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Visa, Passport and Customs

Travel documents

Even though, as an EU citizen, you can travel freely within the border-free Schengen area, we strongly recommend that you always take your identity card or passport with you as proof of your identity.

Please find out before you travel which documents you need to enter your destination country. You should also note that driving licences, bank cards and credit cards are not valid travel documents.

Documents for children and young people

Children also need a valid identity card or passport when flying. Under certain circumstances, they may also need an additional official signed document from their parents, other parent or legal guardian allowing them to travel.

Visa regulations

When you travel from an EU member state to a non-EU country, you may need a visa as well as a valid passport. You must apply for the visa from the consulate or embassy of the country you are visiting.

Border officials can also require you to provide other documents, such as a letter of invitation, proof of accommodation or a ticket for the return journey or round trip.

If you board a flight without a valid visa, you may be refused entry by the border officials of the country in question.

It is essential that you find out about the current entry requirements before you travel. The consulate of the country in question or the German Federal Foreign Office will inform you in detail about the regulations.

Customs regulations

If you are travelling within the EU, you can take tobacco and alcohol with you for your personal use. These products are duty-free, provided that you do not exceed specific quantity and value limits.

There are limitations on bringing some types of products into Germany. There may be import restrictions or an import ban on some animals and plants, products of animal origin or plant origin, textiles, medicines, narcotics and fireworks.

You should also be aware that you must inform customs officials if you are carrying €10,000 or more in cash or the equivalent in another currency.

You can find more detailed information on the European Union website.