9 Reasons to Study Abroad in Germany

Germany is one of the most popular study abroad destinations. Learn about the nine reasons why international students choose to study in Germany.

portrait of Marisa Upson
by Marisa Upson

Updated April 14, 2022

Edited by Will Baker
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9 Reasons to Study Abroad in Germany
Image Credit: Elisabeth Schmitt / Moment / Getty Images


Germany's top-ranked universities, low to no-cost tuition, and picturesque landscapes help make this fascinating country one of the top spots for studying abroad. Over 319,000 international students enrolled in Germany's world-renowned higher education system in 2021.

While Germany is well known for sausages and beer, its cultural and scientific influence has shaped the world in many ways. This includes the country's commitment to quality education, recreational enjoyment, and engineering and building design developments.

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Ready to start your journey?

Let's explore the top reasons international students flock to the country known for its beautiful alpine peaks and currywurst.

1. You Get to Experience German Culture

Germany's long and complex history shines through its many castles, monuments, and world-class museums. It's a land of festivals and fun, including Oktoberfest, Karneval, and Kiel Week, the famed Regatta sailing event.

Accomplished historical figures such as Ludwig van Beethoven, Albert Einstein, and Hildegard of Bingen called Germany their home.

Germany borders nine countries, more than any other European country. As one of Europe's largest and most influential countries, Germany has helped shape Western civilization. By immersing yourself in this highly developed country, you gain a greater world perspective and an appreciation of diversity.

2. There Are Plenty of Programs to Choose From

Due to its high academic standards and free to low-cost tuition programs, Germany is very popular among international students.

You'll find some of the most prestigious universities here, offering thousands of different programs. Some of Germany's most popular undergraduate programs include economics, engineering, business, law, and international relations.

As an industrial center, Germany has invested strongly in STEM programs. The country's engineering and computer science programs rank among the best study abroad programs globally. You'll also find great internships and research opportunities.

3. You'll Receive a High-Quality Education

Germany places a substantial value on higher education. Its commitment to high-quality instruction translates to degrees and programs that are recognized globally and highly respected. As a world leader in science and research, Germany produces college graduates that often enjoy high global employability.

Some more good news: In Germany, earning your bachelor's degree usually only takes about three years if attending full time. You can also work part time during your stay. Many scholarships are available for international students.

4. You Can Learn German in an Immersive Environment

The best way to learn a foreign language is to immerse yourself in the country's culture. Living in Germany offers you an incredible opportunity to learn the second most widely spoken language in Europe, surpassed only by Russian.

Because Germany is the largest economy in Europe and a key player in Europe's business and commerce sector, learning German can look great on your resume. It can also allow you to work for German companies.

5. You Can Eat Authentic German Cuisine

Exploring a country's cuisine is a great experience for your taste buds and offers a better understanding of their culture. Breaking bread with your classmates lets you bond with fellow international students and get to know the locals.

In Germany, you'll get lots of opportunities to enjoy local food at festivals. Oktoberfest pairs beer and sausages, while Christmas markets often serve Glühwein, a mulled wine, and foods like flammkuchen, steckerlfisch, spaetzle, and champignons. See how fun the German language is?

6. It's an Inexpensive Country to Travel In

One of the costs of college is transportation. Fortunately, Germany's efficient public transportation system offers cheap and reliable travel via buses, trams, trains, and licensed taxis.

Another great way to travel in Germany is by bicycle. You'll find bike lanes just about everywhere you go.

In addition to seeing the incredible sites in Germany, you can use your student visa to travel throughout the EU. Because of Germany's central location, you can be in another country in just a few hours, experiencing its unique customs and culture.

7. You Can Experience a Gorgeous Landscape

Germany offers immense beauty, with sublime landscapes such as mountains, river valleys, and over 1,400 miles of coastline. You can hike the Bavarian Alps or take a cable car to the peak of Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain that also boasts the highest beer garden.

Students can take a train to Rügen Island in the Baltic Sea, ski among glaciers in the German Alps, and camp among evergreens in the Black Forest. You may not have time to explore all of Germany's vast landscape, but it's worth a try!

8. You Can Explore Beautiful Cities

Magnificent architectural buildings — from ancient castles and cathedrals to modern towers, glass factories, and iconic concert venues — combine to make each German city a beautiful explorative experience.

You can travel to the canals and waterways of Hamburg, home to the second-largest seaport in Europe, or experience Berlin's street art and nightlife. Germany also has many small, enchanting villages with winding cobblestone streets and medieval townhouses you won't want to miss.

9. Tuition Fees Are Incredibly Low

Yes, you can study abroad in Germany for free! Almost all public universities offer tuition-free education for earning your bachelor's or master's degree. These institutions charge a small administrative fee that ranges from about $110-$390 per semester.

This fee may also include the cost of a travel pass that lets you use the public transportation services in the area for free. Private institutions, however, typically charge tuition fees that can range from about $2,200-$22,000 per year.

Frequently Asked Questions About Studying Abroad in Germany

How much does it cost to study abroad in Germany?

The main costs to study abroad in Germany include the semester fee, living costs, and health insurance. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research estimates these costs to be about $960 a month.

Rent is usually your highest cost and can be reduced depending on the city you live in and shared accommodations. While most public colleges do not charge tuition, there are a few exceptions.

Where should I study abroad in Germany?

According to the German Academic Exchange Service, students can choose from over 21,000 programs at over 400 universities. Popular choices for international students include the Technical University of Munich, Humboldt University of Berlin, and RWTH Aachen University.

The right university for you depends on your academic and career goals and your ideal learning environment. Once you've narrowed down your list, check the schools' websites to determine their admission requirements.

What are the requirements to study abroad in Germany?

To study in Germany, you need to meet specific academic requirements, which vary based on your particular program. Additionally, most applicants will need to prove they have sufficient funds to sustain themselves while going to school. This comes to about 10,330 euros for one year, which is currently about $11,410 U.S. dollars.

Additional requirements include proof of language proficiency and health insurance. The database on admission requirements tool can help you determine whether you qualify.

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