City registration office
All people living in Germany are obliged to register at the registration office (Einwohnermeldeamt) in the city of their residence. You need to register within 1 weeks after moving into your accommodation. Neglecting this rule will result in a fine.
In order to register you need to have an address of residence and a valid passport or ID. You need to hand in a form, which you can get from the registration office or download from their website. Tis form needs to be filled in and signed by your landlord.
We recommend to make an appointment for the registration.
Please note: If you move to a new address within Germany or within a city, you need to re-register in the registration office of your new city/neighbourhood of residence. Again, this needs to be done within 7 days! You do not need to give notice of departure in your old city of residence. This is only required, in case you move/return to another country!
Students from non-EU countries must additionally apply to the Municipal Immigration Office (Ausländerbehörde) to have their visa converted into a residence permit (Aufenthaltserlaubnis). This needs to be done as soon as possible after your arrival in Germany! The residence permit is usually issued for a period of 2 years and is liable to charges.
To receive/extend the residence permit, you will need to hand in the following documents:
- valid passport
- proof of health insurance
- proof of financial means
- a recent biometric photograph
Depending on your educational status you also need to show either
- certificate of enrolment or conditional admission to university studies
- (conditional) admission for a German language preparation course or university preparation course (Studienkolleg)
- secondary school leaving certificates
- for students enrolled in the 5th semester or higher: confirmation of the university that the student is studying successfully according to the proper from and pace.
You need to extend your residence permit at the immigration office every 1-2 years according to the issued time period. Please make sure to get the required extension before your old residence permit expires! The residence permit will only be extended, if the purpose of the stay has not yet been fulfilled, but can be fulfilled in a reasonable time period. This is measured by the regular time period stipulated for completing a degree course, set by the university.
A residence permit issued for studying at a university is only for this purpose and does not allow you taking up an employment.
A change of degree course is only possible before completing the first 3 semesters. Afterwards, it is only possible, if you are changing into a higher semester. In any case changing the degree course means changing the purpose of your residence permit and therewith has to be approved by the immigration office!
Opening a bank account with a local bank in Germany can be an advantage, when it comes to monthly payments and money transfers such as the semester fee, rent or health insurance fees. Another advantage of a German bank account is being able to withdraw money from numerous ATMs anywhere and anytime.
Usually, opening a bank account is free of costs for students.
We recommend to ask at the bank what documents are required for opening an account. Most of the banks ask for the following:
- valid ID-Card or Passport
- certificate from the local residence office, proving your residency
- student ID or enrolment certificate of Hochschule Düsseldorf
The International Office staff can assist you with opening a bank account, if help is required.
Should you need to do a money transfer without having opened a bank account yet, it is possible to take the transfer slip as well as the amount of money in cash to any local bank to have it transferred. The bank will charge you a fee for this transaction.