How to Get Germany’s Opportunity Card: Chancenkarte Guide for 2024
Woman completing her opportunity card application while walking and drinking coffee

How to Get Germany’s Opportunity Card: Chancenkarte Guide for 2024

Summary:

How the Chancenkarte Success System helped dozens to secure Germany’s Opportunity Card in less than 90 days. Learn step-by-step how to meet the requirements, complete your application, and overcome challenges, regardless of your location or qualifications

Today, we’ll show you how we’ve helped dozens of job seekers obtain a Chancenkarte in less than 90 days.

Our clients obtained visas despite:

  • Living outside the Schengen Area.
  • Having their training qualifications unrecognized in Germany.
  • Not being eligible for public or private German health insurance.

How did they obtain this “hard to get” visa in record time? Feather’s Chancenkarte Success System.

In this tutorial, we’ll walk you through the entire process step-by-step.

Still unsure about how the Chancenkarte works in Germany? Here’s all you need to know:

Copyright & Credit: Make it in Germany.

Why the Chancenkarte Success System is the fastest way to securing permanent residency in Germany

Let’s break it down for you:

The Chancenkarte Success System follows a detailed, no-questions-asked checklist based on the official German government requirements.

The system solves loopholes in the application process that no government website will help you with. 

In other words, follow this system to:

  • Quickly determine if you qualify
  • Complete your Chancenkarte application
  • Obtain your opportunity card
  • Fly over to Germany
  • Land the dream job you deserve

(It does not matter where you apply from; the steps are all the same)

But let’s not jump ahead too soon.

Here’s a quick look at the 5 steps in the process:

  1. Show your skills meet the opportunity card’s requirements
  2. Secure health insurance coverage
  3. Prove your financial stability
  4. Prepare necessary application documents
  5. Submit your application

Step 1: Show your skills meet the opportunity card’s requirements

The first basic requirement for the opportunity card is to have gone through at least two years of academic or professional training. There are 3 documents you could submit in your application to prove your expertise:

  1. A government-recognized training certificate.
  2. A German professional or academic certification.
  3. Scoring at least 6 in the opportunity card point system.

Option A: A government-recognized training certificate

Depending on the kind of training you went through, the process differs:

For academics:

In your application, add your bachelor’s degree with transcripts. 

For Apprenticeships:

You’ll have to go through Germany’s recognition procedure. Don’t stress about it. In 2022 alone, over 52,300 successful recognitions were completed.

To get your training recognized, contact these organizations. They’ll be the ones to help you through the process:

  1. Central Office for Foreign Education (ZAB):
    • Phone: +49 (0) 228 501 664
    • Email: zabservice@kmk.org 
    • Online requests should be available by early 2025.
  2. Anerkennung In Deutschland (Recognition in Germany)
    • Use their Tool to identify the best contact to get your training recognized.

You’ll eventually receive an “equivalence of qualification”. Submit it along with the rest of your application to the consulate. If your training is not or only partially recognized, jump to “Option C: Scoring at least 6 in the opportunity card point system”.

Exceptions for IT professionals and AHK trainees:

For IT professionals, three years of practical experience are equivalent to a degree.

For Trainees of the German Chamber of Commerce Abroad, your experience is also equivalent to a degree.

In both these cases, you should append proof of your experience to your application to qualify for the Chancenkarte.

Option B: Getting a Professional or Academic Certification from Germany.

When you study or complete vocational training in Germany, you satisfy the training requirements of the Chancenkarte.

However, consider applying for a residence permit. It offers an 18-month stay with no part-time work restrictions—even better than the opportunity card!

Option C: Scoring at least 6 in the Opportunity Card Point System.

If your training is not or only partially recognized in Germany, you must prove that you obtained 6 points in the Chancenkarte points system.

Here are all the ways you can score points, along with the documents needed to prove each of them in your application:

4 points from partially recognized training

When going through Option A, you should have obtained a partial equivalence certificate from your contact at Anerkennung in Deutschland or the KMK. Attaching it to your application will secure you the 4 points.

