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You can find out whether you need a visa or not on the website of the Federal Foreign Office: Overview of visa requirements/exemptions for entry into the Federal Republic of Germany

Do not enter Germany with a tourist visa if you want to stay for more than three months. A tourist visa cannot be converted to a student visa.

Do you need a visa to enter Germany?

As a citizen of an EU member state, of Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway or of Switzerland, you only need a valid identity card or comparable proof of identity to enter Germany. Please visit the website of the Federal Foreign Office for a complete list of countries showing the entry requirement (visa no/yes).

Citizens of other countries

In principle, a visa is required for entry, which must be applied for at the responsible German embassy in your home country before entering Germany.

If you have been admitted to a study program or a preparatory course (e.g. German intensive course), you will need a visa for study purposes. This is usually issued for a period of three months. If so, after your arrival you will have to apply for a residence permit at the Foreigner's Registration Office within these three months. The duration of a residence permit is usually one year.

For more information about the visa application process you have to contact the German embassy or consulate in your home country. You can find the contact data on the Website of the Federal Foreign Office:

Proof of sufficient funding for studies

Applicants from outside the European Union must prove that they have enough money to finance their studies and living in Germany. For this purpose, they must provide proof of financial means when applying for a visa. Proof of sufficient financing is also required when applying for a residence permit after arrival.

  • “From 1 January 2023, the presumed annual requirement that must be paid into the blocked account when applying for a visa amounts to 11,208 euro.” source: Federal Foreign Office
  • "From the winter semester 2024/25 onwards the annual requirement will be 11.904 Euro." source: 
  • “With a blocked account, you can provide evidence during the visa application process that you have adequate financial resources.” source: Federal Foreign Office 

Providers of a blocked account

Expatrio, Fintiba and Coracle are examples of providers of a blocked account for proof of funding when applying for a visa.

They also offer travel health insurance and health insurance while studying in Germany. With such a combination offer, applicants can save time and effort. A combination contract can be concluded via the internet from the home country.

As we can currently observe, the DAAD advises to obtain precise information about the services offered and, if in doubt or unclear, using alternative providers when setting up a blocked account.

Academic Evaluation Centres (APS) in India, China and Vietnam

The Academic Examination Centres (APS) in India, China and Vietnam check formal university entrance qualifications for studies at German universities. Among other things, the authenticity of university certificates acquired in these countries is determined.

Applicants from India

Since 1 November 2022, prospective students with Indian school or university credits who wish to pursue a preparatory course, Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Germany must submit an APS certificate when applying for their visa.
Prospective students who receive a scholarship financed by European funds and doctoral students whose doctoral supervisor does not require an APS certificate for enrolment are exempt from verification.

The APS application is made online:

Contact to the APS office in New Delhi:

Gate No. 3, DLTA Complex, R.K. Khanna Stadium, 1 Africa Avenue, 110029 New Delhi, India

Applicants from China

Akademische Prüfstelle des Kulturreferates der Deutschen Botschaft Peking
Landmark Tower 2 / Büro 0311
8 Dongsanhuanbeilu Chaoyang Bezirk
100004 Beijing

Telephone: +86 10 65 90 71 38

Applicants from Vietnam

German Embassy Hanoi, APS
29 Tran Phu, Q. Ba Dinh
Hanoi | Vietnam

Telephone: +84 24 3267 3335

Telephone enquiries Monday – Thursday from 2:00 p.m. only.