Every student dreams of studying abroad to experience a different style of education from what their own country offers. Many students choose to make this move due to the better quality of colleges and instructors in their desired country. The possibility of meeting people from diverse cultures and learning a new language is also one of the top reasons for moving abroad for studies.
While traditionally the United States of America and the United Kingdom have been popular study destinations for students around the world, recent reports show that Germany has been climbing up the preference lists swiftly because of several reasons. According to the U.S. News Rankings in 2020, Germany is the 4th most preferred higher education destination among students.
But why has Germany become such a hot pick among students aspiring to continue their education in a brand new system? The most populous member of the EU has a stellar record in public education, student-friendly policies, beautiful tourist destinations and a host of other benefits that make it a worthy contender among higher education destinations.
So, if you are trying to figure out where you should start researching, here are 10 reasons why you should consider to study free in Germany!
1. Your Education is (Almost) Free
We all know that studying abroad is not the cheapest option. Many students come from countries that offer courses at a cheaper price than their selected foreign colleges. Add to that the cost of living in a country whose currency is definitely stronger than your home country’s currency.
This is where Germany comes out as a complete winner. The cost of higher education in Germany is mostly free irrespective of where you come from. If you get admitted into one of the several public universities that offer courses across disciplines, you get your education for practically no cost at all.
However, there are some small fees that you need to pay during your semester that cover student union fee, transport fee and student contribution and barely ever exceeds €300 per semester. Despite that, scholarships in Germany offered through DAAD makes living and studying in Germany even more convenient for international students with tough financial situations.
There are exceptions to the rule and some universities need you to pay tuition fees in case you take longer to finish your studies if you are a non-EU or EEA student. But for the most part, an accessible German higher education system with generous acceptance rates and stellar academic record makes the minor fees worth paying!
2. You Can Choose From Several Top-Ranked Universities
Speaking of an accessible public education system, Germany’s top universities are among the most recognized and highest-ranked institutions in the world with many of them ranking among the 20 best colleges in Europe.
Higher education in Germany puts a lot of emphasis on providing quality guidance to their students and that is reflected both in their course structures, faculty and facilities. Moreover, their practical-first approach ensures that students develop hands-on problem-solving skills that set them ahead of others in the industry.
While most of these courses are taught in German, there are options to take the classes in English as well. Depending on which university you are taking your classes at, you might even have free German classes that help you further your language skills while learning your core subject.
With a combination of state-of-the-art technology, experienced instructors and continuously updated course materials, you are ready to dive into the professional world once you graduate from a German university.
3. You Can Work As A Student and Earn
If you are doing your masters in Germany with a student visa, you are permitted to work 20 hours a week or 120 full days in a year according to the law. Even if you do not need an extra source of income, if your studies allow you to have the time, working as a student can be a great experience.
You learn valuable life skills on the job such as discipline and teamwork which might make you an attractive candidate to your future employers even if your work experience is not directly related to your field of study. Most students in Germany work as babysitters, tutors, in restaurants or bars as well as in administrative roles.
Though the pandemic might have reduced the number of available jobs especially in the service industry, student jobs are not very difficult to come by. If you have existing work experience in your field of study, you might even find student jobs that are directly related to your skills and can add to your CV.
4. Living In Germany Won’t Drain Your Pockets
Once you cross the hurdle of finding a place to stay in Germany, the largest monthly expense you will face is your rent.
But here’s the good news! You can easily find cheaper accommodation options in student dorms and student residences that are common in almost all German cities with universities.
Student dorms are generally reserved for students who attend master in Germany at a state-funded school while student halls and residences are open to residents from any colleges and provide rooms based on your application and ability to fund your stay. These options often cost between €200 to €300 and are a great place to meet students from around the world, make lifelong friends while studying together.
If you are out of luck at these options, you can always look for flatshares or WGs (pronounced vee-gay) which are apartments shared between multiple people with a few common areas such as bathrooms and the kitchen. They are cheap based on the area you are looking in and often have flatmates who come from varying cultures!
When it comes to your groceries, Penny, Lidl and Aldi are extremely student-friendly and finding nutritious fresh food for a reasonable price is easy in any part of Germany.
