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Important advice for Ukrainians on their way to Germany and in Germany

Why Germany?

Germany is one of the richest countries in Europe and has a very high standard of living. In addition, Germany has been a country of immigration for decades and has many years of experience of integrating people into the society. There are no separate residential quarters for foreigners and there are no differences in treatment and education. Here are some key reasons to choose Germany as your temporary home:

  • One of the best social security systems in Europe;
  • Free internationally recognized education in schools and universities;
  • Free health care at the highest level;
  • A strong economy and many good jobs;

Details about the advantages Germany offers can be found on this website.

For Ukrainan citizens, Germany offers a unique immigration package. After registration and initial admission, as far as known so far, you will receive:

  1. free accommodation (rental costs for an appropriate apartment and costs for heating and water are reimbursed);
  2. Compensation of costs of initial equipment of the apartment (furniture, electrical appliances, ...)
  3. monthly standard rate of 449 euros for the first person to purchase food, clothing and to participate in social life; additional persons receive slightly less.
  4. free German lessons;
  5. preparing children for school / special integration courses;
  6. support and advice from municipal social workers and authorities
  7. other assistance (for single mothers, people with disabilities, etc.).

Germany is enacting the law on the special status of Ukrainians according to the EU's mass influx directive 2001/55/EC. The law on this is currently being prepared. Therefore, the national implementation may still contain changes. You can find the information and track the details here.

In any case, the plan provides for:

  1. free residence in the EU for up to 3 years;
  2. issuance of a work permit in Europe;

After 5 years of residency in Germany, you can obtain an unlimited settlement permit. You will receive your settlement permit after only three years if you also have a command of German and are for the most part able to earn your own livelihood. Later, you may even be eligible for citizenship. We assume that there will be an easier option here as well, since there have also been easier conditions for Ukrainian citizens to obtain a work permit in the past.

It is important to know that there is full employment in Germany and everyone can find work at very short notice to increase their standard of living. Tempton is happy to support you in this as Germany's best personnel service provider. Please feel free to contact any Tempton office at any time.

How to leave Ukraine for Germany?

The most reliable way to leave Ukraine is by rail. Your route will take you first to Western Ukraine (Uzhgorod, Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Chernivtsi, Luzk, Kovel, etc.). After that, you can continue by taking evacuation trains to cities in Poland, Slovakia, Romania or Hungary. If you intend to go to Germany, it doesn’t matter via which country you enter the EU. Onward travel will be available from all countries.

Due to the large number of people currently using this route, passing the border can take between 3 and 16 hours. Travel by rail from Ukraine, as well as to neighboring countries, is free. It is not necessary to buy tickets.

Unfortunately, due to the very dynamic war, a number of railroad stations are temporarily out of service. Up-to-date information about the functioning of your station and the departure time of trains can be found on the Ukrzaliznytsia Telegram channel.

Alternatively, you can use scheduled buses, private cars or other means of transportation. Carpooling and ride sharing opportunities can be found in many public groups and Telegram channels.

In the cities you reach via evacuation trains you can be registered and assigned to any city in Germany or choose the further route yourself. If you intend to travel to Germany, you can take the trains to Warsaw, Bucharest and other major cities to continue from there or take direct trains to cities in Germany.

Travel to Germany is free of charge for citizens of Ukraine. Deutsche Bahn will cover the costs of train rides for the full travel, throughout the whole EU. To do this, you only need to show your Ukrainian passport or ID card on the train and indicate that you are traveling to Germany. This is sufficient until you arrive in Berlin, Munich, Dresden and Nuremberg. After that you can continue your journey to any place free of charge. For this purpose, you will receive a ticket at the "travel center" at the respective train station.

Flixbus, as a major bus provider in Germany and Europe, also offers free onward travel.

Upon arrival in Germany, you should register at the Foreigners Registration Office or at a refugee arrival center. Registration offices are located in all major cities of Germany's 16 federal states. In the cities Berlin, Nuremberg and Munich there will be representatives of the Foreigners Registration Office at the main train station.

It can be quite clever to bypass the large refugee arrival centers in Berlin and other major cities, which are overloaded and will distribute you most likely to some other city anyway. Better choose smaller places in Germany, there is a good chance that you will be able to stay and search for a permanent place to live. If possible choose the city in the proximity acquaintances and friends, who can support you later. In almost all cities you will get the same services.

