After Arrival

After arriving in Greifswald, there are several things you will need to take care of. To help you on your way, we have listed and explained the most important tasks below. 

International Office
Imme Burkart-Jürgens
Domstraße 8
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834 420 1175


Registration in Greifswald

All foreign nationals must register in Germany. You have to register at the Resident Registration Office within a fortnight after arrival in Greifswald if your stay in Germany is planned for more than three months.

To do so, you will need the following documents:

  • valid passport or ID card if you are a citizen of the EU
  • Wohnungsgeberbescheinigung (landlord confirmation) of moving in, to be provided by landlord
  • if you previously lived elsewhere in Germany, the registration certificate of your former place of residence
  • if you are registering for the first time in Germany, you will automatically receive your Steueridentifikationsnummer (tax identification number/national insurance number) by post after approx. two to three weeks

Whilst you are there you can request a police certificate.  (Cost: € 13, to be paid in cash)

After registering at the Resident Registration Office, you will need to go to the Immigration Office with your registration certificate to prolong your stay in Germany.

Please remember that you will also need all of the relevant documents for family members who have come to Germany with you!

  • valid passport
  • civil status certificates (marriage and birth certificates, original and translation into German by an officially certified translator)

Citizens from other EU/EEA states no longer need a Freizügigkeitsbescheinigung (certificate of freedom of movement) from the Immigration Office. The registration certificate from the Resident Registration Office is recognised as proof that you are entitled to stay in Germany and exercising your right of free movement as an EU/EEA citizen. 

Universitäts-und Hansestadt Greifswald
Der Oberbürgermeister

Markt 15
17491 Greifswald

Opening Hours:
Mondays closed
Tuesday 9.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m. and 2.00 - 6.00 p.m.
Wednesday 9.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m.
Thursday 9.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m. and 2.00 - 4.00 p.m.
Friday 9.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m. 

Tel.: +49 3834 8536 4132, -33, -34, -36, -37, -38, -39

Resident Registration Office (Einwohnermelde-
) Greifswald

Immigration Office Greifswald

This is not the official website of the Immigration Office Greifswald! The contact details are provided in the margin! These pages provide information for foreign academics and their families

Foreign Nationals who Require Visas

Anyone who has entered Germany with a visa and is planning a stay of more than three months in Germany, has to extend their Aufenthaltstitel (residence permit) at the Immigration Office.

To do so, you will need to go to the Immigration Office. You will need the following documents (for yourself and accompanying family members, if applicable):

  • valid passport
  • registration certificate from the Resident Registration Office
  • rental contract (for the address)
  • certificate from your health insurance company that you are registered with them
  • proof of income (scholarship, employment contract)
  • biometric passport photos (the Resident Registration Office also has a passport photo booth, which will print four passport photos for approx. € 7.00)
  • for students: enrolment certificate
  • fees for the issue of a residence permit: € 100.00/ € 110.00
Foreign Nationals who Do Not Require Visas

Foreign nationals of Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, or the United States of America can request the required Aufenthaltstitel (residence permit) after arrival in Germany. To do so, they have to register at the Resident Registration Office within one week after arrival and then go to the Immigration Office to get their residence permit. However, this only applies if you do not plan to start work immediately! If this is the case, you will need to apply for a visa PRIOR to entering Germany!

The Immigration Office will require the following documents (for yourself and accompanying family members, if applicable):

  • valid passport
  • registration certificate from the Resident Registration Office
  • rental contract (a confirmation from your landlord is not sufficient)
  • certificate from your health insurance company that you are registered with them
  • proof of income (scholarship, employment contract)
  • biometric passport photos (the Resident Registration Office also has a passport photo booth, which will print four passport photos for approx. € 7.00)
  • for students: enrolment certificate
  • fees for the issue of a residence permit: € 100.00/ € 110.00
Citizens of EU/EEA Countries

Citizens of EU/EEA countries no longer need a Freizügigkeitsbescheinigung (certificate of freedom of movement) from the Immigration Office. The registration certificate from the Resident Registration Office is recognised as proof that you are entitled to stay in Germany and exercising your right of free movement as an EU/EEA citizen.

However no changes have been made for accompanying family members, who themselves are not EU/EEA citizens, but are nationals of a third country. They still receive their residence permit from the Immigration Office after they have proven their status as a family member and entitlement to freedom of movement through corresponding certificates.

