When it comes to travelling to Germany, many nationals across the globe may be required to apply for a visa.
Since 1995, when Germany became a member state of the Schengen area, it has become easy for the travellers to visit Germany, Europe.
Who Requires a German Visa?
You will require a short-stay visa to visit Germany, and even to enter other member country which is in Schengen area, if you are a :
- Hold a passport of a third-world country that has no visa liberalisation agreement signed with Schengen states
- Hold a passport of a third-world country which has visa liberalisation agreement signed with the Schengen states, but you were not allowed to enter Germany or any other Schengen area.
What Type of Visa do you Require to Enter Germany?
In case, if you are looking to go to Germany on a short excursion (up to 90 days), then you need to apply for a Schengen short-stay visa to Germany, also known as a C-type visa. For stays longer than 90 days, you should apply for a German long-stay visa, also referred to as a D-type visa.
Depending on the objective of entering Germany, you are able to make an application for one of these short-stay visa types for Germany:
Apply for the Germany Airport Transit Visa, if you necessitate touching down at one of the German aerodromes in order to board a flight to your non-Schengen destination.
German transit visa. Apply for this visa if you need to stop at a German port to board a ship to a non-Schengen destination.
Tourist visa Germany. Apply for this visa if you plan to visit Germany for holidays, tourism or exploration.
A visa for visiting family and friends in Germany. Apply for this visa if you want to visit relatives or friends living in Germany.
Business Visa Germany. Apply for this visa if you need to enter Germany to conduct business.
Visa for official visits to Germany. Apply for this visa if you need to enter Germany for an official visit.
Medical Visa Germany. Apply for this visa if you need medical care in Germany.
German visas for cultural, sports and film teams. Apply for this visa if you need to participate in activities related to culture, sports or religion, or if you need to be part of a film crew.
German trade fair and exhibition visa. Apply for this visa if you plan to attend trade fairs and exhibitions in Germany.
German training/internship visa. Apply for this visa if you want to complete an apprenticeship or internship in Germany.
What Documents are Needed to Apply for a German Visa
A short-term Schengen visa application for Germany requires the following list of documents:
A visa application form needs to be filled out with the correct information, along with the information in the rest of the document. Find out how to fill out the German visa form correctly
Declaration form issued by the German authorities in your country of residence and must be signed by you. You hereby confirm that you have provided all necessary information to the best of your knowledge and belief.
2 passport photos. These photos must be identical and taken within the last three months.
Passport and travel document which should :
- Valid at last three months beyond your scheduled departure from Germany
- Not older than 10 years
- Contain at least 2 blank pages
- Copy of previous visa
Round-trip schedule. A copy of the return flight booking with passenger details and data proving that the stay under the Schengen Agreement does not exceed 90 days
Proof of accommodation. Documents showing the German embassy/consulate where you will be staying in Germany during your trip. i.e. Hotel reservations. (One can log on to – Booking.com to browse cheap hotels in Germany!)
Proof of funding for travel to Germany. As per the European Commission, foreign applicants applying for a German visa must provide proof of possession of €45 per day to the German embassy or consulate during their stay.
Next is a cover letter explaining why you are applying for a visit to Germany, how long you will be staying and other details about your trip.
Proof of civil status, which can be a marriage certificate, a child’s birth certificate, a spouse’s death certificate, etc.
German Travel Health Insurance. Before you apply, you must have travel health insurance for the entire Federal Territory and all other Schengen countries. Your insurance must cover medical emergencies of at least €30,000.
Travel medical insurance for non-natives visiting Germany who meet German visa requirements can be purchased online from Europ Assistance or DR-WALTER. Travel insurance from all these companies is accepted by German authorities worldwide.
Additional German Visa Requirements Based on Employment Status
Additional German visa requirements depending on employment situation:
- Employment contract
- Checking statements for the last 6 months
- Leave permission from the employer
- Income Tax Return (ITR)
- Copy of business licence
- Company account statements for the last 6 months
- Income Tax Return (ITR)
- Certificate of enrollment
- School or college clearance certificate
- Pension certificate for the last 6 months
- Proof of regular income from the property for the last 6 months
Note: Kindly find the NOC letter for visa application from school or university.
Additional Requirements for Germany Visa for Minors
Additional German visa requirements for children applying for a short-stay visa are:
- Birth certificate for minors travelling to Germany.
- Application in German signed by parents.
- Family court order, where only one parent has sole custody of the child.
- Verified copies of parents’ ID/passports.
- Notarized permission from parents to enter Germany, signed by both
- parents/legal guardians, in case, if the minor is travelling alone.
Note: A legal guardian or parent must accompany the minor child when applying to the German Embassy/Consulate.
Documents Required for German Schengen Visa for Wife/Husband of German Native
If you apply for a German visa as a German citizen/spouse of a German citizen, you must also present the following documents:
- Proof of spouse’s German citizenship (ID card, consular card or German citizenship certificate).
- German marriage certificate.
- German domicile.
German Schengen Visa for the Members of Official Delegations
When applying for a German visa as part of an official delegation, following documents you need to present:
- Official copy of the invitation.
- Evidence of the purpose of the trip (negotiations, meetings, intergovernmental organisation events, consultations).
How Can you Apply for a German Short-stay Visa?