If you come to Germany by another means of transport, or if you arrive in a smaller city by train, we can help you find the nearest refugee arrival center. To do so, simply come to one of our 150 Tempton branches and we will be happy to take you there personally after a cold or hot drink. You can usually find us near train stations. Here's a location overview.

Residence for Ukrainians in Germany

Residence conditions and status

The Federal Ministry of Homeland Affairs has issued a legal ordinance temporarily exempting persons displaced from Ukraine from the requirement of a residence title in the territory of the Federal Republic of Germany. It entered into force on March 9, 2022, and is applicable retroactively to February 24, 2022. This also removes the 90-day limit from visa-free travel.

On March 3, 2022, the EU Directive on the mass influx of foreigners (2001/55/EC) was activated by a decision of the Council of Europe. In Germany, the law for this is still being implemented.

The EU Directive (and later the German implementing law) grants "temporary protection" in a fast-track procedure. Ukrainian nationals are therefore advised to refrain from applying for asylum. "Temporary protection," unlike an asylum application, allows for quick processing, full freedom of movement and a work permit.

With the entry into force of the Council of Europe's decision, Section 24 of the Residence Act is directly applicable. This means that a corresponding residence permit can be applied for immediately. The foreigners authorities have either already started the application procedures or are preparing them.

This residence permit automatically entitles the holder to take up self-employment or employment.

Documents issued by the municipalities

After arriving in Germany, it is necessary to register as a "refugee" at an appropriate place. This is best done at the following locations:

  1. initial reception center
  2. arrival center
  3. foreigners authority

It is advisable to register in the city or town where you plan to stay for the duration of your stay. Here is an interactive map with the relevant foreigners authorities: Link

After submitting an application, presenting identification documents and registering your personal information, citizens of Ukraine should receive the following:

  1. Registration form (usually handed out immediately) and
  2. Tax identification number (comes by mail).

Registration allows for housing and receiving social benefits. This includes money for living expenses, housing, and necessary medical care.

The next step is to register as a refugee with the appropriate biometric data. Depending on the city you are staying in, this is already possible or currently in preparation. After this registration, a so-called fiction certificate is issued. This then also allows you to work. It is valid until the final residence permit is issued. This usually takes a few weeks.

Passport renewal or issuance

To obtain or renew a passport of Ukraine, you must contact the Consulate General of Ukraine in Germany. You can get the nearest consulate and details on the website of the Embassy of Ukraine in Germany (Link). Here as example from Düsseldorf: Link

Prospects for extension of stay

After 5 years of residence in Germany you can get a permanent residence permit. If you have mastered the German language and can secure your livelihood (you have a permanent job or a family member who provides for you), you will receive a permanent residence permit after only three years. You can also obtain German citizenship later if you wish. We assume that the procedure will be simplified here as well.

Health insurance and medical care

Types of aid

Protection seekers from Ukraine are entitled to benefits under the Asylum Seekers Benefits Act (AsylbLG): either after expressing a request for protection or after being granted a residence title. There is an entitlement to health care benefits. Accordingly, the necessary health care is guaranteed.

  • All medical and medical services necessary for the treatment of acute illnesses, including dental pain;
  • Medicines and dressings on the advice of a physician;
  • Gynecological examination of pregnant women;
  • Additional medical care for people with disabilities.
  • It is important that you obtain the appropriate document from the Immigration Office certifying to the doctor that you are a refugee. Please do not pay any expenses yourself at the doctor's office. These will not be reimbursed later. The doctor must bill the state directly. For this he needs this certificate.

Health insurance

Health insurance is offered as part of the application for social benefits after obtaining a temporary residence permit. This health insurance is regulated by the state and covers all necessary treatment costs. Germany has one of the best state health insurance systems in the world. There are no graduations. The benefit package is always the same. There are also private health insurances. However, we strongly advise against this, especially before a detailed consultation.

Apartment and accommodation

Everyone who has received protection (applied for protection) has the right to housing paid by the state. At the same time, the cost and size of such housing must comply with the established social norms. Here is an example: Link

As a rule, the table shows the restrictions on cold rent, service charges and the total amount. Heating costs are paid in addition.