Landkreis Vorpommern-Greifswald
Ausländerbehörde Greifswald

Feldstraße 85a, 
17489 Greifswald

Office Hours:
9.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m.
2.00 - 6.00 p.m.

9.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m.
2.00 - 4.00 p.m.

Tel.: +49 (0)3834 8760 2912, -2910, -2911
Fax: +49 (0)3834 8760 9025


Website Immigration Office

Bank Account

In Greifswald, you will need a bank account. Your salary will be paid into the account and you can use it to pay for your bills. You can use an ec-card to withdraw money or pay in shops and in most cases you can organise online banking.

Required documents:

  • registration certificate from the Resident Registration Office 
  • residence permit
  • passport

Before opening an account, it is wise to contact the bank in which you would like to open an account by phone to arrange for an appointment.
If you would like someone to come with you to open an account, because e.g. your contact at your Institute has no time on that day, please contact the Welcome Centre Greifswald. A member of staff will then accompany you.

Important information from the BAMF Federal Office for Migration and Refugees

Online bank account - with interface and customer support available in English 


The market square in Greifswald’s town centre has most major banks:

Commerzbank Greifswald
Markt 7/8
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834-579915

Volksbank Vorpommern
Markt 14
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834-547330

Sparkasse Vorpommern
Markt 10
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834-5570

Schuhhagen 2
17491 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834-2311621

Deutsche Bank AG
Markt 2
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834-89570


Foreign scholars in Greifswald and their accompanying family members must have health insurance The responsible Immigration Office will require health insurance for the residence permit.
If you are not in possession of health insurance, you will not be issued with a residence permit!

We therefore advise you to contact your health insurance company in your home country before you leave, to find out whether your health insurance will cover your stay in Germany, so that you have insurance from the first day on. 

If this is not the case, we suggest you take out travel health insurance, which will cover you for the first days in Greifswald. After you have arrived in Greifswald we will be pleased to help you find health insurance to meet your requirements.

Basically, there are two different types of health insurance, which depend on how your stay is being financed. You will find further information below. 

Private liability insurance is a further kind of important insurance that is common in Germany and that we highly recommend. This is because in Germany, everyone can be made liable for damages made to third parties. Parents are liable for their children. The insurance covers claims that occur from accidental damage.
If you are interested in liability insurance, please contact the Welcome Centre Greifswald. 

Stay Financed by a Scholarship/Self-Financed

If you are coming to Greifswald with a scholarship or financing the stay yourself, you have to take out private health insurance. Holders of scholarships can contact their scholarship providers to ask if they have any partnerships with private health insurance companies.

Usually, holders of scholarships are exempt from social security payments, further information can be obtained from your scholarship provider.

The following private health insurance companies are suited for guest researchers, doctoral students, scholarship holders and postdocs and their families.
The contributions for and the payments made by the individual insurances can be very different and therefore please make sure to inform yourself in detail prior to signing a contract.
Some of the named insurances also offer insurance cover by the day. 

Care Concept AG




Care Med

A cooperation between Deutsches Studentenwerk and the HanseMerkur Insurance for students and doctoral candidates

Exception: Health Insurance for EU Citizens with Scholarships/Self-Financed

There are possibly other regulations for citizens of the European Union, Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
If you are a citizen of one of these countries, please contact your health insurance provider in your home country. Find detailed information on the following page: 


Stay with Employment Contract

If you sign an employment contract, you will automatically be obliged to make social security payments. As an employee, you cannot free yourself from the obligation to make these payments. This is because Germany has a comprehensive social security system that is financed by these payments.
The respective payments are stipulated by law, deducted automatically from your salary and paid directly by your employer to the respective social security agency.

Further information from the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees:

However, payments into the social security system give you access to the services provided by the individual types of insurance:

Statutory Health Insurance with Employment Contract

When you sign your contract in Greifswald, you have to provide proof that you have taken out health insurance. To do so, you can register with one of the statutory health insurance providers quite easily. The Welcome Centre is happy to help you with this.

You will then receive confirmation of membership from your health insurance. You have to send this to the HR Department as soon as possible.
The HR Department then contacts your health insurance company, which then passes on the information to the other social security agencies.

The statutory health insurance payments are calculated as a percentage of your salary, are deducted automatically by your employer and transferred to the provider.

