Updated: Sep 30, 2019
The Working Holiday Visa is an amazing way to travel as it gives young people the opportunity to live and work in a number of countries around the world. On a Working Holiday Visa, you can immerse yourself in a foreign culture while earning money to support your time abroad without having to worry about securing a sponsored job.
Whether you are taking a career break, wanting to learn a new language or simply looking for a change of scene, then Berlin is an ideal choice for your Working Holiday. Check out our blog post on Why You Should Move to Berlin for Your Working Holiday.
With many international companies setting up shop in the German capital and a burgeoning start-up scene, Berlin has ample work opportunities for expats. On top of this, Berlin is very affordable with respect to rent, transport and day-to-day life. The city is a cultural hub with a world-class party scene, diverse restaurant culture, and seemingly endless array of museums and galleries. As it borders nine countries, Germany is perfectly situated for exploring the rest of Europe.
If you are between the ages of 18 – 30 (35 for Canada) and from one of the following countries, you can apply for a working holiday visa for Germany:
Canada, Australia, Uruguay, New Zealand, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Israel, Argentina, South Korea, and Chile.
The main requirements for the Working Holiday Visa are:
Passport valid for at least 3 months after the expiry of the visa
Travel insurance for the duration of working holiday year
Proof of funds
Return flight or proof of funds showing you are able to pay for a return flight. If applying in Berlin, you do not need a return flight
Argentina, Taiwan, & Canada (if applying in Canada) have additional requirements. These can include a motivational letter and proof of accommodation. Check the links below to find out the exact requirements for your home country.
Listed below is information on where you can apply.
Programa de Vacaciones y trabajo - This is the newest Working Holiday Programme! You can apply at any German embassy abroad or you can apply in Buenos Aires. You cannot apply in Germany.
Australians can apply at any German mission abroad, including in Germany. In Australia, you can apply in person at the German Consulate-General in Sydney.
For Canadians, the visa is called the Youth-Mobility Visa. The regulations have recently changed and it's now possible to apply directly in Germany. You can apply for the Youth-Mobility Visa twice under different categories. The categories that you can apply under are:
a) Young professionals who wish to obtain further training under a contract of employment and increase their knowledge of Germany's language, culture and society.
b) Young citizens who wish to do a work placement in a business in Germany as part of their studies or training.
c) Canadian post-secondary students who wish to engage in an occupational activity during their academic vacation.
d) Young citizens who wish to stay in Germany for tourism and cultural discovery purposes while being authorized to work to supplement their financial resources.
It's common to apply under category D for the first application and then apply under a different category for the second application. Previously, the second year Youth-Mobility Visa had to be applied for in Canada, but it's now possible to apply directly in Germany.
Programa de Vacaciones y trabajo - You can apply at any German mission abroad and in Santiago, but you cannot apply in Germany.
工作假期签证 - You can only apply in Hong Kong and not abroad or in Germany – click here for full details and requirements.
You can apply at any mission abroad or at the German embassy in Tel Aviv. You can also apply in Germany.
ワーキング・ホリデー - You can apply at any mission abroad or at the German Embassy in Tokyo. You can also apply in Germany.
You can apply at any German mission abroad or after your arrival in Germany. If applying in New Zealand, then you can apply at the German Embassy in Wellington.
워킹 홀리데이 비자 - You can only apply at the German embassy in Seoul.
工作假期签证 - You can only apply at the German embassy in Taipei.
Programa de Vacaciones y trabajo - you can apply at the German embassy in Montevideo or at any German embassy abroad. You can not apply in Germany.
This Working Holiday Visa is not currently in effect but should be available shortly.
Click here for a list of German missions abroad.
If you apply for the visa outside of Germany, your visa starts on the date on your Working Holiday Visa application form, which should correspond to your flight details and insurance start date. If applying in Germany, you also need a registered address (Anmeldung) to apply, something that we provide through our Berlin Kickstarter and Berlin Pro relocation packages. We have compiled a list of FAQs based on our experience helping lots of people successfully apply for the Working Holiday Visa. To check out the list, click here.
Nomaden Berlin provides detailed visa information for those applying for the Working Holiday Visa. We make it quick and easy to apply in Berlin and abroad. We provide recommendations on travel insurance, relevant forms, and tips for your application to ensure your Working Holiday Visa is approved. Other services we provide include 30-day private studio accommodation in Berlin with an address registration service, a visa appointment booking service, relocation workshops, extensive job hunting information, tours, events, and full administrative information to get you set up in Berlin. Click here for further information on our relocation packages.