4.1 Visa formalities necessary for studies in Germany

German embassies and consular representations will provide information on current entry and residence requirements for Germany.

Applicants for university studies from the following countries do not require a visa to enter Germany:

  • European Union
  • EEA states: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway
  • Switzerland

as well as:

  • Andorra
  • Australia
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • El Salvador
  • Honduras
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Monaco
  • New Zealand
  • San Marino
  • South Korea
  • USA

Applicants from these countries must, however, apply for a residence permit after entering Germany (► 5.1.3).

Applicants from all other countries need a visa for studies in the Federal Republic of Germany. A tourist visa does not entitle the holder to register as a student. Information on current entry regulations and the application forms are available from the Federal Foreign Office (Auswärtiges Amt).

Arrival in Berlin should be reasonably early, i.e. at least 2 or 3 weeks before the semester begins, in order to allow for sufficient time to look for a place to live, deal with the registration formalities and to prepare for studies. Information sessions in faculties, departments and institutes are usually held before lectures start. The International Office of the HU offers specific orientation sessions for international students. Humboldt students organise tours of the various campus areas and semester breakfasts for newcomers. All these events are announced online.