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May 17, 2024

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May 10, 2024

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Learn About Your Destination


Federal Republic of Germany
Exercise increased caution in Germany due to terrorism.

Reissued after periodic review with minor edits

Exercise increased caution in Germany due to terrorism.

Country Summary: Terrorist groups keep planning attacks in Germany. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning. They target tourist locations and transportation hubs. They also target markets/shopping malls and local government facilities. They target hotels, clubs, and restaurants. They also attack places of worship, parks, and major sporting and cultural events. They target schools, airports, and other public areas.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Germany.

If you decide to travel to Germany:

  • Be aware of your surroundings when traveling to tourist locations and crowded public venues.
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities.
  • Monitor local media for breaking events and adjust your plans based on new information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter
  • Review the Country Security Report for Germany.
  • Visit the CDC page for the latest Travel Health Information related to your travel.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Embassy Messages


Quick Facts


Three months beyond planned date of departure from the Schengen area.


Two pages.


Not required for stays under 90 days.




 10,000€ (euros or equivalent).


 10,000€ (euros or equivalent).

Embassies and Consulates

Clayallee 170 
14191 Berlin 
Federal Republic of Germany 
Telephone: +(49) (30) 8305-0
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(49) (30) 8305-0
Fax: +(49) (30) 8305-1050

Giessener Str. 30
60435 Frankfurt am Main
Federal Republic of Germany
Telephone: +(49) (69) 7535-0
Fax: +(49) (69) 7535-2252
Passport, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, and Citizenship: 
All other questions:

Koeniginstrasse 5
80539 Munich
Federal Republic of Germany
Telephone: +(49) (89) 2888-0
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(49) 89-2888-0
Fax: If you need to send a fax, please email first to obtain a one-time use fax number. 

Willi-Becker-Allee 10 
40227 Duesseldorf 
Federal Republic of Germany 
Telephone: +(49) (69) 7535-0
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(49) (30) 8305-0 
Fax: +(49) (69) 7535-2252
Consular services are provided through the U.S. Consulate in Frankfurt. 

U.S. Consulate General Hamburg 
Kehrwieder 8
20457 Hamburg 
Federal Republic of Germany 
Telephone: +(49) (30) 8305-0 
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: Contact the U.S. Embassy in Berlin: +(49) (30) 8305-0 
Fax: +(49) (30) 8305-1050
Consular services are provided through the U.S. Embassy in Berlin.  

U.S. Consulate General Leipzig 
Wilhelm-Seyfferth-Str. 4 
04107 Leipzig 
Federal Republic of Germany 
Telephone: +(49) (30) 8305-0 
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: Contact the U.S. Embassy in Berlin: +(49) (30) 8305-0 
Fax: +(49) (30) 8305-1050
Consular services are provided through the U.S. Embassy in Berlin.

Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Germany for information on U.S. - Germany relations.

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Traveling Through Europe: If you are planning to visit or travel through European countries, you should be familiar with the requirements of the Schengen Agreement. 

  • In Europe's Schengen area, your passport generally must be valid for at least six months at the time of your entry. Although Germany only requires travelers to have three months of validity remaining beyond their intended departure date, airlines may still deny boarding for having less than six months validity, especially if transiting additional Schengen countries.
  • If you plan on transiting a Schengen country, review our U.S. Travelers in Europe page.
  • You will need sufficient proof of funds and a return plane ticket.
  • For additional information about visas for the Schengen area, see the Schengen Visa page.
  • If traveling with prescription medication, review the information below regarding pharmaceuticals to avoid potential fines and confiscation.

Carry identification with you at all times.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to, or foreign residents of, Germany.

Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Terrorism:  Credible information indicates terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Europe. European governments are taking action to guard against terrorist attacks; however, all European countries remain potentially vulnerable to attacks from transnational terrorist organizations.

Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad.  Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack –including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds.  Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:  

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, and celebratory gatherings)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists  
  • Places of worship  
  • Schools  
  • Parks 
  • Shopping malls and markets  
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights)  

For more information, see our Terrorism page.  

