Perks for students
There are discounts for students in many different areas. For example you can get cheaper tickets for the movies, museums or swimming pools. Newspaper and magazine subscriptions as well as computer software are also available at discount prices.
For students of all Bochum universities the student identification card is also a ticket for local public transportation (Semester ticket).
You should always have your student ID card with you. And: If you’re not sure, go ahead and ask if there is a reduced price for students!
International Student Identity Card (ISIC)
In addition to the normal student ID card from the school you can also apply for an International Student Identity Card (ISIC) at the AStAs in any Bochum school or at a travel agency. With this card all students under the age of 35 are entitled to discounts in many countries of the world. For the application you will need a valid student ID card and a passport photo. The ISIC costs 12,- € and is valid for one year.
The ISIC is not needed within Germany, it is more useful for traveling abroad or if you are planning a longer stay abroad. The card is available in September for the following year and is valid until December of that year (a maximum of 16 months).
TV and Radio license fee
In Germany there is a mandatory fee for all Radios, TVs and computers with internet access. The 17.28 € a month fee (5.76 € if you only own a radio) is used to finance the public television and radio stations. The fees are mandatory even if the appliance or the public stations are not used. However, they are not automatically due, not until you have registered yourself at the toll collecting agency, the Gebühreneinzugszentrale (GEZ).
The GEZ provides information once a year to students who live in AKAFÖ dorms about their duty to register such appliances. This visit will be advertised beforehand on posters hanging in the dorms.
Theoretically it is possible to be exempted from these fees. But this is normally only the case if the student receives a state grant (BAföG), or if they can prove to be a so called "special case of hardship". Low income alone does not qualify as a special case – Questions can be directed to the GEZ-Hotline at 0180-501 65 65.
It is nearly impossible for students from countries outside of the European Economic Area to be exempted from the license fees. Because you are required to show proof that you can finance your studies before you may begin, there is no chance of success for a "special case" application. In case of doubt, the only thing that helps is to sell all appliances subject to fees and give notice at the GEZ.
Discount telephone service
If you are lucky enough to be exempt from TV and radio license fees or receive BAfÖG, you can apply for a discount telephone service at the Telekom. When you present proof of this in any Telekom shop you will receive a free credit of approximately 7,- € a month to call on the German Telekom network. However the basic fee for telephone service is still the same price.