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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät

Costs and Scholarships

Starting your studies in a different city or even a different country is definitely an exciting perspective. It opens a lot of new opportunities and gives you the chance of not only getting to know the local inhabitants, cultural peculiarities, architecture and cousine, but also burn through part of your savings. For that reason this section of the page will help you to make your expense estimations as precise as possible and hopefully will positively influence your profit and loss statement for the period of your studies in Berlin.


There are NO tuition fees at Humboldt Universität zu Berlin! Neither for German and EU students, nor for international students from other countries!


Compared to other German and European cities the cost of living is relatively low in Berlin. Especially rents, food and leisure activities cost less than in other large cities. Humboldt-Universität neither charges tuition fees nor long-term study fees. The semester fees and contributions include a semester ticket for free use of public transport (which is a very good deal compared to the regular monthy ticket). According to the Studentenwerk (German student welfare organization) students spend on avarage arround 800 EUR per month in Germany (not including individual expenses).


You could check the "Lebenshaltungskosten-Rechner" of ZEIT ONLINE, a German national weekly newspaper: http://ranking.zeit.de/lebenshaltungskosten/#!/city?city=35.

Currently, you should expect the following average spendings in Berlin (obviously, it depends on your personal livestyle!):

(This is on top of the University Registration Fee of around 300€, which has to be paid once per semester and includes a ticket for the public transportation system in Berlin.)

Item Average Spending Per Month
Rent for student dormitories (Studentenwohnheim) 200-400 €
Rent for private housing (e.g. shared flat) 250-500 €
Food approx. 200 €
Clothing approx. 49 €
Telephone, Internet 20-40€
Leisure 80-100 €
Study Material 30-50 €
Health Insurance 80 €

Source: Sonderauswertung der 20. Sozialerhebung DSW/DZHW


Some Examples:

  • Cinema: 8-12 € (tuesdays less)
  • Visa at the Ausländerbehörde: 80 €
  • Currywurst: 3 €
  • Döner Kebab: 3.50 €
  • Noodle Box: 4 €
  • Food at the university cafeteria per meal: 2-3 €
  • Food at a restaurant: 6-15 €
  • Beer at a Kneipe: 3-4 €
  • Cocktail: 5-8 €


Semester Ticket

So far, there are no tuition fees at the HU. However, as a HU student, you will have to pay a semester fee of around €300 (degree students) /€250 (exchange students). These amounts are obviously subject to change. Check your admission/confirmation letter for the exact amount.

The fee is split up to several separate amounts. The biggest chunk goes towards the Semester ticket (~€190). The semester ticket is a seasonal student ticket for public transport in Berlin. Every HU student is required to purchase the ticket each semester, which provides freedom of travel for the whole semester (i.e. for six months) on the U-Bahn, the S-Bahn, buses, trams, and ferry boats throughout Berlin and in Potsdam (fare zones ABC). As an added bonus you can even take your bike along for free in case you don‘t feel like riding after a long day of studying.

You also pay ~€10 for the “Studierendenschaft” (student body, in which you are automatically a member. In return, you can elect the student parliament and take advantage of the student counseling services offered by “StuPa/RefRat”.

Another part of the fee is for the “Studentenwerk” (~€50). All students in Berlin are required to pay a fee for the services of the student welfare organization, which is responsible for student dining facilities (“Mensa”) at the universities in Berlin as well as for the dormitories (“Wohnheime”). In addition, the “Studentenwerk” runs a number of counseling services.

Degree students pay an additional amount of ~€50 as administrative fees.

The total amount of the fees has to be paid to the account of HU. The account details can be found on the website of the university and should also be mentioned on your acceptance letter. You may pay via bank transfer or with cash at the “Kasse” (rooms 1003 – 1006). Do not forget that you need a receipt for the payment. This should preferably be in German or English but may also be in your own language as long as it clearly states that you have paid the right amount to the Humboldt bank account. You will need to present this confirmation
at your enrollment.



The MEMS program, and HU in general, do not award scholarships, so instead we have compiled all of the following information to help you finance your stay in Berlin! Even though there is no tuition cost, we understand that there are many other expenses that need to somehow be financed. With this in mind, we created this informative list to aid prospective and current students in finding funding. There are opportunities for bachelor, master and doctoral students, so make sure you read through everything to find what will work best for you!

Tips and tricks for a scholarship for going abroad can also be found here: www.wiwi.hu-berlin.de/de/international/abroad/finanzierung/

For further information on the different sources of finance that are available in Germany, have a look at the Studentenwerk Berlin (in German):


DAAD Scholarships 

In order to help you finance your studies in Germany, there are some organizations offering scholarships. The biggest organization in this area is Deutscher Akadamescher Austausch Dienst (DAAD). The DAAD is one of the best and least complicated ways to obtain a scholarship.

The DAAD has over 80 scholarships in their search results when looking for funding for a graduate program in Economics. Their search function allows you to narrow those results with information like country of origin, and keywords for specific programs. 





Humboldt-Universität supports excellent students of all nationalities with the so-called Deutschlandstipendium. Selection criteria, amonst others, are academic performance, educational background, social involvement and/or political commitment (e.g. in higher education policy, in religious communities or political organizations and the effort in the social environment).

The Deutschlandstipendium provides students with a financial support of 300 EUR monthly for at least two semesters. The money comes from the federal government and private sponsors such as corporations, foundations, associations and alumnis.



Research In Germany

Research in Germany is another very useful search engine to help you find the perfect scholarship for you. They have information on funding for graduates, PhD students, post-docs and senior researchers. 




All HU students can apply for a subsidy or a refund of the HU fees for the "Semesterticket". The refund depends on your personal income and savings. Just contact the Semtix office, they will be able to give you more information: www.refrat.de/semtix


Funding through Foundations

The following list is by no means exhaustive. It was last updated on 31 May 2016. If you know of or are part of an organization that offers scholarships, please send us an e-mail and we will add it to our list. Additionally, we are in no way associated with these organizations and can not assist you with your application process.


Scholarship Foundations for International Students


Political Scholarship Foundations



Another helpful platform providing students with a good overview about the opportunities offered by various organizations is ScholarshipsTimes.com. This platform updates students about scholarship announcements. The scholarships are categorized according to both level of education (e.g. Undergraduate, Postgraduate, etc.) and sponsors (e.g. Government, NGO, etc.). They also have a special scholarship section for international students coming to Germany which can be found here: www.scholarshipstimes.com/category/scholarships-worldwide/europe-scholarships/germany-scholarships/