Information for international students

You come to Germany to study? Welcome! A lot of things will be different for you here. To prepare you to study successfully, we will take care of your health insurance. As you might know, you may not enrol in Germany without a health insurance. This means that you must not forget to take out a health insurance either in your home country or immediately after arriving in Germany. We will now show you how this is done!

Mehrere Studenten auf dem Campus liegen entspannt beieinander und lachen miteinander.© AOK

Inhalte im Überblick

    How does the German health and welfare system work?

    Health insurance in Germany

    In Germany, health insurance is compulsory for all students, i.e. in order to enrol at a college or university you have to submit proof of health insurance. So you cannot start your studies unless you are insured. The AOK offers you excellent health care at affordable prices and will help you getting the answers you need on all matters related to health insurance and social security.

    As an international student, do I need to take out health insurance?

    In Germany, all students have to provide proof of health and long-term care insurance by certificate of a statutory health insurance company, in order to be matriculated.

    A student can be insured as follows:

    • under statutory health insurance
    • under student health insurance
    • under private health insurance (an exemption from student health insurance is necessary)

    If you are from another EU country and studying in Germany, you don't have to take out health insurance, if you are already insured in your home country (e.g. under family insurance).

    This also applies to you, if your home country has signed a Social Security Agreement concerning health insurance with Germany. To verify your insurance to us, you need a certificate of entitlement (e.g. E104).

    Your AOK student advisor will personally discuss with you the best option for your particular situation:

    Just call 0049 9131 9242 10 128 *
    Mon - Wed: 8 – 16.30 
    Thu: 8 – 17.30 
    Fr: 8 – 15 

    * The cost of a call from abroad via land line or mobile phone depends on the rates set by the respective foreign network operator.

    Students with an European Health Insurance Card

    Students with an European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) are also considered to possess a recognised health insurance in Germany.

    The following countries recognise the EHIC: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Macedonia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Rumania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and Spain.

    To be able to enrol at a German university, you will need to prove that you have taken out a health insurance. You may do this by simply taking your EHIC to a branch of the AOK and having an insurance certificate issued.

    What do I need to bear in mind if I have a job alongside my studies?

    • All kinds of 'minor employment' up to an income threshold of 450 Euro/month are exempt from insurance in all lines of insurance.
    • Short-term jobs up to a maximum of three months or 70 calendar days are exempt from insurance in all lines of insurance.
    • During the semester, jobs that require you to work up to 20 hours a week are exempt from insurance under statutory health insurance, private health insurance and unemployment insurance.
    • Regardless of how much money you earn and how many hours you work per week, as a student your job is exempt from insurance during semester breaks.

    What are the advantages for me if I take out insurance with AOK?

    The AOK is a non profit oriented health insurance organisation. As one of the largest health insurance organisations in Germany we have the administrative and financial strength to provide excellent medical care at moderate rates. Our service is fast, competent and unbureaucratic. You can count on us in case of emergency. We offer you:

    • Affordable premiums
    • Our special "AOK Student-Service " - 70 times in Germany
    • Free choice among over 130.000 doctors and dentists
    • No advance payments thanks to your AOK card
    • Individual advice and personal service provided by our student advisers
    • Accessible office locations, directly on-site in many university and college towns
    • Long opening hours and quick, unbureaucratic help when needed
    • Nation-wide telephone hotline at the cost of a local call
    • Advice and assistance in all matters relating to social security
    • A comprehensive program to promote health and healthy living
    • On-going support to help you overcome all hurdles relating to insurance during your studies
    • We will arrange for you a smooth transfer from free family insurance to the Student Health Insurance scheme and, if required, subsequent Voluntary Student Insurance.

    What risks does the health insurance cover?

    Under its slogan meaning 'the health insurance provider', AOK is one of the providers of statutory health insurance. They pay out for treatment by doctors and dentists, drugs, therapy (massages, physiotherapy, etc.) and assistive equipment (wheelchairs, walking aids, etc.), hospital treatment and sickness allowance. Some of these services incur an additional charge. This is the case for people insured with any insurance company.

    Other information: With our benefits, we also support the idea that illnesses may not develop at all, or can be detected and treated at an early stage.

    Find out more about AOK's benefits and services here (The side is in German).

    How can I take out insurance with my regional AOK?

    Please enter your German postcode so that we can display regional offerings and information on how to become an AOK member.
    Aktualisiert: 30.03.2022

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