FAQ Mensen

Generally, students who don’t study at a Berlin university which cooperates with the studierendenWERK have to pay the guest price category.

The student price category only applies to students who are enrolled at universities in Berlin and Potsdam (Uni Potsdam, University of Applied Sciences Potsdam, Film University Babelsberg as well as the Universities of Applied Sciences at Wildau and Brandenburg).

Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to offer the subsidised food for students who study at universities in other federal states of Germany.

Liste der Hochschulen im Zuständigkeitsbereich des Studentenwerks Potsdam (299.93 KB)

The canteens and coffee bars offer their guests a high quality, varied, and healthy selection of dishes and beverages. The wishes, satisfaction, and the trust of our guests is our prime focus.

Our daily menu is completed - according the respective size of the facilities - by vegetarian and vegan dishes as well as fresh seasonal fruit, different salads, starters, and desserts. We only serve fish from sustainable fishery.

The diversity of our selection enables all guests, also the ones who are restricted to specific foods due to allergies, to find something for themselves.

We avoid using genetically modified food and glutamate as well as superfluous preservatives and artificial colouring.

Our guests receive the service of our friendly and helpful staff members who are always open to your suggestions, criticism, and suggestions for improvement.

The basis for our quality management is, apart from the adequate treatment of foods, the hygienic standards as required by law.

In our modern kitchens, our meals are freshly made and always of high quality. Cleanliness, a friendly atmosphere, a careful treatment of the foods, and an inviting display of them are our standard.

The training of our cooks and the regular further training of our employees are mandatory for us and also show that we’re a forward-looking organization.

Communication and team spirit are the basis of our common success.

All of our staff members contribute to this success.

The responsibility for secure jobs and mutual respect are the foundation of our leadership responsibilities.

We operate economically, sustainably and environmentally.

We are very family conscious and feel obligated to encourage the balance of family and work.


Enjoy your meal and your stay!

The canteen and coffee bar staff


You can give back your MensaCard at every checkout of our canteens. You will immediately receive the remaining credit and card deposit – if it is a deposit card.

Do you have questions about the MensaCard? Write us an e-mail to mensacard@stw.berlin.



The additives are marked in the studierendenWERK BERLIN. They are marked as following:

  •  3 - contains alcohol
  •  4 - flavour enhancer
  •  5 - waxed
  •  6 - contains preservatives
  •  7 - contains antioxidants
  •  8 - contains artificial colours
  •  9 - contains phosphate
  • 10 - blackened
  • 12 - contains a source of phenylalanine
  • 13 - contains artificial sweeteners
  • 19 - sulphuretted
  • 20 - laxative effect


The other addiitives are marked in the studierendenWERK BERLIN. The following markings apply:

  •  2 - contains pork or gelatine derived from pork
  • 14 - contains finely chopped meat
  • 16 - contains caffeine
  • 17 - contains quinine
  • 35 - nitrite curing salt
  • 36 - contains yeast


The allergenics are marked as following by studierendenWERK BERLIN:

  • 21 - contains gluten from grain:
    21a - wheat
    21b - rye
    21c - barley
    21d - oat
    21e - spelt
    21f - kamut
  • 22 - crustaceans
  • 23 - contains eggs
  • 24 - fish
  • 25 - peanuts
  • 26 - shell fruits:
    26a - almonds
    26b - hazelnut
    26c - walnut
    26d - cashew nut
    26e - pecans
    26f - Brazil nut
    26g - pistachio
    26h - macadamia
  • 27 - contains celery
  • 28 - contains soy protein
  • 29 - mustarde
  • 30 - milk and dairy products, including lactose
  • 31 - sesame seed
  • 32 - sulphur oxide & sulfide
  • 33 - lupine
  • 34 - molluscs



We use iodized table salt. 13.12.2014: In accordance with the EU Regulation 1169/2011 (LMIV), the studierendenWERK BERLIN labels food and ingredients with allergic and intolerance-inducing effect.

