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What is SU?
SU (Statens Uddannelsesstøtte) is a state educational grant (or scholarship, if you will) that is given to all full-time students here in Denmark.
Up until 2013, rules were different and SU was only available to the Danish students or students that have worked continuously in Denmark for a minimum of 2 years.
Luckily, that has changed and now foreign students receive SU the same way that Danish students do. Well, almost, but we’ll get to that, in just a second.
Why does Denmark pay you to study?
According to The Ministry of Higher Education and Science, every Dane is entitled to receive financial support throughout his or her studies. Thus, all the Danes can study anywhere regardless of their social standing.
By receiving this financial aid, students can focus more on their studies, rather than on making money. This will also relieve their parents, so they don’t have to spend too much money from their own pockets.
Personally, I believe that Denmark wants its students to study to the best of their abilities, which would be impossible without it.
How much is SU?
As of today, SU is 6,166 DKK per month, before taxes.
The final amount depends on which tax card will be used on your grant. If you use your A-kort, or your primary card, you will receive around 5.200 DKK.
If you use your secondary tax card, this will come down to about 3,200 DKK per month.
Keep in mind that these numbers depend on how you set your taxes, so we can only give you an approximation.
Also, make sure that you receive the right amount of SU.
If you are getting the full 6,166 DKK a month, it’s not a gift from the government, but an incorrect tax card. And thus you will have to pay it back in May.
How can I get SU?
Naturally, all Danish citizens are eligible without any troubles. They can receive SU immediately without any additional complications.
International students are also able to receive SU, but we need to ask for “Equal Status”. With this document, we are theoretically on the same level as the Danish students.
However, equal status also differs.
You can get it under Danish Rules or EU Rules. EU rules are usually made for all international students from EU/EEA countries. A student coming from outside of EU/EEA countries is usually unable to receive SU. The only option would be getting it under Danish rules.
Requirements for the EU/EEA students (EU rules)
- You have status as a worker or have retained your status as a worker in Denmark
- You have resided in Denmark for five years
Requirement for non EU/EEA students (Danish rules)
- You came to Denmark with your parents (before you were 20 years old, you keep living in Denmark and all of you have permanent residence permit)
- Worked in Denmark continuously for at least 2 years (minimum 30 hours per week)
Before you apply
The least possible day for applying to SU is the last day of the month.
If I would like to receive SU for September, the last possible day for applying would be the 30th of September.
It is impossible to receive SU in a retrospective effect.
The last day for applying to SU in a year is the 5th of December. And you won’t get your money sooner than in January.
OK, let’s get started with the application.
Step-by-step guide to SU application.
You can find our step-by-step guide here.
We tried to make it as easy as possible to understand the process. If there is anything unclear, you can leave a comment bellow and people can jump in to help you.
My equal status was not approved. What do I do now?
This happens mainly if you don’t have a work contract, which specifies the working hours and you have only started working, from a month you apply.
In that case, you have to work for a month or two, with stable 10-12 hour work weeks, and apply again.
How can I stop SU?
SU is paid out the last day of previous month.
What that means is that your SU will be paid to you, before the month begins, and also, before you know whether you will have the hours necessary.
In case you want to stop the SU for an upcoming month, you can do that only until the 15th day of the previous month, through SU.dk.
If you have failed to work the required number of hours per month, you can opt in to use SU Holiday.
SU holiday gives you an option, to have 6 weeks in which state does not check your hours.
You, however, need to work for 3 consecutive months before you can apply for this and you can do it only once a year.
On the other hand, you can divide these 6 weeks to your liking, and you can submit the SU Holiday respectively, meaning for a past periods, up to few months.
You do this, as everything, through SU.dk
If you get an internship, for less than 3 months, you might want to pause your SU, instead of canceling it.
This way, you don’t lose your equal status and it will be paid to you immediately, from the month you start working again.
Keep in mind that SU does not work with unpaid internships in Denmark, and you will lose your residence permit, if you leave Denmark for more than 3 months.
Can I get SU Holiday and how do I apply?
In case you want to get SU holiday, inform your employer about this and prepare a form for them to fill out and sign.
The form needs to include:
- Your name
- Your CPR Number
- Company name
- Company CVR
- Period, in which you take your holiday
- Today's date
- Your signature and company stamped signature
There is no template for this but this is what they require. Then, you upload this form through SU.dk and fill there out, what period you are taking your holiday in.
SU Loan and Slutloan
(student loans in Denmark)
While you receive SU you have also an option to get an SU loan.
This is a loan from the government that you are free to use on anything you’d like.
The amount is approximately 2500 DKK and it is tax free.
You get about 1% interest and you have to start repaying the loan, one year after you finish your studies.
Slutløn (completion loan) is a similar thing, however this one can be taken in addition to the SU loan, in the last 12 months of your education. The amount is slightly lower, at around 1500 DKK.
How to contact SU?
If you have any questions, you should contact the SU office in your university.
They are the direct link between you and SU.
You also have an option of contacting SU through your e-boks, but that’s pretty much it. There are no phone numbers to call.
Ready to apply?
How much can you earn in a month, besides SU?
The ammount changes every year, but as of 2021, according to SKAT's phone line, the ammount is 13,711 DKK. This ammount is before tax, so keep that in mind! Also, SKAT looks at your yearly income, rather than month-to-month income so you can exceed the ammount in one month a little, if you keep it lower the next. This ammount is also including feriepenge so make sure to calculate it into the ammount. Thank you Povilas Borkovskij for finding this out.