Visa and City Hall Registration

Important Information during the Corona-crisis

Concerning residence permits, work permits and visas

  • Residence permits/visas (and therefore also the corresponding work permits) that have expired in the Corona interim period (from about 17.03.2020) or will soon expire remain valid until an appointment can be made with the Immigration Office. This includes the 120-days work permit.
  • Persons with residence permits for Germany who are currently staying abroad and whose residence permit expires abroad can contact the Immigration Office in Kiel by e-mail in order to obtain a fictional certificate that allows them to re-enter Germany.   
  • Appointments that were canceled during the closure of the Immigration Office in Kiel, do not need to be requested again. The Immigration Office will send out new appointment invitations to those, whose appointments were canceled.
  • Appointments that were scheduled for the period after the re-opening of the Immigration Office (from May on) do not need to be requested again. The Immigration Office will send you a new appointment invitation letter or a confirmation of your scheduled appointment.

Concerning residence registration for new arrivals and new address registration for those who have moved at the Residence Registration Office:


Visa required for students from NON-EU countries


International students who come from a NON-EU country need - with a few exceptions, please check with the next German Embassy - a visa to enter Germany. This visa can be obtained from the respective German Embassy abroad. A basic distinction is made between two types of visa:

The Schengen visa is issued for a short-term stay (e.g. tourist stay, participation in the summer language course) of up to three months per half-year. Caution: If you have a Schengen visa, you must leave the country after three months at the latest. The Schengen visa is therefore not suitable if you want to study, do a doctorate or research in Germany.

A national visa is issued for a stay of more than three months and therefore needed if you want to study or do a doctorate or research. As a rule, you will have to present the following documents to the German embassy or consulate responsible for you:

  • the admission letter of the German university,
  • health insurance coverage,
  • proof of any academic achievements already completed,
  • proof of any knowledge of German or a planned language course in Germany,
  • documents proving the financing of living expenses during the studies (proof of financing, e.g. a blocked account)
Starting January 1, 2020, the presumed annual requirement that must be paid into the blocked account when applying for a visa will increase to 10,236 Euros (853 Euros per month). This increased amount applies to all visa applications submitted from September 1, 2019.
For more information check the website of the Federal Foreign Office.

Within the framework of the REST Directive, it is possible for third-country students to reside and study in Germany without a German residence permit if they have already been granted a residence permit in another EU member state within the meaning of the REST Directive. The prerequisite for these facilitated mobility conditions within the EU is not only the sending of a digitally filled out notification ( download for the notification form Mobility according to §16a AufenthG) as well as the form for proof of subsistence (download form for proof of subsistence) but also:

  • Residence permit of the first EU member state for study purposes and within the meaning of the directive (Attention: this must be valid for the entire duration of the stay in Germany, as the stay within the framework of mobility is based on the residence permit of the first EU member state).
  • Proof of participation in a Union or multilateral programme with mobility measures or the agreement between the universities (this can be, for example, an Erasmus contract or a binational study programme).
  • Proof of admission to the host higher education institution
  • Recognized, valid passport/passport replacement
  • Proof that you have sufficient means of subsistence (currently at least Euro 853,-- per month, this also includes proof of health insurance valid in Germany) - necessary: bank account balances

All documents need to be sent in pdf format to not later than 5 weeks before your planned arrival day in Germany!

Another option is a visa for a language course. But beware: This visa is only valid for the duration of the language course. It cannot be converted into a visa for study purposes. If a language course is to be taken in connection with a course of study, this must be stated when applying for a visa. A study visa or a student applicant visa must be applied for for this purpose.

Registration in Kiel

All persons who move to Germany (citizens from the EU, the EEA AND all NON-EU citizens) must register with the responsible residents' registration office in their city upon arrival in Germany. If you have an apartment in Kiel, you can register for an appointment via the following online portal:
Please note that you can only register here if you live in Kiel. You can register for an appointment in the main city hall as well as in the city hall branches in districts of Kiel.
Here you will find the information you need for registration: (German only)
If you do not live in Kiel, please contact your local authority to find out where and how to register.

We recommend that you register for an appointment before entering Germany, as soon as the German Embassy has approved your visa, or as soon as it is certain that you will travel to Kiel and live in Kiel.
Starting November 15, 2019, the residents' registration office of the city of Kiel will offer an open consultation hour on Fridays from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. We recommend getting there early to get an appointment for the day.


Application for a Residence Permit

EU and EEA nationals

do not require a residence permit in Germany.

Nationals from third countries (NON-EU)

must apply for an appointment with the responsible immigration office after entry and registration at the City Hall in order to obtain a residence permit. However, in order to apply for an appointment, you must prove that you already have an appointment to register at the relevant City Hall, as this determines which immigration office will be responsible for you.
If you have an appointment for registration at the City Hall in Kiel, you should also make an appointment at the Kiel Immigration Office by sending an email to In your email be sure to include your family name, your given name, your date of birth and the reason for the appointment.

The appointment invitation will be sent to your registered address. Make sure your name is on the mailbox to ensure delivery of the appointment invitation.

If you live in another city, please inquire where the responsible immigration office is and how you can arrange appointments there.
In general, you will need the following documents:

  • Completed confirmation of registration (Meldeschein) from the Einwohnermeldeamt / Bürgeramt (Residents' Registration Office)
  • Proof of private or statutory health insurance
  • Student card of the university
  • Proof of financing
  • Valid passport
  • Money for fees (ask your foreigners authority about the rates beforehand)

However, your responsible immigration office will inform you - when you make the appointment - what you need to bring along in your case. After checking your documents, the immigration office will convert your visa into a "residence permit for study purposes". The residence permit is initially limited to one to two years. Since study programmes usually last several years, you will have to extend your residence permit again.

If you have any questions, please contact
Jan Bensien