Apply for a visa for a short stay in Germany and the Schengen area Unfortunately this specification of service has not yet been completely translated.

Nationals who require a visa for a short stay in Germany or in the Schengen area must apply for one in good time before entering the country at one of the missions of the Federal Republic of Germany.

If you are a national of a state listed in Annex I of the European Union Visa Regulation (VO (EU) 2018/1806), you need a visa for short stays of up to 90 days per period of 180 days in the Schengen area. In the Legal basis section you will find the regulation including Annex I.

If Germany is your only destination or main destination (in the Schengen area), you can apply for a visa at a German mission abroad (embassies and consulates); the same applies if you do not have a main destination but intend to enter the Schengen area via the German external borders. The German embassy or consulate where you must submit your application depends on your place of residence. In many countries, the application can also be submitted to a service provider. In countries where Germany does not have a diplomatic mission or consular post, it may be possible to apply for a visa for travel to Germany at another Schengen partner.

The visa generally entitles the holder to stay up to a maximum of 90 days within a period of 180 days, e.g. for visiting, business and tourist purposes.

Agreements between the EU and individual third countries make it easier for their nationals to apply. You can find information on this on the list of countries with visa facilitation.

If you are a national of a country listed in Annex II of the Visa Regulation of the European Union (Regulation (EU) 2018/1806) and you do not intend to pursue a gainful activity, you do not need a visa to enter the Schengen area.

  • a valid travel document (e.g. passport)
  • biometric photograph
  • a completed and signed application form
  • proof of adequate and valid travel health insurance
  • proof of the purpose of your trip and the conditions of your stay in Germany
  • Proof that you can pay for your stay and your return journey
  • Details of the documents required for a visa application can be found on the website of the relevant German mission abroad and in the information sheets posted there.
  • Forms: yes
  • Online procedure possible: no
  • Written form required: yes
  • Personal appearance required: generally yes

Related Links

  • Antrag auf Erteilung eines Schengen-Visums, Kategorie C, auf der Seite des Auswärtigen Amtes
Auswärtiges Amt (AA)


  • You will need a valid travel document.
  • You must submit a completed and signed application form.
  • You must be able to demonstrate the purpose of your journey and the conditions of your stay.
  • You must be able to demonstrate that you will leave the Schengen area before your visa expires.
  • You must not be the subject of an alert for refusal of entry in the Schengen Information System (SIS).
  • You must not constitute a threat to public policy, internal security, public health or the international relations of one or more Member States of the Schengen area.
  • Verordnung EG Nr.810/2009


Persons listed in Article 6 of the EU Visa Regulation (e.g. holders of diplomatic passports, civilian air or sea crew) are exempt from the visa requirement.

Related Links

  • 6 Absatz 1 Aufenthaltsgesetz (AufenthG)
  • Verordnung (EG) Nr.810/2009 (Visakodex)
  • Verordnung (EU) Nr. 2018/1806 (EU-Visa-VO)

Related Links

  • Übersicht über die Auslandsvertretungen auf der Seite des Auswärtigen Amtes: Länderübersicht
  • Internetseite des Auswärtigen Amtes
  • Visabestimmungen auf der Internetseite des Auswärtigen Amtes
  • Liste der Länder mit Visumpflicht bzw. -freiheit auf der Seite des Auswärtigen Amtes
  • Liste der Staaten, deren Staatsangehörige ein Visum für Kurzaufenthalte (bis zu 90 Tage) im Schengen-Raum benötigen
  • Liste der Länder mit denen Visumerleichterungsabkommen bestehen auf der Seite des Auswärtigen Amtes

As a rule, you must submit the application documents in person:

  • On the website of the German diplomatic mission or consular post in your place of residence you will find the application form and detailed information on which documents you need to enclose with the application.
  • Please book an appointment for the application in good time.
  • You can hand in the complete application form and the required supporting documents either directly to the German mission abroad or to an external service provider.
  • When you hand in your first application, your fingerprints will be taken (these must be re-scanned every five years).
  • The visa will be affixed to your passport in the form of a label.
  • Only if you cannot be granted a visa will you receive a written decision, which will also inform you of the legal remedies available to you against this decision.

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