Even if your training was not recognized officially, you should still add proof that you undertook it to show you satisfy the 2 years of training requirement.

1 point for short-supply occupations

You’ll automatically gain one point if you train in a high-demand, low-supply field. Remember to mention this in your cover letter (more on that later).

Up to 3 points from professional experience

Working for at least 2 out of the last 5 years earns you 2 points, while 5 years in the previous 7 gives 3 points. 

Your consulate will recognize the following as proof of your experience:

  • Work contracts
  • Statements from your employers
  • Salary slips

Up to 4 points through language skills: 

Language skills can earn you points based on your proficiency level:

  • A1 German earns 1 point.
  • A2 German earns 2 points.
  • B2 or higher in German earns 3 points.
  • C1 or better in English adds 1 point. That includes native English speakers.

Submit a graduation certificate or equivalent to demonstrate your proficiency. Ensure these documents state the CEFR level of the course or exam you completed.

1 point for living in Germany for 6 months or more

This can include studying, completing a language course, participating in a work exchange, or completing an internship. Note that tourism and visits do not count.

To prove this, you could provide:

  • Copies of old passports with visas and entry stamps.
  • Anmeldung and Abmeldung documents from the Bürgeramt (Citizens’ office).
  • Contracts and documents related to your stay, like internship agreements, employment contracts, or university enrollment certificates.

1 point if your spouse or partner qualifies

You automatically get one point if your spouse is eligible for a Chancenkarte. Just provide a copy of your partner’s passport and the date of their application.

Up to 2 points for your age

If you’re under 35, you’ll score 2 points. If you’re between 35 and 40, you’ll earn 1 point.

You will submit your passport to the embassy with your application, so no additional steps are needed.

Step 2: Secure health insurance coverage

Health insurance is necessary for your Opportunity Card application.

However, there’s a massive loophole that stops everyone from meeting the current requirements:

  • Proof of Insurance: The consulate requires proof of public or private health insurance. However, you cannot get this without a job in Germany. 
  • Alternative Insurances: Other types of insurance, like travel health insurance, are rejected because they’re not considered insufficient.

But wait, don’t you need a Chancenkarte before getting a job? Yes, you do.

What a catch-22, right? 

Chancenkarte Health Insurance Loophole visualization

Well, we came up with a solution: 

Feather’s expat health insurance

Feather offers an expat health insurance plan with a special confirmation letter upon request. 

Here’s why this is a game-changer:

  • All the required documents: When you sign up for our plan, you can download a confirmation of cover, certificate of authority, and Anlage 6 in under 3 minutes straight from your account. Make sure to submit them with your application.
  • Confirmation Letter: This letter explains why Feather’s insurance meets the official criteria, helping you overcome the consulate’s pushback.
  • Customer Success: Our approach has helped many customers navigate consulate requirements successfully.
  • We have your back: If your local consulate doesn’t listen, we’ll personally contact them. 
How feather fixes the Chancenkarte Health Insurance Loophole visualization

Plus, once you secure employment, we help you transition quickly (and digitally) to a standard public or private health insurance plan.

Step 3: Prove your financial stability

To qualify for the Opportunity Card, you must prove you can financially support yourself in Germany.

Here are your options to demonstrate your financial stability:

  • Blocked Account: You need at least €12,324 in a blocked account, ensuring a minimum of €1,027 monthly for living expenses. We recommend Icici Bank for this. Their service is fast, reliable, and made specifically for job seekers. 
  • Declaration of Commitment: A resident of Germany can declare financial responsibility for you by sending a declaration to the immigration office. Attach the verified document to your application. It must include the remark “nachgewiesen” (verified) to be approved.
  • Part-time Employment: Secure a job of up to 20 hours per week and attach the work contract to your application.

Step 4: Prepare the necessary application documents

Take your time to make sure all documents are in good condition. Always provide the original when possible, as well as a photocopy. 

Most importantly, you should never staple your documents together. Instead, use plastic sleeves to ensure they stay in perfect condition because stapling will render the documents invalid.

