How to Get a Student Visa for Germany

Student Visa for Germany

Are you an international student looking to get a student visa for Germany? If yes then you are at the right place.

Germany has amazing universities that attract students from all over the world. But like any other country, Germany has its rules for who can come in. Depending on your home country, you might need a student visa for Germany. 

In this article, we will help you understand what you need as an international student to get a student visa for Germany. Let’s get started.

Key Takeaways

  • If you are from specific countries like the EU, Australia, Canada, or Japan, you may not need a visa to study in Germany.
  • There are three types of student visas: Language Course Visa, Student Applicant Visa, and Student Visa.
  • Apply for your German student visa at least 8 weeks before your planned travel date.
  • When in Germany, you will need to get a Student Residence Permit.
  • Make sure you have all the necessary documents for your visa application, including a passport, proof of civil status, and proof of where you will stay in Germany.
  • The cost of a German student visa is around 75€.
  • Processing time for a German student visa can vary, usually taking about 25 days.
  • As a student in Germany, you can work part-time, but there are limits depending on your nationality.
  • Your student visa for Germany is usually valid for 3 to 6 months, but you can extend it if needed.
  • If your student visa application is rejected, you can fix mistakes and reapply, but there is no guarantee it will be accepted.

What is a Student Visa for Germany?

If you want to study in Germany, you can get a student visa. You need to apply to a study program at a German university and get a letter of admission. It is also called a letter of acceptance. 

Different types of universities in Germany offer these study programs, like Universities, Universities of Applied Sciences, and Academies of Arts, Music, and Film.

Do You Need a Student Visa for Germany?

If you are from a certain countries, you can go to Germany to study without needing a visa. These countries include those in the European Union, as well as Australia, Canada, Japan, and others.

But if your country is not on that list, you will need a visa to study in Germany. But do not worry, we will help you figure out what you need to do in this article.

If you are from one of those countries we mentioned earlier, please remember that you must register with the Residents’ Registration Office within two weeks of arriving in Germany.

Also, some countries like Andorra, Brazil, and others need a visa if you plan to work during your studies or after you graduate.

Types of Student Visa To Study in Germany

If you are going to Germany for school, you will need the right visa. For longer-term educational visits, like going to university there, you will apply for the Germany National Visa (D Visa). This visa is for stays longer than three months.

There are three types of student visas for different situations:

  1. Language Course Visa: If you are going to Germany for a German language course that lasts between 3 months and 1 year.
  2. Student Applicant Visa: If you are still waiting for your formal acceptance letter from the university or need to take entrance exams. This visa lasts for 3 months. But you can extend it to 6 months if needed.
  3. Student Visa: Once you have been accepted to a German university, you will get this long-term visa. Please remember to register with the Alien Registration Office in your city within two weeks of arriving to get your German Residence Permit.
Germany Student Applicant VisaGermany Student Visa
Who needs it?Applied for a course and have a confirmation letter but have not received a formal admission yet.Already been admitted to a German university you have applied to.
Validity3 monthsLonger than 3 months
ExtensionExtend it for 6 more monthsYou need to get a student residence permit

When To Apply for a German Student Visa?

To make sure everything goes smoothly, it is best to submit your German Student Visa application and all the needed documents at least 8 weeks before you plan to travel to Germany.

How To Apply for a German Student Visa?

Applying for a German student Visa is easy if you have all the necessary documents. But it is important to be prepared. Here is what you need to do:

  1. Find the German Embassy or Consulate in your country. You can search online to locate it. 
  2. Visit them to submit your application. If there isn’t one in your country, you might need to go to a neighboring country where there is one.
  3. Check all the documents you need. Before your appointment, make sure you have everything they ask for. You can find out what you need on the official websites of German Embassies.
  4. Get ready for the interview. Look up common questions they might ask in the interview. And do not forget to bring proof that you paid the visa fee.

How To Get a German Residence Permit?

Once you arrive in Germany, getting your Student Residence Permit is important. Here is what you need to do:

  1. Register your address at the residents’ registration office.
  2. Schedule an appointment with the Immigration Authorities and get an application form.
  3. On the day of your appointment, bring the required documents:
    • Filled out the application form and registration confirmation letter.
    • Proof that you are admitted/enrolled in your study program.
    • Original certificates of your previous education.
    • Proof of your registered address in Germany.
    • Health insurance proof.
    • Proof of financial means such as a blocked bank account in Germany, letter of commitment, or a scholarship award.
    • Proof of English/German proficiency, depending on your degree program.
    • Confirmation of payment for the German Residence Permit fee.

Documents Required To Get a Student Visa for Germany

To apply for a German Study visa, you will need a bunch of documents. Here is what you will need:

  1. Fill out the Germany Student Visa Application form completely.
  2. Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your planned departure from Germany and has a blank page.
  3. Bring proof of your civil status, like a marriage certificate, birth certificate, or death certificate if applicable.
  4. Provide two high-quality identical photographs.
  5. If you have had previous visas, include copies of those.
  6. Show proof of where you will stay in Germany during your studies.
  7. Make sure you have health insurance that covers you for your entire stay in Germany.

a. For a Language Course Visa

  1. Write a letter explaining why you want to attend the language course.
  2. Include your CV, showing any internships or jobs you have had.
  3. Prove you have enough money to live on while you are there.

b. If you have not been admitted yet

  1. Bring your recognized school leaving certificates.
  2. Show confirmation that you have applied for the study program.
  3. If you are doing a preparatory course, show proof of that.

c. If you have been admitted to a university

  1. Bring your acceptance letter from the university.
  2. Show all your certificates from previous education.
  3. Write a cover letter explaining why you chose the university and how it will help your future career.