The studierendenWERK BERLIN provides a wide range of changing meals every day, at various universities.

Our meal plan:

  • two starters
  • colourful salad buffet
  • a climate dish (vegan)
  • one to two vegetarian dishes
  • one to two special offers
  • a pasta counter in some canteens
  • a range of cakes and desserts
  • a wide range of hot and cold beverages

In our first vegetarian canteen “Veggie N°1”, we offer diverse vegetarian dishes to our guests, with a high percentage of sustainable products.

Our offers vary according to the respective capacities of the canteens.

When selecting our products, we lay our focus on high quality produce, careful preparation and that all essential vitamins are preserved. We also ensure that our offers contain all vital vitamins and minerals and that these are preserved as well throughout the preparation process. We always take into account the latest nutritional-physiological findings.

In most canteens, you can put together your meal as you wish and chose from different components. In smaller facilities, we have to offer complete or partial menus due to restriction of space.

What we offer in the coffee bars:

  • premium tea and coffee specialities of Fairtrade quality,
  • a diverse range of cake
  • and a wide range of cold drinks.

When selecting our products, we pay great attention on high quality produce and careful preparation. We also ensure that our offers contain all vital vitamins and minerals and that these are preserved throughout the preparation process. We always take into account the latest nutritional-physiological findings.

Three prices apply at the canteens and coffee bars of the studierendenWERK:

Price 1:
The lowest price category is for students of public and private Berlin universities, which cooperate with the studierendenWERK.

This price category also applies to students which fall under the responsibility of the Studentenwerk (Student Services) Potsdam (Potsdam University, Potsdam University of Applied Sciences, Film University Babelsberg as well as the Wildau and Brandenburg Universities of Applied Sciences). Unfortunately, it is not possible for the studierendenWERK BERLIN to offer subsidised prices to students from universities in other federal states of Germany.

Price 2:
Medium price for the staff members of Berlin universities, which cooperate with the studierendenWERK. This price can only be offered when an employee identity card or a confirmation of the respective university is presented.

Price 3:
This price applies to guests of Berlin universities and universities of Applied Science

Liste der Hochschulen im Zuständigkeitsbereich des Studentenwerks Potsdam (299.93 KB)

Children’s meals: We provide free canteeen meals for students’ children aged six and under.

Please note:

  • The parents (father and/or mother) must be registered as students and also eating lunch in the canteen.
  • Please use the Kids-MensaCard to receive the free children’s meal. You can get this card at the checkout in the major canteens.

  • The free children’s meal will only be provided if the parent is eating a main course themselves.  When both meals have different prices, the cheaper one is for free.
  • All canteens offer children’s meals.

If your MensaCard does not work, you can contact the staff at the cashiers in the major canteens at any time.

If you lose your MensaCard, we can block your card and give you the remaining value in cash if you give us the card number. That’s why it’s so important to note the number when you receive the card, and keep it in a safe place.

Did you lose your MensaCard or do you have further questions about it? Feel free to write us an email to mensacard@stw.berlin.

CampusCard does not equal MensaCard

The CampusCard with an inbuilt MensaCard has already been introduced at some universities. The numbers are not identical! Therefore, please note the extra number that is on the back of your Campus Card. We can only refund your balance and deposit with this number!  You can find more infos about the CampusCard here: https://campuscard.berlin/

The procedure called 'autoload' corresponds to the direct debit procedure which is widely used also ouside higher education.

Further information can be found here.

Do you have any questions about the MensaCard? Please send us an e-mail to mensacard@stw.berlin .

FAQ Wohnen

Insurances: Which do we recommend? 

We recommend to get a personal liability insurance (Haftpflichtversicherung) and a household content insurance (Hausratsversicherung).

