Cost of living in Germany for international students in 2023. The complete guide

Cost of living in Germany for international students in 2023 

Germany is a country in the central region of Western Europe, situated between the Baltic and North Seas to the north, and the Alps to the south. It is the second-most populous country in Europe after Russia and the most populous member state of the European Union.

Considering the economic state of Germany, the country has the largest economy in Europe and is the world’s fourth-largest economy by nominal GDP.

Germany is internationally acclaimed for providing high-quality education to international students. Germany is home to over 350 public universities and almost all study programs in public universities are tuition-free. Private universities offer programs with affordable tuition fees and also provide scholarship opportunities. This article will guide you through the cost of living in Germany.

How much does it cost to live in Germany for an international student?

The cost of living in Germany for international students depends on various factors, especially the place where your university is located. For example, major cities like Berlin and Munich are slightly expensive when compared with other German cities. While cities like Bielefeld, Frankfurt, and Halle are very much cheaper. However, the living cost for international students will be around 10,200-12,000 EUR per year.

How much does the average rent cost in Germany?

Accommodation is one of the most expensive parts of living in Germany for international students. Hence it is a very important decision to make. You should consider the area where you select to live and also, it’s better to share a room. As it can reduce the cost. The cost of accommodation depends on the area you choose to live in and the type of housing. Munich and Stuttgart are considered as some of the most expensive cities in Germany, while Dortmund is considered as an affordable city to live in.

Have a look at the average rent cost to live in Germany cities

German City Average Rent
Aachen €535
Augsburg €613.57
Berlin €790
Bochum €400
Bonn €650
Cologne €700- €800
Dresden €500
Frankfurt €860 – €870
Hamburg €800 – €868
Leipzig €500
Mainz €650
Munich €1000- €1200
Stuttgart €850

How much does the Tuition fee cost in Germany?

Germany has strict policy when it comes to education and the country believes that education should not be commercialized. Germany is known for providing quality free education. Universities in Germany provide free education to international students, which makes it one of the top study destinations among international students.

Have a look at some of the best public universities in Germany:

The tuition fee varies depending on the university you choose. The tuition fee in private higher education institutions ranges from 10,000 EUR/year to 20,000 EUR/year, depending on the degree level and study program.

Have a look at the average tuition fees for Private universities in Germany:

University Average Tuition Fee
Bard College Berlin €28,700
CODE University of Applied Sciences €9800
Munich Business School €24,000
EBC Hochschule €10,000
GISMA Business School €20,000
Friedensau Adventist University €3,500
Hertie School of Governance €  32,500
SRH Hochschule Berlin €10,000
University of Applied Sciences Europe €1,400
WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management €15,000


Food and grocery costs in Germany

It is important to plan your food and grocery costs because if there is no proper budget for grocery shopping it can become an over expense. The happy news for international students is that grocery cost is relatively low in Germany. Germany’s agriculture industry is so strong that food products are available at a cheap rate.

Have a look at the average price of some common food products:

Items                             Average cost
White bread (500g)                      1.24 €
Milk (1 litre)                     0.71 €
Eggs (12)    1.64 €
Rice (1kg, white)     2.03 €
Potato (1kg)      1.06 €
Onion (1kg)  




1.09 €

Chicken (1kg)                                                             7.53 €
Tomato (1kg)                                                            2.62 €
Beef (1kg)                                                           11.65 €
Apples (1kg)                                                          2.22 €
Banana (1kg)                                                          1.58 €
Oranges (1kg)                                2.29 €


Transportation costs in Germany

Germany has a well-established public transportation system, which makes it easier and affordable for international students to travel. The public transport includes high-speed trains, modern urban metro systems, clean buses, and trams.

Mode of Transportation Average Cost
Bus €70/month
Train €19-50/month
Taxi €3-50 upwards


Semester tickets for students

The Semester Ticket is a pass that allows students in Germany access to an extensive network of public transportation. Designed to simplify student travel, this ticket enables you to navigate buses, trams, trains, and sometimes even ferries within your chosen city and its surrounding areas. It’s a valuable resource that ensures seamless mobility for scholars pursuing their academic endeavors, while also encouraging exploration and immersion in the local culture. The Semester Ticket offers a lot of benefits including Affordability and convenience.  The semester ticket plays a pivotal role in reducing the cost of living in Germany for international students.

Health Insurance Cost in Germany

Health insurance is mandatory by law in Germany. International students should plan accordingly as it affects the overall living cost. The average student health insurance cost in Germany ranges from EUR 120 to EUR 200 per month, based on the type of insurance (private or public) and personal circumstances. Students only pay lower premiums compared to other residents in the country.

Some top public health providers in Germany are TK, Barmer, KKH, and AOK.

How to save money in Germany?

Have a look at some of the tips to minimize your cost of living in Germany.

  • Save Money on Utilities: Switch Electricity and Gas Providers Annually

Saving money on utilities like electricity and gas is one of the best ways to save money. Switching electricity and gas providers can lead to significant savings of 100€ to 250€ per year. Always remember to cancel the contract to avoid automatic renewal for another year. Portals like Verivox or Check24 offer convenient services for transferring your contract.

  • Choose cheap supermarkets

There are a lot of supermarkets in Germany that sell products at an affordable price. You can inquire with local students about farmer’s markets, where you can get fresh products at an affordable price. Students in Germany can avail discounts at cafes, restaurants, theatres, libraries, and museums, among other places, if they present their student ID cards.

  • Use public transportation

The Deutschland Ticket or the 49 EUR Monthly Pass

The Deutschland Ticket, priced at €49 monthly, offers unlimited travel on all public transport modes throughout Germany. With this ticket, you can choose all modes of transport, such as buses, trams, subways, regional trains, and even ferries. You can maximum save up to €500 per year.

To know more about the study programs and cost of living in Germany for Indian students, feel free to reach out to Matrixx Overseas.


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