A man holding euro.
  • Eduzeit
  • 3 weeks ago

Studying in Germany is a dream for many international students, including the ones from Nepal. There are several reasons for this. Some of these include top-quality education, a wide range of courses, and an affordable cost of living. Yes, Germany is not particularly expensive when compared to other European nations. That said, you still need to have a basic understanding of living expenses in Germany if you wish to study there. This is because although it is fairly affordable, studying in this nation without properly knowing about the cost can cause you problems. So what is the cost of living in Germany

In this blog, we talk about the living expenses in Germany. So, without any further ado, let's get started! 

Proof of Financial Resources

A man holding euro.

Before you even begin your journey to study in Germany as an international student, you first need to get a student visa. However, even to get the student visa, you first need to have proof of financial studies. According to Daad.de, you need to show funds of 934 Euros per month or the equivalent of 11,208 Euros per year

The acceptable forms of proof include proof of parental income or a specific amount in a blocked account (also known as Sperrkonto). Additionally, you can also show a receipt from a recognized organisation. 
This is the basics of how you can show proof of financial resources. Now, some of you may have noticed that we mentioned a blocked account. But what is a blocked account?

Blocked Account

A Blocked Account is a special type of account that you have to make in Germany. In this form of account, the funds are blocked from regular withdrawal or use except under a specific period. In the context of studying in Germany, the money you transfer to a blocked account cannot be accessed until you enter the nation. Therefore, it is important to request the necessary documents early on. To request a blocked account, you must submit the following documents:

  1. Completed forms
  2. Copy of your passport certified by a German diplomatic mission in your home nation

Once you submit all of these documents, the banks charge a fee between 50 to 150 Euros to set up the blocked account. As mentioned previously, you cannot use the amount transferred into the blocked account before your arrival in Germany. Once you arrive in Germany, you will be issued an EC card with which you can access the money. The account only allows you to withdraw a specific amount per month, which is equivalent to 934 Euros per month for students. 

Tuition Fees

Euro

The good news for Nepalese students who wish to study in Germany is that the majority of education institutions in Germany do not charge fees for Bachelor's courses or many of the Master's courses. That said, you do need to pay tuition fees, but this fee is not particularly high compared to other countries. Private higher education, however, may demand more fees for their degree programmes. 

According to Daad.de, the federal state of Baden-Württemberg has decided to charge non-EU citizens a tuition fee of 1,500 Euros per semester. Since Nepal is a non-EU nation, if you decide to study in this federal state, you will need to pay the said fee. Do note that this fee does not apply to doctoral students. 

Semester Contribution

Germany Euro in Hand.

Another cost that international students from Nepal fail to note is that higher educational institutions charge semester contributions. The fees may vary in higher education institutions and federal states. These fees are used to pay for administration work such as registration and registration, student services (also known as studierendenwrek) and activities of the General Student's Committee (AStA). 

Many higher institutions also include semester tickets. It is essentially a ticket that allows you, as a student, to use local public transport in the region for the duration of the semester. In some specific circumstances, you automatically get this ticket once you pay the semester fee. The specific semester fee varies, however, it typically ranges between 100 and 350 Euro. You must pay this fee when you enrol and before the start of every new semester. Do note that this does not cover additional costs associated with your studies including materials for specialist books and copies. 

Average Living Expenses in Germany for a Nepalese Student

Germany Euro

The specific living expenses in Germany vary depending on the spending habits of each individual. This includes spending habits regarding food, recreation, and clothing. That said, we can estimate the average cost, given that some costs are easier to estimate than others. According to Daad.de, the average living expenses of a German student are as follows: 

Expenses List Expenses Cost (Euro)
Rent Including Utility Cost 410 Euro
Food 198 Euro
Health Insurance, Doctors Fees, and Medications: 100 Euro
Transportation Cost (Cars or Public Transport) 89 Euro
Tuition Fees 76 Euro
Recreation, Culture, and Sports 65 Euro
Working Materials such as Books 31 Euro
Telephone, Internet, Radio and TV Licence, Postage 32 Euro
Other Expenses 144 Euro
Total Expenses: 1145 Euro

Do note that as per Daad.de, this expense is sourced from the German Centre For Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW): 22nd Social Survey 2023. 