Basically, a personal liability insurance covers costs for damages that an insurance holder caused to the property of others. Wheras, a household content insurance comes into play, when accidents with water, faulty circuits or fire occur in your apartment or if your appartment gets broken into. Your insurance company will then cover the costs for possible damages to your furniture and other househould items. Terms and conditions of insurance companies apply and we advise to read them with caution. Please, do also make sure beforehand if you might be insured through your parents insurance plans. 

You can top up your MensaCard at our Mensa Foodtrucks. You can find the route plan here.

At the FU/Otto-von-Simson-Straße/ Mensa FU II, HU/Geschwister-Scholl-Straße/Bibliothek Grimm Zentrum and HTW/Mensa Treskowallee, the reloaders are also accessible on weekdays.

We've also compiled a list of other launderettes located near the respective halls of residence.

We'll try to let you know four to six weeks before you move in. Unfortunately, this does not always work out and we contact you at short notice (e.g. if other applicants drop out). If you have a period of notice or something similar, let us know via the dormitory portal so that we can make an offer.

If you have any questions or problems, please contact the internet provider directly at 0800 550 555 702. Alternatively, you can also send your request by email to support@hotzone.de or send a private message on Facebook @cloudcast.hotzone.

You have applied for three student residencies, but now you would like to modify something?

That is no problem at all. You can make changes to your application at any time without affecting the waiting period. Simply log in to your online portal. You have received the access details with the confirmation of your application from us. Then write us via the notification function which contents you would like to modify. Do you want to choose other student residencies, would you like to inform us of a different move-in date or would you like to change your preferred dwelling type? We will then make the modifications for you.

What regulations apply regarding the Rundfunkbeitrag (called GEZ up until 2013) for students in the student residencies?

The Rundfunkbeitrag – contributions to German broadcast media – must be paid by the resident, i.e. every adult who actually lives there. Because delimitation problems are “pre-programmed”, all tenants who have a valid rental contract and are registered at the residence are counted as being occupants of the residency. More information can be found here.


Fotolia 75749528


You applied to us for a place in a student residence hall? Then you have received your access details for the housing portal with your confirmation of application. Now log in with your e-mail address and password. In exceptional cases it can take up to two days before you receive your password. Please be patient.

Your application was successful and you already live in one of our residence halls?

You can use this portal for: 

  • Sending us messages with modification requests regarding your application
  • Uploading your certificate of enrolment or other documents
  • Requesting documents
  • Seeing your contract
  • Cancelling or renewing your contract
  • Applying for a removal
  • Sending damage reports

I cannot log in. Why?

Make sure that you have written your email address the same way it was written on the application. Check your password entry.

Can I bring my pet with me?

No, having pets is prohibited according to the General Rental Terms and Conditions.


Do I have to pay second-home tax?

Yes, according to the regulations of the State of Berlin.

How long am I bound to the rental agreement?

In compliance with the contract type, the minimum period of residence is three months.

Are there short-term rentals (days/weeks)?



FAQ Finanzierung


1. You have filed you last application to studierendenWERK BERLIN.
2. There has been NO interruption in your course of studies (e.g. semester of vacation).
3. You do not have any financial assets, or your assets are less than 8.200 euro.
4. Your own income does not exceed 450 euro per month, or is not higher than in your previous application. You agree to the crediting in the same amount.

If all of the above apply, you can use Formblatt 9.

If the preconditions do not apply, please use apply via BAföG-Digital.

Documents required for the short application (copies are sufficient):

  • Current matriculation certificate (proof of matriculation according to § 9 BAföG) including your number of semesters at university ("Hochschulsemester") and number of semesters studying your current subject ("Fachsemester") OR Formblatt 2
  • Formblatt 3 by the parents plus income documents of your parents from the penultimate calendar year before the start of the period of entitlement (i.e. the period for which the benefits are claimed), unless you have already received BAföG regardless of your parents ("elternunabhängig"), then if applicable income of spouse or registered life partner
  • Formblatt 4 (if you have children)
  • Should you have moved and you do no longer live with your parents: Written proof of tenancy ("Wohnungsgeberbescheinigung") or copy of lease (pages showing contracting parties, address, beginning of the lease + signature of contracting parties)
  • Proof of study performance, should you apply for support for your 5th semester ("Fachsemester") (ECTS or Formblatt 5)

Please don't forget to sign you application!

