Temporary restriction of non-essential travel from third countries into the EU


On 17 March 2020, Heads of State or Government of the Schengen Member States together with their counterparts of the Schengen Associated States have decided to apply a temporary restriction of non-essential travel from third countries into the EU area.

On 01 July 2020, these travel restrictions were extended for residents of Kenya, Somalia and the Seychelles as well as Burundi and Eritrea until further notice.  Travel restrictions can only be lifted if the country of residence is entered into a “positive list”. It is checked on a regular basis if countries can be entered onto this list and the Embassy will publish without delay once there relevant changes.

Exceptions from the entry restrictions apply to:

  • EU citizens and their family members
  • Non-EU citizens and their family members with long-term residence permit for the EU
  • Non-EU citizens with essential functions, such as scientists, diplomats, airline crews
  • Health care professionals such as doctors or nurses
  • Non-EU students where the university requires personal presence for their studies
  • Highly qualified employees whose work is deemed economically essential and which cannot be done from abroad

If your intended purpose of stay falls under the exemptions from the entry restrictions for long-term stays, please continue down the page to “Long stay more than 90 days”, e. g. to attend university, work or join a family member in Germany.                                

If you have applied for a Schengen visa (short-term business trips, visits or tourist trips) with a travel date within the entry stop, you can either revoke your application and re-apply at a time when travel again will be possible or your application will be decided upon on the basis of the current factual and legal situation.                                

Quarantine when entering Germany

Click here for more detailed information.

Arriving in Germany
Arriving in Germany © dpa

Generally speaking, all foreigners require a visa for stays in Germany. A visa is not required for visits of up to 90 days in an 180‑day period for nationals of those countries for which the European Community has abolished the visa requirement. List of all countries whose citizens require a visa to enter Germany

The type of visa you require depends on how long you plan to stay. Are you planning a short visit to Germany, e.g. for a holiday? Or would you like to stay longer, e.g. to attend university?
Please choose how long you are planning to stay. You will find an overview on visa requirements here:

Short stay (maximum of 90 days, e.g. for a holiday or business trip)

Long stay (more than 90 days, e.g. to attend university, work or join a family member in Germany)

Visa appointments can only be obtained online. When applying, make sure you have all required documents and duly filled-in forms. Applications can only be made in person (exceptions for Frequent Travellers).
Please do not send original documents (invitation letters, certificates etc.) to the Embassy before the Visa appointment took place. The inviting person/company/university should send it directly to you and you should bring it at the day of your appointment to the Embassy.

FAQ on visas and entry

  • To enter Germany and the Schengen area, Kenyan, Burundian, Eritrean and Somali nationals will require a visa. Seychellois nationals only need a visa for stays exceeding 90 days.
  • The German Embassy Nairobi is the competent visa authority for short term (Schengen visas) and long term visas (national visas) for all applicants residing in Kenya and Somalia.
  • Long term visa applicants residing in Eritrea, Burundi and Seychelles also apply from the German Embassy Nairobi.
  • Short term visa applicants (Schengen Visa) residing in Seychelles (third country nationals) need to apply at the German Embassy in Nairobi as the competent visa section.
  • Kindly observe: Short term visa applicants (Schengen Visa) residing in Burundi need to apply at the Belgian Embassy in Bujumbura as the competent visa section for German Schengen visa applicants. Short term visa applicants (Schengen Visa) residing in Eritrea need to apply at the Italian Embassy in Asmara as the competent visa section for German Schengen visa applicants.
  • The visa applicants residing in South Sudan must apply at the German Embassy Kampala, Uganda.
  • Please note that you have to reside in one of those countries for more than six months in order to be eligible to apply with the Embassy in Nairobi.


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