Applying for a Jobseeker visa in 2023 requires much more preparation, courage, and consistency than ever.
I used the above three words because there are thousands of applicants for the German Jobseeker visa each year. To succeed, you should prepare well, have the dedication to overcome the challenges, and finally be consistent and keep trying in the right direction until you get there.
Enough of motivation for now, let’s jump straight into the topic.
How to apply for a German Jobseeker visa?
To apply for a Jobseeker visa, you should:
- Meet the eligibility criteria.
- Prepare the documents required for the visa.
- Prepare a plan of action for the next 6 months.
- Book an appointment at the Consulate or Embassy of Germany or the third-party service provider in your country.
- Submit your documents.
- Await the result.
- Travel to Germany and apply for jobs.
Let’s break down the above steps into details
1. Meet the eligibility criteria
The eligibility criteria for a Jobseeker visa are usually listed on the official German embassy website of the country where you plan to apply.
In this post, we will consider the example of India and hence we refer to the website of the German embassy in India.
As per the information on the official website as of 2023, the following criteria should be met by the candidate applying for a Jobseeker visa:
|Academic Qualification||Degree or Vocational training recognized by Germany.|
|Financial requirement||Proof of sufficient funds either via a Blocked account or via Invitation letter or by displaying a bank account statement with enough funds.|
|Professional experience||It is not mentioned on the official website but it is highly recommended to have at least 5 years of professional experience before applying for the Jobseeker visa.|
These are the major requirements when it comes to the eligibility criteria.
Apart from these, there are a bunch of Documents that should be prepared and presented for the Jobseeker visa application.
2. Prepare the documents required for the Jobseeker visa
Some of the documents required to be furnished before you plan your visa application are:
|Travel||A valid passport with at least 1 year of validity in the future.|
|Application form||A filled visa application form. Please check the official website of the German embassy in your country to get the details of this form.|
|Photographs||Color photographs that meet the biometric requirements, not older than 6 months.|
|Motivation||You need to submit a motivation letter showcasing your motivation to search for a job and work in Germany.|
|Declaration||There is usually a requirement to submit the declaration form duly signed by the applicant. Details can be found on the official website.|
|Education||Bachelor’s degree or proof of vocational training. Whichever is applicable.|
|Work experience||Prior job contracts or confirmation letters from previous employers.|
|Education||Proof of recognition of your education in Germany (ZAB approval) if required.|
|Financial||Proof of sufficient funds either via a bank statement or via a Blocked account or via an obligation letter from someone already in Germany.|
The above are the basic and the main documents required to apply for a Jobseeker visa in 2023. You should definitely visit the official embassy website in your country before preparing the documents to get up-to-date information.
3. Prepare a plan of action for the next 6 months
Once you have all the documents in place and meet the eligibility criteria, it is important to plan your travel and stay in Germany.
The 6-month visa will entitle you to stay in Germany and search for a job. This sounds exciting but you should plan it well to avoid troubles later.
The best approach is to start applying for jobs in Germany while you are still in your home country. This will give you an insight into the German job market and will also help you understand the speed at which your application goes through different stages of the interview.
It is very unlikely that you will get a positive response when you apply for jobs in Germany from your home country in the beginning but as I said earlier, it is a practice to prepare you for the real job hunt when you land in Germany.
Apart from applying for jobs, it’s also a good idea to build your network of like-minded people who are also either preparing for a jobseeker visa or are already in Germany.
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I’ve also heard from JSV applicants that they prepared a daily timetable for their first 3 months where they spent morning hours applying to as many jobs as possible and the later part of the day upskilling and attending interviews.
You can follow a similar approach or build your own. The idea here is to have a consistent plan that will help you stay focused when you are in Germany.
4. Book an Appointment for the Jobseeker visa application
Now that you have prepared all the documents and are ready to apply for the visa, the immediate next step is to book an appointment for the document submission and for the visa interview (in some countries).
If the German embassy in your home country conducts visa interviews, you should prepare for the interview and make sure that you answer all the questions with confidence.
If the embassy in your country does not conduct the interviews or collect the documents via a third-party service provider, make sure to book an appointment with the service provider. For example, In India VFS Global handles the document collection from applicants on behalf of the German embassy.
In many countries, the waiting time to get an appointment is huge. So, it’s better to book an appointment well in advance.
5. Submit your Jobseeker visa documents
On the day of your appointment, it is mandatory to appear in person. In some special cases, you can also nominate another person to appear on your behalf.
Make sure to bring 2-3 copies of all the required documents on the day of your appointment. Apart from the copies, keep the originals as well.
You also need to bring the visa application fee. If you are submitting the documents directly to the consulate or the Embassy, you will have to prepare a Demand Draft to pay for the visa processing fee. On the other hand, if you are submitting the documents via a third-party document processing agency, they usually accept the fee via Cash, Credit card, or other online payment methods.
6. Await the result
A Jobseeker visa application submission doesn’t guarantee that your visa will get approved for sure. It just ensures that the documents are accepted by the embassy for further review and verification.
There could be a possibility that your application will be rejected. This could be because of any reason but the most common reason quoted by the embassy while rejecting a Jobseeker visa application is “The lack of motivation or lack of preparation“.
If your visa gets rejected, you have the possibility to re-apply or drag the decision to the court. We won’t be covering these topics in this post but just wanted to let you know that there is a possibility to challenge the decision of the Embassy legally.
In the best scenario, your Jobseeker visa application will get approved and your passport will get stamped with the Jobseeker visa for a duration of 6 months.
7. Travel to Germany and Apply for jobs
Congratulations, you finally did it.
You got your Jobseeker visa for Germany but bear in mind that this is only half the battle. The main challenge will start once you land in Germany.
I do not intend to scare you or demotivate you but I just wanted to keep you informed that once you land in Germany, you will face the real challenge of finding a long-term apartment, German bureaucracy, Apartment registration, Medical appointments, and most important – Job hunting.
If you focus on the preparation section that I detailed above, you will find it easy to stick to a job search plan and apply to jobs on a daily basis.
Remember – You might not get a positive response from German employers in the first couple of weeks or maybe even for a month or so. The key here is to stay motivated, be consistent, and keep upskilling yourself. You will definitely crack the German job market if you follow the guidelines and the best practices.
Finally, statistics show that 70% of the Jobseeker visa applicants end up getting an offer letter from Germany. So, your chances of finding a job in Germany are quite high.
Anoop is a German PR holder and a Software Engineering manager with over 12 years of experience in the IT industry. He worked for several renowned IT companies in India and many startups in Germany. Anoop was featured on YourStory Germany, Zeit Online, Imagine Foundation, Tech Job Fairs Berlin, and many other platforms.
Interested in discussing the above topic in detail? Schedule a 30-minute 1-1 session with Anoop here.