Departure to Munich

Passport, Visa & Permits to Munich

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There are different visa requirements for people of different countries. For EU members and international guests of certain countries a tourist visa is NOT required if the duration of stay is less than three months. Guests from all other countries need to get a tourist visa before they leave for Germany. For more information on who requires visa and the process involved, please click here.

Visa Types

There are two key German visas.

Short term Schengen Visas that allow the holder to move freely throughout the entire Schengen Community for up to 90 days within a period of 6 months and provided that the applicant does not intend to work. Schengen Visas must be applied for at the diplomatic or consular mission of the country of your main destination.

Long term Residence Permits that are issued by an individual member state. They are generally linked to a specific purpose (e.g. study, work) and entitle the holder to remain in this state's particular territory for an extended period of time. However, with a Residence Permit you can also travel the rest of the Schengen Area for up to three months.

Cards: If you want to work more than 3 months, you must have a specific visa (Aufenhaltserlaubnis). You must go to the office for foreigners (Ausländerbehörde) with:

  1. Your passport
  2. You accommodation contract
  3. Your work contract
  4. Your registry at the town hall (Anmeldebescheinigung)
  5. 3 identity photos

Come with an International citizen form (your own town hall will indicate you how to get it). You will then get the form EG-Ausländer that you and your company have to complete. Then bring it back to the above office or send it by mail. You should get your authorisation card within the following 2-3 weeks.



The work permit for foreign nationals

Starting in 2005, Germany is making a greater attempt to encourage highly skilled workers to move to Germany. The professions most in need are natural scientists (biologists, chemists, physicists) engineers, professors and scientific personnel in high technology areas.

The new German Immigration Act allows highly qualified persons to be granted permanent residence and permission to work from the outset, rather than five-year work permits as was previously the case. Family members who enter Germany with highly skilled workers who have obtained a visa, or family members who join them later in Germany, can obtain the right to work in Germany as well.

Foreign students also have reason to be happy. Foreign graduates of German universities will have a year to look for a job if they wish to stay in the country. Self-employed immigrants will also feel more welcomed under the new law, provided they invest one million euro and create ten new German jobs.

It should also be noted that Germany is a member of the Schengen Agreement. With a Schengen Visa, you can entry one Schengen country and travel to other Schengen visa countries freely.

Residence Permit

As of the 1 January 2005 introduction of the new German Immigration Act, foreigners need only obtain a German residence permit, which gives them the right to work, rather than separate residence and work permits. Citizens of the US, Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, and Switzerland may apply for their residence and work permit while remaining in Germany as visitors. Citizens of these countries, however, are not allowed to work in Germany until after their work and residence permit application is approved.

Citizens of most other countries are required to apply for and obtain a residence and work permit prior to entering Germany at their German consulate.

The procedure is as follows. The residence permit application (also work permit) is received by the German embassy in the applicant’s country. The Embassy passes the application to the immigration office. In co-operation with the local employment office, a decision is made. If the application has been approved, the Embassy provides an entry visa to the candidate. Once in Germany, the foreign national and any accompanying family members must apply for their work and residence permits at the local foreigners authority. For more detailed information, please click on the link below.

Update 2/04/2008


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