Deutsches Studentenwerk

Help with financial difficulties and bridging loans

Under certain circumstances Studentenwerke offer financial help for students who find themselves in financial difficulty. Usually this is in the form of a loan which has to be repaid.

Some Studentenwerke also help out international students with smaller amounts. These do not normally have to be repaid.

Loans for emergencies

What happens if students, through no fault of their own, can no longer meet the cost of living, or pay the rent or finance their studies themselves? What if, for example, they are ill for a long time?

In such cases students can make an application to their Studentenwerk for financial support.

Basically the same rules apply for international students as for German students. But for international students the requirements are often difficult to fulfil because to get a loan a guarantor has to be named.

Loans for emergencies

  • Given once or over a longer period
  • Application to the Studentenwerk
  • Conditions vary widely!
  • No difference in allocation, whether German or international student
  • Loans must be repaid!

Loans at the end of your studies

Especially towards the end of your studies it is important to be fully focused on the last examinations and final papers.

Some Studentenwerke offer special loans for students who cannot work during this period. These are only granted if it is obvious that the student is coming up to finals. Also, the conditions of each Studentenwerk are different. Ask directly at your Studentenwerk if and under what conditions you can get help during the end phase of your studies!


International students who find themselves in financial difficulty should definitely talk to their Studentenwerk. Even if the Studentenwerk itself cannot give any financial support, the advisors at the Studentenwerk may be able to refer you to other possibilities!