STS High School 14–18 years of age
Austria welcomes you!

High School in Austria

Age 15-18

You don’t have to be skier to love Austria. But if fresh powder and well prepared slopes is your thing then Austria will be your kind of heaven. There are mountains and lift systems everywhere and they are often close to the cities.

High School Classic

High School Classic is the traditional high school exchange programme, chosen by most of our students. It is the perfect programme for those who long for a genuine high school experience abroad and who are willing to embrace all the surprises it can bring. Here’s how it works: based on your profile, we find you a suitable host family and school, and the best part is, it can be anywhere in Austria, from the peaks of the Alps to the banks of the Danube! If you’re open to adventure and are willing to let yourself be surprised by your exchange experience, this is the programme for you.

High School 2-in-1

Experience two new countries in one year! The new High School 2-in-1 programme gives you the unique opportunity to spend each semester of your high school exchange in a different country. You can learn an extra language, gain insight into yet another culture and make even more international friends.

A fall semester in Austria can be combined with a spring semester in: Switzerland.

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Order our brochure now and read all about STS High School, our destinations and a very special period abroad that could be the adventure of your life!

Music is important

Winter sports aren’t everything, though. Austria is also famous for its musical history, such as Mozart’s years in Salzburg. Music is still a big deal, not the least in all the music oriented schools. You will also notice that all the cozy villages seem to have their own big orchestras. If you sing or play an instrument, there are plenty of opportunities for you to develop your talent during an exchange year in Austria.

Postcard beauty

Austria is one of the world’s most secure countries and a favorite among tourists. The country is full of postcard beautiful scenery and cities and villages with amazing architecture. Bring your skis or your instrument, or both, and grab the chance to live here and see it all for yourself!

Population: Nearly 9 millon
Area: 83 856 km2
Capital: Vienna
Language: German
National holiday: October 26
Highest mountain: Grossglockner, 3 798 m
Country code: +43

School life in Austria

Sprechen Sie Deutsch? Do you speak German? You don’t need any grades in German to become an exchange student in Austria, but some basic knowledge and a curious mindset is recommended. You will learn a lot by just living in Austria, but if you’ve studied the language before you will get the most out of the education.

Your year in an Austrian school

High school in Austria is called Gymnasium and you will be placed in year 10 or 11 out of 12, depending on your age and your previous grades. As an exchange student in an Austrian high school most of your courses will be compulsory. They offer a diverse mix, including German, English, maths, natural and social sciences, sports, and so on. Students can sometimes choose art, music or another language, like French or Spanish.

The school week is normally from Monday to Friday (and sometimes Saturday too), but the days are relatively short.

If you like music or sports

If you have a particular interest in music, economics or sports, please let us know. There are many high schools in Austria with a certain specialisation. We will try our best to find a school that fits your interests.

Gemütlichkeit awaits you!

Austria is famous for its conviviality, locally known as Gemütlichkeit, and you will be heartily welcomed by your warm and carefully selected host family. Our families live all over the country, meaning you may be placed in a bigger city or in a smaller, rural village.

You will spend a lot of time with your family and get to know the country through their daily life. Food is always an important part of the culture and while living in Austria you will probably be served some traditional dishes. Wiener schnitzel, sachertorte and apple strudel are some of our favorites!

The perfect match

Before departure, you will have a Skype interview with our STS colleagues in Austria. They will ask some questions to get to know you, in order to find the perfect host family for you. If you have a special geographical request you can always let us know. There is no guarantee we can match your request, but we will try our best.

Quick facts

  • Who can go: 15–18 years on arrival
  • Departure month: January/August/December
  • Language requirements: Basic German knowledge
  • Visa: Yes
  • Choice of destination: No
  • Prep course: STS Welcome Camp included
  • School year: September–July
  • School day: Usually 08.00 – 14.00
  • Subjects: Compulsory and optional
  • Trips in the country: Snowboard trip, Vienna and Graz weekend, welcome weekend in Salzburg. Additional cost

Free time in Austria

Austria is a country with majestic nature and lots of outdoor activity options. Exactly what’s on offer for your free time depends on the size and location of your town or village. On the weekends families often go hiking, trekking or skiing in the mountains. Be prepared to improve your downhill skills. You might even get the chance to visit a famous ski resort such as St Anton.

If you don’t want to spend all your time on the slopes, there will of course be other things to do as well. Some popular activities can be table tennis, fencing, riding and swimming. There will probably be lots of days when you just take a stroll with your friends and visit a café. The country has a great café culture.

Activities with your school

The location of Austria makes it great for travelling. Many schools arrange trips for their students. Seize the opportunity and join your new friends on travels to France, England and the Alps.

Want to sing or play an instrument? Well, you’ve come to the perfect place. Music is important in Austria and you will have great opportunities joining a choir or an orchestra – in school or outside.

STS activities in Austria

Throughout the year in Austria, we will arrange activities and excursions for our exchange students. You can join us on a trip to Graz and lake Wolfgangsee in Salzburg, explore Austria’s capital Vienna, and go on a skiing and snowboarding trip. The last activity of the year will be a Farewell Party. Your local contact person will provide you with information about travel dates and costs connected to the different activities.

STS Welcome Camp in Europe

Your exchange begins with our fun Welcome Camp in Europe! The Welcome Camp gives you the best possible start to your exchange, and is packed with sightseeing, seminars, new friends and lots of fun.

Add ons

If you want to call Vienna home during your high school exchange, be sure to ask for the Vienna City Choice in your application.

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What's included

  • Air fares to host family and back
  • Accommodation in an approved host family
  • Full board in a host family
  • School spot in a public high school 
  • Personal assistance and contact person from home country and host country
  • STS Welcome Camp 
  • Pre-departure orientation in your home country
  • Emergency support 24/7
  • Free interview 
  • Meetings and material to prepare you and your parents
  • STS bag and t-shirt 
  • STS Diploma
  • STS Ambassador Club


For you that wish to stay shorter than 5 or 10 months we also have shorter programme lengths. Please call us!

5 months
From $12,500
10 months
From $14,650


About you/the student