Changes from 1 January 2021
With the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020, some changes in immigration from the UK to Germany have taken effect.
We have gathered the most important information for students below:
As of 1 January 2021, UK nationals travelling to the EU and the Schengen area will be treated as third-country nationals. This means:
- There will be thorough checks at the Schengen area border.
- Persons who want to work in the EU or want to stay in the EU for more than 90 days within a 180-day period, will have to meet the entry conditions for third-country nationals.
- This could mean applying for a visa or work permit. You should check with the German Embassy what type of visa, if any, you will need. A national visa costs € 75 (approx. £ 60), if you receive a publicly funded scholarship, the visa is free of charge. Depending on the purpose of stay you should apply for the visa months in advance.
- Periods of stay authorised under a visa or permit will not count against the 90-day limit.
- If you are planning to stay in Germany for more than 3 months, you must register at your local registration office within 14 days of arrival. In Würzburg, this office is called Bürgerbüro.
- Students who would like to work in Germany: EU nationals can enter the German labour market freely. UK nationals may enter the country without a visa. However, they need to apply for a residence permit before taking up employment. For more information see: Working in Germany (below).
Students from the UK might be subject to international students’ fees after the transition period. At the moment, universities in Bavaria do not collect fees from non-EU students.
The UK will participate in EU programmes, including Erasmus+, until the end of the current programme period (2020).
This includes European exchange in terms of Erasmus+ until 2022. Students may still apply for Erasmus+ scholarships during that time. The Erasmus coordinator at your university can provide you with more information on this.
Since the decision was made that the UK would no longer participate in the Erasmus+ programme after the end of the current funding period, a new British programme to fund international student exchange was initiated, called the Turing Scheme. How this will affect relationships between European partner universities and student exchanges has yet to be determined.
British citizens should carry a UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) or a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with them when visiting Germany. This entitles them to medically necessary treatment in Germany even after 1 January 2021. If you currently own a EHIC, it is valid in Germany until the expiration date. After it has expired, you need to apply for a GHIC with the NHS before coming to Germany. For visits to the EU for study purposes, you will have to apply for a GHIC that is time limited to the duration of the course.
For more information, see the website of the NHS.
You can also find general information on (health) insurance matters when coming to study in Germany with our International Office.
Please keep in mind that you may need to take out a separate travel insurance when going abroad.
If you would like to work in Germany as a non-EU national, you always need a residence permit.
You can obtain this document after your arrival in Germany at the local Bürgerbüro. However, if you would like to start working immediately after your arrival, you need to apply for a visa from home. Your residence permit should state that you are allowed to work. You do not need the approval from the Federal Employment Agency as long as the work placement corresponds with your course of study. For more information see Working in Germany: The official website for qualified professionals.
A residence permit to complete an academic internship can be issued for the duration of the internship and for a maximum of six months. During this time, you are not allowed to obtain other employment.
For a short checklist on how to get a residence permit to complete a study related work placement in Germany as a non-EU national, please refer to the Federal Government’s website.
Please note that this information is subject to change, largely depending on the outcome of the negotiations currently underway between the EU and the UK.
Last updated in March 2021.