First steps after arriving in Germany
Blick auf das Beachvolleyballfeld und Haus 15

First steps after arriving in Germany

After arriving in Germany, international students have to take some important steps to successfully settle into their studies and life in Germany.

German version

Registering at the registration office: First steps in Germany

Immediately after your arrival in Germany, you must register with the relevant registration office (Einwohnermeldeamt or Bürgeramt). This registration is required by law and must be completed within two weeks of moving into your new home. When you register, you will receive confirmation of your registration certificate, which is required for many official matters.

Steps for registration

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Like German citizens, international students must register their place of residence at the Residents' Registration Office / Volkshaus.

If you have found an apartment, a room in a hall of residence or a shared flat in Germany, you must register at the Residents' Registration Office within two weeks. This also applies to every move!

The registration confirmation serves as proof of address and you will need it, for example, if you want to open a bank account.

You will need the following for registration:

  • Passport or identity card
  • Tenancy agreement
  • Registration form
  • Certificate of enrollment

If you register with your main place of residence in Wildau, you will receive a welcome money of 50,- Euro per semester from the city of Wildau. Further information can be found here.


Town Hall Wildau
Karl-Marx-Straße 36
15745 Wildau
Tel.: 03375/5054-59 or –60

Office hours:
Monday 09.00 - 12.00
Tuesday 09.00 - 12.00 and 14.00b - 18.00
Thursday 09.00 - 12.00 and 14.00 - 17.00


Town Hall Königs Wusterhausen
Schloßstraße 3
15711 Königs Wusterhausen

Tel.: 03375 273 373

Office hours:
Monday 8.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m.
Tuesday 8.00 -19.00
Wednesday closed
Thursday 8.00 a.m. - 6.00 p.m.
Friday 7.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m.



If you live in Berlin, you can find the relevant registration office on the Internet.

Health insurance: Essential for studying in Germany

If you want to study in Germany, you need health insurance. You cannot be enrolled without health insurance cover. You are obliged to have health insurance until you are 30 years old or in your 14th semester and, in the worst case, you will be de-registered if you do not have insurance cover. As an EU student, you remain covered by health insurance in your home country and do not have to apply for additional health insurance in Germany.

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Choosing health insurance

  • There are two types of health insurance in Germany: statutory and private. Until the age of 30 or the 14th semester of study, however, you must always be covered by statutory health insurance. You can only take out private insurance in exceptional cases
  • Please note: Once you have private insurance, you can no longer switch to a statutory health insurance company!
  • In most cases, however, statutory insurance is the cheaper option - unless you are privately insured through your parents


Recognition of foreign health insurance policies

There are social security agreements with some countries, including the member states of the European Union and the European Economic Area: If you have statutory health insurance in your home country, you can have this insurance cover recognized by a statutory health insurance fund in Germany. However, clarify in your home country which documents you need for this! For students, this is usually a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). You can apply for the EHIC free of charge from your health insurance company.

Your insurance may not cover all costs in Germany. Find out exactly which benefits you are entitled to in Germany before you enter the country. If you do not have insurance cover in your home country, you must still take out insurance in Germany, just like all other students.

Private health insurance policies from other countries may also be recognized in Germany under certain circumstances. You should clarify the details with your insurance company.

If your private insurance is recognized, you will need confirmation for enrolment that you are exempt from compulsory statutory health insurance. However, you will then no longer be able to switch to a statutory health insurance company for the duration of your studies!


Accident insurance

As a student at the TH Wildau, you are legally insured against accidents on the way between your home and the TH Wildau as well as within the university. In addition, the Studentenwerk Potsdam has taken out a group accident insurance policy for all students of the TH Wildau, which also covers accidents during leisure activities, internships and activities outside the university in preparation for examinations.

However, the International Office recommends that you also take out adequate accident insurance cover.


Liability insurance

Liability insurance that indemnifies the insured person against claims for damages by third parties is not provided by the TH Wildau. The International Office therefore recommends that you take out sufficient liability insurance cover yourself.

Information on the semester ticket = Deutschlandticket

The semester ticket, which allows students in Germany to use local public transport, will be replaced by the Deutschlandticket from summer semester 2024. By upgrading the semester ticket to the Deutschlandticket, students will be able to use public transport throughout Germany and benefit from solidarity-based funding that offers all students the opportunity to receive the discounted Deutschlandticket.


Semester fees at the TH Wildau

All students at TH Wildau pay a fee for public transport in, which amounts to approx. 200 EUR per semester and includes a semester ticket with the student ID card. In addition, administrative fees of approx. 300 EUR per semester are payable to the Studentenwerk Potsdam and TH Wildau. Current information on the semester fee can be found here.

Bank account, blocked account & payment methods: Financial requirements for studying in Germany

In order to study in Germany, international students must meet certain financial requirements. An important step in this process is opening a blocked account, which serves as proof of funding for the visa procedure and ensures that students have sufficient financial resources during their stay in Germany.

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Payment methods

A lot is paid in cash in Germany. This is especially true for smaller amounts. Although credit cards are relatively widespread, they are not very common for everyday purchases. However, payment by EC card is widespread.


Bank account

Open a bank account as soon as possible after your arrival. This will make it much easier to arrange monthly payments such as rent and insurance!

You will need the following documents to open a bank account in Germany:

  • Certificate of enrollment from the university
  • Passport or identity card
  • Confirmation from the registration office
  • Appointment at the bank (recommended)

Ask your bank or savings bank about free current accounts for students.


Blocked account

If you have already set up a blocked account in your home country, you must now have it activated in Germany.

To activate your blocked account, it is best to make an appointment in advance at your bank branch and bring the following documents with you:

  • Registration certificate from the residents' registration office
  • Certificate of enrollment from the university
  • Passport

They will fill out a service order with you. Please note that your account will be blocked without this service order (i.e. previously submitted transfers or direct debits will not be executed).

Please note that it may take several weeks to activate your account. You should therefore bring enough cash with you to ensure that you have sufficient funds available during the first few weeks.

Radio fees for students in Germany

Every household and every office in Germany, including students, are required by law to pay a monthly broadcasting fee. This fee contributes to the financing of public service broadcasting on television, radio and the Internet. The fee is currently €18.36 per month and is compulsory for all persons resident in Germany, regardless of how many television or radio sets they own or whether they use public broadcasting services.

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The fee is only paid once per household, i.e:

  • 1 person in an apartment = 1 license fee
  • 1 family in an apartment = 1 license fee
  • 1 shared flat = 1 license fee

Once you have registered your residence with the city, you can expect to receive an invoice from the "ARD ZDF Deutschlandradio Beitragsservice" within a few weeks. The fee is due from the first month in which you are registered in Germany, regardless of whether you register yourself or wait for a letter from the authorities. Welfare recipients can apply for an exemption, while people with disabilities pay a reduced fee.

German classes at TH Wildau

The Language Center at TH Wildau offers a comprehensive program of German courses for students and employees of the university. These courses are designed to help participants improve their German language skills, learn a new language or develop intercultural skills.

    Dipl.-Wirtsch.infor. (FH) Carolina Maria Winkler

Dipl.-Wirtsch.infor. (FH) Carolina Maria Winkler Dipl.-Wirtsch.infor. (FH) Carolina Maria Winkler

    M.A. Simon Gerard Joseph Devos-Chernova

M.A. Simon Gerard Joseph Devos-Chernova M.A. Simon Gerard Joseph Devos-Chernova

Tel.: +49 3375 508 386
House 13, Room 033

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