Prepare your arrival

Prepare your arrival

Here we list a few things that need to be done before coming to Heidelberg. Please contact IMPRS or your supervisor as early as possible if you have questions.

Download the following pdf overview compiled by the IMPRS that provides an overview over the information below. This broschure is sent to all arriving IMPRS students soon after the formal offerfor the PhD project has been accepted.

1. Whom to contact

Inform your supervisor, your new home institution, and IMPRS about your arrival date as early as possible, so that your institute and IMPRS are able to prepare the necessary steps.

2. Visa / invitation letter

Apply for a visa for yourself and for any family member accompanying you.

The home institute of your PhD supervisor is supposed to write an invitation letter for you. Ask for this letter well in advance, however, we need to write your proposed arrival date in this letter.

  • a) Citizens from Member States of the European Union (EU), Switzerland, Iceland, Norway, and Liechtenstein do not need a visa.
  • b) Citizens from Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, and the USA do not need an entry visa.
  • In general, a visa entitles you for entry and residence of 90 days initially, but as you are planning a longer stay in Germany as an IMPRS student, you must apply for a residence permit shortly after your arrival. This also applies to the b) citizens above.

3. Personal documents

  • Make sure that you bring a passport or equivalent identification document that must be valid for the duration of your entire stay in Germany.
  • Collect all original certificates that is necessary for your registration at the city of Heidelberg registration office (passport, marriage certificate, etc)

4. University documents/Receipts

Collect all original certificates that are necessary for your registration at Heidelberg University.

Please, check the IMPRS webpage about the admission procedures carefully. It could be painful to organize missing documents after arrival in Heidelberg.

5. Travel invoice/receipts

If your travel expenses are covered by your home institution of your Phd project, please keep all your travel invoices and receipts (boarding passes, train tickets, receipts of taxi/ shuttle, bus tickets, etc.) for reimbursement.

6. (Initial) accommodation

Please inform IMPRS and the person at your institute who is in charge of accommodations well in advance (i.e. 2-3 months before arrival) about your arrival date so that they can look for a temporary housing for you. They can also later help you with finding a permanent place to live. People from the institute secretariates that may help you are:

  • Ditta Mueller-Wolkenstein (LSW), mueller-wolkenstein @
  • Ruth Crespo (MPIK), ruth.crespo @
  • Helga Ballmann (ARI), ballmanni @
  • Daniela Scheerer  (MPIA), scheerer @
  • Anna Zacheua (ITA), zacheus @

Important note: From July-September, accommodations at the institute’s guest houses are very often fully booked because of many summer guests. Besides that, it also difficult to find housings in Heidelberg as the university semester lectures start September. For those reasons, it is urgently important to take care of accommodations as soon as possible, especially for preliminary guest house reservations.

Some information about accommodation opportunities in hostels or guest rooms can be found here.

Further information in preparation of your arrival to Heidelberg or Germany can be found from the MPIA International Office.