You can then scan all pages and upload them to portal along with your documents. You will get a receipt. Alternatively, you can send them by post or use the letterbox at Behrenstraße 40/41, 10117 Berlin, or hand them in at the InfoPoint at Hardenbergstraße 34, 10623 Berlin.


The studierendenWERK BERLIN always provides you with free and reliable advice and application processing. If you have any questions, please contact the BAföG office staff by telephone or email.

We recommend filling out the application via our new BAföG-Digital portal. This offers numerous advantages. The information is answered in the form of a questionnaire and immediately checked for plausibility and completeness. You are welcome to watch the BMBF video.

We therefore strongly advise you not to use services that are subject to a fee. We are not permitted by law to accept applications with an online signature submitted in this way.

We always recommend: Try it!

Because of the 26th BAföG Amending Act ("BAföG-Änderungsgesetz") the maximum amount of support increases by more than 17 % in three stages until 2021. The aim is to get more students into the BAföG funding area. Furthermore, the requirement rates, the surcharges for health and care insurance as well as for housing costs have been increased. The exemption of own income and parents' assets has been improved by higher allowances. The formerly interest-bearing BAföG bank loan (KfW) was exchanged for the "interest-free BAföG full loan" (state).
The repayment conditions of the loan have been improved by a debt cut.
In the future, it will also be possible, for example, to take into account extensions of study periods/overruns of the standard study period due to the care of close relatives (from nursing level 3). The upbringing of one's own children is taken into account until the age of 14 instead of 10 years.

The studierendenWERK BERLIN is solely responsible for all BAföG enquiries by students of the following universities:

More detailed information and legal bases can be found in German language on these pages.

You can use the Studentenwerk Göttingen's BAföG calculator to find out how high your individual requirements could be.


€ /mtl

Students who live with their parents receive  427,00
Flat-rate extra payment for rent 56,00
Extra payment if student has own health insurance 84,00
Possible extra payment for care insurance 25,00
Maximum monthly support 592,00

The extra insurance payments are usually only available for those aged 25 and above.


€ /mtl

Students who do not live with their parents (live in their own flat/shared flat/student residence) receive 427,00
Flat-rate extra payment for rent 325,00
Extra payment if student has own health insurance 84,00
Possible extra payment for care insurance 25,00
Maximum monthly support 861,00


In addition students who live in a family unit with at least one child of their own get a payment increases of €150 per month for every child under 14 years of age. The extra payment is granted to only one parent within a single time period. If both parents live together and are receiving funding via BAföG, they must agree among themselves who will receive this payment.

In addition to your own income, the income of your parents is included, as is the income of your spouse if you are married, or your registered life partner if you have one.

Key to the decision is the income from the penultimate calendar year before the start of the approval period.

Example: When making an application for the summer semester 2021, the relevant income is that from the calendar year of 2019. (The income year used to reach a decision is determined by when your approval period begins.)

For deciding which income is to be used in the calculations, the law provides fixed exemption amounts, both for the parents and for any other children eligible for maintenance. The more of your siblings are currently in education, the less your parents are obliged to contribute financially to your studies. Your entitlement to educational support funding would thus increase. But even if you are the only child who is studying, it is worth checking whether you are entitled to BAföG.

If your parents earn more than the exempted amount, they calculations will be made on the basis of your need for support, and you will not receive the highest amount. You will find the calculations in your decision letter. An application for an update or advance payment (maintenance advance) may be considered for you.

When working out how much support you may get, your own income (e.g. via part-time jobs or holiday jobs) during the approval period is always important.

