Entry

Some people arrive in Berlin

What do I need to enter Germany?

As a citizen of an EU member state, you do not require a visa to enter Germany. If you work in Germany, complete training, or would like to study, then this is possible without any limitations. Like every person who lives permanently in Germany, you need to register with your district office after you have moved into an apartment. People from Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland are treated as EU citizens. They also do not need a visa and may work and study in Germany.

Additional information is provided in registration requirements and at the Berlin service portal.

People who do not come from the EU require an entry visa to enter Germany. However, there are exceptions from the visa requirement. You can find out if you are free from the visa requirement in the list provided by the Foreign Ministry. You may then travel within a period of a half year to 90 days in Germany. The half year starts with the day of your entry into the Republic or into the Schengen area. During this term, you may also enter and leave multiple times, provided you do not stay for longer than 90 days.

Citizens of Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea and USA may also stay in Germany for longer than 90 days. If you want to settle in Germany permanently, then you may also acquire the necessary residency permit after entry. The same also applies to citizens of Andorra, Brazil, El Salvador, Honduras, Monaco and San Marino, provided the acceptance of gainful employment is not intended.
More information is provided in residency rights and in residency permit.

Where can I apply for a visa?

The visa must be applied for prior to entry. The visa application may be submitted to the responsible embassy or a general consulate of the Federal Republic of Germany in the country where you currently live. It’s important that you apply for a visa for the purpose of your stay. Your visa functions during the initial period in Germany as your residency permit, which is important for admission to studies, accepting employment, or for an application for your family to join with you.

In most cases, the visa fee costs 60.00 Euros. You can read more about the exact fees in the memo about visa fees.

The time required to issue a visa may vary. This depends on the purpose of the planned stay. For this reason you should apply for a visa early:

The website of the Foreign Ministry features all of the representatives of the Federal Republic of Germany.

A list of all representatives of other states in Germany is provided on the website of the Foreign Ministry.