The information on this page was collected from public resources and does not constitute legal advice.

General information on border crossing?

To enter Germany, you must first cross the border through an EU country, like Poland. Please note: Be prepared for long waiting lines. Make sure to bring enough water and food. There are free trains to Germany, the tickets can be obtained at the station. Up to date nformation about transport possibilities from the borders: Polish rail operator PKP Intercity mceclip0.png, the Czech rail operator ฤŒeskรฉ drรกhy mceclip0.png and the German rail operator Deutsche Bahn mceclip0.png, which are currently transporting Ukrainian citizens free of charge.

If you lost your or your child's passport, you can apply to the Foreignersโ€™ Office (BAMF) mceclip0.png for a passport substitute.

If someone you know is missing, you can contact the German Red Cross (DRK) mceclip0.png where you can submit a search request for free.
There is an Arrival Center in Berlin to help with accommodation, meals, and medical needs.

Important: Do not give your passport to anyone. And if possible, do not travel alone.
More information at INFOMIGRANTS mceclip0.png.

What documents do I need to enter?

To enter Germany, you will need the following documents:

  • A Ukrainian passport (biometric or non-biometric) or
  • A valid passport equivalent. In exceptional cases, a valid personal ID card may be sufficient.
  • In order to prove family/marital status, birth certificates and a marriage certificate are required.
  • A Ukrainian travel document for refugees or a Travel Document for Person Granted Complementary Protection is required to prove refugee status in Ukraine.
  • Non-Ukrainian third-country nationals can prove legal permanent residence in Ukraine by showing a Ukrainian residence permit.

More information at Federal Office for Migration and Refugee mceclip0.png .

What happens after a border crossing?

If you have not received a private accommodation, you must report to the initial reception facilities upon arrival.
If you have received private accommodation, you should register as soon as possible at the Residents' Registration Office and apply for a residence permit at the Foreigners' Registration Office mceclip0.png.

How can I get from the border to the capital (a certain town)?

All train journeys in Germany are free of charge for refugees.
You can travel directly to your desired destination on a regional train without a ticket.
You can use your Ukrainian passport, ID card or proof of residence to travel to Berlin, Dresden, Nuremberg or Munich.

If you want to continue your journey with an Intercity (ICE, TGV, RJX, IC/EC), you will be issued a "helpukraine" mceclip0.png ticket at the DB Reisezentrum. This ticket entitles you to a one-way trip in a 2nd class carriage to your desired destination. When checking tickets on the train, present an identity card confirming that you are a citizen of Ukraine (passport or ID-card), or confirmation of registration on the territory of Ukraine. More information at Federal Ministry of Interior and Community mceclip0.png.

If you are a mother with kids and you are still in Ukraine, you can useย liftukraine.org. The NGO will match you for housing with families in Germany who have kids at the same age. They will also organize a transport from Ukraine to those families in Germany.

Currently, Ukrainian citizens can travel free of charge on many buses and trains in the Verkehrsverbund Berlin-Brandenburg (VBB) (www.vbb.de mceclip0.png), in Hamburg (www.hvv.de mceclip0.png), Munich (www.mvg.de mceclip0.png) and Hanover (www.uestra.de mceclip0.png). Other cities may already have this option. When you arrive in a city, ask the helpers at the train or bus station about your options.

With Flixbus, you can travel free of charge from the Polish border towns of Przemyล›l and Rzeszรณw to Germany. This offer is valid for all refugees from Ukraine regardless of nationality. You can get a free ticket on flixbus.com. There you have to click on the chat at the bottom right. Enter your last name, first name, and email address there and select the category "Gutschein" (voucher). The subcategory does not matter. A staff member will then help you online to get a free ticket. Or you can send an email to service@flixbus.com.ua with a request for a free ticket and your name and email address. However, according to Flixbus, the website is faster.

How can I travel to another (specific) country?

Available services and information sites are:

More information at Handbook Germany mceclip0.png.

Touristic travel is possible and does not affect your temporary protection status. With a biometric passport, Ukrainian nationals can continue to travel inside the Schengen Area without a visa and stay there for a total of 90 days within 180 days. The same applies if you have already been granted a residence permit, e.g., for temporary protection, even if you do not have a biometric passport. In such a case, you do not need a separate visa.

If you wish to continue traveling in order to apply for temporary protection in another EU member state, this is at this moment usually possible without a visa. In case of doubt, please ask about the entry procedures in the country to which you wish to travel. There is currently no European assignment procedure for persons wishing to apply for temporary protection. You then apply for the residence permit for temporary protection on site in the new member state.

If you have already received temporary protection in Germany, you may move to another EU country under certain circumstances. To do this, you must submit an application for a transfer of residence to the immigration office responsible for you. The foreigners authority responsible for you is the foreigners authority at your current place of residence. You can find the address on bamf.navi. If your application for a change of residence is successful, you will receive a "Certificate of Change of Residence". This certificate then states what you have to do in the next step and which authority in the other EU country you have to contact.

How long can I stay?

The validity of the residence title issued within the temporary protection procedure is to be retroactive from the credible date of entry into Germany, at the earliest 4 March 2022, until 4 March 2024. Regardless of that, all persons fleeing Ukraine are allowed to stay in the EU for 90 days within a 180 day period of time without any limitations or an obligation to register. The Ukraine Transitional Regulation has been extended to November 30th, 2022. However, the visa-free stay and thus the exemption from the requirement for a residence permit for 90 days from entry into Germany will now be extended limited.