If you are an employee, income of up to €450 euros per month is not included in the calculations. For example, if you earned no more than a total of €5,400 from October 2020 to September 2021, your financial support would not be reduced. If you have earned more, the excess amount is divided by 12 and deducted from your financial support.

This is different with income you receive from an apprenticeship (e.g. payment for an internship, or if you are within the dual educational system). In this case, your income – minus work-related (tax) deductions and social insurance payments – will be fully included in the calculations used to determine the amount of financial support you receive. The total income during the approval period is calculated then split into equal amounts for each month.

In the case of income from one-off jobs similar, any profits over €367 per month are used in the calculations. The total income during the approval period is calculated, then split evenly across the months of the approval period.

Parent-Independent Financial Support

Parent-independent financial support is certainly the most generous form of support, as the income of parents is not taken into account.
“Parent-independent financial support” cannot exactly be applied for; instead, the office examines whether you have met the conditions on the basis of the information you give in Appendix 1 to Form 1 (CV).

Parent-independent financial support is granted if:

  • You begin your studies after turning 30 (please ensure to make note of Point 9)
  • After turning 18, you have been in employment for five years (employment periods do not have to be linked, they can be make of up several smaller time periods)
  • You were in education or training for up to three years, and then in employment, and the combined time studying and working was at least six years.

Employment also includes periods of military service, civilian service, federal voluntary service, a voluntary social or ecological year, development service, as well as periods in which you have received unemployment benefits and/or sickness benefits. However, your income must have been sufficient to maintain yourself. For more information, please contact the Office for Educational Support.

Maintenance Advance

If your parent/parents refuse to provide the calculated income amount as a cash maintenance allowance (or they refuse to provide the necessary information on their income), it is possible to request advance payment (“maintenance advance”).

If an application is made, the State of Berlin (represented by studierendenWERK BERLIN) will if applicable pay all or part of the maintenance amount in advance, after consulting the parents/the parent and examining the facts.

In turn, your regular entitlement to maintenance from your parents will be converted to entitlement to maintenance from the State of Berlin. This entitlement will be equivalent to the amount paid in advance. If a subsequent examination reveals that there is a higher level of maintenance required for your university education and your parents are able to pay this, the State of Berlin can demand that your parents repay the financial support that was paid to you in advance. If needed, this demand may be made before a Family Court.

If, on the other hand, the examination reveals that there is no longer any further liability for maintenance, then your will in effect receive parent-independent financial support. However, whether this is the case will be decided by current case law.

If your parents offer benefits in kind (housing and meals, for example in the parents’ home), advance payments are either reduced or not possible at all. You may then have to make a complaint against your parents. For these maintenance proceedings, you may also have to attempt yourself to resolve the issues of financial maintenance or child support in kind.

In principle, educational support funding is no longer provided if you have reached the age of 30 (35 for a Master’s degree) at the start of the course for which you are requesting educational support funding.

Exceptions are possible:

  • If you met the access requirements for financially supported education at a technical higher secondary school (attendance of which requires you to have completed vocational training), at an evening lower secondary school, a vocational preparatory school, an evening grammar school, or a college, or if you met the access requirements by passing a non-pupils’ examination or an entrance examination.

  • Because of your professional qualifications, you have been enrolled in a higher education institution without a university entrance qualification.

  • If you were unable to start your educational period at the regular time for personal or family reasons. A specific example of this is if you have been uninterruptedly raising your own child (aged under 14) when you reach the age limit and up to the start of your course, and you have been employed during this period up to a maximum of 30 hours per week (as a monthly average). Single parents are also allowed to work for more than 30 hours a week, thus avoiding the need for support in the form of Grundsicherung (basic social assistance benefits).

  • If you were prevented from starting your studies because of caring for your parents or close relatives [from care level (Pflegestufe) 3].

  • If you have become needy as a result of a drastic changes in your personal circumstances and have not yet graduated from any course that can be promoted under this Act and that qualifies you for a profession.

