International Office
Bildliche beispielhafte Darstellung eines Ausrufezeichens.
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Entry requirements and visa

Before traveling to Germany, you should first find out which entry regulations apply to you. Please keep in mind that if needed, you have to apply for a visa on your own.

Entry requirements Non-EU countries

Non-EU citizens:

  • If you plan to stay in Germany longer than three months, you must first apply for a national visa for Germany in your home country or country of residence (D visa) before entering Germany. This also applies if you are already in another EU member state.
  • Entry into Germany with a "visitor or tourist visa" (Schengen visa category "C" valid for 90 days) is not suitable for a study stay! It can neither be changed into a residence title for study purposes nor extended after entry. You must then travel back to your country of origin at your own expense and apply for the applicable visa there.
  • The national visa of category "D", usually issued for a period of 90 days, also entitles the holder to a short stay in other Schengen countries. After entering the country, you must apply for a residence permit at the local Foreigners' Office.

Citizens of Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea and the USA:

  • An entry visa is not required, only your passport.
  • For stays longer than three months you will need a residence permit, for which you can apply at the Foreigners' Office after entering Germany.

REST Directive:

  • Exchange students from non-EU countries who have a valid residence title for study purposes in another EU country (except Ireland and Denmark) can enter Germany via the REST Directive. Here you can find more information about the required documents. The documents are submitted by the International Office to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees. Please contact us via email at

In order to apply for an entry visa or a residence title for Germany, you will need to provide financial proof . This proves that you have sufficient financial means to finance your stay in Germany.

Financial Proof of students from NON-EU countries
Information on the financial proof

Entry requirements for EU countries

Citizens of EU member states, the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland:

  • An entry visa is not required, only your identity card.
  • If you plan to stay in Germany longer than three months, you must register at the City Administration Office (Bürgerbüro) and obtain a Freedom of Movement Certificate or a residence permit for citizens of the Swiss Confederation.
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