TK-Techniker Krankenkasse
Rakower Str. 11
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834 77 76 25

DAK- Deutsche Angestelltenkasse
Schuhhagen 3
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834 830790

AOK- Allgemeine Ortskrankenkasse
Vulkanstr. 16
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 180 2590590 4358

Barmer Ersatzkasse
Wolgaster Str. 146
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 18500 10 6250

Statutory Pensions with Employment Contract

Statutory pensions in Germany make different payments:

  • retirement pensions
  • pensions due to reduction in earning capacity, if you are unable to work full-time or at all due to your state of health
  • pensions for surviving dependants, if the insured dies and leaves spouse and children behind

Start of Employment
Your employer registers you with the relevant pension agency and also transfers the payments directly to the agency. The pension agency will provide you with a Sozialversicherungsausweis (national insurance card), which states your social insurance number and your name and must be presented to your employer.

The following groups are exempt from making pension payments:

  • Scholarship holders
  • Civil servants
  • Employees, who receive their salaries from an employer with headquarters outside of Germany

End of Employment
When your contract comes to an end, you will be deregistered automatically from the statutory pension scheme. However, your will NOT automatically receive notification of the made payments and the earned entitlements.

What happens to the contributions you made to the pension system in Germany if you leave the country is therefore very complicated and depends on individual circumstances. The German system of statutory pensions is, particularly when linked to the pensions systems in other countries, very extensive.

If you have made payments into the German national pension system (Deutsche Rentenversicherung), it is therefore strongly recommended that you clarify what is on your pension account (you only need your social security number) before you leave Germany.

A statement will list all of the contributions that you have made so that you can gain an overview and you will not need to present any further proof of listed periods of time retrospectively. Especially if you are moving away from Germany, otherwise it would be difficult after years of absence to provide proof that would justify entitlement to a pension in Germany.

Whether you will be able to reclaim your payments and according to which conditions, also depends on various factors. EU citizens can generally not reclaim the payments they have made, they can request the payment of pensions once they have reached the German pension age. If this is the case, a personal advisory meeting with the Deutsche Rentenversicherung is indispensable.

Deutsche Rentenversicherung in Greifswald
Information and Advice Office
Pappelallee 1
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 (0)3843 5766 0

If you have any general questions, you can also contact the Welcome Centre, we have information booklets in various languages that are of course available to you.

You will find the most comprehensive information on the Deutsche Rentenversicherung’s website.

The link below gives you access to a website containing information for internationally mobile academic staff on pension systems in various European countries:

Find your pension - what you need to know about your pension

As an internationally mobile researcher, your career can take you to different stations at research institutions in various countries. What that actually means for social security and pension eligibility is a question that only experts seem to be able to answer. Did you know that pensions in most countries are not just there to guarantee for a certain standard of life at old age? They often also include payments at times in which your earning capacity is restricted and to protect your spouse, partner and children.

Imagine 20 years have past - do you think you will remember all of the pension providers from work pension schemes where you might be eligible for payments? If you are in doubt, it is perhaps time that you get to grips with the pension topic.

FindyourPension is a website that provides information on pension systems and providers in various European countries. It is aimed at mobile researchers and provides details about future pension eligibility that you can gain in Europe. The FindyourPension portal is part of a project funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. It has been created by the VBL (supplementary pension institution of public sector employees in Germany) in close cooperation with universities and research institutions, as well as other European pension companies, company pension funds and schemes and business associations. The website already offers information about several important research countries. It gives you the chance to get to know the pension landscape throughout Europe, to find out about your pension eligibility and to better understand it. 

Statutory Unemployment Benefits with Employment Contract

Statutory unemployment benefits support those who have made contributions in case of expected or already existent unemployment.

However, a certain number of months in which contributions were made must be present before the benefits will be provided. If unemployment is imminent, e.g. if your limited-term contract has not been renewed, it is necessary to notify the Federal Employment Agency at least three months before the employment contract comes to an end. Usually your employer will inform you about this deadline. If your notification is too late, you will probably lose out on some of the payments.

You can receive further information from  

Federal Employment Agency

Federal Office for Migration and Refugees


Statutory Nursing Care with Employment Contract

As a member of a statutory health insurance, you will automatically be registered for statutory nursing care.
Employees, who have private health insurance covering general hospital services, are also legally required to take out private insurance for mandatory nursing care from the same company.

Insurance for mandatory nursing care will cover the costs of nursing care if the insured is no longer able to accomplish the tasks of daily life independently, due to a bodily or mental illness or disability.

You can receive further information from 


Statutory Accident Insurance with Employment Contract

Statutory accident insurance is an element of the statutory social security insurances, the contributions are paid for in full by the employer.