Crime: Violent crime is rare in Germany, but can occur, especially in larger cities or high-risk areas such as on large metropolitan subway systems and in train stations, primarily during late night or early morning hours. Most incidents of street crime involve the theft of unattended items and pickpocketing. Theft and pickpocketing primarily take place at train stations, on public transportation, at tourist attractions, and at large public events.  Always pay close attention to your valuables! 

Be cautious and aware of your surroundings. 

U.S. citizens should exercise caution when congregating in known expatriate hangouts. 

Don’t buy counterfeit and pirated goods, even if they are widely available. They are illegal to bring back into the United States, and you could also be breaking local law. 

Demonstrations: Demonstrations occur regularly in Germany. Large, public demonstrations take place for a variety of political and economic issues. Demonstrations tend to take place on politically significant holidays like German Labor Day (May 1) and during international summits hosted in Germany.  Demonstration organizers must obtain prior police approval, and police routinely oversee participants.    

  • Demonstrations can be unpredictable; avoid areas around protests and demonstrations.
  • Check local media for updates and traffic advisories.
  • Strikes may interfere with travel plans. We strongly encourage travelers to check transportation schedule information prior to travel.    

International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Internet romance and financial scams are prevalent in Germany. Scams are often initiated through Internet postings/profiles or by unsolicited emails and letters. Most scammers pose as U.S. citizens who have no one else to turn to for help.

Tips to avoid scammers:

  • Look for red flags like their location is far away, their profile was recently created or seems to be too good to be true, the pace of the relationship is moving too quickly, or they ask for money.
  • Set up a phone call/video chat in the initial stages.
  • Do a reverse image search on the profile picture.
  • If they ask for help, you should refer to them to the closest U.S. Embassy or Consulate so we can work with local authorities to assist.
  • If you believe you have been scammed, report the incident to local law enforcement right away and stop all communications with the scammer.

Common scams include:

  • Romance/online dating
  • Money transfers
  • Lucrative sales
  • Gold purchase
  • Contracts with promises of large commissions
  • Grandparent/relative targeting (kidnapping, arrested, medical emergency)
  • Free Trip/luggage
  • Lotteries
  • Inheritance notices
  • Work permits/job offers
  • Bank overpayments

Technology Usage Abroad: Mobiles Devices are vulnerable to compromise, theft, and physical damage anywhere in the world. Best practices prior to traveling abroad are keeping all software (operating system and apps) updated and using virtual private network and encrypted voice over IP (VoIP) applications if possible. Make sure that all VPN/VoIP are reputable, and U.S.-based. Do not connect to unknown open Wi-Fi. GPS Navigation Apps are helpful in getting U.S. citizens around in a foreign country. Prior to using the GPS app, make sure you research the route to make sure it is safe. GPS navigation app may give you the shortest route without safety consideration. Be cautious of using dating apps/online dating websites abroad as U.S. citizens can be targeted by scammers. Make sure to inform your friends and family of your whereabouts, meet at a well-known public location, and not consume suspicious food or drinks. Avoid traveling alone to bars or nightclubs.

Victims of Crime: Report crimes to the local police: in an emergency dial 112 for ambulance and 110 for the police and contact the U.S Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate (see contact details above). 

Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes. 

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas

We can: 

  • Help you find appropriate medical care 
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police 
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent 
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion
  • Provide a list of local attorneys 
  • Provide information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States 
  • Provide information on victim’s compensation and support in Germany
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution 
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home 
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport 

We also maintain information on our website on how to report child abuse situations to the local authorities.

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Embassy or the Consulates General in Frankfurt or Munich for assistance. Call 110 if you are in immediate danger.

Tourism: The tourism industry is generally well regulated, and rules are regularly enforced. Hazardous areas/activities are identified with appropriate signage, and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities.

Germany sometimes experiences extreme weather conditions including floods, long periods of drought, and unusually harsh winters with vast amounts of snow even in urban areas. Numerous injuries and deaths occur every year in Germany’s Alpine and coastal regions. Most of the emergencies relate to the following sports:  skiing, hiking, snowboarding, mountain biking, sledding, rock and mountain climbing, paragliding, and swimming. Those engaging in Alpine sports are strongly encouraged to register with German “Alpen Verein.”

