Visa/temporary residence permit

International students who are not nationals of an EU member state usually require a student visa in order to enter the Federal Republic of Germany. Student visas are issued by the German diplomatic mission (embassy or consulate) in the relevant home country on presentation of the official letter of admission from htw saar. Visas are not required by students from countries with which special agreements between governments have been signed. You can find more information (incl. links to the German diplomatic missions worldwide) on the website of the German Federal Foreign Office (“Auswärtiges Amt”):

Important: The visa requirement also applies to non-EU nationals who hold a temporary residence permit / student visa issued by another EU member state. With a temporary residence permit / visa issued by another EU member state you are of course free to travel and visit other EU member states, but it does not automatically allow non-EU nationals to take up temporary residence as an exchange student in Germany. Non-EU nationals with a residence permit/ visa from another EU country need to contact the German embassy or consulate in the country where they hold residence in order to find out if they need to apply for a visa.

In the first weeks after arrival in Germany, all students who are not nationals of an EU member state, need to register at the Immigration Authority in Saarbrücken. Depending on the visa specifications and validity dates students may need to apply for a temporary residence permit at the Immigration Authority (administration fee ca. 100€).

Health insurance

Students from an EU or EFTA member state must provide an EHIC chip card (European Health Insurance Card) as proof that they are insured in their home country. After arrival in Saarbrücken on presentation of the EHIC card to a German health insurance fund in Germany you will receive a proof of exemption for the German statutory health insurance („Bescheinigung über die Befreiung von der Krankenversicherungspflicht“). Students need to submit this proof of exemption when they enrol at htw saar.

The expiry date of the EHIC card has to exceed either 31 March for students coming for the winter semester or 30 September for students coming for the summer semester. The EHIC itself should be presented whenever you consult a doctor.

International students without EHIC must have sufficient health insurance to cover their stay in Germany. Please note: No insurance inevitably means no registration at any German university. Proof of health insurance is also necessary for the visa (if applicable) and in order to obtain the temporary residence permit at the immigration authority in Saarbrücken (if applicable). Most students from non-EU or non-EFTA member countries take out statutory student health insurance in Germany.

Please find here the procedure for non-EU or non-EFTA countries who plan to take out health insurance from their home country.

Travelling to Saarbrücken


Saarbrücken airport is located about 20 km from the city and can be reached from the city centre by a shuttle bus (bus runs on limited hours, taxi one-way to city center ca. 25€). At present, Air Berlin and Luxair are the only airlines operating regular scheduled services to and from Saarbrücken. Other airports that can be used when travelling to Saarbrücken include Frankfurt am Main, Frankfurt-Hahn, Metz, Luxembourg and Paris. Except for Frankfurt-Hahn these airports all have good bus, coach or rail services to Saarbrücken.


Saarbrücken is situated on the IC and ICE/TGV main line linking Mannheim and Paris and has excellent rail links to other German cities (see:


Saarbrücken is served by international coach services from almost every European country (see


htw saar
Hochschule für
Technik und Wirtschaft
des Saarlandes

University of
Applied Sciences


Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft
des Saarlandes
Goebenstraße 40
66117 Saarbrücken

Telefon: (0681) 58 67 - 0
Telefax: (0681) 58 67 - 122

Staatskanzlei des Saarlandes

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