Free Education for International Students — Countries that offer free education

Free Education for International Students — Countries that offer free education

Free education for international students is an opportunity everyone looks forward to at one point in their life. If you come from countries like Nigeria, India, Ghana, or Yemen, you will understand how hard it is to make a living not to think about affording a college education. This is not to say that these are the worst countries on earth or probably the poorest but I am speaking of the devil I know. 

As a Nigerian, seeing people sleep under the bridges, beg for basic needs and probably starve is a reality I may never uncheck. It’s as true as tomorrow. Most times, we want to run away from this ugly reality, advance our lives and help people around us. Since we can’t afford the cost of studying abroad, we look out for countries that offer free education for international students. 

As you already know, when you are looking for a university to attend, the first thing that you need to make sure of is how much a year at the university will cost. Tuition fees vary from country to country and from one course to another. However, some countries offer free education and the lowest tuition for international students to study and that is exactly what this post is about. 

Featured Inside 

  • Introduction
  • Featured inside
  • Countries that offer free education for international students
    • List of countries that offer free education for international students
  • Top Recommendations
  • Conclusion 
  • Frequently asked questions FAQ 

Countries that offer free education for international students.

One of the most common questions asked by students who are going on a study abroad trip is if the country they are visiting will offer them free education or low tuition fees. Surprisingly, most people still believe that education is only for the rich. 

However, it is time to put an end to the belief that quality education is only for the super-rich. There are several countries where students from all over the world can get free tuition and even study grants.

When you think about it, several European countries offer free education for international students in their universities and colleges. Notwithstanding, this option is not only limited to European countries alone. There are also many other countries where you can get a college degree at little or no cost. It’s not just a dream anymore; your education may just be one or two steps away. See also Top-rated University in Europe 

Right inside this article is a list of the top 7 countries that offer free college education to international students. We will be looking at these amazing countries individually so that you can fully understand how you can go about your study abroad trips to any of the below-mentioned countries.

List of countries that offer free education for international students: 

  1. Germany
  2. Norway
  3. Finland
  4. Sweden
  5. Austria
  6. Czech Republic
  7. Spain


When you talk about countries that offer free tuition for international students, Germany is the number one on the list. In Germany, all public universities charge no tuition fees for both domestic and international students regardless of their country of origin. According to DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service), Germany has more than 400 higher education institutions that offer over 17,000 study programs to foreign students from all over the world every year.

However, Germany is home to some of the best universities in Europe, such as the Free University of Berlin, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg, and many more. Germany has been attracting international students for years to its affordable education system, Germany is the land of ideas and innovation. It is the country with the highest number of international students in the world! German universities have been known worldwide for their high-quality academic standards and they now offer full-degree programs in English.

Nevertheless, while it seems completely free, most faculties require students to pay some administrative fees that range from $150 to $500 per semester. This includes membership at the Studentenwerk and the AStA, which provide cheap meals and public transport discounts. While living expenses are not covered by the government, they are relatively low compared to other European countries.

Furthermore, these fees can be waived if your income falls below a certain level. If you want to study at a private university, you should expect to pay around $700 per semester. If you have 12 years of school education (high school), you are eligible to apply for a bachelor’s degree in Germany. However, if you have completed your high school in a non-EU country, you may be required to complete one year of preparatory studies before enrolling in your undergraduate program.


Another country that offers free education for international students in Norway. Norwegian universities and state university colleges as a rule do not charge tuition fees to all students including international students. However, certain courses may have semester fees which vary from institution to institution and course to course. you will be expected to cover your living costs for the duration of your studies. This is true for most of the countries on this list. 

Norway has a reputation for being expensive but its universities are free, and the government provides non-degree students with a stipend of nearly $1,000 per month to help cover living expenses. Government money is also available to help international students with tuition and living costs. The program is open to all EU citizens who have completed secondary school in an EU country, as well as some non-EU students (from countries including Australia, Canada, and South Africa).

However, some of the drawbacks of studying in Norway as a non-EU student are the cost of living in Norway. The cost of living in Norway is high but still affordable for most people, especially if you plan on studying there for a short period. It ranges from 1,000 EUR per month to 1,500 EUR per month and students must fund these costs themselves unless for a few exceptions as stated above. Costs for university accommodation in Norway start at around 300 EUR per month. 

As with other countries on this list, there are no tuition fees at public institutions, fine. But if you choose to study at a private university, you should expect to pay between 10, 000 and 15,000 EUR per year.


