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Best Cities to Live in Germany: A Guide For Students

Germany has it all. Beer, sausage, and an undisputed respect for David Hasselhoff. Is there any better place to be a student? We think not. With world-class universities, top-ranked degree courses, low or no tuition fees, and an affordable cost of living, it’s no surprise that Germany has become a hot spot for local and international students.

The country has something for everyone, with each city offering something different for its diverse student population. So, don your lederhosen, fill a stein and get ready, because we’ve put together a list of the best cities to live in Germany.

Plus, with its handy travel links, thriving student job market and top-quality studentwohnheim (student dorms), we’ll reveal why Frankfurt is at the forefront of university life in Germany.

Received a Student Visa For Germany?

Recently received your student visa for Germany? Congrats! With over 400 universities and super cheap tuition fees, Germany is home to more than 300,000 like-minded international students. But, it’s not just the top-quality education that attracts students from all over the world – Germany has so much more going for it.

In Germany, the cities come alive when the sun goes down. As the birthplace of Germany’s techno scene, Frankfurt is particularly popular with party-loving students. But it’s not all wild underground raves – you’ll also find hundreds of traditional taverns and low-key bars in the city to enjoy a chilled drink with mates.

At 21% cheaper than the cost of living in the UK[i][ii], Germany is pretty affordable too. Food and utilities tend to be lower than most European countries, and public transport is reasonably priced and efficient.

And, there’s also the bonus of post-grad job opportunities. With so many highly respected universities to obtain your degree from, German graduates enjoy high employability in the global job market – and there are a bunch of student jobs in Germany whilst you’re studying, too.

But, you might not want to head back home just yet. Frankfurt’s reputation as the financial capital of Germany makes it the perfect city to pursue your undergraduate career in business or finance, as well as being one of the best cities to live in Germany.

Food & Drink

With influences from Polish, Turkish, and Jewish cooking traditions, German cuisine is diverse – and more importantly delicious. In Germany’s major cities you’ll find eclectic dishes from all over the world. But, if you want to go for something more traditional, try a bratwurst, currywurst, schnitzel or pretzel. Either way, you won’t be disappointed!

Germany is also home to the iconic Oktoberfest – one of the biggest celebrations of beer worldwide, and a tradition that both locals and tourists take part in. Each city hosts its own Oktoberfest, but when it comes to live entertainment, Frankfurt is considered one of the best festivals in Germany.

With its central location, Frankfurt is also a great base for exploring the culinary and drinking delights of other major cities. Its main train station is one of the biggest in Europe, with regular journeys to Munich, Cologne and Berlin.


Universities in Germany are renowned across the globe for their academic excellence – and their price! All of the public universities in Germany are tuition-free, meaning that whether you’re a German resident or an American studying abroad with a student visa, you’ll only pay an administrative fee at the start of each semester.


Germany isn’t just famous for being home to several influential schools of philosophy and art. The country also houses a wide range of stunning art galleries and gothic castles. Frankfurt itself is a perfect demonstration of Germany blending the new and the old, with the old town contrasting with buildings such as the modern 300-metre Commerzbank Tower.


Where better to study than the city that’s said to have the world’s seventh-best quality of life? Frankfurt is incredibly well connected with the rest of Germany, which means you’ve got plenty of opportunities to explore other German cities from this travel hub.

Although it’s not the cheapest place to live in Germany, it makes up for it with a rich cultural heritage and world-class educational institutions – making Frankfurt a strong contender as one of the best cities to live in Germany.

Entertainment & Nightlife

Central Frankfurt is a key location for businesses, making it Germany’s answer to Singapore or Tokyo – a bustling hub of commerce which is perfect for professionals. That being said, there’s a prominent student community and the outer edges of the city cater for this.

The area of Bockenheim is the former location of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University and remains a key location for the city’s students. Here you’ll find plenty of affordable bars where you and your fellow friends can socialise. For affordable beer and a sense of neighbourhood familiarity, we suggest that you head to Zum Tannenbaum, located just a three-minute walk from our Bockenheim accommodation.


When you think of German sausage, you probably think of the nation’s all-time favourite – the frankfurter. People flock from far and wide just to try an authentic version of this tasty snack made from beef and pork. They can be picked up from virtually anywhere in the city for a couple of euros, but we recommend Ebbelwoi Unser for its great atmosphere and consistently high standard of food.

Studentenwohnheim Frankfurt

Studentenwohnheim offered by Yugo in Frankfurt is centrally located, giving students access to the best of the city. Our accommodation is safe and secure, in addition to being all-inclusive – meaning all you have to worry about is your studies and enjoying your time in Germany!