To complete the application process for a short stay visa to Germany, complete the following steps:
- Check the type of German visa you need
- Please check the where you require to apply
- Fill out the application form for a short-stay visa for Germany.
- Collect German legal visa requirements. And do not forget to:
- Get the travel health insurance done (you can buy this online at Europ Assistance or DR-WALTER).
- Book a flight
- Organise your accommodation.
- Arrange a visa interview
- Attend an interview at the relevant German Embassy/Consulate/VAC
- Wait for application response
Where can I apply for a Short-Stay Visa for Germany?
To visit Germany, you are required to submit your German visa application to the German representative authority in your country of residence. This representative could be:
- German embassy
- German consulate
- Visa application centres where Germany entrusts the issuance of visas
- Embassies/Consulates of other Schengen countries entrusted by Germany to issue visas
Who can Apply for a Schengen Visa at the German Embassy/Consulate/VAK?
If you are only visiting the Federal Republic of Germany and not other Schengen countries during this trip, you need to submit your Schengen visa application to the German Embassy/Consulate/VAC.
On the flip side, Schengen countries have created some rules that require an application if you are visiting multiple countries.
If you are not visiting Germany destination, do submit your application to the German Embassy/Consulate/VAC only if:
- You are spending more days in Germany than in other countries
- You are spending the same number of days in each country, but enter the Schengen Area via Germany.
Kindly note that it is not possible to apply for a short-stay visa to Germany from a country you currently hold a visa. To apply for a German visa, you must be a citizen of this country or have a residence permit.
How Long Does It Take to Get a German Visa?
Estimating the length of time your German short-stay visa could take can be up to 15 days, though it can be longer depending on the amount of applications received at the German embassies. Overcrowding during peak seasons can cause delays of up to 30 days, with the possibility of taking up to 60 days in extraordinary circumstances. To prevent any impediment in the issuance of the visa, you should submit the application as early as three months before the trip, but no later than 15 days before.
How much does it cost to apply for a German visa?
German Schengen visa fees are as follows:
- €80 for adults applying for a short stay visa
- €75 for adults applying for a long-stay visa
- €40 for children under 12
- Children under 6 years free
In addition, there are applicants’ categories who are exempt from paying fees and categories of applicants who are required to pay a lower amount.
Do check out the list of German Schengen visa fees to see if you belong to one of these categories!
How Long Can I Stay in Germany Without a Visa?
All nationals of the EU / EEA member nations have the capacity to enter and stay in Germany for a maximum of 90 days within a 180-day window. If they wish to remain for a longer period, they must register with the pertinent German authorities.
People from visa-exempt countries of Germany may remain in Germany and other countries of the Schengen area for up to 90 days, over a six-month period. To stay for a longer time, depending on their nationality, further actions are needed, such as:
- Residents of Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, the Republic of South Korea, and the United States of America must secure a residency permit from appropriate German authorities within three months of arriving in Germany.
- Other individuals from German visa-exempt countries ought to apply for a Germany National visa for longer stays from their home nation.
Citizens of nations that have yet to enter into a visa-free understanding with Germany and the other Schengen countries need to secure a visa prior to travelling to Germany or any of the other Schengen nations.
It is vital to be knowledgeable about the 90/180 Schengen Visa Rule. Failure to adhere to this regulation, even for a single day, may lead to adverse repercussions. The repercussions of exceeding the time limits of the Schengen area are illustrated here.
Can I Get an Extension of my Visa in Germany?
Of course, it is possible to prolong your German Schengen Visa, but only in extraordinary circumstances in which new evidence and special circumstances appear after you have arrived in Germany, for example, Humanitarian situations or factors beyond one’s control. You should take your extension to the Alien Registration Office (BAMF).
If you want to comprehend in what cases and under what provisions you can expand your German Schengen Visa, read ‘How to Extend a Schengen Visa in Germany‘.
Can I Revoke your German Schengen Visa?
Absolutely, your German visa may be withdrawn if the responsible German authorities determine that the prerequisites for giving the visa are no longer applicable.
If the termination of your visa occurs while you reside in German soil or in another Schengen participant land, you will be provided a time limit to depart. If you don’t leave the territory of the Schengen region within this time period, you will then be considered an unlawful inhabitant.
Please bear in mind that the inability of the visa holder to present the entrance needs to the boundary administrator may also result in an edict to cancel or revoke the visa, though not necessarily.
Long-Term Stays in Germany
If you stay in Germany for more than three months, you must apply for a “long-term visa“, also called a “D visa“.
- Visa to study in Germany. Apply for this visa if you want to study at a university in Germany.
- German family reunion visa. This visa is for family residing in Germany who wish to reunite in Germany.
- German work visa. This visa is provided to those who have a job offer in Germany
- Visa for German job seekers. Apply for this visa if you intend to visit Germany to work
- German visa for guest scientists and researchers. Scientists invited by German institutions for research or research purposes must apply for this visa.
Health Insurance If you Stay for Long-term in Germany
Individuals who are needed to have a compulsory visa to come into the Schengen zone should acquire either private or legal health insurance if they intend to live in Germany. Health insurance regulations vary substantially for guests, international students, and immigrants. For additional info about health insurance in Germany, please read:
An intriguing fact about Germany: Its main capital Berlin is nine times bigger than the French capital of Paris and has more bridges than the beautiful Italian city of Venice.