10 Free Universities in Greece for International Students

Greece is known for being the birthplace of democracy and where Western civilization started. It is also the birthplace of the Olympic Games and has a rich history. Moreover, this European country is also the birthplace of Alexander the Great. Alexander the Great conquered much of the known world during his time.

Aside from its rich history, Greece also has a notable educational system. A good number of its universities have a respectable ranking when compared to other educational institutions in the world. Due to this, Greece can be an option for history-loving students looking to study abroad. In this article, we will be looking at the free universities in Greece for international students.

Cost of Studying in Greece

Studying in Greece is not as expensive as studying in other European countries. This is particularly true if you’re a citizen of a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country. Citizens of these countries don’t have to pay for tuition when they study in Greece.

In terms of cost of living, international students can expect to spend between 450 EUR ($500 USD) and 750 EUR ($900 USD) per month. This budget already includes accommodations, food, and other expenses.

Are Universities Free in Greece?

Universities in Greece are free for citizens of the EU and EEA countries. While universities charge tuition for non-EU or non-EEA citizens, they can apply for scholarships so they can study for free in these universities.

International students from non-EU or non-EEA countries can also study for free in many of the universities in Greece through the Erasmus+ program. This program is available for some of the top Greek universities.

What are the languages of instruction for universities in Greece?

Greek is the main language of instruction in Greek universities. But, these universities also offer some courses taught in English and other European languages, such as German and French.

Free Universities in Greece for International Students

1. National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

We start our list of free universities in Greece with the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, which has been operating continuously since it was established in 1837. This makes it the oldest institution of higher learning of the modern Greek state. Additionally, it is the first contemporary university located in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The university offers a wide array of courses for local and international students through the different departments under its nine schools. These schools include the School of Law, School of Health Sciences, School of Philosophy, and School of Education.

The university also has a University Club that enhances the living conditions of the students, organize entertainment events, and encourages socialization with each other. Moreover, the university also has several museums the students can visit for historical and cultural enrichment.

2. University of Crete

Even as the University of Crete was officially established in 1973, it only started operations in 1977. It is a public university that aims to provide high-quality education for its students. The university also wants to take a leading role in innovative research. Despite being a young university, it has already set up links with other institutions of higher learning around the world as well as organizations offering scholarships for international students.

The five schools and sixteen departments of the university offers a wide variety of courses for its students. These courses include Archeology, Psychology, Computer Science, Medicine, Primary Education, and Economics.

Students of the University of Crete can also join any of the societies of the universities. These societies cater to the different preferences of students. Moreover, the university also has sports facilities where the students can sweat it out after classes.

3. University of Thessaly

Next in our list of free universities in Greece is the University of Thessaly, which was established in 1984 and aims to use research and education to promote scientific knowledge. It also endeavors to contribute to the economic and cultural development of its local community as well as promote academic and scientific excellence in all its fields of expertise.

The university has ten schools consisting of different departments offering a broad range of courses for its students. These schools include the School of Health Sciences, School of Engineering, School of Economics and Business, and the School of Humanities and Social Sciences.

The university also has a Theatre Group made up of students from its different departments. The group has organized numerous events and performances since 2006. Similarly, the Musical Ensemble of the university has been involved in several musical activities focusing mainly on a Greek repertoire.

4. Technical University of Crete

Even though it was established in 1977, the Technical University of Crete only started accepting students in 1984. Aside from providing undergraduate and graduate programs, the university was also founded to conduct research. It also aims to support innovation as well as organize seminars to promote technology and innovation.

This free university in Greece has five schools offering undergraduate and postgraduate programs. These schools are the School of Mineral Resources Engineering, School of Production Engineering and Management, School of Environmental Engineering, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and School of Architecture.

The students can enhance their social life by joining the different school clubs of the university. These clubs include a photography club, a radio enthusiast club, a dance club, and a theatre club. The university also offers several sports and recreational programs to meet the athletic needs of its students. Moreover, academic student unions were also established to enhance the academic and social life of the students.

5. Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

While the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki was established under the administration of Alexandros Papanastassiou in 1925, efforts to establish it started under Eleftherios Venizelos following the liberation of northern Greece. The university opened its doors to its first students in the following year in 1926.

