British students enrolled at a UK university do not require visas or residence permits for internships related to their current course of study provided that the hosting institution has obtained ‘agreement’ (Einvernehmen) from the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit). Any visa-free stay in Germany may not exceed 90 days within a 180-day period and, in addition, the internship may not total more than 90 days within one year. This privilege also applies to all other nationals who do not require visas for visits not exceeding 90 days within a 180-day period.
For internships exceeding the time limits outlined above, British citizens may apply to the local immigration office (Ausländerbehörde) for their residence permits after arrival in Germany and without having obtained a visa prior to travelling to Germany. Please note that you need to register your new residence (Anmeldung) with the authorities (Meldebehörde) within 2 weeks of having moved in and apply to the local immigration office (Ausländerbehörde) for your residence permit within the first 90 days of your stay in Germany. This privilege is also extended to citizens of Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Korea (Republic) and the United States of America. We strongly recommend contacting the local immigration office as soon as possible after your arrival in Germany in order to secure a timely appointment.
Please note that you may only start your internship once you have been issued a residence permit explicitly authorising the employment as an intern. You may also choose to apply for a visa prior to travel, effectively permitting employment as an intern from the first day of visa validity.
All other nationalities require a visa prior to travelling to Germany.
Study-related internships (Studienfachbezogenes Praktikum) require the ‘agreement’ (Einvernehmen nach § 15 Nr. 6 BeschV) of the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit). The ‘agreement’ needs to be applied for by the German hosting institution/ company (guidance for the host is available here – in German).
Only students currently enrolled at a UK university and having completed a minimum of four semesters in their current undergraduate course may undertake a study-related internship. This minimum requirement does not apply to graduate or post-graduate students.
Under German minimum wage legislation, interns must be paid the German national minimum wage (currently €12/hour, subject to change). Only students on a mandatory internship/ placement are exempt from minimum wage requirements.
Under German law, all residents must have sufficient health insurance cover. Please read our additional information on health insurance requirements.
How to apply for your visa:
1. Complete the VIDEX online application form, print one copy of the form including the barcode page (page 7) and sign the form on pages 5 and 6. Separate application forms are required for each applicant; all children also require separate forms).
2. Compile your supporting documentation to bring to your appointment:
- Printout of the online application form including barcodes (as under #1)
- Valid passport signed by the holder, issued within the last 10 years and valid for at least six months. The passport needs to have at least 2 consecutive blank pages (i.e. a blank double page spread).
Plus 1 photocopy of the passport biodata page
- Current UK residence permit (BRP)/ visa (non-British applicants only)
Plus 1 photocopy of the permit/ visa.
- 2 fully biometric passport photos, size 35 x 45 mm. Consult our FAQs for detailed requirements.
Confirmation of agreement (Einvernehmen) by the Federal Employment Agency
Letter from the Federal Employment Agency confirming agreement (Einvernehmen) with a named student undertaking an internship with a named company (original required).
Internship contract (copy sufficient)
Confirmation by UK university that student is currently enrolled indicating subject of course, dates of commencement and anticipated completion of course.
In case you are not being paid the national minimum wage:
Written confirmation by the student’s university that the internship/ placement is a mandatory requirement of the student’s degree course.
Evidence of sufficient funds to support yourself during your stay (valid as of 2023, subject to change). Options below may be combined, provided that the total requirement is being met. Please note that NO alternative evidence of funds is acceptable.
Internship remuneration of minimum EUR 964 gross/month
OR blocked account holding minimum EUR 934/month.
OR evidence of scholarship of minimum EUR 934/month
OR evidence of UK student loan indicating the maintenance loan component per month (minimum EUR 934/month), term or year
OR formal commitment (Verpflichtungserklärung) by sponsor resident in Germany.
- Confirmation of health insurance cover commensurate with the level of statutory German public health insurance (gesetzliche Kankenversicherung).
- Academic curriculum vitae
Processing time: For some visa categories, we will require approval from other German government agencies, such as the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit) or the local immigration office (Ausländerbehörde). If you have previously lived in Germany this will add to processing times, as the immigration office may need to look into your previous immigration record. Once a decision has been made on your application, we will contact you.
In this visa category, most applications are typically processed within 2 weeks.
Although we will provide you with a file number, please understand that we cannot respond to questions regarding the status of your visa application. Should we have any questions or should we require additional documentation to process your application, we will contact you.
3. Book an appointment to apply for your visa.
Where to book your appointment/ apply for your visa:
All internship visas must be applied for with a Visa Application Centre run by our external service provider, TLScontact.
TLScontact operates from London and Manchester (serving the German Embassy in London) as well as Edinburgh (serving the German Consulate General in Edinburgh) with two distinct jurisdictions and your place of residence determines which Visa Application Centre you will need to contact to apply for your visa. Please refer to our consular district map for additional details.
If your application is successful, you will be issued a limited-validity entry visa - similar to a UK entry clearance. Students on an internship placement may be issued a visa covering their entire stay. Please make sure to check the validity of your visa. Once you have arrived in Germany please register your new residence with the local authorities (Meldebehörde) within 2 weeks of having moved in and apply to your local immigration office (Ausländerbehörde) for your Electronic Residence Permit. We strongly recommend contacting the local immigration office as soon as possible after your arrival in Germany in order to secure a timely appointment.
Further information on living and working in Germany is available here.