For programs in German, you will need a TestDaf or DSH score. For English courses, you will need TOEFL or IELTS scores.

How Much Does a Student Visa for Germany Cost?

When you apply for a German student visa, you will need to pay a fee of 75€. If you are under 18, it is 37.5€. You have to pay in the currency of your country.  Sometimes, you will need cash, other times a credit card, or a demand draft. 

Sadly, if your visa application is rejected, you will not get your money back. In some countries, if you have a scholarship from a German public institution like DAAD, you do not have to pay any visa fees.

Type of Student VisaApplication FeeProcessing Time
Above 18 years of age€751-2 months
Under 18 years of age€37.52-3 months

What Is The Processing Time of Student Visa for Germany?

The time it takes to process your German student visa can vary. It usually takes about 25 days. But it might be longer depending on where you apply and how busy the German Embassy is. Sometimes it can take up to 6-12 weeks, and in the longest cases, it could take 3 months.

What Is the Success Rate of a Student Visa for Germany?

Getting a German student visa is quite easy. Our research from 2023 shows that about 95% of students succeed in getting their visas. 

In simpler terms, for every 100 students who apply, 95 get approved. So, it is very unlikely that your visa application will be rejected. 

Just follow the seven basic steps carefully, and your chances of studying in Germany are very high.

Scholarships in Germany

Germany is a great place for students from all over the world because of its excellent education and reasonable costs. 

Also, there are many scholarships available to help you pay for your studies. 

Heinrich Boll Scholarships are for students at all levels, from undergraduates to PhD students.

Can You Work With a German Student Visa?

If you are a foreign student in Germany, you can work while you study, but there are some rules.

  1. If you are from EU/EEA countries or Switzerland, you can work up to 20 hours a week during term time. This includes voluntary work.
  2. For students from other countries, there’s also a chance to work, but you cannot work more than 120 full days a year, or 240 half days. And you cannot carry over any unused days to the next year.
  3. Once you finish your studies, if you want to work in Germany, you can extend your permit for up to 18 months. But you need to find a job in the field you studied.
  4. If you are a graduate of EU/EEA countries, you can stay and look for work without any limits. You can even apply for permanent residency after two years of working in Germany.

How long is the Student Visa for Germany valid?

When you get your study visa for Germany, it is usually for 3 months, sometimes 6. During this time, you need to come to Germany and do some paperwork such as applying for a residence permit. 

This permit will let you stay for your whole study period, usually one to three years. If you need more time to finish your studies, you can also extend your permit.

What Can You Do With Your Temporary Student Residence Permit in Germany?

As a student with a residence permit, there are important things you should know:

  1. You can extend your permit if needed, especially if your study program takes longer than expected.
  2. You are allowed to work during your studies, but there are limits on the number of days you can work.
  3. After finishing your program, you can stay in Germany for up to 18 months to find a job. If you get a job, you will need to apply for a different kind of permit.

What If Your Student Visa for Germany Is Rejected?

If your student visa application for Germany gets rejected, it can feel upsetting. But do not worry, you can fix mistakes or missing documents and apply again. Please remember, you will have to pay another fee for each new application.

If you believe the rejection is not fair, you can write a letter to appeal. Ask your local German Consulate for guidance on who to send your letter to.

In your appeal, explain clearly why you think they should accept your application. But, there is no guarantee that your appeal will work.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How can I get a student visa for Germany?

If you want to study in Germany, first, you will need to get a German student Visa from the German Embassy in your home country. Once you are in Germany, you will have to apply for a student residence permit at the Foreigner’s Authority.

2. How much money do you need for a student visa in Germany?

To get a student visa for Germany, you need to prove to the German Embassy that you have enough money. They want to see around EUR 11,208 per year. There are two main ways to do this. One way is to open a blocked bank account in Germany and put the money in there. Another way is to get a scholarship to study in Germany.

3. How long can you stay in Germany on a student visa?

This visa lasts for three months and lets you meet the requirements to join a German university. If you need more time, you can extend it for up to six months.

4. Can you live in Germany with a student visa?

As a non-EU citizen, you can stay in Germany while studying at a German university with a student residence permit. The permit lasts for one to two years and is given by the Foreigner’s Authority.

5. Is a German student visa hard to get?

In 2023, we looked into it and found out that about 95% of students who apply for a German student visa get it. That means if 100 students apply, 95 of them usually get approved.


If you are from another country and have been accepted to study at a German university, you can apply to get a student visa for Germany. This visa lets you do full-time university studies or prep courses before starting your main studies. 

It is crucial for students coming from outside Europe to get this visa to enter Germany. You should understand the visa process. It is important because it can determine your academic future here. 

It might seem complicated to get a student visa for Germany. But it is important to take it seriously. You do not want visa issues to ruin your chance of studying in Germany.

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