Optimizing the processing time of the visa application and waiting period

Basically, the waiting time can be divided into two sections: The waiting time until the appointment and the waiting time after the appointment.

How long does it take to get a response?

In this video, Dr. Ben explains what waiting time you can expect from the German embassy, and how you can make use of this time.

Additional demands

During processing: It is possible that the visa office will ask you questions about your application and / or request additional documents. Please respond immediately. 

Processing of your visa application usually takes up to four months. Therefore, do not be surprised if you do not hear from the embassy before that and please refrain from making inquiries by telephone or in writing during this time.

If you have been waiting for four months without hearing back from the embassy, FIA's counselling team can assist you: fill in this form and email it to visum@fia-academy.de. We will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss further steps with you.


Get the visa

The embassy will inform you by e-mail that your visa has been granted and that you can pick up your passport. You will have to pick it up in person.

However, you may also receive an official letter of denial from the embassy. This may have various reasons. Please immediately send a copy of the letter by e-mail to FIA (visum@fia-academy.de). FIA will summarize the reasons for you and give you recommendations on how to proceed, e.g. objecting (remonstrance) or applying for a new visa.


Before entering Germany

After you receive your passport check if all the information on the visa label is correct. If you detect any incorrect information you should immediately report this to the embassy.

Prepare your trip to Germany:

  1. Take out travel health insurance. You will need to show it when you receive your visa.
  2. Book your accommodation.
  3. Inform the FIA consulting team about your arrival in Germany. You will immediately receive binding information on the commencement of your first course.


Arriving in Germany

After entering Germany: Immediately register with the residents' registration office (located in your new place of residence at the citizens' office, citizens' service center or city hall) and make an appointment at the foreigners' registration office to apply for your residence permit. You should make the appointment at least four to six weeks before your visa expires.

A national visa allows you travel within the Schengen area.


Change your residence permit status

  • The residence permit §16f is only valid for 1 year. Therefore, it is necessary to change to the residence permit §16d. You may do so after successfully completing your language course or with the recognition notification from a German state health authority.
  • The residence permit §16d is only valid for 18 to max. 24 months, thus it can be useful to look for a job with a (restricted) temporary professional license while waiting for a test date for the professional knowledge test. The residence permit §20 paragraph 3 No.4 applies then (visa for job search).