Finland offers free education for international students as well as for domestic students– but only at the undergraduate level (i.e. Bachelor’s). This means students who want to pursue their Master’s or Ph.D. degree in Finland will have to pay tuition. That said, as a student living in Finland, you will still need to pay for your accommodation, travel, and food expenses.

However, most classes are taught in Finnish or Swedish, which are the two official languages of the country. This is because The Finnish government funds all higher education institutions. International students from the European Union can pursue their master’s or Ph.D. for free; others pay about $8,000 per year. Because most classes are taught in Finnish or Swedish, however, international students need to pass a language test on acceptance or attend preparatory courses before enrolling.

Top Recommendations 


Sweden has introduced tuition fees for all except the European Union (EU)/ European Economic Area (EEA) or Swiss nationals in the autumn of 2011 due to changes in Swedish law regarding higher education. While institutions in Sweden charge non-EU, EEA, and Nordic nations an application and tuition cost for graduate and postgraduate programs, they provide Ph.D. positions for free, with a monthly salary.

However, you may also need to pay an application fee when applying for studies in Sweden for a bachelor’s or a master’s degree program. Remember that international students will have to Cater for their living and travel expenses. 


Austria is one of Europe’s most popular destinations for international students and offers free education for international students to study at both public universities and colleges. Tuition fees were removed in 2011 to increase the number of international students studying there; currently, the country has around 100,000 foreign students enrolled each year. International students have to pay a small administration fee each semester (about €363).

However, Non-EU/EEA students will have to pay a nominal tuition fee of around €730 per semester, which fares somewhere around ₹55,000.  This is not bad, considering the quality of life and education in Australia. 

Czech Republic

Students who speak Czech can study for free at any public university in the Czech Republic. Despite your nationality. It’s a law in this country. This makes it at the top of the list of countries that offer free education for international students. 

However, students interested in studying English can do so for roughly €4,000-12,000 (US$4,425-13,275) each year. At roughly US$9,000 per year, living expenses are lower than in many western European countries. The Czech capital Prague is ranked joint 35th in the QS Best Student Cities list.


EU students do not have to pay exorbitant education costs in Spain, whereas international students can study at public universities for between €750 and €2,500 (US$830-2,760) each year. Fees are calculated per credit and might be significantly higher at the graduate level. 

To live in Spain, you should budget between €10,800 and €13,200 (US$11,940 – 14,600) per year. Madrid, Barcelona, and Valencia all appear in the QS Best Student Cities list, with Barcelona ranking 21st.

However, Spain is home to some of the finest Universities in the world which is why it is one of the most popular study destinations for international students who want to study for free. 


In summary, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Finland, etc, are some of the leading countries that offer free education for international students to pursue a university education. However, there are other countries including France, Belgium, Greece, and Denmark that offer minimal cost of study. All these European countries have good economies and provide a high standard of living. The tuition-free education in Europe is one of the reasons why international students prefer to study there.

But you also need to remember that most of these countries share a common language like German or French. So it is recommended that you should have a good knowledge of the language before you apply. You may also have to pass an exam before you are admitted into the university. You will need to check with your local embassy for more information about the requirements for international students. Learn How you can prepare for your study abroad here

Frequently asked questions about studying in Europe 

Why is Europe the best place to study? 

Europe is one of the most fascinating continents to study as long as the world is concerned. Many European countries have outstanding living, travel, and employment possibilities. This is because of its well-deserved reputation as a center of intellectual achievement. Europe can be a very appealing destination for students.

What do I need to know to study in Europe? 

Requirements for studying in Europe vary according to country. However, most often than not, you will be required to take aptitude exams at the EU university where you wish to study – IELTS, TOEIC, or TOEFL for language skills, and GRE, GMAT, SAT, or PAT for academic and intellectual skills. These tests have a predetermined format and design. You may be required to write a statement of purpose. Please, learn how to craft an outstanding SOP for your international study application for free

What is the education system in Europe? 

The European education system focuses on providing bilingual and multicultural education to children in nursery, primary, and secondary school. Two years of early education (nursery cycle), five years of primary school, and seven years of secondary school make up the European school system. Their Higher education aims at skill development for career education. 

Which European country has the easiest student visa process?

Obtaining a student visa to study abroad in Germany is quite easy. However, you can only apply for a German national visa if you have been admitted to a German higher education institution or preparatory college. Germany’s Colleges have the Highest Percentage of International Students.

Can I study and work in Europe? 

Most European countries allow students to study and work. However, EU citizens can work full time with a work permit. To work full-time as a Non-EU student, you will require a work permit. Although most nations allow students on a visa to work part-time, other countries limit the number of hours visa holders can work.

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