Wikimedia Conference 2016/Visa process

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General visa information[edit]

Please check the following website to find out whether you need a visa for travelling to Germany: http://wmde.org/visagermany. WMDE would be happy to welcome all registered participants at WMCON16. For this reason, we advise you to apply for a visa sufficiently early to ensure you receive your visa in time.

You will need to make an appointment with the nearest German embassy or consulate. We advise you to check the appointment availability now, as in some countries longer waiting times and scarcity of appointment options are likely, and to make an appointment straight away. Please also check the processing time for a visa.

Please note that if you are transiting certain countries (e.g. USA, United Kingdom) en route to Berlin, you may also be required to apply for a transit visa.

We would also like to highlight that you need to have a passport that is at least valid for three month beyond the period of your stay. Visa assistance and support by WMDE WMDE will assist you with your visa application and will provide the following documents:

  • Letter of invitation
  • Foreign travel health insurance
  • Copy of registration of association of WMDE
  • Copy of identity card from WMDE’s Executive Director

The documents will be sent to you via email. Please print these documents and bring them along to your appointment at the embassy/consulate. The Department of Foreign Affairs in Berlin confirmed that it is generally not necessary to present the original documents at the embassy/consulate, which reduces the mailing expenses extremely. Prior to your appointment, we however advise you to double-check this with your contact person at the embassy/consulate. Should the original documents be required, please inform us accordingly and we will send them to you in the fastest manner.

Furthermore you will need the following:

  • Travel plan (group 1 self-organized, group 2 and 3 provided by WMF)
  • Hotel room booking confirmation (group 1 self-organized, group 2 and 3 guarantee provided within letter of invitation)

Visa approval[edit]

As WMDE wants to keep an overview on the status of all visa applications, we kindly ask you to immediately inform us via wmcon@wikimedia.de, once your visa has been approved.

Participants from group 2 and 3, whose flight is booked via the WMF, should inform the Travel department that the visa is approved and that you accept the proposed travel plan, which has been sent to you after your registration. This is crucial as WMF will only book your flight after the notification of your successful visa completion.

Visa problems or denial[edit]

In case you experience any problems during the visa application process or your visa application is denied, we like to advise you to contact us immediately via wmcon@wikimedia.de. We will try our best to get in contact with the German embassy or consulate and to support you as good as possible.

Visa fees[edit]

The fee per visa amounts to approximately 60,- €. Participants from group 2 may get the visa fee refunded. Please fill in WMDE’s reimbursement form and bring it along with the original invoice to the Wikimedia Conference. After presenting all the correct documents at the registration desk, you will receive the reimbursement in cash.