Financial aspects

Financing your exchange

As a general rule, it’s more expensive to study abroad. Studying abroad generally involves extra expenses, because you must take out health insurance and travel insurance, living expenses in your host country may be higher than what you are used to, and you will have to pay travel expenses etc. This means that it’s a good idea to start thinking about how you are going to finance your exchange early in the application process.

You have a good deal of influence on how expensive your exchange is going to be. By choosing a host country close to Denmark, you can keep travel expenses down. You can also save money by going to a country where it’s cheaper to live than in Denmark. If you choose to travel to a capital or a popular city, the cost of accommodation is likely to be very high. 

In MoveON you can read Travel Reports made by students that have been on exchange and get an idea of how expensive their exchanges were.

Read about different sources of funding below.


You may be eligible for a grant to help cover travel and living expenses. For example, if you go on an exchange with Erasmus+ or the Nordplus/Nordlys programme, you will automatically be considered for a grant. In the MoveON portal, where you’ll find a description of all of AU's exchange agreements, you can find out which of the various agreements fall under the Erasmus+ or Nordplus/Nordlys programmes.

If your exchange isn’t part of these programmes, you may be eligible for a grant from your faculty. Read about the different options in the menu.

Grants for specific countries

If you want to study in the United Sates, you can get guidance and apply for scholarships from Fulbright Denmark.

AU also occasionally announces grants and scholarships students can apply for. We post about such opportunities on the AU Rejs Ud Facebook page. You apply for grants and scholarships of this kind directly from the organisations that offer them.

The Danish state scholarship - Udlandsstipendiet

If you arrange your exchange on your own, you might be a candidate to apply for this scholarship to cover all or part of your tuition expenses.

  • Read more about this scholarship under the heading 'Freemover' in the menu.


There is a variety of scholarships you can apply for that can help finance your studies abroad. However, you should always be able to finance your exchange in another way, for example, through grants, savings or a loan.

There are several databases on the internet where you can find information about specific scholarships and advice on applying.

You can also invest in the Danish scholarship guide Legathåndbogen, or borrow it from the library. It’s a good idea to check out the Travel Reports from former exchange students in MoveON to understand how much an exchange costs and which scholarships other students have received.

Tips on applying for scholarships 

  • Start well in advance.
  • Spend plenty of time writing your application and make sure that you tailor it to the foundation you are applying to.
  • Applying for a scholarship is like writing a job application – your application must convince somebody that you are the right candidate.
  • Think about what’s in it for others. Foundations often have a specific mission – how will you and your exchange contribute to this?
  • Remember to write a thank-you letter!

Help for applying for scholarships


Danish students can continue receiving SU while on exchange, regardless of whether you arrange your exchange yourself or whether it’s under AU’s exchange agreements. But please keep the following in mind:

  • You must take a full course load while on exchange. This means that you must apply for and get pre-approval of the courses you plan to take in order to receive SU while studying abroad.
  • You must be able to document that you are actively engaged in your studies while on exchange.

Get more information about SU while studying abroad from or from AU’s SU office.

  • Read more about SU in connection to the Danish state scholarship arrangement Udlandsstipendiet.

Important information about SU for international students at AU who want to study abroad in another country:
As an international student, you are generally entitled to receive SU due to the work requirement. If it’s possible for you to meet your work obligations and continue working while on exchange, you are still entitled to receive SU. However, many international students aren’t able to work while on exchange, which means they loose their SU entitlement if they study abroad. Note that there may be special exceptions and rules that apply to you depending on your individual circumstances. AU doesn’t make or administer the rules on SU for international students. You should consult the following page on the Danish Agency for Higher Education and Science SU website for further information: Changes to your circumstances -


Grants awarded through AU to students for study or internship placements abroad are disbursed without any tax being withheld. They are reported by AU's payroll office to the municipality as B-income. It is important that you save documentation of all major expenses during your stay abroad so that you can prove to the Danish tax authorities (SKAT) that your grants were actually spent on an exchange abroad.

Scholarships for study trips abroad are also exempt from Danish tax when they are used to cover the costs of travel between Denmark and the place of study, food, minor necessities, accommodation at the place of study, tuition and course fees etc., including fees for laguagecourses in the language of the country of study.

You must notify SKAT of the expenses you have incurred, so they can be deducted from the total scholarship amount on your annual tax return. Your expenses must be documented with original receipts, and it is therefore important that you remember to keep all documentation for your expenses abroad.

If you are an Erasmus+ student, your Erasmus+ grant will automatically be reported to the tax authorities by AU as a tax-free grant for a study trip. However, please note that SKAT may demand to see documentation/receipts showing what the scholarship has been spent on at any time. So, save all receipts relating to transport, accommodation etc.

Even if you are no longer fully tax-liable in Denmark, you must still pay tax on your SU in Denmark. For further information, see For information on tax issues while abroad, contact the tax authorities in your host country.


Under the ‘Sample budgets’ tab, you’ll find sample budgets for different exchange destinations for your information.