For all persons who entered the country after February 24th, 2022 and up to June 3rd, 2022, the visa-free period or the period in which no residence permit is required ends on August 31st, 2022. Anyone who entered the country after June 3rd, 2022 falls under the new regulation of the Ukraine Residence รœV of July 1st, 2022. These persons are exempt from the requirement for a residence permit for a period of 90 days from the date of entry. During this period, those affected must apply for a residence permit. If the 90 days have expired and no residence permit has been applied for or granted, the stay is no longer considered permitted.

Where can an unaccompanied minor get help?

Children and adolescents under 18 years of age are considered to be underage and cannot effectively undertake many legal actions themselves. The Youth Welfare Office takes care of them if they entered the country without their parents or other legal guardians.
The juvenile court appoints a legal guardian for unaccompanied children. Before they turn 18, the application for asylum can only be filed by the legal guardian or Youth Welfare Office.

Unaccompanied minors can also contact the German Association for Unaccompanied Minors mceclip0.png.

If an unaccompanied minor is recognised as a refugee, they can have their parents join them in Germany. A family reunification process mceclip0.png has to be carried out in such circumstances.
More information at UNHCR mceclip0.png.

Are there any Covid-related requirements and if yes, what are they?

According to the Corona Virus Entry Ordinance, there is a general obligation to provide proof (vaccinated, recovered, tested) before entering Germany, but there is no longer a quarantine and registration requirement, since Ukraine is no longer classified as a high-risk country as of February 27, 2022. Irrespective of this, the requirements of the Corona Entry Regulation must always be observed.

However, in the case of war refugees and displaced persons, the situation is dealt with pragmatically. Among other things, voluntary tests are offered at the border upon entry. In the case of Covid symptoms, medical professionals are consulted.

Where do I register for temporary protection?

You can apply for temporary protection directly with the Border Officer / the police or at the Foreigner's Office mceclip0.png in your city. In some cities, you can also apply for temporary protection online. To do so, you would need to locate the website of the city you wish to apply from for more localized information. If you apply online mceclip0.png, you will receive an email regarding your appointment. Please note that it may take a while to receive an appointment. You will receive temporary protection starting on the day of your appointment.

Detailed registration information is currently available for the following cities/states:

Important: If you have family in a specific city and would like to live there, be sure to mention this when you register. The authorities will then try to help you stay close to your family.
More information at Handbook Germany mceclip0.png.

What are my rights while I wait to get temporary protection?

Temporary protection is normally granted immediately if you apply for it in person. If you apply online mceclip0.png, you will have to wait for an appointment.

If you were unable to apply initially, a request for protection is considered simultaneously as any other request for support (accommodation, food, medical care). You are entitled to benefits (for example, social benefits, medical insurance, etc.), either after expressing a request for protection or after you were granted a residence permit.
Visit the following website for more information:

What documents will I receive once I get temporary protection?

The residence permit is usually issued as an independent document. Upon submitting an application, you will receive a confirmation. The confirmation of registration will work as a temporary document to facilitate access to any services allocated for you.

May I temporarily return to Ukraine? What will happen to my protection status?

If you already have a residence permit for temporary protection in Germany, it expires when you are leaving Germany not only for a temporary reason or when you are not staying in Germany for more than six months. The immigration authorities can extend the six-month period before it expires, not afterwards, if you can prove that the longer absence is only temporary.

Can I move around the country and the European Union freely while under temporary protection?

Yes. You can travel around the EU without a visa up to 90 days in any 180 days period. The German government cautions that entering another Schengen state may not always be permitted due to border controls or other entry restrictions.
Please note that the residence permit will be invalid if you leave the country and will not return within six months.

Can I apply for asylum while under temporary protection? What is the difference?

Yes but the German government discourages applying for asylum, as the required protection will be granted through a different and shorter procedure. If you decide to pursue an asylum application, you would have to cancel the status granted under temporary protection and lose your right to work and have certain benefits. It is not advised to Ukrainian nationals who qualify for the temporary protection status to apply for asylum. The temporary protection is more beneficial and is granted much faster.

Under EU law, you can apply for international protection (asylum) in the first safe country you enter. Persons seeking international protection have similar rights as for temporary protection, but there are also some differences. In the case of an asylum application, a person can access the labor market after 6 months if no final decision has yet been taken on the case. In the case of temporary protection, access to the labor market may be granted much earlier. You can also apply for "family reunification" if a family member already resides legally in the EU.

How and where can I apply for the residency?

You would need to register at a reception facility (Aufnahmeeinrichtung) or with the local foreigners office (Auslรคnderbehรถrde). You will get a certification, e.g., proof of arrival (Ankunftsnachweis) or call-up certificate (Anlaufbescheinigung), and may be granted a residence permit.

The competent authority can be found here mceclip0.png.

The application procedure differs slightly depending on the place of application and the Foreigners Office. In Berlin, the application can be submitted online mceclip0.png.

Please visit this website mceclip0.pngย  to know more details about the procedure of application for residence permit.

How long I need to wait to get the residency?

Most immigration authorities immediately issue a temporary certificate. This means that the residence is considered legal from day 1.

What if I don't have the international passport?

Germany offered an exception for those without a biometric passport (i.e. international passport) based on humanitarian grounds. A national ID card will be accepted if you donโ€™t have an International Passport.
More information at German Federal Foreign Office mceclip0.png.

Where can I take a photo for my documents?

Many government agencies have photo machines in the building. Feel free to ask for help.

Where can I translate my documents?

You will find the phone numbers of interpreters who speak Ukrainian, Russian and English on ukraine-dolmetscher.de mceclip0.png. Their service is free of charge.

How do I get Mobile phone/internet services?

You can get free SIM cards at the refugee centers, train stations or any of the stores of the following providers:

Important: You will need a document proving your identity in order to activate your SIM card. This can be your passport or a paper issued by a German authority.
More information at Handbook Germany mceclip0.png.

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