As per the article from DAAD regarding the cost of education and living, the average monthly expense of a German student is around 842 Euro per month, including the following expenses: 

  1. Rent
  2. Travel Expenses
  3. Expenses for Food, Clothing, and Learning Materials
  4. Health Insurance
  5. Telephone
  6. Internet
  7. Radio and TV licence fees
  8. Recreational activities
  9. Semester Contribution

Now although these are two average living expenses in Germany, do note that it is always a good idea to stick with an estimation with a higher cost estimation. This lets you have some additional funds should you somehow spend more. 

Financing Options

A hand counting euro.

The good news about studying in Germany is that not all expenses need to come from your savings, You have some financing options. This includes scholarship opportunities and part-time jobs in Germany. Many institutions such as DAAD, party-related foundations and business-affiliated organisations offer scholarships to international students like the ones from Nepal. This can lower the overall cost of living in Nepal. Furthermore, you can also engage in side jobs as a student. That said, there is a small restriction. 

According to the side jobs article by daad.de As an international student from Nepal, you can only work up to 120 full days or 240 half days of work per year. Furthermore, you are not allowed to work as a freelancer or become self-employed during your stay as a German student. If you wish to work for more than the said time, you need permission from the Agentur für Arbeit (Federal Employment Agency) and the Ausländerbehörde (foreigners' office). Now, whether you gain permission or not depends on the situation of the labour market. If the demand for your skill is high and the human resource is low, the chances of getting the permission would be high and vice versa. 

There is one exception, though. If you work as an academic assistant, there is no stipulated limit. That said, you may still need to inform the foreign officer. 

Conclusion

Studying in Germany is one of the best decisions you can ever make. This nation is home to some of the best education destinations across the globe after all. That said, it is important to know about the living expenses in Germany. If you study in Germany without having this knowledge, you can spend more than you need or underestimate the actual cost which can land you in financial problems. 

In this guide to international students regarding the cost of living in Germany, we talked about the proof of financial aspects, blocked accounts, tuition, fees, living costs, and financial options you need to consider when studying in Germany. We hope you found this helpful. If you want further insights regarding studying in Germany, do check out some of our other blogs. If you want expert education services in Germany, feel free to contact us at Edu Zeit, a German Language Consultancy in Nepal. Thank you for reading till the end. 

FAQs on Living Expenses in Germany

Is it expensive to live in Germany?

Germany is relatively inexpensive when compared to other European nations. That said, the specific living expense in Germany varies depending on your spending habits, your location, and other factors. 

How much is rent in Germany?

According to the German Centre For Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW): 22nd Social Survey 2023, the rent in Germany is around 410 Euro per month. 

How to stay in Germany cheaply?

If you wish to stay cheaply in Germany you can find cheap accommodation, use public transportation, buy cheaply, take advantage of free attractions, and consider part-time work. 

How expensive is food in Germany?

The price of food in Germany is considered quite low when compared to other neighbouring nations. As per the German Centre For Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW): 22nd Social Survey 2023, the average monthly expense of food in Germany is 198 euros. 

How much is a litre of milk in Germany?

As per Daad.de, one litre of milk in Germany is 0.90 Euros. 

How can I save money on food in Germany?

You can save money on food in Germany by doing the following:

  • Buying in bulk
  • Reducing meat consumption
  • Using coupons and discounts
  • Eating out less
  • Shopping seasonally
  • Buying generic or unbranded products
  • Shopping at discount supermarkets

Is education free in Germany?

Yes, education in Germany is free in public universities. However, if you choose to study in private universities, you will need to pay as per the requirements of the university. 

Can I save money in Germany?

Yes, you can save money in Germany. Now, there are several ways how you can do this; some of the key methods to save money in Germany are as follows: 

  • Budgeting
  • Use Public Transportation
  • Find Affordable Housing
  • Cook at Home
  • Shop Cheaply
  • Limit Eating Out
  • Take Advantage of Discounts
  • Avoid Impulse Buys
  • Save on Entertainment
  • Plan for Big Purchases
  • Consider Second-Hand

Interested to Study in Germany?

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