Alvarium Yugo Accommodation

Home to 264 studio apartments in 17 styles, Alvarium offers a range of studios that suit the needs of any student. The space also boasts a private roof terrace, modern gym, cinema, and games room. With Goethe University just down the road, this is the perfect place for students to thrive.

Student Residences at Urbanum, Frankfurt

Situated in the trendy Gallus district, Urbanum puts you right in the centre of Frankfurt’s bustling student scene that’s packed with busy bars, laidback cafés and trendy boutiques. With 17 studio styles and 270 apartments to choose from, Urbanum offers the perfect blend of choice and convenience. There’s also a gym, student lounge, communal kitchen, study room and roof terrace with impressive views over the city.


Hamburg is the German city for shopping, entertainment, and relaxation. It’s the country’s northern hub for culture, making it the ideal place for students to live. Don’t be fooled by the numerous concert halls, art galleries, theatres, clubs ,and bars – you’ve still got to study, and few places are better equipped to further your education than this major European science and education centre.

Entertainment & Nightlife

With over 100 music clubs, 60 museums and 30 cinemas, it’s no surprise that Hamburg is a student haven and is considered one of the best cities to live in Germany. You’ll never be late for a concert (or a lecture) with the city’s punctual public transport system. The end of September brings one of Europe’s largest festivals – Reeperbahn – giving you the perfect opportunity to bond with your fellow students over music, art and film.


Where better to try a hamburger than the place that gave them their name? In Hamburg, there are plenty of places to eat, no matter what your budget and appetite. From your average burger to fancy fine dining, there will be something for you. For a combination of European and local dishes, we suggest Frau Moller. Just a 10-minute drive from our studentenwohnheim Hamburg (Wandsbek accommodation), this restaurant offers a homely feel at a reasonable price and will be sure to leave you feeling satisfied.


For those of you who prefer a calmer location, Münster offers the quietness of a smaller town but the nightlife of a larger city, meaning you’re in the right place to both study, and have a good time. Spend the day by the Aasee reservoir and you’ll be sure to get through your work in this serene location.

Entertainment & Nightlife 

During your time in Münster, be sure to take in the city’s rich culture by visiting one of the many museums and galleries the city has to offer, or enjoy a boat ride on the Aasee. There are also plenty of drinking options both day and night - relax in a beer garden or spend the evening in a cocktail bar. Pension Schmidtt is a popular choice for students, hosting student-friendly events in a cosy, 70’s-style setting.


Experience a range of cuisines with prices to suit the student budget. You’ll be able to try everything from local sausages to Vietnamese spring rolls without spending too much. The city has a reputation as a place that welcomes outsiders, and the local delicacies prove that Münster breaks the mould from typical German cuisine. P.S - the pumpernickel is a must-try.

We recommend dining in the student-oriented Cavete – just a 10-minute drive from our studentenwohnheim accommodation – where you can try some local vegetarian dishes at a reasonable price.


Expect to become an honorary citizen of Darmstadt, as the locals (who like to refer to themselves as “Heiners”) are known for their welcoming demeanour. You’ll have plenty of time to get acquainted with the city’s many green spaces, museums, libraries, and other useful study spots.

Entertainment & Nightlife 

You may think that such a small city doesn’t have much to offer a student in the pursuit of nightlife, but one of the benefits of the city’s size is that you can really experience the diverse entertainment options to work out what suits you. You’re likely to bump into people that you know, and have some great opportunities to make new friends. The nightlife ranges from Irish bars to pubs, and even a club or two. In fact, Darmstadt is known for kickstarting the careers of some of the world’s most prominent techno DJs. Keep an eye out for the two festivals hosted in the city every year – Heinerfest and Schloßgrabenfest – both of which are hotly anticipated events that draw in huge crowds.


Darmstadt has something for everyone, from burgers to vegetarian dishes to traditional German cuisine (straight from the Hessen state). We recommend Habibi vegetarian restaurant, just an eight-minute drive (or 20-minute walk) from our accommodation. Here you’ll be able to find generous portions at a reasonable price – yes please!


So, there you have it! Those are our top picks for some of the best cities to live in Germany. Whether you’re looking for a big sprawling city or more of a small-town feel, you’re sure to find somewhere perfect to call home in Germany. With its bustling student population, lively nightlife, top-class universities and post-grad job opportunities, Frankfurt has to be our pick of the bunch.

Already got your student visa for Germany? Now you’ll need to find somewhere to live. Luckily, you’re spoilt for choice with Yugo. With student accommodation across Germany, including Frankfurt, Hamburg, Munster and Darmstadt, there’s a Yugo property that’s waiting for you.