QS Best Student Cities ranking: 11

Back to the full ranking >

Germany’s capital city can stake a credible claim to being one of the coolest cities in the world. During the past decade its cultural scene has flourished, turning it into a major center of design, fashion, music and art to rival even New York or London.

More so than those cities however, Berlin is still easily affordable on a student budget, while also being enough of a global financial centre to appeal to those whose outlook is of a more corporate nature.

It may have just slipped out of the overall top 10 in the latest edition of the QS Best Student Cities, but it remains well within the top 10 in terms of affordability, combining low living costs with free tuition for both domestic and international students (with the exception of some master’s programs).

Though not an academic hub on the scale of cities like London, Paris or Boston, Berlin does boast three strong entries in the 2013/14 QS World University Rankings: Freie Universität Berlin (ranked 109), Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (126) and Technische Universität Berlin (183=).

Berlin is also gaining a growing reputation as a destination for international students due in part to greater provision of courses in English, particularly at graduate level. With a high quality of living, affordability, a liberal atmosphere and a happening party scene, the German capital has a huge amount to offer international students of all backgrounds and interests.

Read more about studying abroad in Germany >

QS ranked universities*:

Freie Universität Berlin; Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin; Technische Universität Berlin

More about Berlin

Number of universities ranked by QS*


Top ranked institution

Freie Universität Berlin (109th in the world)



Average university fees


Mercer Quality Of Living rank


Mercer Cost of Living rank


Cost of a Big Mac**


Cost of an IPad***


*Universities assessed within the QS World University Rankings®.

**Based on the Big Mac Index, published by the Economist Intelligence Unit.

*** Based on the iPad Index, published by Commsec.

See the full methodology of the QS Best Student Cities here >