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Please be advised that the Department of Foreign Affairs’ Travel Advice is now available at Ireland.ie/travel. Travel Advice on this webpage is no longer being updated. To ensure you receive the latest Travel Advice for Germany, please see Ireland.ie.


If you’re travelling to Germany, our travel advice and updates give you practical tips and useful information.

Security Status

  • Normal precautions
  • High degree of caution
  • Avoid non-essential travel
  • Do not travel
  • Overview
  • Safety and Security
  • Local Laws and Customs
  • Health
  • Additional Information
  • Embassy Contact



Security Status

Normal Precautions

Irish citizens need a valid passport or passport card to enter Germany.

Irish passports do not have a minimum validity requirement when travelling within the EU or to the UK. However, your passport should be valid for the duration of your stay. 

Irish citizens do not require a visa to enter Germany.

Visitors to Germany are advised to follow the guidance of national and local authorities and stay fully informed of what is going on by monitoring local news and social media. While in Germany, you must carry photo ID with you at all times.

Citizens can also follow the Embassy in Berlin and Consulate in Frankfurt on social media (Twitter:  @IrlEmbBerlin and @IRLinFrankfurt) to ensure access to relevant updates and alerts.

Emergency Assistance

The best help is often close at hand so if you have problems, try talking to your local contacts, tour operator representative or hotel management.

Numbers for emergency services:

  • Police 110
  • Ambulance / Fire Brigade 112

Our tips for Safe Travels:

Safety and Security

Safety and security

  • Pickpocketing and petty theft are common, particularly around the larger train stations and tourist areas. Be careful of your personal belongings and aware of your surroundings.
  • Be alert regarding possible scams. If you are stopped for assistance in a busy area, this could be an attempt to distract you while you are robbed. If you are approached by someone claiming to have been robbed, do not hand over money but instead advise the individual to contact the police.
  • Reports of sexual assault can increase during large-scale events and festivals such as Silvester (New Year's Eve), Karneval/Fasching (Carnival) or Oktoberfest. If you are a victim of sexual assault, go to the hospital immediately, and contact the police by calling 110 to report the assault and obtain a police report.
  • Avoid demonstrations by any organisation or political party which appears to be inciting racism or hatred. Using or displaying Nazi symbols or material is illegal in Germany.
  • If you're a victim of a crime while in Germany, report it to the local police immediately by contacting 110. You can also contact the Embassy of Ireland in Berlin for advice and assistance.
  • Travellers should take seriously the global risk of indiscriminate terror attacks, which also applies to Germany. We advise all citizens to maintain an awareness of their surroundings, remain vigilant and to follow the security advice issued by the German authorities.
  • Please be advised that illegal drugs and substances are common in the Berlin club and night life scene. These can be unknown drugs or new substances as Berlin is a point of exchange of these in Germany.
  • Follow the Embassy of Ireland in Berlin on Twitter. In the event of a security incident, we will issue travel advice from @IrlEmbBerlin. In the event of a crisis, we will only post updates issued by the authorities in Ireland and Germany.
  • If you are an Irish citizen and require emergency assistance outside of normal working hours, leave a message on the Embassy Berlin emergency number (+49 30 220 720) stating your name, location, telephone number and the nature of the emergency and the Embassy duty officer will return your call. Do not send an email if you require emergency assistance outside normal working hours.

Local Laws and Customs

Local laws and customs

Personal identification

  • German police have the right to ask individuals for identification at any time. If you don’t have your passport with you, the police may escort you to wherever your passport is so that they can see it. 
  • We strongly recommend that you apply for a Passport Card before you visit. A Passport Card costs €35, fits neatly into a wallet and can be used as ID and  for travel within the EU/EEA and Switzerland. It is available to Irish citizens, aged 18 and over, who hold a valid Irish passport with at least 6 months remaining validity. We also recommend keeping a  photocopy of your passport in a separate place so you can prove your identity  if you lose your passport.
  • Digital file-sharing and downloading outside of paid services is illegal and enforced in Germany. Substantial fines can be imposed on anyone caught downloading or sharing files illegally.
  • It is against the law to operate a bicycle or scooter while under the influence of alcohol and this is regularly enforced, with substantial fines for violations.



European Health Insurance Card

Make sure to obtain a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before you travel to Germany. This card entitles you to emergency medical treatment on the same terms as German nationals. The EHIC is not a substitute for travel insurance and doesn’t cover medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or treatment of a non-urgent nature. You can apply online.


Possessing a medicine without the relevant prescription is legal, provided the medicine in question does not contain substances prohibited under the German Narcotics Act.

Travel Insurance

Buying comprehensive travel insurance can save you and your family a lot of money if something goes wrong. It will also ensure that you get the medical attention you need, when you need it. Hospital bills can quickly run into thousands of euro, and a medical evacuation back to Ireland can cost thousands more.

Not all policies are the same, and the cheapest one might be cheap for a reason. Make sure your policy covers all the activities you plan to do on your trip. Insurance Ireland recommend that you purchase a policy that provides a minimum medical cover of €1 million. 

The Embassy cannot pay for emergency medical repatriation, repatriation of remains, or for expenses as a result of a personal emergency while you are abroad. If you buy an appropriate travel insurance policy, these costs will be covered, provided you have not broken the terms and conditions. 

