Temporary Residence with a Visa

A visa is an independent residence permit for the purpose of entry into the Federal Republic and for the initial period of the stay. The validity of a visa is therefore generally limited.

A visa is issued by the German diplomatic mission (embassy/consulate) for short or longer-term stays before entry into the Federal Republic. For short stays it can also be issued by the diplomatic mission of another Schengen country.

Note: Anyone attempting to enter the country without a visa will be turned back at the border. Anyone entering the country in breach of the visa regulations or making false statements will not obtain a residence permit as a matter of principle. Anyone entering the country illegally as a foreigner will always be sent back from the Federal Republic to the country that they came from.


The German Residence Act provides for the following types of visa: