How to get your EU Blue Card & work in Germany

7 Easy Steps…

Have you ever heard of the EU Blue Card?

The Blue Card is for highly qualified foreign workers.

With this visa you can work in Germany and other EU countries. If you have this visa, you can quickly get a permanent residency, too. If you can – try to get this visa!

What do you need to get the EU Blue Card?

You must have written proof of a university degree.

You must have a job offer in the EU. This job offer must pay well…

Read more below.

#1 Why should I get the EU Blue Card?

The advantages of getting a EU Blue Card are:

  • same working and salary conditions like nationals
  • you can live and work freely in any country of the Schengen area
  • you’re entitled to many socio-economic rights
  • you may be able to get a residence title for the rest of your family
  • the Blue Card gives you the perspective of permanent

Once you’ve decided to go for the EU Blue Card, there’s two ways to get it: You may apply for it at the German embassy/consulate in your own country.

Alternatively, you can come to Germany on a tourist/ other kind of visa. Then apply for the EU Blue Card whilst you’re in Germany.

#3 Get Health Insurance

You need to have proof of health insurance for your EU Blue card application.

The easiest way for this is to get private health insurance.

You can change to public health insurance, once you have the EU Blue Card and start working.

So a private one is the best option until you are employed in Germany.

To get health insurance proof for your application, I can highly recommend CareConcept.

They have special offers for foreigners that apply for a German visa.

#4 Schedule an Appointment

You are in Germany already?

Then you can apply for an EU Blue Card in Germany.

It is most convenient to schedule an appointment at the Foreigners Registration Office (Ausländerbehörde) which you can do online.

To find your local Foreigner’s Registration Office google “Ausländerbehörde + City”.

The website should have information in English. You can make an appointment online in most cities.

Alternatively, you also may show up at one of the following locations without an appointment, but expect to wait for several hours.

Showing up at one of the offices is best if you need your visa asap. As most foreigners apply for a freelance visa in Berlin, here’s the link to the Berliner Registration Office:

Make an appointment at Berliner Registration Office for an EU Blue Card online.

You are not in Germany? No problem!

Most foreigners apply for an EU Blue Card in the German embassy in their country.

In this case, you get your documents ready and then you make an appointment at the German embassy.

#5 Get all the Documents for the ‘EU Blue Card’

Once you have completed the first steps and scheduled an appointment, it is time to get all documents together. The documents and requirements for the EU Blue Card in Germany are:

  • you have non-EU citizenship
  • proof of a German or recognised higher education qualification (BA/Masters etc)
  • you need to have a binding working contract or binding job offer from a German company
  • written proof that the job pays you an annual minimum gross salary of currently EUR 49,600, which is roughly 4133 Euros per month. 
Exception: in the case of an EU Blue Card being awarded to scientists, mathematicians and engineers or to doctors and IT specialists, a lower salary limit applies, currently about EUR 37,128. Your future employer must give you this proof!
  • the form ‘Application for a Visa or Residence Permit’, which can be downloaded online, just google it!

If you want to get permanent settlement permit then…

  • if you get a work contract for less than 4 years, you only get the residence permit for that amount of time (plus three months)
  • Holders of an EU Blue Card in Germany shall be awarded a permanent settlement permit if: they have been in highly qualified employment for 33 months, they can provide evidence of having paid compulsory contributions or other proof of expenses creating entitlement to insurance benefits that are comparable to those provided under the statutory pension insurance scheme, and the other generally applicable conditions for the granting of a settlement permit are met.
  • Provided that the individuals concerned can demonstrate have good German language skills (level B1), the settlement permit shall be granted after a period of 21 months.

You need the following documents for an application in Germany:

  • Valid passport
  • 1 current biometric photo 35mm x 45mm
  • University or university college qualification
    Original and copy; together with evaluation
  • employment or concrete job offer Original and copy
  • The form “Antrag auf Erteilung eines Aufenthaltstitels” (Application for Issuance of a Residence Permit)
    A residence permit may only be issued upon formal request. Only required for first-time application.
  • The form “Antrag auf Erlaubnis einer Beschäftigung” (completed)
    Only when approval is required from the German Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit)
  • The form “Stellenbeschreibung” (filled in by the employer)
    Only when approval is required from the German Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit)
  • Occupation practice permit
    Only if required (see ‘Prerequisites’)
  • Health insurance (see above for getting the correct health insurance proof!)

#6 Attend the Appointment and pay the fee…

If you go to the foreigner’s office (Ausländerbehorde) in Germany, prepare yourself well with some food and drinks.

Even if you have an appointment, you never know how much time you will spend there.

Make sure you bring all the necessary documents and have informed yourself well about the EU Blue Card in Germany.

Remember, you are applying for a visa to allow you to live and work in Germany. Try to speak some German. Even just a little.


German officials are a lot more likely to issue German visas to foreigners who have some language skills in German.

If you have never lived or worked in Germany, it is no problem, if you don’t speak German. But it helps, if you do!

Also, if possible, it is a good idea to bring along a friend who is fluent in German.

I personally recommend getting professional help with your visa application.

Yes, it’s a one time financial commitment. But it’s worth it. It was for me, in any case.

They check your paperwork. They accompany you to the visa interview.

It highly increases your chance to get your Blue Card.

In any case.

Try to get everything right the first time. That’s my only advise.

#7 Time to wait…

The hardest part is always waiting.

You normally get an idea from the immigration officer whether your visa application will be approved.

The German official will also tell you how long you must wait.

Good luck! If you were not successful, you can try another time.

But it is an unwritten rule that every failed application decreases your chances to get a German visa…

#8 Receive the News. Get to Work!

Not much to say about this, apart from: Viel Glück!! Our fingers are crossed!

If you got your Blue Card, well done!

You will notice that many employees in Germany use Xing and LinkedIn to build up a professional network.

It might be worth creating a profile on these platforms.

Want to add something? We do our best to keep this article up-to-date. Nevertheless, if you spot anything that’s unclear or inaccurate, then please contact us.

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