First Steps in Aachen

  View through trees from RWTH logo at Semi90 Copyright: © Martin Braun

On the following web pages you will find information to help you prepare for the start of your studies with us.


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Welcome Week

Please arrange your travel to Aachen so that you arrive in good time for the Welcome Week. Participation in the Welcome Week is compulsory.


Step 1: Attend the Welcome Week and Network with Others!

The first few weeks in Aachen are very exciting but can also be a bit unsettling for most international students. You don't know anyone, you have to take care of plenty of bureaucratic formalities before studies even start, and at the same time get used to a foreign country and a completely new culture.

The Welcome Week for international students will help you successfully master this difficult initial period and find friends. Please plan your arrival for this event.

Don’t miss it! You can find further information and the detailed program on the Welcome Week page.

Step 2: Register With the City

All newcomers to Aachen must register with the city of Aachen within two weeks of their arrival. You need your ID and proof of your address in Aachen. On the following page, you can find detailed information about registration. If you haven't found permanent accommodations yet, take a look at our page Accomodation in Aachen.

The broadcasting fee of 18.36 euros per month is a fee that, in principle, every household has to pay. A room in a shared apartment (WG) is also considered a household, even though the kitchen is shared. In a WG, on the other hand, the contribution only has to be paid once by one individual, with the others sharing the apartment indicating the contribution number of the individual paying. As soon as you register with the City of Aachen, you will receive mail from the ARD ZDF Deutschlandfunk Beitragsservice asking you to "register". Further details are available on their website.

Step 3: Open a Bank Account

After you register with the city, you can take your registration confirmation and your ID to open an account with a German bank.

Step 4: Health Insurance

In order to enroll at a German university you need proof of health insurance. If you are sufficiently insured in your home country or have private health insurance, you can be granted an exemption from a German statutory health insurance company. This exemption confirms that you are relieved of the insurance requirement in Germany. You must present this exemption when enrolling. You can find further information on the pages about health insurance.

Step 5: Enroll and Complete Other Formalities

Upload all required documents in RWTHonline before the enrollment deadline. In addition, please transfer the semester fee. Please make sure you fill in the reference line – Verwendungszweck – when transferring the payment online. You can find this in the application status in RWTHonline in the Enrollment section.

After two or three days you can access and set up your IT services and request your BlueCard, in order to validate your enrollment. These steps are described in detail on the page What To Do After Enrolling.

Please take the expiration date of your visa into account and apply for an online appointment to extend your residence permit at the Immigration Office in good time.

Step 6: Questions or Problems? Get Help!

The RWTH Aachen Info Service Center is your first point of contact as an international student for all questions about organizing your stay, life, and studies in Aachen. You can find an overview on the page Advice & Assistance.