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Barcelona second best student city in Europe, says report

Catalan capital 19th in world ranking, scoring high in number of top universities and safety


19 October 2021 02:07 PM


ACN | Barcelona

Barcelona is the second best student city in Europe, according to a report by Studee, a search engine of university studies worldwide.

The Catalan capital is only below Dublin in the ranking, which assesses aspects such as rent, cost of living, amount of young people in the city, number of high-ranking universities and safety.

Barcelona is also 19th in the world ranking, ahead of Madrid (23rd, and 3rd in Europe) but behind the top three: Tokyo, Melbourne and Seoul.

The study is inspired by the QS Best student cities list, which puts Barcelona 13th at a European level and 34th overall.

The report by Studee evaluates the city especially favorably in terms of safety, and also top universities; there are five according to the QS rankings: University of Barcelona (UB) – the highest ranked in Catalonia and Spain –, Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB), Pompeu Fabra University (UPF), Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC) and Ramon Llull University (URL).

Barcelona also compares well to other cities in average rent – £768.46 (€911.88) –,in cost of living – £604.41 (€717.21) – and in free speech, at 87. Yet, the latter indicator is based on a ranking for Spain as a whole, not specifically Barcelona or Catalonia.

According to the search engine, the city is more average in terms of the amount of 15- to 24-year-olds, and in number of restaurants and food delivery places, as well as in the cost of MacBooks.

The report also takes into account the average internet speeds, with Barcelona at 36 Mbps, which leaves it neither at the top nor the bottom of the list, as well as the price for MacBooks. 

At a European level, London is fourth, followed by Lyon, Valencia, Toulouse, Brussels, Lisbon, and Montpellier. 

The top 10 world ranking is topped by Tokyo, Melbourne and Seoul, followed by Quebec, Adelaide, Montreal, Perth, Houston, Brisbane and Pittsburgh. 


  • Students at the Ciutadella campus of Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, September 7, 2021 (by Eli Don)

  • Students at the Ciutadella campus of Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, September 7, 2021 (by Eli Don)