Formalities for International Students
Formalities regarding residency in Germany
Many people who come to the University of Bremen need a visa to enter Germany. This will be issued by the responsible German representation in your country. Further information can be found on the website of the Federal Foreign Office of Germany.
Citizens of the European Union do not need a visa. Also for some other countries (for example USA, Japan) no entry visa is needed.
Details can be found on the website of the German representation responsible for you.
Overview of visa requirements/exemptions for entry into the Federal Republic of Germany
After arrival in Bremen, you must apply for a residence permit at the latest four weeks before the expiry date of the entry / study visa.
You can do that on campus at Bremen Service University BSU.
What you need for this are:
- Valid passport
- Registration certificate (can also be obtained from BSU)
- Proof of health insurance
- Enrollment certificate or admission letter from a university
- Proof of finances (secure livelihood - currently 720 euro, per month)
- 1 (recent) biometric passport photo
- signed application form Antragsformular
- During preparatory studies – additionally a registration certificate for the language course and, if necessary, proof of university entrance qualification
After you have arrived in Bremen, register as a citizen of the city within two weeks at the Stadtamt in Bremen. You can do this at the Stadtamt on our campus, at the BSU (Bremen Services University).
What you need for this are:
- Valid passport
- Form “Registration” (application form)
- Certificate issued by your “landlord/landlady”
After presenting these documents to the Stadtamt (BSU) you will receive a confirmation of registration.
Health insurance is compulsory for most people in Germany. Some statutory insurance companies have their offices in the glass hall on the campus
Overview of the German health insurance system in different languages
Deutsche Insurance - an insurance agency offers international students interested in statutory health insurance an easy-to-understand, multilingual online platform
Set up a checking account
The normal account for the settlement of payments at the bank is called Girokonto.
Before deciding on a financial institution, check which bank is right for you. Compare account maintenance fees and availability. Ask if the bank offers a student account (free of charge under certain conditions, e.g. age limit).
To open a current account (Girokonto), you will normally need your passport and student ID, and possibly your confirmation of registration.
In Germany, it is not common to send checks to the payee through the mail (for example to the landlord)! The rent is usually transferred from the current account.
Opening times vary from financial institution to financial institution. The following usually applies: Weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., on Thursdays also until 6.30 p.m., closed at noon from 1 p.m. to 2.30 p.m.
Überweisung - Transfers
Transfer is the name of the process when you want to wire money to another account. You will need to complete a transfer form.
Dauerauftrag - Standing order
You instruct your financial institution to automatically transfer regular fixed-rate payments (such as rent) by an agreed date (for example, on the first day of a month).
Lastschrift - Direct debit
Direct debit is a convenient method of payment if you have to pay regular amounts in variable amounts (such as for your telephone). You then give the recipient a written “direct debit authorization”, so he may deduct certain amounts from your account. You do not have to be afraid of misuse because you can undo wrong bookings and stop the authorization at any time.
Formalities for studies
Semesterbeitrag – The semester contribution has to be paid by all students of the University of Bremen and is also obligatory for exchange students. It is not a tuition fee!
Students intending to continue their studies in the next semester must re-register within the confirmation deadline (until 15 February or 15 August) by paying the semester contribution.
The students are responsible for compliance with the deadline. You will not receive a separate request to pay the semester fee.
The semester contribution encompasses the cost of the semester ticket as well as contributions to the Studentenwerk - Student Welfare Services (for example refectory, housing) and the AStA (general student representive body) as well as the administrative fee. Exchange students do not have to pay the administrative fee.