How to Apply for Freelancer Visa in Germany

Read to learn more about freelancer visas in Germany.

Over the years, freelancing has grown to become a better career option for individuals who seek work flexibility and employment independence. As compared to other conventional employment types, freelancing gives employment freedom, and Germany is one of the unique places where freelancers can thrive.

Hence, if you wish to step up your game in freelancing, you can consider obtaining a freelancer visa in Germany.

In this article, we are set to explore everything you need to know about freelancer visas, the types, requirements, and how to apply for a freelancer visa in Germany. Don’t miss a single step!

What is a German Freelancer Visa?

A freelancer visa is a type of visa that allows you to work and live in Germany as a freelancer. It is a type of visa that has become popular in recent years to provide financial breakthrough and independence to outstanding and creative individuals.

However, you do not need a German freelancer visa if you are from Australia, Canada, USA, Japan, Israel, South Korea, or New Zealand. All you have to do is to travel to Germany, get health insurance, register at the tax office, get accommodation, and apply for a freelancer residence.

Basically, a freelancer visa in Germany is subdivided into two components. They are:

#1. Freelancer (Entry) visa

This is a visa that you will have to apply for at the German Embassy in your own country. Although this Visa is valid for just a few months, you will need it to be able to enter Germany, and for the immigration authorities to know that you are entering the country for work. Once you arrive in Germany you can then exchange your entry visa with a residence permit.

#2. Freelancer residence permit

This is a component of the German Freelancer Visa that will allow you to work and live in Germany for a long time. However, you will need to apply for the resident permit at the German immigration office upon arrival in Germany with the entry visa. Note that as soon as you obtain the freelancer residence permit, you might no longer need the entry visa.

How does freelancing work in Germany?

Without a doubt, you must understand the legal environment for self-employment before thinking about conducting a freelance job in Germany. If your job is listed as a liberal profession, then you can be a freelancer. However, if it is acknowledged as a commercial profession, you might have to become a businessperson in Germany.

If you obtain a freelancer visa in Germany, you will be able to work with different business individuals or startups on part-time and need-based contracts.

Types of Germany Freelance Visa

Basically, there are two types of freelance visas in Germany, and you can apply based on your type of occupation. They are:

#1. Visa for self-employment

The visa for self-employment is also known as “Selbständiger”. Undoubtedly, you can receive this Visa if you are a sole proprietor, legal representative, managing director, or company founder. Also, you can obtain this Visa if you have an economic interest in Germany for your business, or whether your business will have a positive impact on the economy of Germany.

#2. Visa for freelance employment

The visa for self-employment is also known as “Freiberufler”. Basically, this type of visa is available for you if you have an occupation that will positively impact the economy and culture of Germany. Therefore, if you are an engineer, writer, artist, language teacher, doctor, architect, interpreter, or auditor, you can consider opting for this Visa type.

In a nutshell, if you fulfill the prerequisites and have a solid profession, you can apply for a freelancer visa in Germany. This is because you will be considered a freelancer if you can conduct independent, literary, scientific, educational, teaching, or artistic activities.

Requirements to obtain a freelancer visa in Germany

Definitely, to obtain a freelancer visa in Germany there are various requirements you need to fulfill. Compliance with this requirement will increase your chances of obtaining the visa. Here are the requirements.

  • Your profession must be of economic interest and regional need to Germany.
  • You must be able to emphasize that there are clients ready to work with you in Germany. Moreso, your clients have to write a letter of interest and intent of how they plan to employ you.
  • Accommodation or proof of where you will lodge is important to get a freelancer visa in Germany.
  • Statement of bank account that proves that you can live comfortably in Germany pending the time you will get paid.

The document required to apply for a freelancer visa in Germany include:

  • Two recently made passport-size photographs.
  • A valid international passport with at least two extra pages on it.
  • Recommendation letters from your previous employer. Attach it with your curriculum vitae, and cover letter.
  • Portfolio of your previous work. Also, several printed samples of your regular work in the same profession and previous freelance work.
  • Completely filled national visa application form.
  • Proof of freelance plan.
  • Evidence of an adequate pension plan, especially if you’re older than 45.
  • In addition, you must include at least two letters of commitment from future employers or customers.

