Before entering Germany there should be a sufficient time frame for obtaining the necessary documents so that the stay abroad can begin within the scheduled time. One of the most important documents is the visa.
Citizens of the European Union are exempted from the visa requirement according to §2 FreizügG/EU as well as citizens of Island, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland and citizens who are allowed to apply for a Residence Permit after having entered Germany.
There are two kinds of visa: on the one hand the so-called “Schengen-Visa” (“C-Visa”) which is only suitable for short-time-stays up to three months, on the other the German Visa (“D-Visa”) for stays which should last longer than three months and in case that it is intended to take up an employment in Germany.
The application for a visa has to be made before entering Germany at the German authority in the country of origin. It is strongly recommended to start the visa application procedure early. The German authority in the respective country of origin will file the application for visa to the responsible foreigners’ authority in Germany which will then check if all the requirements for the issue of a visa are fulfilled. The German authority in the respective country is not allowed to issue a visa until the foreigners’ authority in Germany has given its approval.
The fees for a visa are 60 Euros at the moment. The processing time for visa procedure varies, according to the scheduled length of stay, between a few days and several months. More detailed information as well as application forms can be found and downloaded from the homepage of the German authority in the respective country of origin.
Please note: If you want to stay longer than 90 days or if you plan to take up an employment in Germany you will need the German Visa (“D-Visa”) in any case because this kind of visa is an indispensable requirement for obtaining a Residence Permit for Germany. If you only have a “Schengen Visa” (“C-Visa”) a Residence Permit can not be accorded, which means that the holder of this type of visa has to leave Germany after 90 days.
These indications shall only serve as a first general orientation. With regard to the differing individual circumstances of each stay as a foreigner in Germany and the corresponding legal provisions it is absolutely necessary to contact in any case and as early as possible the responsible foreigners’ authority in Germany.