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Registration, visa and residence in Berlin

- Registration at the local public office (“Bürgeramt”)
- Types of student visas
- Application for residence permit
- Extending your stay in Germany
- Becoming a German (citizenship)

Registration at the local public office (“Bürgeramt”)

As soon as you have found an apartment, you are obliged to register "Anmeldung" at the local public office “Bürgeramt” within the first two weeks. Every time you move to a different city, area or house you need to register at the office and give them your former and current address.

You will need to bring the following documents to register:

Insider Tip: The opening hours in the different local public offices fluctuate between the different districts. Therefore, check out the opening hours before you go. Furthermore, some offices offer appointments online. In case you don’t have an appointment try to be there very early otherwise you will end up in a long line.

Further information can be found on the website of your university or at the Studentenwerk Berlin. The Studentenwerk Berlin has also put together a great checklist concerning the arrival procedures.

Types of student visas

Please consult with the Germany Embassy or Consulate in your home nation for visa information specific to your country.

Student visas are granted for a period of 3 month and need to be extended by the German authority within this time period. Click here for details.

There are three different types of student visas:

The following documents are required to apply for a student visa in Germany:

For details please click here or visit the website of the “Ausländerbehörde”
The DAAD provides students with a Pre-Departure checklist.

Application for residence permit

After you got your three-months study applicants visa by the German Embassy in your country, you need to apply at the aliens office for a residence permit in order to be able to stay longer than the initial 3 months. In some cases the universities can do it for you, therefore you should check the homepage of your university.

You will need the following documents for your application:

Where to apply for your residence permit

Office "Ausländerbehörde" (Aliens office)
Friedrich-Krause-Ufer 24
13353 Berlin, Germany


Subway U9 to Amrumer Straße footpath through Torfstraße, turn left after a little bridge across the canal
City railway: S 4 / Westhafen
Bus: 127, 227, 248


Office Hours

Monday & Tuesday

7am - 2pm


10am - 6pm

Wednesday & Friday

Closed (They are often open fot students at the start of the semester - check the website under "Aktuelle Information" first!)

Experience reports by other students & recommendations:

If you are not under time pressure, we recommend to get an appointment online. The waiting time for an online appointment is about 6-8 weeks.

Extending your stay in Germany

International students need to leave the country as soon as their studies are finished. If you would like to extend your stay you need to apply for another residence permit at the aliens office before your visa expires.  A lot of students try to extend their visas to do an internship in Germany.

You will need the following documents for your applications:

Becoming a German (citizenship)

In general, the German citizenship is established by descent from a German legal mother or a German legal father. You can also obtain the citizenship by applying for it. Before you can do so, you need to fulfill some prerequisites like the following: