Germany Opportunity Card: A Faster Process to Move to Germany

Written by

Alisha Azeem

Fact check by

Divyansh Chaudhari

Updated on

Jul 25,2024

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Why Apply for a Germany Opportunity Card?

  • Easy and Fast Entry: The Opportunity Card allows quicker entry into Germany, enabling jobseekers to start their search for employment without needing a permanent job offer.
  • Point-Based System: This card utilizes a transparent point-based system evaluating skills, qualifications, work experience, language proficiency, and age, making it accessible to many applicants.
  • One-Year Residence Permit: This card provides a one-year residence permit, giving holders ample time to find suitable employment in Germany.
  • Access to a Larger Talent Pool: For employers, the Opportunity Card opens access to a broader pool of qualified candidates, making it easier to find skilled workers.
  • Professional Qualifications Recognition: Holders with at least two years of work experience and recognized professional qualifications are eligible, ensuring that applicants meet Germany's high standards3.
  • Comprehensive Health Insurance Coverage: Cardholders benefit from free travel health insurance worth up to €953 and access to Germany's public health insurance with English-speaking services.
  • Enhanced Job Market Opportunities: The Opportunity Card aims to attract young talent from outside the EU. With an estimated 780,000 job openings across various sectors, Germany offers abundant employment opportunities for cardholders.

For people outside the EU who wish to work abroad, especially in Germany, the Germany opportunity card is a gold mine for you. Known as the ‘Chancenkarte’ in German, this opportunity card allows applicants from non-EU countries to enter Germany and look for employment without having a permanent job contract. For skilled workers and professionals, this card opens up a plethora of opportunities for work in Germany. Germany launched this card to attract more skilled workers to fill the German workforce.

Germany has been facing a shortage in its local workforce for the last few years, and the issue has become quite critical of late. Through the opportunity card, Germany aims to attract new talent and fill its workforce with the incentives provided, unlike any other country. This opportunity card can be availed by any applicant from any country outside the EU who wants to look for a suitable job in Germany. It makes finding work easier than ever before. 

Of course, there are some requirements that you have to meet regarding eligibility and financial security, But if you qualify, getting the Germany opportunity card will be a piece of cake. It gives you a 12-month stay permit in Germany with a max of 20 hours per week of work. You cannot find a better deal than this! Here is everything you need to know about the Germany opportunity card. 

What is the Germany Opportunity Card?

The Germany opportunity card is a 12-month work permit that allows you to work in Germany without a permanent job contract. It facilitates a quick, legal, and very simple way to enter Germany for work. With the Germany opportunity card, you also have a good chance of eventually getting permanent residence in Germany. You also get a work permit immediately after your application is completed, and the procedure for the same, as you might already know, is not a lengthy one. To be eligible for Germany's opportunity card, you must first meet the fundamental prerequisite of vocational training. There are many advantages of the German opportunity card for employees and employees, which we will get into eventually.

In essence, the Germany opportunity card is a residence permit which lets you find a job in Germany for up to 12 months maximum. The unique part about this is that you don’t need to have a fixed employment contract! However, if you do not find a suitable job within the stipulated period, you cannot extend your Visa and will have to leave Germany. If you do get a job, you can apply for a different visa, which allows you to stay in Germany, but it is not linked to the opportunity card.

Most skilled workers who have vocational training or university degrees are eligible for this opportunity card. It allows you to perceive qualified employment.

You can bring your family members with you through the opportunity card Germany is offering, unlike most other visas. However, you can enter Germany with the opportunity card and shift to a different resident residence visa once you get a suitable job. Also, keep in mind that you cannot study in Germany with this visa.

Getting a Germany opportunity card can take from a few weeks to some months. However, the authorities will try to make the process faster and simpler, as is the purpose of this visa.

Benefits of the Opportunity Card in Germany 2024

The opportunity card offers various advantages to individuals who wish to seek employment opportunities in Germany. From the streamlined procedure, access to job markets, favourable payment, and work hours to gaining exposure, unlike any other, there are many advantages to the opportunity card Germany is offering. Some of the major benefits of the opportunity card are listed below.

  • The Germany opportunity card brings Fastrack entry to you, allowing you to skip the lengthy procedures of German immigration. The Opportunity Card Germany streamlines your application and makes it easier to do so. 

  • Unlike the job seeker visa, which has a six-month limit, the Germany opportunity card allows you to stay in Germany for one year. That is double the time that you get while on the job. It also allows part-time jobs while you look for a permanent job.

