Applying for blue card renewal? Here is how to do it right

Have you already completed 3-4 years in Germany on a blue card and you are applying for a blue card renewal?

You will find a lot of resources online about how to apply for a Blue card in Germany.

But, what you should do when it comes to renewing your blue card? No one is really talking about it.

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I tried a lot of websites and resources to understand the procedure myself when I was applying for a blue card renewal but with no success.

So, here I am going to explain to you the steps and the documents required to renew your as well as your dependent’s blue card in Germany.

Get a blue card renewal appointment

This is the first step which is kind of the biggest blocker especially in cities like Berlin.

Getting an appointment for the renewal of your Blue card in a city like Berlin is one of the toughest things to do as an ex-pat.

The good news is – Even though it is tough to get an appointment for the blue card renewal, trust me it is not impossible.

Steps to book an appointment

Booking an appointment for your blue card renewal is different in Berlin and other cities of Germany.

Blue card renewal appointment in Berlin

  1. Visit the official website to book an appointment for your blue card renewal.
  2. Read through all the important informations and the list of documents required.
  3. Proceed to the appointment booking page and fill out the details.
  4. Proceed to the next page and you will most probably see an error message saying that “There are no appointment available at this moment. Please try again later.” or something similar.
  5. If no appointments are available, make sure to bookmark this page and retry as often as you can.
  6. If an appointment date is available, try to quickly select a date and time and confirm the selection and fill the other details as well.
  7. You will get an email confirming your appointment. Keep this email safe and print it as well.

Pro Tip:

* Make sure to turn off the auto-translation feature of your browser as it interferes with the appointment selection page elements and you might not see the option to select a time for your appointment.

* Always keep your Blue card details handy while booking an appointment.

Blue card renewal appointment anywhere else in Germany

If you are living in another city, you might not have an online appointment booking system, unlike Berlin.

In this case, you can get an appointment by directly reaching out to the officials at the Foreign Office (Ausländerbehörde).

Here is how you can ask for an appointment to apply for blue card renewal:

  1. Find the email id of the foreign office in your respective city (Google it).
  2. Write them an email with your passport number, blue card number and your name asking for an appointment to renew your blue card.
  3. Request them for an appointment in the upcoming days or weeks. Ideally you should write them atleast 5-6 months before your blue card expiry date.
  4. In 90% of the cases, you will either get an appointment or they will ask you for additional documents or information which you can send them via email.
  5. If you are among the unlucky 10% where the officials do not reply to the email, do not worry. Just give them a call or visit the office personally and ask for an appointment.

Prepare for the blue card renewal appointment

Congratulations! You’ve already passed the biggest hurdle in your blue card renewal journey.

Now, the next step is to prepare all the relevant and required documents for you and your dependents before you appear for your appointment.

Please visit the official website here and make sure that you have all the documents listed for the Blue card application.

There are a few documents that are needed only for the first-time application and are not required for the renewal. e.g: Your degree certificate.

You can have a look at this page to get the details about the optional and required documents for your blue card renewal.

Pro Tip:

* Keep your originals with you on the day of your appointment along with the copies of the same.

* Make sure that you have all your documents in English or German. In case any of your documents are in any other language, then get it apostilled.

On the day of your visa appointment

So, your blue card renewal appointment day is here.

The first thing I would do is to inform my employer about the appointment and ask for home office permission.

I will plan my travel a day before the actual appointment date. This will include preparing my office bag with all the documents, enough drinking water for 2-3 hours, enough cash, an ATM card, and so on.

Now, I will share my experience in the Berlin office on the day of my Blue card renewal appointment. It is going to be the same or almost similar in any other foreign office in Germany.

Blue card renewal experience in Berlin

I reached the office at least 15-20 minutes before my scheduled appointment time which was 8:00 am.

The security person at the entrance of the building asked me to visit the 2nd floor and sit in the waiting room there.

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The waiting room had around 10-12 chairs with two screens that were displaying the token numbers and the respective room.

My token number was displayed on the screen at around 8:10 am.

Pro Tip:

Make sure you don’t miss your number. Keep watching the screen all the time.

I along with my family went to the room which was on the same floor as the waiting room.

The official was a lady (in her 50s) who asked my wife and daughter to wait outside as only one person was allowed inside the room at a time due to the ongoing corona restrictions.

The lady was nice and the good thing was that she spoke with us in English.

I handed over the following documents to her:

  • Passport (Original)
  • Current blue card (Original)
  • The green slip that came along with the blue card. It is very important if you changed jobs. (Original)
  • City registration document or Anmeldung document (Original)
  • House contract (Original or copy)
  • Health insurance card with your photo on it (Original)
  • Confirmation letter from the Health insurance (Copy)
  • Biometric photo (Recent photo – One copy). We got this one day before from a nearby DM for 8 euros.

She didn’t ask for the Marriage certificate, Degree certificate, or the Birth certificate of my daughter. Probably because it was a blue card renewal application.

