMA Business School

Established in 1999, GISMA Business School helps talented and ambitious individuals develop the skills required for today’s tech-driven global business environment and utilize innovative solutions to counter contemporary challenges within the industry. Know more about the courses at the GISMA Business School, here.

Arden University Berlin

Established in 1990, Arden University Berlin is an education hub for programs designed with a strong emphasis on employability and professional development. The large number of courses offered at the university has been endorsed by professional bodies such as the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), and the Association of Project Managers (APP).

IU International University of Applied Sciences (IU)

Established in 1998, IU International University of Applied Sciences (IU) provides accredited higher education programs with ease and flexibility. Most of the programs of the university are available completely digitally or on-site in Berlin or Bad Honnef, near Cologne in Germany. Tuition costs at the university range from 14000-15000 Euros (excluding scholarships and bursaries). 

Cost of Studying in Germany

Now we are going to understand the cost of studying in Germany. The cost of studying in Germany is an umbrella term and includes tuition fees and the living expenses incurred by a student during his tenure at the German university. 

Tuition Fees at German Universities

The education system in Germany can be broadly classified into Public Universities and Private Universities. Public Universities do not charge students a tuition fee but only an administration fee payable at the start of every semester. The administration fee could range from €150 to €250 a semester. Students should note that while undergraduate studies in Public Universities are void of any tuition fees, however, not all postgraduate studies are free of tuition fees. More of this will be explained as you keep reading.

Students wanting to study at Private universities would be required to shell out anything close to €20,000 a year for an Undergraduate Program and €30,000 a year for a Postgraduate program. Candidates should note that these figures are likely to change given the volatility of the global market.

Cost of Living in Germany for Indian Students

Germany has simplified the cost of living in Germany for international students through the mandatory Blocked Account. Every year, according to the prevailing economic conditions as well as the relevant fee structure, every university would request that a monthly sum be provided for the student to facilitate his living expenses in the country as well as for completing his education, this money is deposited in a Blocked Account.

Starting January 01, 2023, this amount has been set at €11,208 for an entire academic year. This amount roughly translates to €934/month. For a student, this amount would cover accommodation, living expenses, and even travel pass costs. A Blocked Account is a mandatory requirement. Let us take a look at what the average expense of a student in Germany looks like.

Average Expenses of a German student (2019)

Particulars Expenses incurred per month
Rent (including utility costs) EUR 332
Food EUR 154
Clothing EUR 48
Transportation costs (car/public transport) EUR 116
Health insurance, doctor's fees, medications EUR 96
Telephone/Internet/radio and TV licence, postage EUR 32
Working materials (books etc.) EUR 24
Recreation, culture, and sports EUR 65

Average Everyday Prices

Particulars Expenses incurred per month
1 loaf of bread (approx. 500g) EUR 2
1 kilogramme of potatoes EUR 0.99
1 litre of milk EUR 0.90
1 bottle of mineral water (0.75 litres) EUR 0.80
1 cup of coffee (in a café) EUR 2.50
1 glass of beer (in a pub) EUR 3
1 pizza (in a restaurant) EUR 7
1 lunch (in the cafeteria) EUR 2.50
1 T-shirt EUR 10 - 50
1 pair of trousers EUR 30 - 100
1 cinema ticket (with student discount) EUR 6
1 theatre ticket (with student discount) EUR 6 - 30
1 museum ticket (with student discount) EUR 2 - 8

source: DAAD 

Also Read

Education Loan for Studying in Germany Cost of Studying in Germany
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Admission requirements for German Universities

Candidates should note that every university has its own admission requirements. We are going to provide students with a rudimentary outline of some of the most important elements that make up the admission process. 

For Undergraduate Studies

  • Candidates should have successfully passed their Class 12 Examinations
  • Scores of English proficiency tests such as IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE Academic
  • Basic IT Skills (for Technical courses)
  • Official Transcripts (Academic + Extracurricular)
  • Student CV
  • Evidence of proficiency in the German Language (TestDAF or DSH)

For Postgraduate Studies

  • Students must have completed a bachelor's degree in a related field
  • Scores of English proficiency tests such as IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE Academic
  • GRE or GMAT Scores
  • Official Transcripts (Academic + Extracurricular)
  • Student CV
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP)
  • Letter of Recommendation (LOR)
  • Evidence of proficiency in German Language (TestDAF or DSH)

Important: Candidates should note that the above requirements are a general outline of what would be expected as part of the admission process. However, candidates would have to go above and beyond when the actual admission process commences. 

Related Reads

Studying in Germany: All you need to know

Exams required for admissions to UG/ PG courses in Germany

Steps to Study in Germany for Free

Student Guide to Germany

What next after you graduate from Germany?

This is one of the most important questions of every graduating student. The expectations built on the Return on Investment (ROI) are extremely high on money spent for studying abroad. Hence, a lot of students end up asking about the job scenario and market prospects. Candidates should note that talking to university alumni and also joining various online forums would give them an idea about the job scenario of the German economy around the time they graduate. Hence, candidates still doubting on going to Germany to pursue higher education should be aware that it is not often one who comes across a study destination that is qualitative but also affordable.

Related Reads

Germany Student Visa Guide Part-Time Work Options in Germany
Post-Study Work Permits in Germany Popular Job Sectors in Germany

For more queries, do get in touch with us in the comments below. Candidates can also get in touch with our Shiksha Study Abroad experts on our website. 

About the Author
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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