Student Visa Update

It has been two weeks since I wrote about the confusing process of getting a student visa in Germany. So, I figured I would post a little update about what has happened during this time. My last post left off with me waiting for proof of enrollment in a public health insurance. Luckily, I received this just a few days later, meaning that I was able to head over to the dreaded Foreigner’s Office and apply for my student visa. Unfortunately, he would only give me a visa for one year, which means I will have to come back to Continue Reading

The Confusing Process of Getting a Student Visa

After being accepted to graduate school in Germany, I posted a to-do list on my blog listing all of the things I have to do before the semester starts in Germany. I formatted it with nice little check boxes next to each item on the list, making it appear like I could easily just work my way through each item one-by-one until everything was taken care of. Well, like all things bureaucratic in Germany, it has not quite worked out that way. You see, I have run into this annoying paradox as I have tried to procure three specific documents: Continue Reading

To-Do Before the Semester Starts in Germany

Now that I have been officially accepted to grad school in Germany, I need to get a lot of things in my life sorted before the semester begins. To give you an idea of all the things one must do before they can study in Germany and to help myself sort my priorities, I figured I share my To-Do List. To-Do Before the Semester Begins ☑ Enroll in German health insurance Now that I am a student, I can get public health insurance in Germany for the best possible rate☑ Open a German bank accountI actually had one three years ago, but Continue Reading

My 1 Year Expat Anniversary

Today marks the one year anniversary of my move to Germany. This has been a very big year for me, and a lot has happened. So, I figured I would take this time to reflect on my expat life so far. July 2013 On July 24th, I flew to Germany on a one-way ticket from Chicago to Hamburg August 2013 I won the HGTV Globe Traveler competition for my picture in Lüneburg am Stintmarkt Marco and I went on a nine-day Italian vacation September 2013 I applied for the German language course visa I started taking a C1/C2 TestDaF-prep course at the Continue Reading

Applying for a Master’s in Germany

I have been living in Germany for about one year now, and the majority of my time here has been spent preparing to apply to German universities. From getting a student application visa to taking the TestDaF, it was all in hopes of someday getting my master’s in Germany. Well, now that the applications have been sent, all that is left to do is wait. And although I do not know if I have been accepted, I figured I could still write about the application process and my experience. Required Documents This varies depending on the university, but from the Continue Reading

My German Visa Journey: Student Application Visa

In my last visa update, I talked about how I got a German language course visa. Since my German class ended and I took the TestDaF at the end of February, that visa was expiring. My plan is to now apply for my Master’s. However, the application period does not begin until April 1, so I needed an extension on my visa. Luckily, Germany has something know as a student application visa (Visum zum Zweck der Studienbewerbung) that gives foreigners time to live in Germany for 3 to 9 months as they apply to universities (if you can speak German, check Continue Reading

German Apartment Tour: Living Room

Finally, here is a tour of our new living room! One half of the living room is used as a dining room. On the left we have a cabinet with wine glasses, beer glasses, and shot glasses. Next to that is our dining room table. There are only two chairs at the table now, since it is just me and Marco eating there each day, but we do have two other chairs. We also hung a shelf above the table, where we keep a bottle of wine from 1983 that Marco’s father gave to him, some LED candles, and an Continue Reading

German Apartment Tour: Closet

I know some of you saw my German bedroom tour and were thinking, “Where is the closet?” Well, Germans do not build closets into bedrooms. Instead, they have to buy huge armoires for their clothes. The issue with this is that it takes up a lot of space. Luckily, our apartment has a storage room (Abstellraum). The tenants of the apartment before us had used it as a walk-in closet, and we thought this was a great idea. The door into this room is directly next to our bedroom door as well. Our goal was to buy all the shelving Continue Reading

German Apartment Tour: Kitchen

Unlike many German apartments, our kitchen is actually attached to our living room/dining room. This is one of the top reasons I like this apartment, as the other ones we looked at had the kitchen as a separate room down the hall. Our kitchen does have a door on it, but we removed it. So this is the entrance from the living room to the kitchen. It is a pretty small kitchen, but it’s alright for just two people. Marco and I can both cook in here together without bumping into each other too much. When you look to the Continue Reading

German Apartment Tour: Bedroom

Welcome to the bedroom tour of our new apartment in Germany! When you walk into our bedroom, the first thing you see is the floor-to-ceiling window. Our view is actually pretty nice. You can see another building on the left, but straight ahead there are just trees. Also, since windows open like doors in Germany, you can see that there are bars across the bottom half of the window so we can’t fall out. Marco was worried that we wouldn’t find curtains that could block out all of the sunlight, but these dark blue polyester curtains we got at Ikea Continue Reading