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Student Life In Germany

Student life in Germany

Tuition fees and cost of living

Compared to other European countries, Germany is not overly expensive. The price of food, accommodation, clothing, cultural activities, etc. is equivalent to the EU average. Most universities are state funded and charge no fees. There is, however, usually a semester contribution of approx. 200 Euros. It covers the semester ticket for public transportation, administrative costs, sports, cultural events, and subsidisation of the cafeteria. At PhD level, there are generally no fees at all, except for the semester contribution. However, note that the costs for private universities can be considerably higher.

Living costs

The monthly amount of money an international student needs is currently approx. 700 Euros. Prices tend to differ not only in the big cities but all across Germany. While life and study in Munich is rather expensive, staying in an East German city such as Leipzig for example can be much cheaper. Cost of living is also influenced by the type of accommodation you choose. In Germany, students live either in residence, share an apartment with other students, or rent an apartment privately.

Halls of residence (Studentenwohnheim)

There are several student halls of residence in every university town. Rooms in students’ halls of residence are the most economical forms of accommodation. International students can ask for help at the Student Services (Studentenwerk). They offer a Service Set for international students which, besides accommodation and meals, may also include health insurance.

Shared apartment (Wohngemeinschaft)

Another option is to share an apartment with other people. It may be a little bit more costly than a room in a residence, but still very common and a popular choice. Depending on the city, the average rent costs between 150 and 350 Euros for a room in a shared apartment.

Private renting

Students who prefer to live on their own can search for a one-bedroom or a bachelor apartment close to the campus. This option can be more expensive. Monthly rent starts at 350 Euros and up. Advertisements for accommodation can usually be found in the local papers (Saturday edition), the bulletin board at the university, or the Internet. If you do not have any luck finding accommodation in Germany before you arrive, then you will need a place to stay for the first few nights, the International Office can help you with this as well.

*Please find links for accommodation searches on: www.study-in.de/en and www.daad.de/deutschland/en

 Finding a job

Many international students in Germany earn extra money with a part-time job. You are allowed to work a maximum of 720 hours, meaning 90 full days per year. Please note that a part-time job can supplement your budget, but it certainly won't finance all of your living expenses. University jobs are a good way to earn money and gain academic experience. Students can work as "Hiwis" assisting professors or as tutors helping students revise the material taught in lectures. Student jobs are also available at other university facilities such as libraries, dining halls and cafeterias. There are also many job opportunities outside the university, such as waiting tables at pubs and restaurants; babysitting; working in supermarkets etc. One of the first places you should look at is the job-finding service. This special service for students is offered by the Studentenwerk in cooperation with the Federal Employment Agency. You can find the address of the local branch of the Federal Employment Agency at www.arbeitsagentur.de

*Tip: Students are eligible for numerous price concessions. With your student ID, you can receive concessions on tickets and entrance fees to theatres, opera houses, cinemas, museums, public swimming pools and other cultural venues.