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Germany currently has over 2 million job openings, but they don’t have enough people to fill them. The good news for international workers like you is that Germany plans to bring in 400,000 foreign workers annually to help fill the gap. Starting in 2024, Germany will introduce the Opportunity Card to make it easier for foreigners to work in Germany. There are also some exciting changes in the job market, especially in healthcare, IT, and skilled trades like carpentry. Do you want to know more about what it takes to get a Germany Opportunity Card? Then this is for you! This opportunity opens officially on the 1st of June 2024.

What is the Germany Opportunity Card?

The Opportunity Card Germany, also known as the Chancenkarte program, presents a chance for international workers to live and work in Germany. It simplifies the challenges of obtaining a work permit and residence visa, making it more accessible for skilled professionals to seek employment in the country. Germany’s opportunity card visa is a gateway to fresh opportunities and a fulfilling life in the German land.

Benefits of the German Opportunity Card

The Opportunity Card Germany offers advantages like language training, help with job placement, and support for cultural integration.

With this card, international workers can thrive in a dynamic work setting, enjoy a high quality of life, and pursue promising career paths in one of Europe’s leading economies.

  • Duration of Stay: You can stay in Germany for one year, with an extension of up to 3 years.
  • This card grants a 6-month stay for job seekers.
  • Point-Based System: The Opportunity Card uses a point-based system to determine applicant eligibility.
  • Point Requirement: To qualify for the Germany Opportunity Card visa, you have to accumulate only 6 points out of 14 available points.
  • Work During Job Search: With the Opportunity Card, you can work in Germany (2-week trial jobs) while you search for jobs.
  • Part-Time Employment: The Opportunity Card also allows you to engage in part-time jobs (20 hours per week) during your job-seeking period.
  • Language Requirement: Although optional for the Opportunity Card application, demonstrating at least A1 in German or B2 in English offers flexibility for applicants with skills in either language.

Eligibility Criteria of the German Opportunity Card

The Germany Opportunity Card website outlines specific eligibility criteria for candidates who wish to apply. These criteria are essential to ensure that only eligible individuals apply:

  • Applicants must be a Non-European.
  • Minimum of 6 Germany Opportunity Card Points
  • Applicants must be 35 years old or younger at the time of applying.
  • Language Proficiency
  • Prior residency in Germany (optional)
  • Three years of professional work experience
  • No criminal record.
  • Demonstrating adequate financial means to sustain oneself in Germany
  • Submit applications through the German Embassy.

Points distribution for the Opportunity Card at a glance

  • Basic requirements: Sufficient German language skills at level A1 or English language skills at level B2 and at least two years of vocational training according to your home country. You must also have sufficient financial means. Proof of this can be in the form of an employment contract for a part-time job.
  • Four points: Are for partial recognition of a foreign professional qualification or permission to practise a regulated profession (e.g. teacher, nurse or engineer). Very few applicants meet these criteria.
  • Three points are awarded for five years of professional experience (in the last seven years) in the learned profession and the preceding two years of professional training according to the laws of your home country. Also, you receive three points for good German language skills at level B2.
  • Two points are for two years of professional experience preceded by vocational training (in the last five years). If you are not older than 35, you also get two points. German language skills at level B1 also receive two points.
  • One point is for applicants not over 40 years old and for a previous stay in Germany (at least six months). You must provide a proof of this. Previous stays as a tourist do not count.
  • One point is for good knowledge of English (C1), and reasonable knowledge of German (A2). If you had your vocational training/university degree in an area of official labour shortage in Germany, or if you applied for the Opportunity Card with your spouse.

Point-Based System for the German Opportunity Card

CriteriaPoints
Qualification (Degree)Up to 6 points if you hold a university degree.
Experience Up to 3 points based on relevant work experience.
Age2 points if under 35, or 1 point if between 35 and 40 years old
Language Up to 3 points based on proficiency in German.
Previous stays in Germany1 point if you have lived in Germany for at least 6 months.
Spouse1 point if your spouse also qualifies for an Opportunity Card.
Read: DAAD Scholarship for International Students

How to Apply for the Opportunity Card in Germany?

Let’s look at the application process for the Germany opportunity card visa for international workers. We have created a clear and easy five-step format below to help you apply for the Opportunity Card in Germany. These step-by-step application instructions will guide you through the process, ensuring a smooth and straightforward experience.

  • Document Gathering: Gather the required documents, which include proof of your qualifications, professional work experience, international passport, etc. Ensure all the documentation you need for the Opportunity Card Germany is in order and readily available.
  • Online Application: Access the online application portal provided for the Opportunity Card. Fill out the application form accurately and completely, providing all the necessary details and attaching the requested documents.
  • Point-Based Evaluation: Your application will go through evaluation based on the point-based system. Points are allocated based on qualifications, work experience, age, language skills, previous stays in Germany, and other relevant factors.
  • Eligibility Assessment: The authorities will assess your eligibility based on the points you received. Your application will move to the next stage if you meet the requirements and have the minimum points.
  • Opportunity Card Issuing: Successful applicants will receive the German Opportunity Card, which allows them to stay in Germany for a specified period and search for employment opportunities.

Downsides of the German Opportunity Card

Some of the notable downsides of the German opportunity card include:

  • Limited availability: There is a cap on the number of opportunity cards allocated annually, resulting in more applicants than available visas annually.
  • Eligibility restrictions: Not everyone qualifies for a visa under this scheme; only those meeting specific criteria are eligible.
  • Language requirement: Even for IT professionals who may secure English-speaking jobs in Germany, the opportunity card’s criteria may necessitate proficiency in German, which might not be essential for their roles.
  • Age limitation: The maximum age limit of 35 years is considered stringent by some.

Conclusion

The Germany Opportunity Card offers a straightforward application process and excellent job prospects for skilled professionals seeking rewarding careers in Europe’s strong economy. Take advantage of this opportunity to live, work, and succeed in Germany. Find out if you qualify and start your journey today.

Chinwe

Author Chinwe

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