Moreover, when it comes to travelling, you can do so easily with your student transport cards which are heavily discounted or even free in some cases within your city or province. Most German cities are also very bike-friendly making getting around easy and cheap.
5. You Meet People From Around The World
Owing to the fact that higher education in Germany is the fourth most popular among international students, their community have also progressively become more diverse. A multicultural student community is an incredible way to find and learn from different perspectives and approach challenges with different problem-solving strategies
But besides your academics, having friends from many different countries teaches you about their food & culture, language and make you more aware of existing in a cross-cultural and inclusive society.
6. Locals Are Helpful & Immigrant Friendly (mostly 😉
There is a myth that people in Germany are cold and curt but unlike the country’s weather, Germans are generally polite and helpful, albeit a little reserved. While they won’t go out of their way to help you like in most Asian and Middle-Eastern cultures, when asked for help the chances are low that you would be refused.
If you know German, connecting with locals is very easy but in bigger cities like Hamburg and Berlin, people value your effort and will often switch to English themselves to make your experience more comfortable and pleasant.
Add to that, the country’s policies are currently also immigrant-friendly and make settling down as a foreign student pursuing their higher education in Germany seamless and easy. In most German cities, immigrants and German locals exist in harmony, enjoying and engaging in each other’s cultures.
7. You Can Learn A New Language From A Native Speaker
There’s no better way to learn a language than through conversation with native speakers. They can teach you the nuances of the language that you will not learn from a textbook or in a classroom.
While knowing German is not mandatory and people have spent years here with just the basics, you still need to have a good grasp of the language to truly immerse in the culture and life of the German society.
Thus, if you have been looking forward to acquiring a new language skill, choose higher education in Germany and learn the language on the go. In our experience, the best places to learn German are at supermarkets and restaurants, billboards and other public places.
8. You Get An 18-Month Visa To Find A Job After Graduation
One of the most common reasons why you should choose to do your masters in Germany is its rapid economic growth and low unemployment rates. Therefore, after you complete your studies, you are most likely going to seek jobs in your area of expertise in German companies.
However, given that your student visa is only valid for the duration of your education, this might not seem like a very plausible next step. However, the German government want the brightest minds from across the world to live in their country and contribute to their economic growth.
Therefore, once you finish your higher education in Germany, you can apply for an 18-month job-seeker visa which allows you to live in the country for this period and find employment in your field.
You need to show sufficient funds to sustain yourself and valid health insurance to be able to procure this visa but in most cases, this visa is your right and you shall be granted the same. Moreover, most people find a job in this period with a German company who then can help you apply for a work visa.
9. You Can Get A Permanent Residency Within A Short Time
The permanent residency, also known as a settlement permit, is offered to skilled non-EU individuals living and working in Germany once they fulfil certain criteria which are mostly related to your employment and remuneration status.
If you have a degree from one of Germany’s top universities and earn above a certain amount based on your profession, you can apply for a permanent residency within 21 months of your employment with a B1 level German language proficiency or in 33 months if you are not proficient in the language.
There are several advantages of having a permanent residency in an economically secure country like Germany with the ultimate one being granted German citizenship which comes with its own perks.
10. Travel around Europe easily
One of the most common reasons among students for choosing higher education in Germany is the freedom to travel across the continent and witness the brilliance of nature, visit the sights of historical and architectural significance and experience European music and nightlife.
Travelling across countries is also relatively affordable with budget airlines like RyanAir making air travel more accessible for students. Bus services like Flixbus and several backpackers’ hostels around the country also make it convenient and pocket-friendly for international students to travel within Europe.
While corona has put a dampener on many students’ travel plans, hopefully with vaccines being rolled out in several EU nations, the travel and tourism industry will open up new possibilities fairly soon.
Should You Consider Higher Education In Germany?
Studying in Germany is an exciting idea with the possibility of being a part of a vibrant and diverse student community, studying in world-class institutes with up-to-date curricula and clear and positive employment opportunities in the future.
If you decide to pursue your higher education in Germany, you will need sufficient funds in a blocked account for your visa. That’s where Coracle’s expertise and technology come in handy. Visit our website to know more while you plan for your studies abroad!
All the Best!