Applying for a Germany Visa in the UK

Applying for a Germany Visa in the UK

German Schengen Visa Requirements and Application Guidelines for the UK Residents

Any UK citizen who holds either a full UK passport or a BOTC, BOC, BPP or BS passport can travel to Germany visa-free. On the other hand, many non-EU nationals who reside in the UK are still required to get a Schengen visa to travel to Germany. Moreover, Germany is quite demanding on the issue of document requirements for visa application and tends to enforce strict guidelines for the application process.


In recent years, following visa liberalization policies for non-EU countries, the number of countries whose nationals require visas to travel to Europe has slightly dropped. Here is the list of nationalities that are still required to get a Schengen Visa to visit Germany and other Schengen states.

Stat: As per 2016, Germany has issued a total of 1,853,655 uniform Schengen visas from 2,004,235 applications received.

Below you can find more information on applying for a Germany visa from the UK.

Who can apply for a Germany Visa from within the UK?

Citizens of these countries who have been residing in the UK for at least three months and plan on visiting Germany are required to get a German visa in order to be able to enter Germany.

You should apply for a visa at the German Consulate General in the UK if:

  • Germany is the only Schengen country you plan on visiting
  • Germany is your main destination (the country you will be staying the longest in)
  • Germany is the first Schengen country you are visiting

In case you plan on staying in Germany for more than 90 days you must apply for a residence permit, not a German Schengen visa.

Please note that if you are not a resident in the United Kingdom you should apply at the German Embassy in your country of residence.

Germany Visa application documents and requirements for UK residents

  • A valid passport or Travel document. Please make sure that:
    • Your passport has been issued (not extended) within the previous 10 years,
    • Your passport has 2 full blank pages, one for the visa stamp and an additional spare page,
    • Your passport will be valid for at least three (3) months after the date you exit the Schengen Area.
  • A valid UK residence permit or other form of Identity Card. The UK residency permit must be endorsed in the actual passport (or on a new biometric ID card)
  • One application form filled out completely and signed by the applicant (please read the explanations carefully). You can also apply via 3rd party websites like this one here. You have to pay an extra fee for their services, but they will also help you with Appointment booking, Documents checking, Visa application as well as with Visa and Passport collection. For more information, please click here!
  • One passport format photo that has a light background, is rightly coloured, and shows full face features. The photo must be less than three months old and be glued on the application form. Applications with stapled photographs will be rejected.
  • A cover letter that explains the purpose of the visit to Germany
  • Proof of travel arrangements: Round trip flight/travel reservations or other proof of intended transport and complete itinerary of your visit to Germany (if several Schengen States will be visited or if the trip covers several Schengen States and non-Schengen countries).
  • Travel Health Insurance stating that you are covered in case of a medical emergency and repatriation not just in Germany, but in the whole Schengen zone (minimum coverage of € 30.000).
  • Proof of accommodation in Germany:
    • Evidence of a hotel booking or rental agreement, or
    • Invitation from your German host (family member, friend) along with a copy of their passport or ID (Proof of sponsorship if dependant)
  • Proof of financial subsistence:
    • A recent statement of UK bank account for the last three months that shows funds of at least 50 £ per person per day spent in German, or
    • Traveller’s cheques
  • Important note: Starting from November 20, 2015 persons applying for a short-term visa are required to provide fingerprints (biometric data) as an additional document.
    • Children younger than 12 years of age and applicants who are not physically capable of providing fingerprints are exempted from this procedure.

Note: Photocopies of the original documents should also be submitted and documents should not be more than one month old.



Documents listed above are documents required in all cases regardless of the purpose of your visit in Germany. Depending on your employment status, here is a list of additional documents that are required for your visa application:

For employees:

  • Employment contract
  • Current bank statement of the latest 6 months
  • Leave permission from the employer
  • Income Tax Return (ITR) form or Certificate of Income Tax deducted at the source of salary

For the self-employed:

  • A copy of your business license
  • Company bank statement of the latest 6 months
  • Income Tax Return (ITR)

For foreign students:

  • Proof of enrolment
  • No-objection certificate from school or university

For retirees:

  • Pension statement of the latest 6 months

If unemployed and married to an EU citizen:

  • A recent (less than 3 months old) Confirmation of Employment letter from their spouse’s employer stating the position held within the company as well as the starting date,
  • Spouse’s valid passport
  • An officially translated marriage certificate. The translation must be in English or German and must be certified as a true copy by the Embassy of the country where the marriage took place or by the Legalization Bureau of the Foreign Office in UK

Requirements for children under the age of 18

Underage children must be accompanied by parents or a an adult guardian at the application center at the German Embassy Consulate General. Also, minors who are granted a German visa are not allowed to travel to Germany by themselves. They should be accompanied by an adult during their stay in Germany.

Required documents for visa application for underage children

  • Original birth certificate among others.
  • Signed travel consent from both parents
    • If one parent is not located in the UK they should submit their signed consent to the German Embassy/Consulate of their residing country

Note: All documents must be either in German or English or officially translated by a certified translator.

To find more about the documentation needed for applying for a visa to Germany click https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/germany-visa/ or http://www.germany-visa.org

How to apply for a Germany Visa from the UK?

To apply for a Germany visa you must book an appointment with the German Embassy in London or German Consulate General in Edinburgh. This can be done in two ways:

  • By booking an appointment directly at the German Embassy in London or German Consulate General in Edinburgh.
    • You can book an appointment every working day from 9am to 10am except on holidays:
      • 2 January
      • 14 April
      • 17 April
      • 1 May
      • 25 May
      • 29 May
      • 5 June
      • 28 August
      • 3 October
      • 25 December
      • 26 December
  • Through VFS Centres.
  • You can also use the services of another third party company such as IAM.