  • The opportunity card also makes it easier for you to apply for permanent residency later and bring your family with you. Thus, if you make the best out of the opportunity card Germany offers, you can get your entire family to immigrate with you and start a new life in Germany.

  • Under the opportunity card Germany system, your employers do not need to have a lengthy approval procedure through the federal employment agency. This means that applying for work in Germany through this opportunity card is much easier.

Eligibility for the Germany Opportunity Card 2024

To be able to access the best that Germany has to give you, you need to be eligible for the Germany opportunity card. There are some important guidelines regarding eligibility listed by the German authorities for those who wish to move to Germany through the Germany opportunity card.

They are listed below:

  • A point system is used for the Germany opportunity card. You need to get at least six points to secure your spot for the Germany opportunity card.

  • There are some language requirements attached to the Germany opportunity card. You must have German skills at level A1 or English skills at level B2.

  • You must also have at least two years of vocational training or a university degree which is recognized by the country you originate from.

  • You must also prove that you have enough funds to support your stay in Germany for one year. You can do this by attaining a part-time job for up to 20 hours a week in Germany or by securing an employment contract as soon as possible.

  • You should also be less than 40 years of age.

 

Points System of the Germany Opportunity Card 

As you may already know, to get the Germany opportunity card, you must have at least six points on the point system allotted to screen the applicants for this card. The points distribution is done in the following manner:

Number of Points Allotted

Qualifying Factor

4

Partial recognition of a foreign professional qualification or permission to practise a regulated profession in Germany. 

3

Five years of professional experience (in the last seven years) along with preceding two years of professional training

German skills above B2 level. 

Two years of professional experience, preceded by vocational training. 

For people who are not above the age of 35. 

For people who are above the age of 40.

1

For a previous stay of at least six months in Germany (vacations do not count). 

Knowledge of English language above C1 level or reasonable knowledge of German at A2 level. 

 

New Germany Opportunity Card Application Process 2024

New Germany Opportunity Card Application Process 2024- TerraTern

The Opportunity Card, effective from June 1, 2024, is designed to facilitate job seekers from non-EU countries to enter Germany and find employment. Below are the steps and requirements for acquiring the Opportunity Card:

Basic Requirements

  1. Language Skills: Basic German (A1) or English (C1).

  2. Education: At least two years of vocational training or a university degree recognized in the applicant's country of origin.

  3. Financial Means: Proof of sufficient financial means to support oneself, which can be demonstrated through an employment contract for a part-time job (up to 20 hours per week) or a blocked account with sufficient funds (€1,027/month).

Points System

Applicants must score at least six points based on the following criteria:

  • Professional Experience: Up to five years of Experience in the learned profession.

  • Language Proficiency: Higher levels of German (A1) or English (C1).

  • Age: Younger applicants (under 35) receive more points.

  • Connection to Germany: Previous stays in Germany for at least six months (excluding tourist visits).

Application Process

1. Prepare Documents:

  • Valid passport.

  • Proof of education and vocational training.

  • Proof of language skills.

  • Financial proof (e.g., employment contract, blocked account).

  • Evidence of previous stays in Germany (if applicable).

2. Submit Application:

  • Apply at the local Foreigners' Registration Office in Germany or the relevant German mission abroad (e.g., German Embassy or Consulate).

  • Complete the application form online via VIDEX, print it out twice, and sign both copies.

  • Provide two current passport photos and copies of the passport's data page.

3. Additional Requirements:

  • Proof of accommodation in Germany (e.g., invitation letter, hotel booking).

  • The declaration for additional contact and legal representation information was completed and signed twice.

4. Processing:

  • The responsible authority will verify the applicant's eligibility based on the points system and provided documents.

  • The processing time may vary, but authorities aim to expedite the process.

Work Permissions

  • Trial Jobs: Unlimited trial jobs lasting up to two weeks each.

  • Part-Time Work: Allowed to work part-time up to 20 hours per week.

Duration and Extension

  • Initial Validity: 1 year.

  • Extension: Possible for up to two additional years if employment is found or other residence criteria are met.

This streamlined process aims to attract skilled workers to Germany, making it easier for non-EU citizens to seek employment and integrate into the German labour market.

