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Do I have to return to the U.S after 90 days in Germany?

by Sarah

Question: I am living with my fiance in Germany. He is in the military. We are not married yet, therefore we are not sponsored through the military for me to be here. We are renting a room from a friend off base. My passport allows me to be in Germany for a 30-day period. I intend on flying back to the United States once my 30 days is up here, but I am unsure of the amount of time that I must spend out of the country before I can return, or if there is even an existing time limit.

Answer: Germany is party to the Schengen Agreement. Travelers for business or tourism are permitted to stay in the Schengen area for 90 days within a six month period. Once the 90 day maximum is reached, leaving for a brief period and re-entering the area does not entitle a traveler to 90 more days within the Schengen states. The traveler would have to remain outside of the Schengen zone for 90 days before reentering without a visa.

So, the answer to your questions are 1) "Yes" you have to leave Germany at the end of the 90-day period and 2) you have to remain outside the country for at least 90 days.

The only way to remain in Germany or re-enter in less than 90 days would be to either get married or apply for a permanent resident visa. Anyone who wants to stay in Germany for longer than 90 days must apply for a residence permit. You can find more information here:

Permanent Residence Visa to Germany

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