Reasons why you should apply through the IAM website

  • IAM’s visa advisors will contact you as soon as possible to confirm the suitable date and time for you to attend the visa processing center in the UK.
  • They will fill in an Application Form for Germany Schengen visas online to secure your appointment and send it to you together with a complete list of requested documents and the confirmation of your appointment.
  • The IAM’s team will assist you in collecting the required documents and checking your prepared application to make sure your application has the highest possible prospect of success.
  • If you cannot collect your passport yourself, IAM’s representatives can arrange for collection. Alternatively, you may choose to have your application sent back by registered mail when you make your visa application.

For more information, please click here or start the visa application by filling the form online here!

How to choose where to apply?

  • If you are residing in England or Wales then you should apply with the German Embassy  London.
  • If you are residing in Scotland or Northern Ireland then you should apply with the German Consulate General in Edinburgh.

Postal application – Only for applicants who fall under the jurisdiction of the German Consulate General in Edinburgh

(Source: German Missions in the UK)

To apply by post you are required to include 55 £ in the application envelope along with all the required documents

You qualify for post application only if the following conditions are fulfilled:

  • You have provided biometric data at any other Schengen country Embassy/Consulate and
  • You belong to at least one of the following categories of applicants:
    • You are the spouse of an EU national
    • You have been issued with at least two Schengen Visas during the last 24 months
    • You have been issued with a Schengen Visa with a validity of at least one year during the last 24 months
    • You have been issued with a Schengen Visa from the German Consulate in Edinburgh during the last 12 months
    • You are a student from China


Note: You can also send your application at the Consulate General in Edinburgh in person on Monday or Wednesday at 11.30 am

Germany Visa application and processing time

You can apply for a German Schengen visa 90 days before your planned trip. Usually the visa application process takes a minimum of 5 working days. However, for nationals of the following countries the application time takes at least 14 working days (Source: VFSGlobal):

  • Afghanistan
  • Algeria
  • Egypt
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan*
  • Kuwait
  • Lebanon
  • Libya
  • Mali
  • Mauritania
  • Morocco
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • North Korea
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Qatar
  • Rwanda
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Somalia
  • Sudan
  • Syria
  • Tajikistan*
  • Tunisia
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vietnam
  • Yemen

*Note: except for diplomatic and service passport

Considering the time application processing takes, you are advised to apply 3 to 6 weeks in advance of your trip to Germany.

Germany Visa fees for UK residents

Since Germany is a Schengen state, visa fees are the same as any other Schengen visa. These are the costs of a German Schengen Visa when applying from UK:

Schengen Visa Category (by age) Fee in UK Pound Fee in Euro
Adult 51 £ 60 €
Child between 6-12 years of age 30 £ 35 €
Child younger than 6 years of age Free Free

Note: Keep in mind that these fees may change depending on currency fluctuations and can be paid only in UK Pounds. Payments can be made in cash and by credit or debit card

Visa fee exemptions

The following persons are exempted from Visa fees:

  • Children younger than 6 years of age
  • Family members of an EU/EEA national
    • Documents required for exemption:
      • Original Marriage Certificate, or
      • Civil Partnership Certificate
      • Original full Birth Certificate
      • EU/EAA national’s passport.
  • Persons travelling for the purpose of study or educational training and are accompanied by teaching staff such as:
    • School pupils.
    • Undergraduates and postgraduates.

Documents required for exemption: A letter from the school principal/dean that states that trip is an obligatory part of the school/college programme.

Germany Visa fee discounts

For nationals of countries that have visa facilitation agreement with the EU visa applications cost only 35 € ( 29.70 £). Nationals of countries that are granted visa discounts are:

  • Albania*
  • Armenia*
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina*
  • Cape Verde
  • Georgia*
  • Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*
  • Moldova*
  • Montenegro*
  • Russia
  • Serbia*
  • Ukraine*

*Note: This only applies to those nationals who do not hold a biometric passport.

Frequently Asked Questions on Applying a Germany Visa in the UK

What can I do if I cannot make it on the day of the appointment?

If you cannot make it on the scheduled day of the appointment, you must book another appointment as it is not possible to reschedule.

Do I have to come in person?

Yes, all applicants are required to show up in person at the German Embassy/Consulate for a visa application

Am I guaranteed to obtain a visa?

No, you are not guaranteed to get a visa. To have a better chance of getting a positive answer, please make sure you provide all the required documents.

Tips:

What can I do if I’m not granted a visa?

If your visa is refused you can appeal against the decision free of charge. You must provide a refusal letter to justify your grounds of appeal. You should keep in mind that all fees are non-refundable and do not serve as a guarantee of your application’s success.

Can I get a visa the same day I apply?

Only in cases of extreme medical emergency you can obtain a visa on the same day of your application. However the German Embassy/Consulate has the final say in this case.

Does a non-EU spouse/family member of a UK national need a visa to Germany?

The spouse of a UK national (EEA/EU national) is required to obtain a German visa. However, if the following conditions are met then they are not required a visa:

  • The spouse holds a UK Residence Permit that states that the holder is a family member of an EU/EEA National
  • Travelling with or joining the EEA/EU spouse in Germany.

Related visa information for the UK Residents:

Embassy & Consulates of Germany in the United Kingdom