Prepare your stay in Bonn

Below you find information on several issues relevant for preparing your stay in Bonn. For more detailed information on accommodation, visa, health insurance, enrollment, etc. you may also want to check out the pages of our central International Office: Before Studying.

To Do's

Incoming Master students from non-EU countries usually need a visa to study in Germany. Please note that for binding information regarding your specific visa requirements, you need to contact the German embassy or German consulate in your home country.

General information is here.

The Studierendenwerk (an organization providing social, financial, and other support services for students in Germany) runs the majority of the dormitories in Bonn. The demand for these rooms is usually extremely high and available rooms are very limited.

For this reason, we support all international Master students in finding a room, i.e. we reserve rooms for our incoming students through the Studierendenwerk Bonn.2 While this generally works out well, there have been occasional shortages which is why we can unfortunately not guarantee that you will be allotted a room - as there may be not enough rooms available.

Application deadlines: July 31st (for move-in on October 1st) and August 31 (for move-in on November 1st), and so on. We will also be able to reserve rooms from January 1st and February 1st.

You can apply for a room of the Studierendenwerk through us by

  1. filling in our form;
  2. following the next steps described in the e-mail, you will receive. We will give you detailed information about how to apply online and how to pay the deposit;
  3. paying a 900 Euro deposit to reserve a room. The deposit will be refunded once you have signed the rental agreement and paid the first month's rent for your room to the Studierendenwerk. Note that reservations are binding.

You can find an overview of the dormitories on Studierendenwerk's webpage2 (some sections are, unfortunately, in German only).

Finally, you can find useful information regarding short-term accommodation, shared housing, student flats, and dorms run by other institutions on the pages of the University's International Office.

Some words of warning:

  1. Please note that neither you nor we can influence the probability that you will receive a room, as the Studierendenwerk is in charge of the allocation process;
  2. You will be offered a room irrespective of your stated preferences and you will have to accept the assigned room (if you refuse it, we will refund your money but no longer be able to support you in finding accommodation). During the application process, you will be asked about your preferences and will have to name three - but this is for technical reasons only.
  3. The chances of receiving a room by applying directly to the Studierendenwerk, and not through us, are not very high but you can still try. Their application form is here.
  4. For the above-mentioned reasons, please be prepared to also look for private accommodation on your own.

Once you have found a place to stay, you need to register with the Residents’ Registration Office (Bürgeramt). In order to register, you need to bring along your rental agreement and your passport. Students with a room or an apartment in downtown Bonn can register at the Bürgeramt in Stadthaus. You can find more information (in German) on their webpage and also an online form for making an appointment (Terminvereinbarung) but you can also go there without an appointment. We will provide assistance for international students seeking to register with the city.

All non-EU international students need a valid residence permit: Students with a visa that is valid throughout their stay do not need to register with the Aliens Office (Ausländeramt), all others do. You can find a map (Stadtplan) and more information (in German only) on the webpage of the aliens office. There is also an online form (in German) to make an appointment (Terminvereinbarung). We will also provide assistance for international students at the aliens office.

In order to get the residence permit, please bring a valid passport, admission letter or proof of registration from the university, proof of registration from the Bürgeramt, proof that you can support yourself financially, a student visa (not applicable for EU citizens), and proof of sufficient health insurance.

In Germany, all students are required by law to have health insurance. EU citizens or students form countries that have signed a social security agreement with Germany can take out health insurance in their home country, this insurance will be recognized in Germany. Please double-check with your insurance company and with the Allgemeine Ortskrankenkasse (AOK) in Bonn whether you are sufficiently covered.

All other students need to take out a German health insurance policy. You can do so with an insurance company of your choice. Several insurance companies are located in downtown Bonn, e.g. AOK, Barmer Ersatzkasse,Techniker Krankenkasse. Health insurance costs amount to about 112 Euro per month. Make sure to bring your certificate of admission to the Master program along when applying for health insurance.

Usually, some representatives of health insurance companies will be present at the Studierendensekretariat during the registration period and you will be able to get a health insurance contract then. You can find more information on the topic on the webpage of the international office.

Since most payments can only be made through bank transfers, you will need to open a German bank account, more specifically a current account or checking account (Girokonto). You can open such an account after having registered with the Residents Registration Office (Bürgeramt) with a bank of your choice or with the post office. In most cases, the basic account is free of charge for students.

For more programs and activities organized by the International Office for all international students of the University of Bonn, ranging from the study buddy program which will provide you with a German study buddy familiar with the university via the help desk to the program of the international club, please visit the homepage for international students. Additional information can be also found in the “Guide for International Students".

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