In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country. Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.  

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General immediately. See our webpage for further information.

Special Circumstances: Germany has strict customs regulations concerning:

  • Temporary importation or exportation of firearms
  • Military artifacts (particularly those of World War II)
  • Antiques
  • Medications/pharmaceuticals
  • Business equipment

Under German law it is also illegal to bring into or take out of Germany any literature, music, or paraphernalia that glorifies fascism, the Nazi past, or the “Third Reich.”

Contact the German Embassy in Washington or one of the German consulates in the United States for specific information regarding customs requirements.

Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:

International Volunteers:

LGBTQI+ Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTQI+ events in Germany. Same-sex marriage is available in Germany. LGBTQI+ persons are protected by federal anti-discrimination laws, and LGBTQI+ Pride events are officially encouraged by most large city governments, including those in Berlin, Cologne, Hamburg, Frankfurt, and Munich. 

See our page and section 6 of our  Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers with Disabilities: The law in Germany prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities, and the law is enforced. Social acceptance of persons with disabilities in public is as prevalent as in the United States. Expect accessibility to be limited in some older public transportation, lodging, and general infrastructure, especially outside major cities, but common in most urban infrastructure. Some older buildings and public transportation systems are less adapted to individuals with disabilities.

Check your hotel or destination to learn more about options to accommodate disabled traveler needs before visiting Germany.

The German National Tourist Board maintains information about accessibility and disability-friendly travel.

All German airports and Lufthansa offer services for disabled travelers.

The German National Railway, Deutsche Bahn, maintains a mobility resource webpage.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.


Germany has generally high-quality medical care and facilities. Prescription and over-the-counter medicines are widely available although brands and drug names differ from those available in the United States.

For emergency services in Germany, dial 112.  

Ambulance services are widely available.  

We highly recommend that all travelers review the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Travelers’ Health webpage and general Traveler Advice for Germany.

  • Select your destination in the Travelers’ Health webpage.
    • Review all sub-sections including the Travel Health Notices, Vaccines and Medicines, Non-Vaccine-Preventable Diseases, Stay Healthy and Safe, Healthy Travel Packing List, and After Your Trip.
  • Review the Traveler Advice webpage that provide advice on medical considerations including:
    • Reasons for Travel (for example: Adventure Travel, Spring Break Travel)
    • Travelers with Special Considerations (for example: Allergies, Long-Term Travelers, and Expatriates)
    • General Tips (for example: Traveling with Medications, Travel Vaccines)

The Department of State, U.S. embassies and U.S. consulates general do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas. Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance. If you are not a resident of Germany, doctors and hospitals will expect immediate payment in cash.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas or purchase travel insurance for this purpose. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance coverage overseas. Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on the type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

The Department of State strongly recommends supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription. Check with the German Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices to ensure the medication is legal in Germany. Also read the information below regarding pharmaceuticals and the documentation required to enter Germany with prescription medication.

Vaccinations: Be up to date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

Air Quality: Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

Air quality varies considerably and fluctuates with the seasons. It is typically at its worst in the winter. People at the greatest risk from particle pollution exposure include:

  • Infants, children, and teens
  • People over 65 years of age
  • People with lung disease such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema

The U.S. Embassy and Consulates General maintain lists of doctors and medical services in Germany. We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic. 

Medical Tourism and Elective Surgery 

  • Medical tourism is a rapidly growing industry. People seeking health care overseas should understand that medical systems operate differently from those in the United States and are not subject to the same rules and regulations. Anyone interested in traveling for medical purposes should consult with their local physician before traveling and visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information on Medical Tourism.  
  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for information on Medical Tourism, the risks of medical tourism, and what you can do to prepare before traveling to Germany.  
  • We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation in the event of unforeseen medical complications.   


