Visa and entry requirements for Hamburg greatly depend on where you live and how long you plan on residing there. Obviously, your needs as a student will vary from those that are just travelling there, so you need to make sure that you have exactly what you need in order to travel. Get all of your paperwork in early and you should have no issues with the process.
Here are the general rules for travelling to Germany as a foreigner.
- Citizens of the European Union, Norway, Switzerland, or Liechtenstein, you only need to have an identity card or passport to enter the country; there is no need for a visa.
- If you are staying for less than 90 days, and you are from Venezuela, Vatican City, Uruguay, Singapore, Seychelles, Paraguay, Panama, Nicaragua, Mexico, Mauritius, Malaysia, Macau, Croatia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Chile, Brunei, Brazil, Bolivia, Bermuda, Barbados, Bahamas or Argentina, you do not need a visa to initially enter the country.
- If you are from Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, and the United States you can apply for a visa, even after they’ve arrived in Germany. Citizens from other countries have to apply for a visa ahead of time.
More information and the rules about the different countries may change, but you can find this information easily. The consulate and the German Embassy in your home country can help you find the information that you need in order to travel to Hamburg.
There are different visas that you may have to apply for depending on what you are doing. The type of visa necessary depends on how far you are in the application process and what you are doing at the Hamburg university. If you have already been accepted and you have confirmed your attendance, you can apply for a visa and stay in the country for education purposes. If you haven’t been accepted yet, if you haven’t visited the university yet, or you need to come to the country in order to take a placement test or other test, then there are visas available for those who are applying to go to a Hamburg university.
These visas are special visas that usually do not cover your entire stay in the country of Germany; they normally only last for three months. If you decide to stay longer, or must for your program of study, you need to apply for an additional residence permit in the country. You can do this easily at the Aliens Department after you’ve changed your registration.
In order to obtain your visa and/or residence permit, there are a variety of documents that you will need to have:
- Proof of health insurance in Germany (Mawista Student – from 33.10 EUR per month).
- Proof of financing.
- Confirmation of university admission/certificate of enrollment
- Identity document
- Visa (for the residence permit)
The whole process can be very confusing and can last a long time, so it’s important that you start applying for the appropriate documents as soon as you can, so that confirmation comes quickly and that you can keep moving forward. If you are planning on spending your entire academic career in Hamburg, this is even more important.
If you still have problems or questions, your university’s international office can help you with anything that may come up. Their councillors are specially trained to help international students navigate through the ins and outs of the process. If you are only studying abroad for a term, your home university can also help you figure out what you need to do in order to attend.
If you have any questions or need help with the process of going to study in Hamburg, you can also contact the Federal Foreign Office in Germany via their website at: