Tourist visa for Germany: What do I need for the visa application? Germany?


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Would you like to visit great cities like Berlin, Hamburg or Munich? Perhaps go on a romantic tour of the castles? Or would you like to experience a Volksfest? Germany is a popular holiday destination that attracts millions of visitors every year. Depending on which country you come from, you will need a tourist visa for Germany to enter the country.

If you are not coming to Germany as a tourist, you may need a different visa. You should therefore always find out about the different types of Germany visas before you travel! Find out more about the tourist visa for Germany below.

Tourist visa for Germany

As a tourist, do I need a visa for Germany?

Germany is one of the 26 Schengen countries. The Schengen area is a large area in Europe (not to be confused with the EU!) That is particularly attractive for travelers as it is one of the world’s largest contiguous areas without border controls! To travel to Germany and the Schengen countries, a visa is required depending on your nationality. If you want to know straight away whether you have to apply for a tourist visa for Germany or not, then click on our list of visa countries.

If you come from one of the 26 Schengen countries or from an EU country, you do not need a visa. In addition, there are around 60 third countries (e.g. USA and South Korea) for which a visa is not required. Citizens of these countries will have to be prepared for the electronic entry document ETIAS from 2022. However, 104 third-country nationals do require a visa to travel to Germany and the Schengen area. You must also apply for a tourist visa for Germany for tourist trips.

How long can I stay in Germany with a tourist visa?

There are different types of visas for the Schengen area. If you want to apply for a tourist visa for Germany, you need the Schengen visa in category C.

The C visa Germany enables short-term stays in the Schengen area and is suitable for visits, tourist or business purposes as well as medical treatment. The tourist visa works like all Schengen visas according to the same principle: You can stay in the Schengen area for a maximum of 90 days within 180 days .

A distinction is also made between a simple visa, a double entry and a multi-visa. With a single entry tourist visa Germany you can only enter the Schengen zone once. If you leave the country even if your visa is still valid, you must apply for a new tourist visa for Germany in order to be able to re-enter. If you have a double-entry visa, you can enter the Schengen zone twice. The multi-visa makes multiple entries possible.

Important: It is only important that you adhere to the 90-day period regardless of the number of your entries !

How long is a tourist visa for Germany valid?

The tourist visa Germany is usually a short-term stay that is limited to a maximum of 90 days. In addition, however, the period of validity is also decisive. There are some Schengen visas that are explicitly issued as transit visas for only a few days for the purpose of transit, other visas are sometimes valid for 5 years.

NOTE: If you are being issued a tourist visa for Germany for the first time, it is possible that your first visa will only be issued for the duration of your exact travel duration (e.g. exactly 14 days for your planned stay from March 1st to March 14th).

Where do I apply for the tourist visa?

You can apply for your tourist visa Germany at the German diplomatic mission in your country. This can be an embassy or a consulate. For your first visa application you have to present yourself personally

One of the reasons for this is that your fingerprints have to be taken. In large countries such as Russia, China and Turkey, the German diplomatic missions work together with official service providers. These partners are located in all major cities of the said countries, so you don’t have to travel to Moscow, Beijing or Ankara in person. However, you will incur additional processing costs for the service provided by these service providers!

Tourist visa for Germany

How much does a tourist visa for Germany cost?

The visa fee for the uniform Schengen visa C, i.e. the tourist visa Germany, has been 80 euros since 02.02.2020, which you have to pay when you apply. 

Due to the visa facilitation agreement, a reduced fee of 35 euros applies to citizens of the following countries:

  • Albania
  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bosnia-Herzegovina
  • Georgia
  • Macedonia
  • Moldova
  • Montenegro
  • Serbia
  • Ukraine
  • Russia

What do I need for a German tourist visa?

Before you have your personal appointment with the German diplomatic mission or the official service providers, you should make sure that you have filled out your visa application correctly. 

The usual tourist visa for Germany is issued as a single-entry visa. If you plan to enter and leave the Schengen area two or more times, you should make a note in your application for the tourist visa that you would like a double-entry or multi-visa.

Checklist for the application for your tourist visa Germany:

  • Completed visa application
  • A valid passport, which is not older than ten years, is still valid three months after the end of your trip and has at least two pages left for the visa
  • Two biometric passport photos
  • Your travel and flight plan
  •  Address for accommodation in Germany (reservation of the hotel room or campsite or a letter of invitation, if you have been invited)
  • Financial proof that you can afford the trip (e.g. bank statements from the last three months or other proof of assets)
  • If a sponsor should cover the costs of your trip, a declaration of commitment is required
  • Schengen travel health insurance that covers at least EUR 30,000 for medical emergencies and is valid for the entire Schengen area
Tourist visa for Germany

Submit your visa application on time!

You can apply for your tourist visa for Germany 3 to 6 months (depending on your home country) before you start your trip. Processing times may vary. It is best to use this period to protect yourself from unpleasant surprises. 

Make sure you get your visa before you travel! You should apply for your tourist visa Germany at least 3 weeks before your vacation trip.

FAQ: Tourist visa Germany

Which visa for Germany as a tourist should you choose?

If you would like to visit Germany as a tourist and require a visa, then you need the Schengen visa in category C, which enables short-term stays of up to a maximum of 90 days in Germany and in the Schengen area. The C-Visa Germany is perfect for family visits, tourism and business purposes as well as medical treatment.

How long is a tourist visa for Germany valid?

The tourist visa for Germany falls into category C of the visa types in the Schengen zone. It enables a short stay of up to 90 days in Germany and the Schengen region. The 90-day period applies to all Category C Schengen visas: You can stay in Germany and the Schengen zone for a maximum of 90 days within 180 days, unless a shorter period of stay is explicitly stated on your visa label!

How much does the tourist visa Germany cost?

The fee for the tourist visa Germany is 80 euros. For some countries, a reduced fee of 35 euros is charged as part of a visa facilitation agreement. However, if you apply for your tourist visa for Germany through an official service provider, there are additional processing fees.

Expaturm aims to help educate Expats in Germany on key issues that they will have to deal with while living in Germany by providing everything you need to know about Banking, Healthcare, Lifestyle, and Housing in Germany


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