Moving to Germany (in times of COVID-19) – a handy guide

Posted in Blog by theresabrucksch on August 24, 2020

If you’re planning on moving to Germany soon, you probably have lots of questions about what it will be like and how Covid-19 might change things? Not to worry, we’ve put together a little guide for you, with some hints and tips for your move to Germany.

Health Insurance

No matter if you are an international student or a professional starting out in your career, you will need health insurance for your stay in Germany. Without health insurance you won’t be able to gain admission for your studies or get your visa, so it is very important to plan ahead. Depending on which country you are coming from, if you have health insurance already, you may be able to claim on your existing policy but you must check with your provider. If you are planning to do an internship, a student employment contract, a student assistant position or a part-time job during your studies in Germany, you must have German health insurance. You can find a list of the various health insurance companies here.

 

Make sure you have your visa

For a stay longer than 90 days in Germany, you generally need a visa. If you enter from a country of the European Union, the European Economic Area or Switzerland, this does not apply.  For most countries it is necessary to obtain a visa from the relevant foreign mission before entering Germany. The Foreign Office in Germany offers a Visa Navigator, with which you can find out which visa you should apply for. The entry regulations have recently changed due to the coronavirus. To ensure everyone’s safety, the German government has imposed entry restrictions. You can find out for which countries these restrictions apply or have already been lifted and which separate regulations for students and employees exist on the website of the Federal Ministry (the list gets updated every 2 weeks). Please also be aware that due to the current situation you may have to expect longer waiting times when applying for your visa.

 

Plan your journey

Whether you travel by plane, train, bus or even ferry, there are basically several different ways to travel to Germany.  Currently there are certain travel regulations, that must also be observed in public transport. These include keeping a safe distance to others, and in most federal states also wearing mouth and nose protection masks. Please note that despite the entry permit, there are Corona regulations. If you have stayed in a “Corona risk area” within 14 days before entering Germany, you are obliged to provide a negative corona test or to quarantine yourself for 14 days immediately after arrival in Germany and inform the public health department about your entry. The list of risk areas is published by the Robert Koch Institute. The corona test result must not be more than 48 hours old. In many countries the test can be taken before you leave to Germany or directly after your arrival, e.g. at the airport. If a test should not be available at your arrival, the test can also be made at a doctor’s surgery. You can find out where a test can be taken at the medical appointment service by calling 116 117.

 

Open a bank account

You do not necessarily need a German bank account for your stay in Germany if you have an existing international account or use an online or mobile bank. If you want to open a bank account in Germany, you can choose from a variety of banks, including commercial and savings banks that operate stores in several cities throughout Germany and online banks that provide a full range of services online. To open your account, you usually need a passport or identity card, a confirmation of registration from the Residents’ Registration Office and, if you are a student, your student ID or a certificate of enrolment. Our local Nido team will be happy to provide you with information about which bank branches are located near the residence.

 

Register your new address

Once you have moved into your Nido apartment, you will need to register your new address at the residents’ registration office, usually within a week or two. The German post office offers a Behördenfinder on their website, which you can use to find the Residents’ Registration Office in your area. To register at the Residents’ Registration Office, you need your passport or identity card and a completed and signed confirmation of accommodation, which you will receive from your local Nido house team. At the registration office you will be asked to fill out a registration form, after which you will receive your registration confirmation, which you should keep safe. The confirmation of registration is very important to obtain a residence permit.

 

Apply for your residence permit

If you are not from the European Union, the European Economic Area or Switzerland and stay in Germany for more than 90 days, you will need a residence permit in addition to your visa. To apply for a residence permit, you have to visit the Foreigners’ Registration Foreigner’s Registration Office  in person within three months. For your application keep in mind to bring a valid passport, eventually a visa, the confirmation of registration from the registration office, proof of health insurance, money for the application fee (110 Euro), if available a certificate of enrolment and eventually a health certificate, your tenancy agreement and a passport photo.

 

Find your new home away from home 

Now you’re all sorted to move to Germany, the last step is choosing your accommodation. If you’re studying or working in the following cities we have a variety of options for you to choose from ready for you to move straight in. You can even book your room online today, it’s that easy.

 Head over to the NIDO STUDENT SITE to see what properties are nearby or drop us a line on +49 (0) 30 40361160 for more information on our student residences.

COVID-19 Note: Flexible booking policy

Due to the current situation we offer a flexible booking policy. You can now book your room and sign your leasing contract worry-free online. We’ve got you covered if you’re delayed and even if you can’t make it at, we’re here to support. You can find further information about this policy on our website.