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Posted on December 03 2020

Can I work in Germany with a student visa in 2021?

By  Editor
Updated April 03 2023
germany student visa

Germany continues to be a top destination for students looking to study abroad. The country is known for its quality of education, focus on innovation and emphasis on research and development. These reasons make it an attractive study abroad option.

 Students opting to go to Germany for study can also make good use of the work options the country offers while they are doing the course. If you are on a student visa, you will want to know if it is possible to work while studying. This post will look at some of the options to work on a student visa in Germany in 2021.

Working on a student visa in Germany

The good news is it is possible for students to work on a student visa in Germany, but they cannot work for more than 20 hours per week during the course. But they can work full-time during vacations.

What are the work options for non-EU students?

Non-EU students have restrictions on the number of days that they can work during their course. They can work for either 120 full days during a year or for 240 half days.

If you have taken up a job as a student assistant or research assistant in your university, it is not accounted for in the 120-day limit, but you will have to notify the Alien Registration Office about this work.

Similarly, if you are doing an internship during the break between semesters, it is regarded as normal work and is accounted for in the 120-day period. But if the internship is part of the course, then it is not accounted for as work.

However non-EU students cannot be self-employed or do freelance work during their studies.

What are the work options for students from the EU?

Students belonging to EU nations can work up to 20 hours per week like the local German students. Exceeding this limit requires students to pay for the German social security system.

Are there any specific restrictions on working while studying?

Students doing a language course or a preparatory course for their first-year graduate program can work in lecture free periods. They should have consent from the Federal Employment Agency or the foreigners' authority.

Do students require a work permit?

Non-EU students should get a work permit from the "Agentur fur Arbeit" (Federal Employment Agency) and the foreigners' authority. The permit will have details of the maximum hours of work a student can do.

You can check with the regional Employment agency, the Bundesagentur für Arbeit for any work opportunities. You can also check ads in newspapers, online portals and check newspapers for any job openings.

How much can students hope to earn from a part-time job?

The income you will receive monthly will depend on your job location, the area you’re working in the industry, as well as on your skills. You should bear in mind that with the income you earn from non-academic part-time work would not be able to cover all your living expenses.

You can hope to earn a tax-free income of 450 Euros per month. If your income exceeds this amount you will receive an income tax number and there will be automatic deductions from your salary.

How can students easily find a job?

It will be easier to find a job if you have some knowledge of the German language or have finished your internship during your studies.

What is the kind of jobs a student can find?

Teaching or research Assistants at the university

These jobs are open to research scholars and you can get a decent pay for them. In this job you will help professors in marking copies, prepare research work or give tutorials. You can even work in the library. But to get these jobs you must apply well ahead. These jobs are notified on the university notice board. The working hours and wages are far better for university jobs.

Waiters at café’s, bars, etc.

This is a popular option among students for many reasons. It gives students an opportunity to meet new people and interact with the local population. Apart from the salary, they can earn good tips too.

Office Assistant

Your primary responsibilities will be to answer the phone, provide information to the company's customers or partners, among other administrative duties.

Retail store assistant

Your role will involve assisting customers with details and choosing the right product they are looking for. t Strong communication skills would be helpful for you.


This job might be the right match for you if you like kids and have at least a bit of experience working with them.  This job is well paying.

Call center officer

You will have to answer the phone, evaluate and handle client requests or grievances. You have to be polite and diplomatic, and you have to have interpersonal abilities. A strong understanding of German is also a must, and you can make your own schedule most of the time.

 Field interviewer

Some businesses or organizations often require data collectors who have to ask consumers about their opinions on goods or services, which would inevitably lead to a survey.

English Tutors

International students can make use of opportunities to teach English to German students. These jobs offer a decent pay, but you should be proficient in the English language.

Industrial Production Assistants

This is a good option for students looking for jobs that offer significant experience and is related to what they are studying. These jobs are well-paying and could help you find a career in Germany post the completion of your course. These jobs are advertised in local newspapers.

When you are looking for work options while on a student visa, there are many choices available. But ensure that you follow the federal laws if you opt to work while you are studying. Flouting the rules could lead to your expulsion from Germany.



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