Statutory accident insurance makes payments if an employee has an accident during or on his way to/from work, or suffers from occupational illness. Payments cover not only the costs for medical treatments, but also e.g. the costs for convalescence after accidents at work and reintegration aid.

You have to inform your employer immediately of any accident you had at or on your way to/from work.

Each of the University’s departments/institutes has a person responsible for safety, who you can turn to for help and who will fill out an accident notification.

If you go to a doctor, it is essential to tell him/her that it was an accident at or on the way to/from your workplace. He will then submit a doctor’s accident notification to the respective accident insurance himself. Depending on the circumstances, he might refer you to a further colleague. 

Deutsche Gesetzliche Unfallversicherung (German statutory accident insurance)


'Lohnsteuer' (Wage Tax) with Employment Contract

Wage tax is a form of income tax. The employer deduces it directly from the wages and transfers it to the corresponding authorities.
Approximately two to three weeks after your first registration at a German Resident Registration Office, you will receive a letter from the Federal Central Tax Office which details the personal and lifelong validSteueridentifikationsnummer (tax identification number). This number must be passed on to the HR Department immediately.

If you work in Germany for more than half a year, your income will be subject to tax. At the end of the tax year, you can make an annual adjustment and then you might receive a tax refund.

You are required to submit a tax statement if you have a tax allowance according to your Lohnsteuerkarte (income tax card) or if you have received wages from different employers. Furthermore, you must submit a tax statement if both spouses have received wages.

If you are staying for less than half a year, your salary will be subject to tax in your home country, as long as you are employed by a foreign company/institution and double taxation law assigns you to your home country. There are agreements with some countries allowing accrued taxes to be collected in your home country. Please take note of the information provided by the Federal Ministry of Finance on the ‘treaties to avoid double taxation’.
A list of countries with which there are contracts to avoid double taxation can be found on following link to the Federal Ministry of Finance.

Additional information about taxes in Germany: EURAXESS, Make it in Germany

Tax Statement

Please note that the Welcome Centre is not able or allowed to provide support for the creation of tax statements.
You have the opportunity to contact an income tax assistance association or a tax advisor to help you draw up your tax statement.

'Lohnsteuer' (Wage Tax) with Scholarship

If you are a scholarship holder, you might be exempt to tax, depending on your circumstances. You might have to pay tax on your scholarship in your home country, please ask the provider of your scholarship for details. If you are receiving a scholarship in your home country, you are not required to pay tax.

Further information on taxation regulations can be found on the internet pages of Make it in Germany,the Federal Ministry of Finance and Euraxess.

University Library

The University Library consists of the Central University Library at the Berthold-Beitz-Platz, the old University Library in the Rubenowstraße, the Departmental Library Friedrich-Loeffler-Str. 23, the Library Archive Am Schießwall and various subject-specific libraries.

Permission to use the University Library is granted on the basis of the Benutzungsordnung (regulations governing the use). The University Library’s primary service is to provide University members with literature and other forms of media. In addition, the University can be accessed by anybody and any institution.
The open stacks area at the Central University Library can be used without a user ID. A user ID is needed if you want to take out books.

To apply for a library ID card, prospective foreign library users will need the following documents:

  • Students at the University of Greifswald - student ID card
  • Employees at the University of Greifswald - employment contract
  • Passport and registration certificate

University Library

Felix-Hausdorff-Straße 10
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: + 49 3834 420 1515
Fax: + 49 3834 420 1501

University Library Greifswald

Application Form for a User ID Card

Room Information System

University Library Opening Hours:

Monday - Friday 8.00 a.m. - midnight
Saturday - Sunday 9.00 a.m. - midnight 

Service Hours at the University Library

Monday - Friday 8.00 a.m. - 9.00 p.m.
Saturday - Sunday 9.00 a.m. - 5.00 p.m. 

Graduate Academy

The Graduate Academy was opened at the University of Greifswald in November 2012.
It is the central body for doctorates and the postdoctoral phase at the University of Greifswald. The Graduate Academy provides a comprehensive offer of qualification courses.  It is open to members from all faculties and Greifswald’s collaborative research partners.
International researchers are also very welcome, some of the events are held in English.

Dr. Michael Gerhard Schöner
Domstraße 14
17489 Greifswald
Tel.: +49 3834 420 1618
Fax: +49 3834 420 1105
Graduate Academy
University Didactics