Max-Planck-Institut für Informatik
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Information for Guests

1 1st contact/things to settle before you arrive

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    FAQ (Max-Planck-Society)

    1. After your application has been accepted by the work group most appropriate for your field of research, you will receive an invitation letter.

    2. Please arrange your period of stay with the researcher inviting you. Inform us of your travel itinerary well in advance, especially about the exact hour of your arrival (train schedule). If you arrive in the evening or on a weekend, please contact your group's secretary for special arrangements (German bank holidays).

    3. Apply for a Visa at the German Embassy in your home country (for this, our invitation letter is essential). If your stay with us exceeds 3 months, the embassy sends your documents to the Office of Foreign Affairs (literally ``Ausländerbehörde'') in Saarbrücken (see also Registering). Please allow several weeks for your visa to be processed.

    4. While waiting for your visa to be processed, check your health insurance coverage for Germany and the contractual amount covered in case of a claim. Here in Germany, you should immediately enter into a health insurance (offered by state-owned or private health agencies) with an agency of your choice. Scholarship holders receive an allowance of 50 % of the monthly health insurance fee (up to 100 Euro) from MPI (please hand membership documentation for the insurance you have chosen). This benefit should enable you to take an insurance with wider coverage, which is advantageous in the case of pregnancy, treatment of previous illnesses, severe illness (such as cancer), etc.).
    For more information please see Sarah Scherer.

    Important Note:

    5. To get help finding accomodation, contact Anja Lehmann ( For short tenancy periods, there are two options for renting furnished flats
        • one (with a shared kitchen) in the institute's guesthouse (tenancy period should not exceed 2 months)
          (see MPI Guesthouse) or
        • one (with its own kitchenette) about a 10 min. bus ride far from our institute (see Flats we let)
    Please also see Housing.

    If you have no place to stay for the first night, you can either
    6. It is advisable to bring an adapter/converter for German electric power sockets with you.

    Amount of money presumably needed to make ends meet:

    Students spend an estimated 350 and 510 Euro per month. Expect to spend this much or more, depending on where you buy food (big supermarkets are cheaper), how often you eat out or travel. You should also add the costs for renting an apartment, with rents ranging from 280 to 400 euros (small or middle sized furnished apartment) plus a deposit of one month's rent. Please make sure to have enough cash with you until you receive your 1st salary.

    Useful tips for daily life: Do's and Don'ts '

    Security: The Federal Foreign Office has classified Germany as "safe and secure". However, one should exercise caution, particularly when walking alone and late at night. Whenever possible, please go out in groups late at night. If you witness a crime, please call the police at 110 immediately.
Created by:Roxane Wetzel/ZB/MPII/DE, 08/06/2001 04:14 PMLast modified by:Uwe Brahm/MPII/DE, 09/12/2013 04:19 PM
  • Uwe Brahm, 09/12/2013 04:19 PM
  • Roxane Wetzel, 06/05/2013 03:43 PM
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