For an exemption from the age limit, you must begin your course immediately upon fulfilling the entrance requirements, or upon the reasons hindering you ceasing to apply, or upon a need arising as the result of major changes in your personal circumstances.

Starting a Master’s degree is always counted as a new course. This thus means that checks must be run (again) on your status in relation to the age limit.

FAQ Beratung

FAQ Jobben Arbeitnehmer

FAQ Jobben Arbeitgeber

FAQ Kitas

State-approved day carers are welcome at any time. Simply apply directly at personal@stw.berlin! To give you a first impression of our day care centers, we also offer guided tours through our facilities.

All children have a right to a non-violent upbringing and education, healthy growth and the best possible development.
You can read about how the day care centers of studierendenWERK BERLIN ensure this in our child protection concept.

studierendenWERK BERLIN’s day care centers are facilities located nearby to Berlin universities, with which we work in cooperation. We make use of contacts with university staff from various disciplines in order to incorporate the latest academic and scientific findings into our educational work. Discussions on current pedagogical issues mean that we continually question and develop our educational activities.

In addition, we cooperate with the family offices of the universities.

A place in our day care centers is free of charge for all children. Parents only pay for the full board of €53.00 per month per child.

So that early childhood education can be successful, we offer the children diverse and age-appropriate experiences that challenge their individual initiative. The carers supervise the children in their learning processes by showing them ways to expand their skills. For this, educational action is guided by the following principles:

  • We nurture and support the children in the individual development of their personalities.
  • We encourage the children to form their own opinions, on which they can build their own decisions.
  • We teach the children creative skills which promote their sense of responsibility.
  • We raise the children’s awareness of responsible approaches to natural resources.
  • We promote the development of social and emotional skills, so that the children develop a sensitivity to their own needs and the needs of other people.
  • In an age-appropriate way, we develop the children’s understanding of democracy.
  • We make it possible for the children to have varied, holistic experiences.
  • We give the children time to play so they can process their experiences.
  • We encourage the children use exploration and experiment to discover their own solution-finding approaches and develop problem-solving thinking.
  • We value a good, trusting educational partnership with the parents.

In all facilities, work is done in a group-orientated way. The basis for all educational services is, of course, the professional framework of the Berlin Educational Program.

Appreciative and constructive interaction between the child’s parents/guardians is indispensable for its development. This is why it is important for us to maintain an open and trusting relationship with the parents and to be seen by you as partners in raising the child.

In the kindergartens of studierendenWERK BERLIN, we regularly share information about the development of the children and seek to establish a conversation with the parents. This is to reflect together on the implementation of the educational goals and to actively supervise the development of the child.

In all facilities, the parents are invited to participate in day-to-day life at the kita: parties are organised together, with parents’ evenings and parent-teacher conferences taking place at regular intervals. Once a year, the parents elect representatives who join with the kita committee to advise on various organisational issues with the educational staff.

In close cooperation with the parents, we place great importance on a careful and individualised settling-in period, to give children a good start to their life at the kita. Here we follow the “Berlin model”.

Your child is already born? Are you a student or an employee at one of our partner universities? Then you can reserve your child for a place in one of our day care centers.Please use the online form. Registration and the agreement of the contract are done in the facility in question. In the day care centers reservation lists for the children are used for the allocation of places.

All of our daycare places are currently occupied. Therefore, allocation is only possible when a place becomes vacant.

To complete the contract, you need a Kita-Gutschein (kita voucher). This will be provided by the Jugendamt (Youth Welfare Office) in your district on presentation of your child’s birth certificate and proof of your work and income. You can also apply for the kita voucher online. For students, it is sufficient to provide a certificates of enrolment to be able to make a claim for full-day daycare, because studying counts as a full-time occupation. However, it is not permitted for you to be on leave.

Please note that the application for a Kita voucher should be submitted at the earliest 9 months and at the latest 2 months before the start of care.


FAQ Kultur

FAQ Studierendenwerk