It’s ‘Japa’ season, and many able Nigerians are thinking of migrating to a foreign country. The most popular destination is either the UK, Europe, or Canada due to several opportunities for foreigners and the Nigerian populace in these countries. However, a move to Germany is also a viable option, and we have compiled some of the best ways to move to Germany. Some of these options are also pathways to permanent residency.
There has always been an increasing demand for guides on the procedures and methods for travelling abroad. This is why we have put this guide together on your behalf to ease your search across the deep net.
Many Nigerians believe Germany befits their presence because it is deemed the fifth most favorable country for immigrants. They have a viable economy (the largest economy in Europe), a tuition-free education system and numerous job opportunities. And yes, our Igbo business brethren are there profiting from the good of the land.
Germany Visa Requirements
You need to fulfil specific requirements to be eligible for migrating to Germany. To get the latest and most accurate information about moving to Germany, visit the German Embassy or Consulate website in your home country.
There are similarities in the requirements for the different visa categories, but in general, you must fulfil the following criteria:
- Be financially stable: You need to prove that you can feed and sustain yourself living in a foreign country. Immigration requires you to provide proof of funds even if you plan to work and earn a salary in Germany. You should have something to rely on and put body and soul together before getting your first wage/salary. Moving to a new country is not that easy.
- Have a valid travel passport: You need to have a valid travel passport of your home country with at least two unused blank pages. The passport should be valid for at least three months beyond the duration of your stay in Germany
- German proficiency: Though German proficiency is not strictly compulsory, it will give strength to your application. And to fully experience Germany, you need to have a knowledge of basic German. If you plan to move to Germany via the education route, it is also not compulsory except your course in strictly offered in German. Courses mostly offered in German are law, medicine, nursing and other science related courses with a wide exception of art and social science courses. So, if you plan to move through a non-education route you should consider taking a beginners class in Germany.
- Proof of civil status: You need to show your certificates such as certificates of marriage if you are married, death certificate of spouse if you are a widow or widower. It would be better to have all certificates at hand when applying so that you will not be taken by surprise.
- Other documents: Depending on your visa category, there are other documents you might need to provide before and after your visa interview. You will be requested to provide proof of residence for your stay in Germany (hotel or hostel reservation) Also a letter may be required to know the purpose of your stay. It should be a detailed letter with information covering flight dates, flight numbers, date of entry and exit etc.
- Travel Health Insurance: After your visa has been approved, you will be required to present travel before you receive your visa. Health insurance is compulsory in Germany, when you arrive in Germany your are required to sign up for a statutory health insurance. Many health insurance companies in Germany now offer immigrants health insurance including travel insurance even when you are not physically in Germany. There are many insurance companies to choose from: AOK, Barmer, DKK etc.
How to Move to Germany
We have highlighted some of the basic requirements to get you started on your dream of moving to Germany. If you are a citizen of a country not part of the European Union (EU), you need to apply and get a visa to enter Germany. Therefore, as an immigrant, you need to apply for a suitable visa category. Here are five (5) proven ways or visa categories to legally move to Germany.
1. Education (Study visa & scholarships)
German universities mostly offer tuition-free education, unlike other countries like the USA and UK. Tuition-free means no exorbitant university fees or meagre fees. Instead, students pay student fees per semester which are very affordable. For this reason, Germany has become a hotspot for international students from around the world.
To immigrate via this route, you must obtain a study visa. After completing a degree, you can remain and work in Germany. If you are lucky to get one before the stipulated time, you can continue your stay in Germany and even work up to earning your permanent stay and citizenship.
Read our article about studying in Germany.
Click here to learn more about study visas.
Click here for scholarship information.
2. Employment: Skilled Immgration Act
The skilled immigration act was enacted in Germany when a shortage of skilled workers was reported. So there are opportunities for engineers, computer and IT professionals, medical and health care workers, and other qualified professionals.
Due to the demand for skilled migrants, the German immigration authorities relaxed the processes and requirements for work. To go via this route, you need to find and apply for a job in Germany first. Also, when applying for jobs, choose companies that meet the necessities of German authorities. If you already have a job offer from your employers, we can say the hard part is over.
As an employee in Germany, you will be able to work as long as your residence permit allows it. Also, after 5 years, you can be able to apply for permanent residency.
Click here to learn more.
3. Employment: Jobseeker visa
A Job Seeker visa allows you to move to Germany to search for a job. YOu can stay for up to six months in Germany to find a job that matches your academic qualification. When you secure a job, you can get a residence permit and continue to live in Germany.
Click on the links below for more information:
4. Work-related visa
This category of visa is broad. It requires you to have gotten a job and meet certain conditions before leaving your home country. For more information on the different kinds of work-related visas. Click on the individual links below:
5. Family reunion
Sometimes when moving countries people are forced to leave their family behind for many reasons. However, after a while, they can reunite in the future. Spouses and children under 16 years old can apply for immigration to Germany to join their spouses or parents. Spouses must prove they are married with authentic certificates, likewise children with their birth certificates.
Also, people who have obtained German citizenship can invite their family, friends and loved ones for a visit or limited stay in Germany
There are many possibilities under the category of visa. Click here to explore more visa categories with the Visa Navigator.
6. Immigration for entrepreneurs/business
This route is for investors with money and interest to spend it in Germany. Entrepreneurs and investors who create economic opportunities are allowed to immigrate there. However, a certain threshold of investment that you need to make. As of the time of this article, that amount is 250,000 Euros. Additionally, you will need to get a Self Employment Visa.
To be worthy of this visa, you must have the required amount of funds to invest, and it should be an investment that benefits the country. With this visa,
Click here to learn more about this category of visa.
Which of these visa categories do you want to apply to you? I hope you will start gathering the required documents after reading this article.
If you have any questions, let us know in the comment section below.