Au pairs from non-EU countries need a visa in order to enter Germany. Allow for enough time in advance for your visa application. It can take some time until you get your visa.
Make sure that you possess a valid passport before you organise your trip.
Your future host family should send you a signed contract and invitation letter by post. You need these documents for your visa application. Therefore, it is important to have them in good time. Here you can download the invitation letter and contract.
Important to know: Processing times for applications can sometimes take longer, depending on the German Embassy in the au pair's home country. We therefore advise au pairs to apply for an appointment for a visa application at the relevant diplomatic mission as soon as possible after they have made a commitment with a host family. Until an appointment is available, the au pair can sign a contract with a host family and start making sure they have the neccessary documents.
According to the au pair contract, the au pair employment should start within 6 months after applying for the visa. The duration of the au pair placement should be of at least 6 months.
As soon as the visa is issued, you may leave your country. The processing of the visa may differ from one country to another, therefore it is recommended to allow for 6 weeks up to 3 months time. Call the German Embassy if you wish to know how much time it will take exactly.
Further documents could be required, such as a police clearance certificate or a health certificate. In this case, it is equally recommended to ask the German Embassy in your country.
Upon your arrival in Germany, your host family should register you at the Residents' Registration Office (Einwohnermeldeamt) and the Immigration Office (Ausländerbehörde). The residence permit will first be issued for 3 months and must be extended afterwards.
As of 1 September 2011, au pairs in Germany need to apply for an electronic residence title, the so-called "Aufenthaltstitel", at the Immigration Office in their host country. For this purpose, a biometric passport photograph is required. Costs vary depending on the duration of the residence the au pairs apply for. The process of issuing a residence permit, which is valid for up to one year, costs 100 euros. According to present experiences, it may take 3 to 4 weeks until the residence permit is handed out. Therefore, we recommend that you ask the local Immigration Office about this matter in time.
Au pairs who enter Germany on a visa may only carry out the job for which the visa was issued. According to the Immigration Office in Berlin, a secondary employment (part-time job) is not allowed.
We are continually researching and updating our host country information, but cannot guarantee that all material provided is complete and correct. If you notice gaps or inaccuracies, we would like to hear from you.