In Germany, the landlord usually requires a deposit to be protected against damage. The deposit is also paid by the social welfare office, but with the following options:

  1. The landlord returns the deposit amount to the social welfare office at the end of the rental period; or
  2. The social welfare office concludes an interest-free loan agreement with the tenant for the amount of the security deposit and pays it in installments (e.g. 50€ per month). At the end of the tenancy, the tenant receives the full amount back (provided the apartment is returned in its original condition and no repairs are required - which is a standard condition of the lease in Germany).

In addition, the social welfare office pays financial support for initial furnishings.

Since social welfare institutions tend to be highly engaged, it is possible to look for housing independently. In this case, the tenancy agreement is concluded by oneself and then submitted to the social welfare office. However, the rental agreement must in any case comply with the above-mentioned requirements of the respective municipality.

In order for the social welfare office to pay for housing, the landlord must first report the essential data of the rental agreement to the social welfare office on a form. The completed form is submitted to the Social Welfare Office for verification and confirmation. If the amounts and the area do not exceed specified limits, the Social Welfare Office will issue a Certificate of Acceptance. Based on this document, you can sign a lease agreement. A scanned copy of the signed agreement should be sent by e-mail to the Social Welfare Office. In many cities it is also possible to conclude the lease agreement yourself and then submit it to the Social Welfare Office later. In this case, however, you bear the risk if the agreement does not meet the criteria.

The Social Welfare Office will transfer the rent directly to the landlord. The application for aid for initial equipment is submitted separately.

Ukrainians are allowed to move freely within Germany with their special protection status. You can also apply to change your place of residence to another country of the European Union. If it is decided to grant your request, you will receive a certificate of transfer of residence. For all questions regarding the restriction of the right to choose your place of residence and the transfer of residence, please contact the Foreigners Department.

Travel within Germany

The Association of German Transport Companies reports that all Ukrainian citizens who have fled the war in Ukraine are currently allowed to use public transport throughout Germany free of charge.

You do not need to buy a ticket to travel for free. It is enough to show a Ukrainian identity card or passport.

The list of public transport that can be used for free includes:

  • Regular buses (excluding long-distance buses);
  • Streetcars; subway;
  • City trains (S-Bahn);
  • Local trains such as regional trains (RB) and regional express trains (RE).

Cannot be used free of charge:

  • Long-distance train, ICE, IC, EC, Flixtrain (FLX).
  • Long-distance buses, such as Flixbus, Eurolines, BlaBlaBus

However, Deutsche Bahn offers a free "Help Ukraine" ticket for Ukrainian citizens who have just arrived in Germany and want to continue their journey. You can get this free of charge at the train station. You can find instructions here: Link



In Germany, 97% of children between the ages of 3 and 6 attend kindergarten. Care for children under 3 years of age is also available.

In Germany there are:

  • state (municipal) kindergartens
  • private kindergartens

Would you like a place for your child in a municipal kindergarten? Then please contact the youth welfare office in your place of residence. There you will receive further information. It is best to register in advance, as there are very few places in kindergartens in some communities and German mothers often register their children years in advance.

Do you want to send your child to a private kindergarten? Then go there directly. You can find private kindergartens if you or assistants enter the search terms "private kindergartens" and the name of the corresponding municipality (city or town) on the Internet.

Children attending kindergarten must be vaccinated against measles. Vaccinations are provided by pediatricians and family doctors.

The cost of kindergarten attendance varies by municipality. Under certain circumstances, many municipalities cover the cost of kindergarten. For more information, contact your municipality's youth welfare office.


Germany has a four-tier education system: elementary school, two-tier secondary education and higher education.

Children usually enter elementary school at the age of 6. Elementary school lasts 4 years (in some states, for example, in Berlin - 6 years).

In Germany there are different types of secondary schools: Hauptschule, Realschule and Gymnasium.

  • Hauptschule was designed as a school with a practical approach and less demanding subjects; it must prepare for manual professions. The level of teaching there is quite low.
  • Realschule has a better reputation, a wider range of subjects, a more thorough education. Graduation from the Realschule is the so-called "mittlere Reife".
  • Gymnasium is the most prestigious type of secondary education. Only after the Abitur (average level plus 2-3 classes of the Gymnasium, i.e. upper secondary school) you can enter universities and other higher education institutions.