After checking these documents, she asked me a few questions:

  • When did you come to Germany?
  • Did you switch your job in between?
  • When did you come to Berlin?
  • Where are you staying in Berlin?

Finally, she printed two forms and asked me to fill and sign these forms. One was for me and the other one was for my wife. You can download a sample of this form below:

She also asked to wait outside in the waiting room after filling the form until she calls me back using the same number.

I translated this form and figured that the form basically was a declaration that we (me and my wife) stay together in the mentioned address.

We both filled the form, signed it, and waited for our number to be displayed on the screen.

Even after 30 minutes, we didn’t see our number on the screen. So, I decided to go back to the same room with a question 😛

I went there and asked her if she can check the form and let me know if something is missing?

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She checked the form quickly and said everything looks fine and asked me to sit there.

After another 10 minutes, she printed a paper with my basic details on it. I was asked to double-check the details.

She also asked me to confirm the eye color and height of my Daughter. This gets printed on the blue card.

This was repeated for all three of us.

Payment for blue card renewal application

After another 5-10 minutes, she gave me a credit card-sized card and asked me to make the payment.

She asked me to pay 232.50 Euros in total. This was the fee for the blue card renewal for me, my wife, and my daughter (4.5).

I had to visit a payment machine, which was on the same floor. This machine looked more like an ATM.

I had to put that card into the machine and topped it up using my bank debit card. It was a simple process that took just 1 minute.

Pro-tip:

Instead of using your debit card, you can also top up using cash.

Once the card was charged with the specified amount, I got a confirmation slip from this machine. I took that slip and gave it back to the lady.

Confirmation letters for the blue card renewal

She asked me to call my wife and daughter as well to review and sign the final set of documents.

She printed out three confirmation letters. One for each of us.

We were asked to review these letters to confirm the details and address.

The letter was basically proof that we have applied for the extension or renewal of our blue card and the same is under process.

It also stated that we can use this letter as proof for the next three months and the new blue card will arrive within the next 4-6 weeks.

Do you have further questions?

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There was also a mention that the new blue card will have a 4-year validity which is more than the 3+ year validity of my current blue card.

Finally, I was asked to sign a form that took our consent for delivering the new blue card to our home address in Berlin.

Once this was signed, she gave us all the original and photocopies of the documents that we had submitted initially.

We checked if everything was in order and if we received back all the originals (Passport, current blue card, Anmeldung certificate, etc)

That was it. The whole process took approximately 1.5 hours and we were free by 9.30 am.

Thanks for reading the post and feel free to add your feedback or general queries in the comments section below.

Good luck!

29 thoughts on “Applying for blue card renewal? Here is how to do it right”

  1. Thank you very much for sharing your experience Anoop. May I ask you how much time you went there before the due date of your blue card?

    My blue card’s due date is June and I’m wondering if I can go earlier or I have to set my appointment only to June.

    Thank you.

    Reply
    • Oh, I’ve just read that you can apply at the earliest date of 8 weeks prior the expiration 🙂

      Reply
      • Yes, But in my case, I still had 3 months for the existing blue card to expire. I got the appointment 2 months before the card expiry.

        So, you could go even before 8 weeks for the appointment. In my case, it was 10-12 weeks before.

  2. Hello Anoop ;
    Thank you very much for the comperhensive explanaition about regaring the renwal of the blue card.
    I appriciate if you can answer my questions:
    1. How did they submitt the new Blue card, did they send it to you by post or did you revist the officials at the Foreign Office (Ausländerbehörde) to collect it?
    2. what kind of Confirmation letter from the Health insurance did they ask for?

    Thank you
    Khairi

    Reply
    • Hi Khairi

      1. It was sent via post to my registered address.
      2. They checked my health insurance card and also the insurance confirmation letter. You can request your Health insurance provider to send you the insurance certificate. Both AOK and TK were really fast in this case.

      I hope this helps.
      Thanks!

      Reply
  3. Hi Anoop,
    Thanks for sharing your experiences, extremely helpful.
    In some websites they say Blue Card is only valid for 4 years. As I understand, you were reaching your 4th year and they extended it to an additional +4 years, right?
    I’m reaching my 4th year, and need to extend some months if possible.

    Best
    Semra

    Reply
    • Hi Semra

      Your Blue card validity is mentioned on the card itself. Please look for the valid till date on your card.

      You should apply for a renewal at least 8 weeks before this date. If you still hold a job that meets the blue card minimum criteria, then you will be granted a new card with another 4 years of validity.

      You are free to switch jobs without having any limitations after getting this new card.

      I hope this helps
      Thanks!

      Reply
  4. Hello Anup,
    Really good overview … was “Erklärung zum Beschäftigungsverhältnis” document from current employer required for extension?

    Reply
    • Hi Nikhil

      Thanks for the feedback.