Your policy should cover:

  • All medical care abroad, including evacuation by air ambulance, or other emergency procedures, and any other costs associated with an unexpected longer stay.
  • Your entire trip, from departure to return. Consider an annual multi-trip policy if you’re making more than one trip in the year.   
  • 24-hour emergency service and assistance.
  • Personal liability cover (in case you’re sued for causing injury or damaging property).
  • Lost and stolen possessions.
  • Cancellation and curtailment.
  • Any extra activities you intend to do that are excluded from standard policies (e.g. water sport activities such as jet skiing or other extreme sports).

Exclusions: You should know most insurance policies will not cover drink or drug-related incidents.

Medical emergency

To locate the nearest clinic operating an emergency service, contact the 24-hour hotline of the German Doctors’ Association on 116 117. An emergency pharmacy service (“Notapotheken”) also operates throughout Germany. The emergency pharmacy in any area changes every day. Enter your German postal code at the website of the German Association of Pharmacists to locate the nearest pharmacy offering an emergency service that evening. The website of the Embassy of Ireland in Berlin contains a list of English-speaking medical facilities 

Long term stays

Health insurance is a legal requirement if you intend to reside in Germany. An EHIC card is not sufficient for longer stays as it does not cover routine care.



Additional Information

Driving and public transport


Drivers must be over 18 in Germany. Drive on the right hand side of the road and always carry your driver’s licence, insurance and vehicle documents, as well as written permission from the registered owner if the vehicle does not belong to you. In the event of a road accident, dial 110 for emergency services.

Traffic can be faster-paced than in Ireland, especially on the motorways (Autobahn), and traffic laws, speed limits and driving customs are different.

Inner city areas of certain German cities are designated as environmental inner city zones (Umweltzone) into which only vehicles bearing a low emissions’ sticker may enter. The website of the Environmental Protection Agency (Umwelt Bundesamt) has information in English.

There have been a small number of reports of scams on motorways in northern Germany in which individuals claiming to be Irish have stopped motorists, said they were involved in an accident and asked to “borrow” money. If stopped by someone claiming to have been in an accident, contact the police on 112 with your location and a description of the individuals seeking assistance and their car registration number. Do not hand over money.

Lost licence

The Embassy has no involvement in driving licences. Please contact the National Driver Licence Service in Ireland in case of a lost driver’s license. If your licence is subsequently handed into the Embassy, the Embassy will return it to the NDLS. 

Car hire

If hiring a vehicle, we advise against giving your passport as a form of security. If allowing your passport to be photocopied, keep it in your sight at all times. Ensure adequate insurance is in place and read the small print of the vehicle hire contract (particularly any waiver that will come into effect if the vehicle is damaged). The Embassy cannot provide legal advice in the event of disputes, but can provide a list of English-speaking lawyers and consumer rights organisations.

Public transport

German public transport is generally barrier-free, meaning that passengers are trusted to have the correct ticket and must produce it immediately if asked to do so by a ticket inspector. Ticket inspectors are often dressed in plain clothes and will not make an exception for non-German speakers. There are fines for travelling without a valid ticket, so ensure you have purchased the correct ticket for your needs and validated the ticket, if required. The Embassy cannot assist with disputes over fines, but can provide a list of English-speaking lawyers should you wish to pursue the matter privately.


It is illegal to cross German pedestrian crossings when the red pedestrian light is on. Offenders risk a fine and payment of all costs in the event of an accident. While the Embassy cannot provide legal advice if you wish to challenge any fine, we can send you a list of English-speaking lawyers should you wish to pursue the matter privately. 

Embassy contact

Embassy Contact

Please note that if you are an Irish citizen and require urgent assistance while the Embassy is closed, contact the main Embassy number, + 49 30 220 720, and leave a message on the Duty Officer voice mailbox.

Embassy of Ireland
Botschaft von Irland
Jägerstraße 51
10117 Berlin

Tel: +49 30 220 720
Fax: +49 30 220 72299

Contact us

Consulate Contact

Signature OpernTurm
Bockenheimer Landstraβe 2-4
Frankfurt am Main,
Website: www.dfa.ie/frankfurt

Tel: +49 (0)69 5095 48400

Contact us

Honorary Consulate Contact

Ms. Brigitte Wagner-Halswick
Honorary Consulate General of Ireland
Frankenforsterstraße 77
51427 Bergisch Gladbach

Tel: +49 2204 609 860
Fax: + 49 2204 609 861

Monday to Thursday 10:00-14:00

Email: Email us

Honorary Consulate Contact

Dr. Michael Fisser
Honorary Consulate General of Ireland
Böttgerstraße 9
20148 Hamburg

Tel: +49 40 4418 6113
Fax: +49 40 4418 6551

Monday to Friday 09:00-12:00

Email: Email us

Honorary Consulate Contact

Dr. phil. h.c. mult. Erich Lejeune
Honorary Consulate General of Ireland
Denninger Straße 15
81679 Munich

Tel: +49 89 2080 5990
Fax: +49 89 2080 5989

Monday to Thursday 09:00-12:00

Email: Email us

Honorary Consulate Contact

Dr. Wolfgang Häfele
Honorary Consul of Ireland
Meßstetter Str. 8
70567 Stuttgart

Tel: +49 711 351 607 10

Monday to Friday 09:30-12:30

Email: Email us