A German language course visa is specially designed to enable students to take their courses in Germany. You can enter Germany and stay there for up to six months to complete your language studies.
Use this guide for the application process to ensure that you get your visa for language study.
Language Visa Germany
In the guide, we explain a German language course visa and how long you can use it to stay in Germany. We shall also explain how you apply for your language visa and the documents you need to present in the application.
What is a German language course visa?
A German language course visa is provided to students who want to learn German in an accredited university programme or school for at least six months. However, the course should not take more than two years within a five-year period.
Do I Need to Apply for a German Language Course Visa?
The language visa Germany is open to anyone enrolled in an intensive German course. The process is quite easy. However, if you plan to stay in the country for more than three months, you must apply for a residence permit.
Language Visa types for Germany
Sprachkursvisum (Language Visa)
Sprachkursvisum is an entry visa for those who want to study German in the country. The foreign language allows you to stay in the country for up to 90 days to learn German. There are over 400 institutions teaching German in the country. You can only apply for a German language visa if your home country has an agreement with Germany regarding the study-based permit.
In many cases, you will receive a residence permit when you arrive in the country. Therefore, your employer or the landlord will not be asked to submit additional documents when they sign a contract with you.
Arbeitsgenehmigung (A Work Permit)
The work permit allows employees from outside Europe to work within Germany's borders for the six months they will be in the country. This permit is provided to employed people, freelancers, or self-employed craftsmen such as consultants and lawyers.
Germany Language Course Visa Requirements
Before applying for a visa, you must find and apply for the course in an institution that offers intensive tutoring. This course should last at least four weeks, with lessons lasting at least eight hours daily. This course should include listening, speaking and reading skills and touch on grammar and vocabulary.
- You also require a student visa, which you apply for at the consulate of your home country before taking your trip to Germany. Here are the requirements for obtaining a student visa.
- Prove that you can support yourself financially for the time you will be studying in Germany. (For example, you can show that you have saved enough money for the study and general expenses.)
- You should have valid health insurance before you enter the country. This ensures that your medical costs are not passed on to the taxpayers if anything goes wrong while studying in the country.
Things You Can't Do with the Language Course-Based Visa
Change the Visa Status
Once you receive the German language visa, there is no opportunity to change your status. You must remain with it for the entire duration of its validity. If you wish to extend your stay, work, or live in Germany, you have to apply for another visa that allows you to do so, as this one does not give any options for admission or permanent residence.
Germany Language Course Visa Application Process
Germany is the best location to study the German language. After being enrolled in an institution offering an intensive German course, you can apply for a language course visa and get to learn from the best schools around. Visit your local embassy or consulate and submit the required documents. Here are the documents that you need.
- Proof that you have been enrolled in a German language school that has the approval of the Federal Office of Administration (called the Bundesverwaltungsamt).
- Proof that you have completed the language visa Germany application form and attached the photo as required.
- Proof of heath insurance
Documents You Need to Apply for the Language Course-Based Visa
Here are the documents you must submit when applying for the language course-based visa at your local embassy or consulate.
- Visa and passport (where these are applicable) Residence permit
- Proof that you have been enrolled in a German language course in any of the accredited institutes or schools that offer non-formal education. (For example, the Deutsch-Uni Sprachcaffe or the Goethe Institute.)
- Proof that you have financial sufficiency (ability to pay a full month’s rent and expenses). You could present a letter from your bank stating the amount in your account, as long as it is at least a full month. If this is not possible, you could send scanned copies of bills that show the amount of cash available in the bank to cover the living costs when staying in Germany.
- If you will stay with friends and family but will be taking care of your costs, you need to provide evidence using any of the above items.
- A health insurance policy that will cover medical expenses abroad. Its coverage must include repatriation where necessary and treatment abroad until the age of 70 if travelling across Europe. This way, nobody will have to take on the burden if you get sick in the country.
- Proof that you have accommodation. (A contract signed by your landlord or utility companies for bills such as water and electricity for the house you intend to live in.)
- Proof of knowledge of the language: Even if you are coming to study the language, you need to be able to communicate while in the country. Show proof that you have studied the language back home.
The Photo Requirement
As explained earlier, you need to attach a photo to your visa application. There is actually a requirement for two recent photos. These photos should not have headgear or glasses. Each background must be light grey or white and clearly show your face. Blur the images behind you so that they are not visible in the image.
Where possible, have one of the pictures taken in natural light. However, ensure that it is not taken in direct sunlight as it may cause shadows on your face, making it hard for the scanning software to pick your image accurately. It does not mean that there cannot be any shadows on the image. It only needs not to be too dark. You can try to scan the image to see if it is okay.
Send copies of these documents and keep the originals. However, ensure that you use a high-quality printing paper and, ensure that you use high-quality printing paper and, preferably, a colour photocopy of the documents where possible.
How long does it take to get a German language visa
It takes about 15 days to get approval for a visa to study German in Germany. However, it might be longer or shorter depending on the status of your application and if you are requesting another type of visa (such as a tourist or student one). Start the process at least two months before the admission date for your German language course.
The Recognised Certifications for the Studies
When you get a recognised certification, it means that you have a certificate of language proficiency. There are several levels of proficiency that can be classified into two groups.
Level A1 to C2: This class covers all levels, from beginner to advanced. It also aligns with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). It covers the basic skills you need to communicate effectively in German; writing, reading, listening and speaking.
CAE: Certificate of Advanced German Language Proficiency. The CAE level is a step below the C2 level discussed above. This certification is based on the academic study of literature.
What Are the Benefits of a Language Visa?
You have the opportunity to stay in Germany for the period specified by the visa you have and work as a language assistant. You can also work while studying in the country and gain admission to a prestigious German university. If you wish to extend your stay in the country, you can always apply for a residence permit with the Federal Office of Migration and Refugees. The latter visa lasts for up to 18 months.
The language course visa is one of the options available to enter Germany. However, there are several types of visas that you can apply for if you intend to stay in the country for longer, both working and studying. Consult your local consulate or embassy for the best visa type depending on the length and objective of your stay in Germany.
Most people go for a language-based visa as it is fairly easy to apply for if you have met all the requirements for enrolling in an intensive German course. Check the list above for the documents you need to present at your local consulate or embassy.
The German language course visa gives its holders a golden opportunity to learn a new language while still living in Germany. A recognised German-based school is more likely to offer quality German courses than international language schools out there. The visa is open to any citizen whose country has an agreement with Germany on study-based visas. This guide shows you all the documents you'll need to apply for a visa, so you don't run into any problems. Follow each section carefully.