      Yes, a letter from the employer stating my current employment, role and salary was provided by the HR which I had to submit during the renewal appointment. I do not recall the German name for this document.

      Thanks!

      Reply
  5. Hi Anoop!

    Did you get a new green slip ?
    I lost mine , but I do not know if it is worth getting a copy before applying for the blue card extension or if I should just wait until the extension appointment to get a new one .

    Thanks !

    Reply
    • Hi Cesar

      I think you should apply for the green slip (If that’s possible). I am saying this because, on my Blue card renewal date, they did ask for the green slip.

      Also, there is no green slip with the new Blue card (as far as I remember) because it is not tied to an employer anymore and I am free to change the employer without any obligations.

      I hope this helps.

      Reply
      • Hi Anoop,

        Any idea how can I apply for a new green slip, I lost mine as well.

        Thank you for answering 🙂

  6. Hi
    Thanks a lot for your detailed explanation.
    My case is a little different. I got approved de blue card from abroad.
    The German embassy in my country approved my blue card and stamped in my passport in one page (it says “supplementary sheet” , and in the next page stamped a visa class D.
    The supplementary sheet (blue card ) does not mention the expiration day, but the visa class D does. The expiration day is in August 2022.
    My employer hired a third party group to take care of the renewal process (I am not sure it it is renewal or issuing a new one ) , and I contacted these third party group asking about this process and they just told me that before the expiration of the visa the immigration authorities will issue an appointment to me.
    My concern is that this group seems to be very relaxed, and as far as I know , if the visa gets expired , I need to leave the country.
    Should I look for the appointment from now ?
    Is this in my passport already a blue card ?
    Please, any suggestions would be very appreciated
    Thanks

    Reply
    • Hi Alfred

      I understand your concern.
      I would suggest you look for an appointment yourself and let the agency also do it for you. If you find the appointment, you can let them know and if they find it, then its all good.

      Meanwhile, you can also send them (foreigners’ office) an email asking for an appointment. As soon as you send the email, you will get an automated reply that says that you can continue to stay and work in Germany for some duration even after your visa expires. Please send that email and check the response yourself.

      Good luck

      Reply
  7. Hi Anoop,

    How long did it take between attending your blue card appointment and receiving the physical blue card?

    I had my blue card extension appointment 5 weeks before my blue card expiry and it is now 7 weeks after that appointment but I am yet to receive the blue card. Although, I did receive a confirmation letter

    Any clue or advise on what I should do?

    Ola

    Reply
  8. My passport will expire in few months and my blue card has a validity till that time even though I am eligible for staying up to 4 years.Now it’s been months only reached Germany. So wen I renew my passport, I have to renew by blue card as well right. Then will my Blue card also get 4 years validity?

    Reply
    • Hi Amal

      Yes, you need to apply for renewal once you have the new passport.
      Your Blue card will also have an extended date i.e 4 years from now.

      Reply
    • I didn’t want to risk it as I was not eligible for the PR when I applied for the blue card renewal. I had to wait for another 3-4 months before I could apply for a PR.

      So, I first renewed my Blue card and after about 6-8 months, I applied for the PR.

      Reply
  9. Hi Anoop,
    Thanks for the detailed vlog. It helps.

    I am based in Munich, and my Blue Card expires this December. I wrote to Munich Foreigners Office and he replied back with this general link: ‘https://www.muenchen.de/rathaus/Stadtverwaltung/Kreisverwaltungsreferat/Auslaenderwesen/Online-Service.html’

    I thought there would be some different process for renewal than applying it for the first time.

    Reply
    • Hi Rohan

      The process is usually the same. They need all the same documents that you would need when you apply for the first time. Also, a new card is printed and sent to your address even when you renew. Maybe that’s why they sent you the same link to start your blue card renewal process.

      Reply
    • When a passport is renewed, you should apply for the renewal of the blue card as well. This is because the blue card is linked to your passport and if you lose your passport and get a new one, it should reflect on your Blue card as well.

      The process of renewing the Blue card is simple and straightforward.
      It might take 6-8 weeks to get the new Blue card delivered to your address in Germany.

      Reply
  10. Hi,

    Thanks for your article. It is really helpful. I have a different question from the ones that are asked already.
    After applying for renewal, you get a document that tells your renewal application is under process. So, with this document can I visit other EU country while my previous Blue card is expired?

    I really need this answer because I have planned a holiday during the time when I will not have my new card but the document only, with expired existing card.

    Hoping to hearing from you.

    Best,
    Sarah

    Reply
    • Hi Sarah

      That’s a good question.
      Unfortunately, I don’t exactly remember that. I was not planning to travel at that time.
      I think you can simply translate the document and read it. It should be mentioned in the document whether you can travel with it or not.

      Also, if you are yet to attend the appointment for the renewal, you should definitely ask the person dealing with your appointment.

      Good luck!
      Thanks!

      Reply

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