Opportunity card application checklist

Prepare your passport

Submit your original passport and a photocopy of your biometrics page in your application. 

Ensure that your passport is valid for at least six more months and has two or more free pages.

Get your birth certificate

If you have it, just print a copy and bring both to the consulate meeting.

However, if you don’t, you should request it from the Registrar’s Office closest to your birthplace. Depending on where you live, the Registrar’s office may have a different name –  searching “how to get a birth certificate in [Country of birth]” on Google is your best option.

Prepare your CV

Here’s what you need to include in your CV:

  • List all your certificates, diplomas, and qualifications. Specify the institutions where you earned them and include the dates. 
  • Detail your professional training. Mention any courses or internships. Include the dates and any certifications you received.
  • List your previous jobs. For each, include your job title, company name, and duration of employment. 

Your CV should be no more than two pages. Here is a free CV template that dozens of applicants have used successfully.

Write a letter of motivation

Your CV is ready? It’s time for a letter of motivation. Include these 3 points in your letter to comply with the mission abroad’s requirements:

  • Your expectations from your stay:
    • The field you’d like to work in. 
    • The type of position you’re aiming for. 
    • The city you want to live in. 
    • How long you plan to stay if you find a job.
  • Your integration into the community:
    • Find a language school or local organization you’d like to join and mention it.
  • Your motivation for moving to Germany:
    • Potential career advancements.
    • Educational opportunities.
    • Better quality of life.
    • What you like about the region you would live in.

Finally, sign your letter as it is mandatory.  Here is another free template that other applicants have used successfully.

Get a Passport Photo

Ensure the photo follows these rules to avoid any issues:

  • No older than six months. If it is, and you still look the same, you might be okay but don’t tell the consulate.
  • It needs to be uniformly white.
  • It Must measure 3.5×4.5 cm.

Show that you’re actively looking for work in Germany

Your Chancenkarte application requires you to make genuine efforts to find work. You can choose any of the following, but the more, the better:

  • Apply for jobs: Use platforms like LinkedIn, Indeed, or the Federal Employment Agency. Print email confirmations of your applications as proof of your job search.
  • Get employment offers. Even if they’re conditional, part-time, or trial positions, they show that you’re serious about finding employment.
  • Contact recruitment agencies: exchange with recruiters and save these conversations to reflect your proactive job search.

Complete the VIDEX application form

Click here to start the online application. Once complete, make sure to save and print the confirmation.

Sign the additional declaration

You can download the declaration form from the official website here

Specific requirements for West Africans & Ghana residents

If you live in Ghana and hold a passport from a country other than Ghana, Liberia, or Sierra Leone, you must provide proof of legal residence

If you completed your education in West Africa, you must submit two school leaving certificates issued by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC):

  • Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE)
  • West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) documents.

Step 5: Submit your application

To apply for Germany’s Opportunity Card, schedule an appointment or submit your application online. Use this world map to find the nearest consulate and this tool to determine if online applications are possible.

Next, prepare for the application fee. It is €75, and you’ll need to pay it in local currency. Bring a little extra cash, as the consulate’s exchange rate may differ from what you find online.

If you qualify through the Chancenkarte points system, add a document detailing how you score 6 points.

Finally, have a physical copy of every document you prepared. The consulate will not accept digital copies.

Woman sitting in bed, excited to finish her online application for the opportunity card

Patience is key, as processing times can vary. If it’s been more than four weeks, you should check in with your contact to understand the reason for the hold-up.

Conclusion

That’s how you can use the Chancenkarte Success System to obtain your job seeker visa quickly and easily. 

Unlike applying by yourself, you won’t need to navigate the tricky process of getting health insurance or scour the internet for advice on boosting your chances. 

Our Chancenkarte Success System and expat health insurance plan make it straightforward and stress-free. 

If you want to get your Chancenkarte, apply for our expat health insurance, and contact us once you’re ready so we can get you the confirmation of insurance coverage letter.