Visa Requirements for German Citizens

Check the visa requirements for citizens of Germany to travel to countries around the world.

Visa Requirements for German Citizens

Visa requirements for German citizens are administrative entry restrictions placed on nationals of Germany by authorities of other states around the world.

According to the current Henley Passport Index ranking, the German passport is the 3rd most powerful passport in terms of travel freedom. German passport holders are currently able to travel to approximately 120 countries without obtaining a visa.

It is necessary to check the visa requirements for German nationals before planning a trip as these requirements may vary depending on the country of destination, the intended period of time the traveler is planning to spend in the chosen country, and the purpose of the trip.

Almost all the visa-exempt countries for German nationals allow travelers to visit their territory for a short period of stay, most between 15 days up to 6 months. Furthermore, German passport holders have freedom of movement in Schengen Area countries, for which they only need to have a valid ID Card.

Although it may not be necessary to obtain a visa to gain entry to visa-free countries, it is possible that German passport holders need to obtain an electronic travel authorization before departure.

German nationals who wish to travel to any country not on the visa not required list needs to obtain a visa. This may be an embassy or consular visa, a visa on arrival at border entry checkpoints, or an electronic visa through an online application.

List of Visa Countries for German Passport Holders in 2020

German passport holders are able to gain entry to several countries without a visa.

However, to travel to other territories they will need to meet the visa requirements stated by the authorities. German nationals are currently required to obtain a visa for around 120 countries across the world.

German citizens need to obtain the correct visa type depending on the state they visit, the expected amount of time they will spend there and the purpose of the travel, whether a tourist visa, work visa, study visa, business visa, or transit visa.

For around 100 of these countries, it is necessary to apply for a visa before departure from Germany. This travel authorization may be obtained in person at the nearest diplomatic office of the destination as an embassy visa, or by means of an electronic visa online application.

Some of the states that offer the option to obtain an electronic travel visa authorization also have a visa on arrival facility at border entry checkpoints. However, obtaining a visa on arrival usually involves the need to wait in line to complete an application form.

Find below a list of the countries for which German citizens need to obtain a visa.

Electronic Travel Visa Authorization

An Electronic Travel Visa Authorization system allows citizens from Germany to obtain an online eVisa or an electronic visa waiver, depending on the territory they wish to travel to and the purpose of the trip. This makes it possible to obtain travel authorization without the need to apply in person at a diplomatic mission.

Although some countries do not require German nationals to obtain a visa, their visa policy states that travelers from Germany must pre-register for an electronic travel authorization before arrival in the territory. This allows any potential security or health risks to be identified among visa-exempt travelers.

Other visa-requested countries have implemented an online form to obtain an eVisa, which accelerates the application process and eliminates the need to obtain it in person.

Many approved authorizations are electronically linked to the traveler’s passport and also sent to the traveler by email. Travelers may be required to print a paper copy to carry with them to present upon arrival.

Most electronic travel visa authorizations for German citizens are approved as a multiple entry permit and allow travelers to spend between 8 to 90 days in the territory. Many are valid for multiple years, or until the associated passport expires.

See below a list of the territories for which German passport holders can apply for an Electronic Travel Visa Authorization.

Visa on Arrival

A visa on arrival is a kind of travel authorization that nationals from Germany can obtain once they arrive at their destination, at a border entry checkpoint.

German passport holders traveling to a territory that has the option to obtain a visa on arrival are able to go directly to a border checkpoint. Travelers must then usually wait in a queue to receive a visa on arrival application from an immigration officer.

Once the form is completed, it is usually necessary to pay the visa on arrival fee. In some cases, it is only possible to pay this fee in cash and with the local currency.

The majority of visa on arrivals for German nationals allow visitors to spend between 8 days and 6 months in their respective countries, and usually valid for purposes of tourism, business, or transit.

A number of countries who offer visa on arrival also allow travelers to apply for an eVisa before departure from Germany. An eVisa application greatly expedites the process and eliminates the need to wait at a border checkpoint. It also allows the applicant to pay the visa fee electronically.

Check below the complete list of countries that offer visa on arrival for nationals of Germany.

Embassy Visa Required

An embassy visa for German citizens is a travel document that needs to be obtained in person from an embassy or consulate of the country of destination, before departure from Germany.

Currently, German passport holders are required to apply for an embassy visa for around 70 countries, including a number of African states.

To obtain this type of document, applicants are required to make a visa appointment at the nearest embassy or consulate of the destination country in Germany. Travelers are recommended to do so far in advance of their expected departure date, as in some cases it can take up to 2 weeks or more to receive an approved embassy visa.

In order for an embassy visa to be approved, the applicant is usually expected to bring a completed visa application form to the consular appointment. It is also usually necessary to present a variety of different supporting documentation determined by the type of visa the traveler requires.

Below you can find the main destinations where German passport holders can visit by first obtaining an embassy visa.

Visa Not Required

For some countries, German passport holders are not required to obtain a travel document such as an electronic authorization or a visa.

Currently, German citizens can travel to around 120 countries visa free. This list includes, amongst others, almost all of the European countries who have signed the Schengen Agreement, for which German passport holders have freedom of movement and only need to have a valid ID Card.

To travel to other countries that have a visa-exempt policy for German nationals, it is necessary to present a valid German passport to gain entry upon arrival.

Travelers from Germany are able to stay for a short period of time, between 15 days and 8 months, and for purposes such as tourism, transit, or business.

If the purpose of the visit or the expected stay period is different from what has been mentioned, the traveler will be required to obtain an embassy visa in person for the intended destination, before leaving Germany.

Find below a list of the visa-exempt countries for travelers from Germany.

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