The university has a combined total of 41 schools and faculties. They offer different fields of study ranging from social and health sciences to arts and humanities. Each faculty and school offer their own undergraduate and postgraduate courses. Aside from learning inside the classroom, the students also participate in the Student Practice program where they get acquainted with and experience the profession they will practice after they graduate.

The student unions of the university also give the students the chance to excel in extracurricular activities. These unions are essentially based on the course they are taking. Moreover, the university gym allows the students to stretch their muscles in different sports disciplines.

6. National Technical University of Athens

Established in 1837, the National Technical University of Athens is another free university in Greece and also the oldest Greek technical university. The university was originally called the Royal School of Arts and was initially meant to operate on Sundays and holidays. The schedule of classes changed in 1840 after it started operating on regular school days as well.

The university has nine schools offering science and technology programs. These schools include the School of Mechanical Engineering, School of Architecture, School of Rural and Surveying Engineering, and School of Chemical Engineering.

Aside from the classroom sessions, the university also organizes educational excursions for the students. The goal of the excursion is to provide the students with the chance to become aware of any advances in technology as well as appreciate classical art and science.

7. University of Macedonia

Established as the Graduate School of Industrial Studies of Thessaloniki in 1948, the University of Macedonia is the second university in the second-largest Greek city, Thessaloniki. It started operating in 1957 and was renamed the School of Higher Industrial Studies of Thessaloniki in 1958. The university was renamed again in 1990 as the University of Macedonia Economics and Social Sciences. But, the Economics and Social Sciences was removed from its name in 2013 thereby giving the university its present name.

The University of Macedonia has four schools consisting of eight schools offering a host of courses for its students. The schools of the university are the School of Economic and Regional Studies, School of Social Sciences, Humanities, and Art, School of Information Sciences, and School of Business Administration.

The university offers several services to ensure all the needs of the students are met. These services include Student Information a Library and Information Centre, an Internship Office, a Physical Education Office, and a Student Counselling and Support Centre.

8. University of Patras

The University of Patras, a free university in Greece, was established in 1964 as a state-supervised, self-administered academic institution. It was intended to focus on economics, business administration, social sciences, science, and technology. The university later became well-known for its excellence around the world.

The university has seven schools consisting of 35 departments. It offers 35 undergraduate programs and 50 postgraduate programs. These programs include Business Administration, Early Childhood Education, Information Systems, Nursing, and Environmental Engineering.

The university also ensures the students are well-rounded so it organizes cultural events to allow the students to experience other cultures. Cultural groups in the university also accept students to become members. Moreover, the sports facilities of the Sports Center offers several sports activities the students can participate in.

9. University of the Aegean

The University of the Aegean was established as a multi-campus, public university in 1984. Aside from promoting regional development, it was aimed at introducing new approaches to higher education in the Greek system. Its campuses are situated in six picturesque islands of Greece: Chios, Lesvos, Lemnos, Rhodes, Samos, and Syros.

The university has six schools and 17 departments. It offers 17 undergraduate programs along with 26 postgraduate programs. These programs are in interdisciplinary, thematic areas, like communication systems, product design, environment, education design, and cultural informatics.

Life in the university is not limited to classes since events are also held to allow the students to experience different cultures. Cultural groups enhance these experiences and allow the students to fully understand them. Moreover, the students can also join sports events organized by the school as extracurricular activities.

10. University of Ioannina

The final candidate in our list of free universities in Greece is the University of Ioannina. It was established in 1964 as a Department of the School of Philosophy of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. It became an independent university in 1970. The university established different schools along the way until it had all of its existing schools today.

The different schools of the university consist of different departments offering a wide variety of programs for both local and international students. These programs include Physics, Philosophy, Education, Economics, Visual Arts, and Materials Chemistry and Technology.

University life consists of club activities, cultural events, and sports competitions for the students. This ensures that the students are well-rounded once they graduate from the university. It also helps promote health and fitness among the students.


The rich cultural heritage of Greece may be the first thing travelers notice about this European country, but it can still be considered as an option for students looking for a cheap place to study abroad. I hope that this article on free universities in Greece was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Free Universities Category!