Moving to Germany A Step-by-Step Guide

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moving to germany

Moving to a new country is never easy, and Germany has its fair share of obstacles and administrative problems for prospective expats to navigate. However, with a little forethought and a good dose of patience, you will soon be settling into your new life in Germany. There are numerous advantages to moving to Germany, which is why it is one of the top destinations for expats worldwide. Internationals in Germany enjoy a high quality of life and a handy, central position for visiting the rest of Europe, in addition to outstanding career prospects, high pay, and a fantastic work-life balance. 


Here are some steps that you need to follow for moving to Germany:

Sort out your Visas for German Immigration

First and foremost, you must establish your legal right to live and work in Germany (or study, if you are coming as a student). In general, if you are an EU citizen, you do not need a visa or a residence card to immigrate to Germany. You have the right to free movement within the EU and only need to register your address in Germany after arrival. 

If you are travelling from outside the EU and intend to stay in Germany for more than 90 days, you will need a national visa, which can be converted into a residence permit after you arrive. Citizens of Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, and the United States do not need to obtain a visa to enter Germany and apply for a residence permit. Your visa/residence permit will be determined by the aim of your stay in Germany, such as whether you want to work, look for work or study. So, make sure that you sort out your visas before moving to Germany. 

Also Read: How to Find Accommodation in Germany?

Organise your Finances

As you are no doubt aware, relocating to a new country is not inexpensive. Whether it’s paying deposits for rental property, hiring a moving company, or simply purchasing plane tickets, the costs may quickly pile up. Consequently, it is prudent to plan and initiate savings for these costs in advance.

Moreover, this presents an opportune moment to assess your financial situation, including the feasibility of transferring your pension to Germany and the types of bank accounts you’ll need upon arrival. While it’s possible to open a bank account in Germany, it’s advisable to have a preferred bank in mind beforehand. Prior to your departure from Germany, you can even schedule an appointment to set up a bank account. So, ensure that you manage your finances before moving to Germany. 

Also Read: Masters in Data Science in Germany

Sort Through your Paperwork

You’ll need a lot of paperwork to get started in Germany, including registration, health insurance, and opening a bank account. It’s a good idea to check ahead of time what documents you’ll need and have them ready. This could contain your passport and birth certificate, as well as, depending on your situation, your work contract, proof of a blocked bank account, confirmation of enrollment at your German university, or your marriage certificate.

You may need to have your documents translated and/or certified depending on your nationality or place of origin. If you hold foreign credentials, you may need to have them recognised in Germany. This is true if you desire to work in a “regulated profession,” such as medicine, law, nursing, or engineering. You can request this from your local recognition authority before moving to Germany.

Also Read: Student Life in Germany

Enrol in an Integration Course

To help newcomers acclimatize to life in Germany, the government created the integration course, a 660-hour intensive curriculum that combines language and “orientation” modules. Some people are required to complete integration courses in order to qualify for residency, while others can choose to do so voluntarily. This is an efficient and cost-effective method of learning German. 

Even if you are not eligible for an integration course, it is worthwhile to enrol in a German language course. You are not required to study German, but it will improve the quality of your life enormously if you can speak with locals on a basic level. Outside of the major German cities, English is not as frequently spoken as you might assume. 

If you don’t already have a job, studying German will improve your chances of getting one, and knowing a few standard words can make interactions with everything from the citizens’ office to the bank to the store that much easier. So, you can enrol in an integration course before moving to Germany.

Also Read: Intakes in Germany

Make an Appointment to Have your Address Registered

After arriving in Germany, one of the first things you should do is register your address at the local town hall. This appointment will provide you with a registration certificate (Anmeldebescheinigung), which is required for many other administrative activities in the federal republic. Following your appointment, you will receive your tax ID (which you will need to submit a tax return) in the mail. 

As registration appointments at citizens’ offices are in high demand (especially in larger cities), securing one can be difficult – especially since you are legally required to register within 14 days of arrival in Germany.

Most citizens’ offices allow you to arrange appointments online, so attempt to do so before you arrive. Some citizens’ offices also have drop-in appointments, allowing you to simply walk up on the day – but be prepared to wait! If you need one quickly, it’s worth revisiting the appointment booking page; some spots will almost certainly become available. 

Also Read: Know about the High Demand for Jobs in Germany

Get Your Health Insurance

Health insurance is required for moving to Germany. If you seek a residence visa, you must produce proof of coverage before your application is accepted, and as a student, you will be unable to enrol unless you have a student health insurance plan. 

Approximately 90% of the population is covered by statutory health insurance, which is handled by 96 insurance funds (Krankenkassen). These funds are all required to provide the same level of care and are not permitted to refuse coverage to anyone.

The insurance covers doctor visits, hospital treatments, and basic dental care. If you are employed, you will most likely be enrolled in a Krankenkasse through your company, although you can change to a different fund if you wish. 

Also Read: Language Courses in Germany

Consider Hiring a Relocation Firm

Consider dealing with a relocation firm if you need assistance with your moving to Germany. They can assist you with numerous administrative procedures related to transferring, such as obtaining visas and permits and getting housing, as well as shipping your goods and choosing a school for your child. 

Also Read: Scholarships for Highly Gifted Students at Universität Heidelberg


Q1. Which jobs are in demand in Germany?

Ans. The top professions that are in demand in Germany are: 
Nursing professionals,
IT specialists,
Craftspeople, and
“Green Jobs”

Q2. What is a good salary in Germany?

Ans. In general, an income of €70,000 to €80,000 per year is considered more than adequate in Germany.

Q3. How much money do you need to move to Germany?

Ans. As a general rule, aim to save at least three times your monthly costs. Upon your arrival in Germany, you may be charged a housing deposit equal to up to three months’ rent, insurance, and the cost of setting up your new home.

We hope that this blog gives you all the necessary information regarding moving to Germany. Many Indian students dream of pursuing education in foreign nations due to the exposure and career growth they offer. Consider joining a free counselling session with Leverage Edu if you plan to study abroad.

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