  • If traveling with prescription medication, visit the German customs website to ensure the medication is legal in Germany.  For medications that Germany classifies as narcotics, you may only carry a 30-day supply.  A comprehensive list of these medications can be found  here.  If your medication is on that list, there is an additional requirement for your doctor to complete a certification form.  You will see part E asks for the endorsement of an “issuing authority.”  As there is no such authority in the United States, travelers may have the doctor self-certify the form and enter the information of his or her practice in part E, ideally with a stamp or seal from their office.  Due to Germany’s strict customs regulations, you are not allowed to receive prescription medication by mail without special permission.  Always carry your prescription.
  • Exercise caution when purchasing medication overseas.  Medication should be purchased in consultation with a medical professional and from reputable establishments.   
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration are responsible for rules governing the transport of medication back to the United States.  Medication purchased abroad must meet their requirements to be legally brought back into the United States.  Medication should be for personal use and must be approved for usage in the United States.  Please visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration websites for more information.    

Assisted Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy   

If you are considering traveling overseas to have a child through use of assisted reproductive technology (ART) or surrogacy, please see our ART and Surrogacy Abroad page.  

  • All surrogacy arrangements, as well as IVF procedures involving the use of donated eggs, are illegal in Germany. For additional information, see this webpage of the German Foreign Ministry (German language only).

Adventure Travel: Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel.

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Road conditions in general are excellent but can differ from those in the United States, but driver error is a leading cause of accidents involving U.S. citizen motorists in Germany.

If you hold a valid U.S. driver’s license, you can drive in Germany for up to six months without acquiring a German driver’s license. Many German traffic laws and traffic signs differ significantly from those in the United States. For more information, please visit the U.S. embassy’s webpage on driving in Germany.

Speed limits are posted on large stretches of the highway, on the Autobahn in urban areas, and when the road has many curves. Although high speeds are permitted on the Autobahn, adverse weather conditions and unfamiliar road markings pose significant hazards. Speed limits are strictly enforced. Use of seat belts is mandatory in front and back seats. Do not park on bike paths or sidewalks. Your vehicle registration, insurance policy, a first-aid kit, a reflective vest, and a reflective triangle must be in your vehicle at all times. In snowy or icy conditions, your vehicle must have snow tires or all-season tires (indicated by M+S marking) or you will be subject to a fine.

Bicycles: German streets and sidewalks have dedicated bike lanes. Bicycles have priority use of bike lanes over pedestrians and automobiles. Bicyclists also have priority over cars when turning onto side streets. If you are driving, check whether a bicyclist is approaching from either direction before attempting to enter side streets, even when the light is in your favor. You will be held responsible for any injury or damage caused if you turn into a side street and hit a bicyclist using a marked bike lane. If you are walking, watch for bicyclists before crossing or stepping into bike lanes. 

Traffic Laws: If you are involved in a traffic accident in Germany, even a minor fender-bender, you MUST stay with your vehicle and not leave the scene until police arrive to take a report. It is illegal to use your cell phone while driving in Germany. Except on priority roads, vehicles coming from the right have the right-of-way. It is generally illegal in Germany to pass vehicles on the right. Germans strictly observe the ‘slower traffic keep right’ rule. It is illegal to operate a vehicle if your blood alcohol level is 0.05% or higher. You may be fined, and your driver’s license may be suspended for specified periods of time, depending upon the gravity of each violation. 

Public Transportation: Germany has an extensive and safe public transportation network consisting of buses, streetcars, trains, and subways. Metered taxis are also prevalent throughout Germany. Uber and other rideshare companies are available in most cities in Germany. Use common sense safety practices such as guarding valuables and remaining aware of your surroundings on all public transportation. 

Strikes in Germany may disrupt public transportation and travel plans.  We strongly encourage travelers to check transportation schedule information prior to travel.

See our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the website of Germany’s Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport (BMVI), the national authority responsible for road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight:The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Germany’s Civil Aviation Authority as compliant with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Germany’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Germany should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website, and the NGA broadcast warnings.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Germany. For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.”

Last Updated: May 1, 2024

Travel Advisory Levels

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Berlin
U.S. Embassy Berlin
Clayallee 170
14191 Berlin
Federal Republic of Germany
+(49) (30) 8305-0
+(49) (30) 8305-0
+(49) (30) 8305-1215

Germany Map