For those arriving at GIU, we provide comprehensive services, including orientation sessions before the semester begins, exciting excursions, and insightful company visits. These initiatives are designed to not only facilitate a smooth start in the city but also to enrich your overall experience during your stay.
Our service at GIU goes way beyond the study program and academic advising services. Be assured that our team accompanies and supports you once you are admitted as a GIU student, even before you arrive in Berlin. We will help you with all organizational and bureaucratic issues that you will face especially in the beginning.
Below you'll find crucial information about essential matters, including residence registration, banking procedures, medical support and more.
When and why do I have to go to the Residence Registration office?
You have moved to Berlin from abroad or from another community in Germany to Berlin or moved apartments within Berlin?
In all cases you have to register (by German Registration Law!) at the residence registration office (Bürgeramt) within 14 days after your arrival.
You can hand in the residence registration form at one of more than 40 residence registration offices in Berlin.
As soon as you are registered, you will receive a residence registration confirmation (Anmeldebestätigung) which you will need for i.e. opening a bank account or for other purposes where you need to proof your residence in Berlin. So make sure to always keep a copy!
Which documents do I need for the residence registration?
- Residence Registration form, filled out and signed available online
- The apartment donor confirmation, filled out and signed by the landlord available online
- Copy of Original Passport (if required with visa) or official ID card
How can the GIU support me in that process?
The GIU administration staff helps you with filling out the application form and affirms if all needed documents are complete.
Furthermore, your application will be handed in at the residence registration office near the GIU Campus and you will be informed once your registration confirmation is ready to be picked up on Campus.
Why do I need a bank account?
A bank account is there to facilitate your financial affairs.
It is necessary for:
- Receiving payments (i.e. support from your family, salary)
- Doing transfers (i.e. payment of rent)
- Having an easy overview of your financial situation
Which documents are needed to open up a bank account?
- Original Passport (if required with visa) or official ID card
- Residence registration confirmation (Anmeldebestätigung)
- University enrollment confirmation (to be eligible for a student’s account)
How can the GIU support me in that process?
The GIU will support you in recommending online banks and bank branches located near the GIU Campus and affirm if all needed documents are complete.
Health insurance is mandatory in Germany to cover the costs of medical treatment. The German health insurance system differentiates between public insurances (gesetzliche Krankenversicherung) and private insurances (private Krankenversicherung).
All students in Germany must have a valid health insurance either from a private or a public health insurance There is free choice upon the type of insurance. There is differences in terms of monthly fees, cost coverage and reimbursement process.
All students, who decide for a private health insurance, have to opt out from a public health insurance and sign an exemption form within the first 90 days after arrival.
Students from countries which have a social security agreement with Germany
Students from EU countries and from Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Tunisia and Turkey do not need to take a health insurance policy in Germany. They only need to bring proof of health insurance from their home countries. Get an EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) from your insurance company.
Students who have private health insurance at home which they want to use in Berlin
Students with private insurance from their home country need to bring a confirmation in English or German stating that it covers all costs in case of medical treatment. With this document they can choose any public health insurance and ask for exemption from the obligatory German health insurance. A travel insurance is not sufficient for this purpose.
- Patients with private health insurance will be billed personally; they have to pay the bill for medical treatment themselves and can later submit the bill to their insurance company to get the amount reimbursed.
- Please note: private insurances do not cover the costs for regular health checkups or medical treatment of diseases that existed before entering Germany.
How can GIU support me in that process?
GIU will support you in explaining the differences between private and public health insurance, handling exemptions and assist if you need help in liaising with the health insurance, doctors or the hospital.
Berlin is the hub of Europe and one of the most vibrant cities around the world. Experience Berlin’s rich history, cosmopolitan architecture and diverse cultural scene.
Berlin, the city of youth, has a strong international community and world-class universities, making it a leading platform within the arena of higher education.
For more info, please visit berlin and visit berlin
BVG (public transportation guide)
The public transportation network consists of underground metro, busses, trains (S-Bahn) and trams. The penalty for not having a valid ticket is 60€. The Berlin tariff area is subdivided into zones A, B & C.
Please note: Beware of tricksters! Please buy your tickets only at official outlets.
From Berlin, you have easy and affordable access to all nearby European cities. Depending on the destination, you can travel by bus, train or plane. Close to Berlin, there are interesting German cities such as Hamburg, Leipzig and Dresden which can best be reached by bus or train. Within Europe, the closest cities to Berlin are Prague (best to be reached by bus or train) and Budapest (best to be reached by plane).
Travel preparation tips
- Book well in advance as bus, train and plane tickets as well as accommodation will be much cheaper
- Always carry a copy of your passport (in case you lose your passport)
- Make sure not to store all your money in the same place, i.e. always store your cash and credit/debit card in a different place
- Take confirmations of all your previously arranged bookings/reservations with you
Traveling by bus
Traveling by bus is by far the cheapest way of traveling both within Germany and to most European cities. All busses depart from “Zentraler Omnibusbahnhof" (ZOB) The most popular bus lines are Flixbus, BerlinLinienBus and Eurolines. Make sure to ask for student’s discounts.
Berlinlinienbus Offers connections to all major German cities as well as to some European destinations. For more info and tickets https://www.fernbusse.de/fernbus-anbieter/berlin-linien-bus/
Eurolines Offers connections to all major European and German cities. For more info and tickets click here
Traveling by train
Berlin "Hauptbahnhof" offers an extensive network of train connections to almost everywhere in Germany as well as to European cities such as Prague, Paris and Vienna. “Deutsche Bahn” continuously offers ticket contingents at discounted prices and cheaper online deals through its website. Make sure to book well in advance to get one of these cheaper deals.
For more info click here
Traveling by plane
The major airport “Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg” (Welcome to BER) is located southeast of the city center and can easily be reached by public transport (train, S-Bahn). It is served by both major airlines and low-cost carriers.
To search for cheap flights, click here