Gaining a modern degree from a prestigious international institute is the primary step to a lucrative career. To gain full advantage of their expertise, getting a post-study work visa immediately after graduation is a cherry on top. In this regard, getting such a visa within Germany after studying at one of its esteemed universities can open many doors.

Germany known for its leading education system, high employment rate and low cost of living is a great destination for foreigners. International students who have gotten degrees from German institutes can further stay within the country by applying for a post-study work visa.

Getting this visa is a long and complex process. To make it more convenient for our readers, we have created a detailed guide on how to get a post-study work visa in Germany for international students.

Steps on Applying for a Germany Post-Graduation Work Visa

As gaining a post-study work visa is crucial, we have narrowed down the entire process to attain this visa in the steps below.

Step 1. Completion of Requirements

The first and foremost step is to understand that you qualify for a post-study work visa under all requirements stated. For Germany, the list stated above contains all the requirements that the individual must have/qualify for an easy process.

Step 2. Provide a Valid Student Residence Permit

Make sure you have a valid student residence permit before applying for a post-study work visa. Germany does not impose any restrictions on students from the European Union, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway, or Iceland who want to live and work there. However, a residency permit is required of students from nations outside the EU.

Foreign nationals studying in Germany for a period of up to 18 months are granted a residence permit. During these months, students are required to seek employment. The student’s final test score marks the beginning of these 18 months. There is no way to prolong the validity of a residency permit.

Step 3. Contact Relevant Authority

Depending on location in Germany, find out which authority is responsible for processing the application. There can be an immigration office in the area, or it might be the Ausländerbehörde (Office for the Registration of Foreigners).

For further instructions and the necessary paperwork, visit their website or get in touch with them directly. When applying for a visa, it is standard procedure to book an appointment. Because processing periods might vary, it is advisable to contact the appropriate authorities in advance to organize an appointment.

Step 4. Pay Application Fee

For the application, a fee of €70 is required. You can submit the fee online. After this, make sure to attach the documents with the application form. During the application process, the applicant will be asked to provide biometric data, including fingerprints.

Step 5: Submit the Application

Recheck all the paperwork attached and make sure there are no mistakes. A few weeks up to a few months is the typical processing period for this application. For updates, check the website of the authority, or get in touch with them directly if you have queries.

Tips on How to Look for a Job in Germany

Having a recognized degree from a reputed institute is the first step, however, finding a job within the country can be challenging. Here are a few students can consider while looking for a job in Germany.

Tip 1: Master the German Language

Knowing German may greatly improve your employment chances in Germany, even if there are English-speaking positions available. This is particularly true for international corporations. It may be helpful to enroll in a language course or to make practicing the language an ongoing component.

Tip 2: Don’t Underestimate Networking

To thrive in Germany, networking is essential. To meet other professionals in a field, and participate in industry events, career fairs, and meet-ups. Sign up for industry-specific social media groups and online forums. This will introduce people to more career opportunities.

Tip 3: Use Internet Job Boards

Particularly in less populated areas, you may see job openings published on company websites. Some well-known platforms including Xing, Monster, StepStone, and Indeed are popular within Germany. Create a profile on these websites and sign up for job notifications when suitable openings become available.

Tip 4: Consider Internships and Entry-level Jobs

Acquiring work experience at a German company might serve as a useful foundation on the way toward pursuing one’s desired profession.

Tip 5: Apply for a Job Seeker Visa

One option to think about is a Job Seeker Visa, which is available to foreign students and recent graduates. This permits you to remain in Germany for a period of up to some months to seek employment.

You have the opportunity to investigate various alternatives, set up instructive interviews, and get a broad understanding of your field over the brief 6-month term that this visa is provided. Keep in mind that this is just a temporary visa; as soon as you get the job notice, you can apply for a permanent one.

FAQS When Applying for a Post-Graduation Work Visa for Germany

What is a Post-Study Work Visa?

A Post-Study Work Visa is a transitory visa that grants authorization for employment and continued study in the host country for international students who have recently completed their studies at an accredited academic institution. It is alternatively referred to as a Graduate Route visa in certain nations as well.

The duration of the visa varies depending on the country and the level of study completed. On average, it lasts between 1 and 3 years. To apply for this visa, you must gather the necessary paperwork, pay the associated costs, and submit an application form. Graduates of internationally renowned German universities can apply for this visa.

People who fall under this category may apply for a residence permit. A full-time degree is required to get this visa. B2 level on the Goethe-Zertifikat or similar test is also required to attain this visa for Germany.

Who Are Eligible to Apply for a Post-Study Work Visa?

This visa requires the fulfillment of certain criteria to be eligible. To successfully get a post-study work visa, the applicant tick the following points.

  • The successful completion of a degree program (Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Ph.D.) that is offered full-time at a recognized educational institution in the respective nation will be required.
  • When applying, the applicant must have a valid student visa in their custody.
  • The person is required to demonstrate that they have finished their education within a certain time limit. Usually, it’s between 1–3 years after graduation.
  • A post-study work visa requires proof of adequate command of the country’s official language, often in the form of standardized tests such as TOEFL or IELTS.
  • Additionally, the applicant must provide evidence that he has sufficient funds to cover expenses during the PSWV’s validity term.
  • A legit health insurance coverage is required of the individual.


Germany is known for its promising career opportunities offering a comfortable living standard. With a saturation of individuals graduating and a high demand for skilled degree-holding individuals in Germany, the country is considered an ideal destination for foreign individuals. We hope this article helped you understand how to get a post-study work visa in Germany effectively,


Hopefully, this article on post-graduation work visa in Germany was informative and helpful. If you are interested in studying in Germany, you can start by checking out the Study in Germany and Available Programs in Germany to check out the numerous study options.

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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