Difference Between Germany's Job Seeker Visa and the New Opportunity Card

Germany Opportunity Card Comparison with Job Seeker Visa- TerraTern

Germany's immigration policies have evolved to attract skilled workers better. Effective June 1, 2024, the new Opportunity Card offers several advantages over the traditional Job Seeker Visa. Here are the key differences:

1. Validity Period

  • Job Seeker Visa: Valid for 6 months, non-extendable.
  • Opportunity Card: Valid for 1 year, extendable for up to 2 additional years if employment is found.

2. Eligibility Criteria

  • Job Seeker Visa: Requires a university degree recognized in Germany and at least 5 years of professional experience.
  • Opportunity Card: Requires a university degree or 2 years of vocational training. Opportunity cards have a points system based on qualifications, language skills, professional experience, age, and links to Germany.

3. Financial Requirements

  • Job Seeker Visa: Proof of sufficient funds (€947/month).
  • Opportunity Card: Proof of sufficient funds (€1,027/month), which can be demonstrated through a part-time job (up to 20 hours/week).

4. Work Permission

  • Job Seeker Visa: Generally not allowed to work, except for trial work up to 10 hours/week.
  • Opportunity Card: Allows part-time work up to 20 hours/week and unlimited trial jobs up to 2 weeks each.

5. Application Process

  • Job Seeker Visa: Apply at the German embassy/consulate in your home country.
  • Opportunity Card: Apply at the German embassy/consulate or local Foreigners' Registration Office in Germany.

6. Points System

  • Job Seeker Visa: Not applicable.
  • Opportunity Card: Points system based on various criteria, making it accessible to a broader range of applicants.

7. Family Reunification

  • Job Seeker Visa: Not allowed.
  • Opportunity Card: This is not allowed initially, but it is possible after securing employment and changing to a work visa.

8. Extension Possibility

  • Job Seeker Visa: Not extendable.
  • Opportunity Card: Extendable if employment is found or other residence criteria are met.

9. Recognition of Qualifications

  • Job Seeker Visa: Required for academic and vocational qualifications.
  • Opportunity Card: Eligibility is required for vocational qualifications but not for IT professionals with 2 years of experience.

10. Health Insurance

  • Job Seeker Visa: Required.
  • Opportunity Card: Required.
 

How to Apply for the Germany Opportunity Card from India?

The process to apply for a Germany opportunity card is quite simple. The Germany opportunity card aimed to provide a quick, easy, and streamlined method to apply to Germany for work. Hence, the process for this is quite simple.

1. You need to fill out an application form where you have to attach your identification, employment, and language documents. 

2. When you go to the page, you will first have to fill out a questionnaire and choose the correct answers that are true to you. This demonstrates whether you are eligible for the Germany opportunity card. Once you complete the questionnaire, you will get your eligibility score by the end, guiding you through the next steps to apply for a Germany opportunity card.

Keep all the documentation ready because you will have to submit it and also book an appointment with the German embassy near you.

 

Conclusion

The Germany opportunity card is one of the best ways to move to Germany for work purposes. There are many benefits attached to it. Moreover, Germany really needs foreign labour due to an ageing population, so you will have a lot of other benefits. Plus, the work unions in Germany are really strong, so you can always count on them to ensure that you never get misread at work. Otherwise, Germany is one of the best countries in which to live. With an excellent public infrastructure, transportation, affordability, which is better than most other Western countries, and safety. Germany is one of the best countries to live in today. It is also one of the most technologically advanced countries and has a lot of scope for growth.

Moving to Germany can be one of the best decisions you make. For immigration-related services, TerraTern is right here to help! We offer immigration-related services that can assist you throughout your process and even after you make your move, so you always have us to rely on.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the specific language requirements for the Germany Opportunity Card?

You must have German skills at level A1 or English skills at level B2. You get extra points if your language skills extend to the C1 level too.

Can individuals apply for the Germany Opportunity Card if they do not have prior work experience?

No, you cannot apply for the Opportunity Card if you do not have prior work experience. You must have at least 2 years of work experience to get this Card.

Is there a limit to the number of times one can apply for the Opportunity Card?

No, there is no limit to the number of times one can apply for the Opportunity Card.

Are family members of Opportunity Card holders eligible for any benefits?

You cannot bring your family members with you through the opportunity card Germany is offering, unlike most other visas. However, you can enter Germany with the opportunity card and shift to a different resident residence visa once you get a suitable job.

How long is the typical processing time for Opportunity Card applications?

Getting a Germany opportunity card can take from a few weeks to some months. However, the authorities will try to make the process faster and simpler, as is the purpose of this visa.