Application fee for freelancer visa in Germany

Basically, to apply for a freelancer visa in Germany you will have to pay a visa fee of €60. However, if you have to pay for a resident permit it will cost about €140. But for a settlement permit, you will spend up to €260.

How to Apply for Freelancer Visa in Germany

To apply for the visa, you have to visit the nearest German Embassy in your home country. After which you request a national D-Type Visa for freelancing. It is noteworthy that the process for application is somewhat different in each embassy. However, you can follow these general steps.

Step one: Locate the nearest German Embassy near you

Without a doubt, the very first step to applying for a freelancer visa in Germany is to locate the nearest German embassy in your home country. If you do not have a German embassy near you, you will find a consulate or a visa center that is affiliated with Germany.

Step two: Make an appointment

After getting to the German Embassy, make an appointment for an interview. Making an appointment for an interview could take a long time. Hence, enable to apply as soon as possible.

Step three: Collect the required documents

The documents you need for the freelancer visa in Germany have been broadly explained above. So, collect all the documents before the day of your interview

Step four: Attend the interview with your all necessary documents

Attending your interview should be at the exact time without lateness. You are to come along with all your documents on the day of your appointment.

Step five: Pay the visa fee

Undoubtedly, the payment of your visa fee is sacrosanct. It is a token of €60, hence payment should be made in due time with evidence of payment. You can make payments online, through cash, or through bank transfer.

Step six: Await a response

The processing of your freelancer visa in Germany can take up to a few weeks to months. As you wait patiently for your response, you can start gathering all the necessary materials and belongings you will need in Germany.

Activities to carry out as soon as you arrive in Germany

Once you get your visa, you can proceed to travel to Germany where you make all the necessary registration. Some of these registrations are

1. Register your living address.

2. Opening a bank account.

3. Register your freelance activity with the tax office.

4. Getting health insurance.

#1. Register your living address

Registering your living address is important as soon as you find permanent accommodation. This procedure is carried out through the ‘Bürgeramt’ also known as a residents registration office. You will receive a commission on your living address registration upon completion.

#2. Open a bank account in Germany

There is an important activity to carry out as soon as you arrive in Germany. This will enable you to carry out transactions as a freelancer in Germany.

#3. Register with Tax Registration Office “Finanzamt”

Without a doubt, registering at the tax office is a very important process as a Freelancer. To make things easier, you can get in touch with a tax consultant to help you with the paperwork.

#4. Get health insurance

To get coverage for health insurance, you will need to get your application for the residence permit and a resident confirmation by your landlord in the place you are living

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I move to Germany as a freelancer?

Yes, you can move to Germany as a freelancer. However, you will need to have a valid visa and work permit. You can find more information on the German Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs website.

Can a freelancer get permanent residency in Germany?

Yes, a freelancer can get permanent residency in Germany. To be eligible, the freelancer must have been living in Germany for at least five years and have a valid visa. They must also be able to prove that they are self-employed and have a steady income.

Is freelancing worth it Germany?

Yes, freelancing can be a great option for work in Germany. The cost of living in Germany is high, so it’s important to make sure that your rates are competitive. There are many online resources available for freelancers in Germany, such as the Freelance Portal website.

Can I do freelance with a blue card?

Yes, you can do freelance work with a blue card. However, you may only work for the specific employer who sponsored your visa. If you want to work for another company, you will need to get a new sponsorship from them.

What is a freelancer visa?

A freelancer visa is a visa that allows a person to work as a freelancer in a foreign country. Freelancing is a great way to get work experience in a new country and make some money on the side. To get a freelancer visa, you will need to prove that you have the skills and experience to do the job you are applying for.


The freelancer visa in Germany has proven to be one of the best visas to gain employment. The enjoyment of financial freedom and work flexibility is at the tip of your finger as you explore this visa type. And yes, ensure that you carry out all necessary documentation and registration as soon as you get to Germany.