Comprehensive school is a type of school where differentiation is made between the possible courses of education (Hauptschule, Realschule, Gymnasium) within one school, or different courses of education are offered at one and the same school. It can be a very good choice, especially for children who do not start elementary school in Germany, as it is much easier to switch between the different courses of education.

All Ukrainian students under the age of 12 are automatically enrolled in school. Here, the experience is that children settle in quickly. Adolescents need to be tested to find the right school entry.

Vaccination requirements

It is important to confirm the presence of vaccinations. If you are able, bring an immunization record to the meeting. If you cannot confirm the presence of immunizations, you may be referred for testing to detect antibodies or vaccination.


After the first-mentioned registration at the Foreigners‘ Office or the Initial Reception Center, data about the respective child is sent to the Ministry of Education. Based on the data received, Ministry of Education staff will send you a letter of invitation for your child to the school in the place of registration and a list of available schools with contacts. You will need to select a school and make an appointment using the phone number provided. If you have not received an invitation letter yet, you can contact the school you have chosen on your own.


Most cities in Germany have sports clubs. They are privately organized and supported by the cities. The membership fee for children is usually not too expensive. For example, in Ebelsbach, a child's membership in the club costs 35 euros per year, but they can buy the family membership for 90 EUR and go to do sports there together, regardless of how many children the family has - one, three or five.

Education costs

Schooling is compulsory, universal and free of charge.

Higher educational institution

You are allowed to study at a German university as a refugee. It is unproblematic especially if your status is recognized. As a refugee from Ukraine this is given with the registration. The same conditions apply to you as to other international prospective students.

You can find more information here: Link

German language

One of the most important elements of integration is learning the German language. Germany has therefore developed an integration package for foreigners who have immigrated to the country:

  • 600 hours of free German training;
  • 200 hours of integration course to get to know the rules and habits in the country.

This integration course is offered free of charge to every refugee from Ukraine by the Foreigners' Registration Office.

We also recommend additional courses that can be found on the Internet:

  • To get started, you can use the online site "My way to Germany".
  • Free offers to improve your German language skills at the Goethe-Institut can be found here: Link
  • You can find the Goethe-Institut's „Onleihe“ service here: Link
  • Overview of materials for learning German on the service Onleihe: Link
  • Visit also the offer to learn German language of "Deutsche Welle" in Ukrainian: Link

Regardless, it is worth paying attention to the offers of the Adult Education Center in your city, which provides German classes on an ongoing basis. The classes are not free, but the Adult Education Center offers a significant discount to Ukrainian refugees.

Car and driving license

Car registration

For the first six months you are allowed to drive in Germany without special German registration and German insurance. After that you have to register your car and need a car insurance. Whether the system will be simplified for Ukrainians is not yet known, we will inform you about this as soon as there is more information available on this.

Verification of the driver's license

The driver's license from Ukraine is valid in Germany only for the first six months. It can be extended for another six months if the driver can prove that he will not stay in Germany for more than 12 months. After that, one must undergo training and obtain a driver's license according to German law. However, it is possible that special rules will be created in the coming months. We advise you to wait and see.

How to find a job in Germany

In Germany, there is almost no unemployment. Therefore, it is easy to find a job quickly in order to increase one's standard of living. Tempton, as Germany's best personnel service provider, is happy to support you in this process.

More information

About Tempton

Tempton is one of Germany’s leading HR services providers. More than 11,500 businesses rely on us to provide them with qualified staff from virtually every industry. These include industrial and commercial assistants, specialist assistants and specialist personnel as well as examined health care staff, airport personnel, engineers and interim managers.

Our service portfolio sets us clearly apart from other HR services providers, because we go beyond supplying temporary staff, offering our customers virtually every service to suit their given HR requirements.

Tempton is a modern employer and service provider. Our employees come from over 100 countries. The teams at our branches often have native speakers from several countries who will be happy to assist you.

How to reach us

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact our refugee coordinator:

Nataliia Vinnytska
Phone: +49 201 94627-511
Mobile: +49 178-9270806
E-mail: nataliia.vinnytska@tempton.de