Please find out early (at least 12 weeks before arrival) if you need a visa to enter Germany by contacting the German embassy about possible visa requirements. If you need a visa, you must apply for a tourist visa which covers the time of the FUBiS program. The German embassy or consulate in your home country can issue such a visa. FUBiS cannot and will not intercede for those who choose not to obtain the appropriate documentation. Participants are responsible for educating themselves on any specific requirements for their selected destination. Failure to obtain appropriate passports and visas is not grounds for any refund.
For further information on visa requirements please visit the German Federal Foreign Office’s website.
Upon request FUBiS can issue you a letter of invitation which confirms that you will be studying during the respective period (Term I, II or III) at Freie Universität Berlin. The condition for receiving such a letter of invitation is that you have already registered and paid all incurred costs. FUBiS can e-mail the document to you as a PDF file or fax it directly to the respective German embassy. In this case you will need to send FUBiS the necessary contact data of the embassy (including contact person and fax number).
It is also recommended that you bring a document (i.e. from your parents or funding agency) to Germany which certifies that you can cover the costs of accommodation, etc. German embassies and consulates require all applicants to procure health insurance coverage for their stay in Germany. All applicants have to provide the corresponding certification.
The day of arrival and departure are part of the FUBiS program. In Term I arrival and departure days vary. The specific dates can be found here: http://www.fubis.org/2_prog/termine/index.html. For Term II and III, it usually is the first and the last Saturday of the respective program. You should arrive in Berlin and move in to your accommodation on the day of arrival. Please note that the day of arrival is the earliest you can move in to your accommodation. Here you can find the arrival and departure dates for your respective term.
The FUBiS orientation meeting is taking place on the day after the official arrival day of the respective terms. Here you will receive important information about the program and your courses. Therefore, you should make sure that you arrive in Berlin on the official day of arrival (usually the day before the orientation) at the latest.
Berlin has many transportation connections: you can arrive by plane, train, bus or car.
Berlin has two airports which are served by many international airlines. Both airports are situated in or just outside of Berlin and are well integrated into the city’s public transportation system.
Berlin-Tegel (TXL) is the mostly popular airport and is located in the north-western part of the city. International long-distance flights usually land here.
Berlin-Schönefeld (SXF) is located just southeast of the city and is also served by many international airlines.
Berlin can be easily reached by train from virtually all major German and European cities. It disposes of several long and short-distance as well as regional railway stations. You will most likely arrive at Berlin’s central station (Berlin Hauptbahnhof).
Numerous coach lines from different German and European cities arrive at Berlin´s Central Bus Station Terminal (ZOB).
Berlin is also easy to reach by car. All highways to Berlin flow into the beltway (A10) surrounding Berlin. From there the exits will lead you to the city center.
Further arrival information can be found on the city’s official website.
Berlin has a very well structured public transportation system called BVG. Your accommodation can easily be reached by metro (the "U-Bahn"), city train (the “S-Bahn”) or bus from all airports and railway stations. Approximately four weeks before the FUBiS term begins, you will receive the FUBiS student guide with exact directions to your accommodation.
You should definitely bring the following things with you: passport, visa (if applicable), enough cash for the first days (approx. 250 euro), valid health insurance (FUBiS also recommends accident and liability insurance. If you have chosen the FUBiS insurance package, you will receive your documents at the orientation meeting), towels, adaptors, laptop with Wi-Fi (highly recommended), Berlin guide, dictionary.
Which clothes you should bring depends on the season. In winter the temperatures lie between +10 ° C and -15 ° C. You should bring a warm jacket, scarf, hat, gloves and water resistant shoes. In summer the weather is quite variable in Germany. It is advisable to bring clothes for hot summer weather as well as closed shoes, pants and sweaters for chilly days.
If you have a medical condition that requires you to travel with medication, you should have your physician write a letter describing your condition and prescription medications along with a list of any generic names of the prescribed medication. You should leave your medications in their original containers.
You may want to check with the nearest German embassy or consulate in your country to see if any of your prescribed medications are considered illegal in Germany.
You should avoid carrying large amounts of non-prescription medication with you while travelling.