Marriage to a German Citizen
Every country has its own laws that apply to its citizens marrying a person from a different country. Getting married to a German citizen with the goal of eventually bringing them to Canada to live is a process with many steps. The German government imposes strict requirements on foreigners who marry Germans as an indirect way of discouraging German citizens from moving to other countries.
You must demonstrate to German officials that they are not currently married to anyone else - either you have never been married or all divorces are finalized - that your identity is proven, and that you have never committed any crimes in Germany. This is done by providing various documents including an Affidavit of Single Status to the German government either in Germany or via a German embassy.
If you want to bring your German spouse or partner to live in Canada, you must then file a sponsorship application for them to become a permanent resident. If they would like to visit you in Canada while their application is in process, they must also apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). For more information, please see our family sponsorship page and our eTA article.
German Marriage Basic Requirements
To get married in Germany a civil ceremony has to take place a couple of days before the main wedding.
The couple must appear in person at the Standesamt for the civil ceremony. The cost of the ceremony ranges from 30-75 Euros.
Requirements for a marriage certificate.
- Copies of birth certificates
- If divorced, divorce decrees/statement
- Statement of single status called “Ledigkeitbescheinigung”
- All the documents required need to be translated into German in what is called “Apostille”
- Medical certificates and blood tests in some cases
- Minors should have parental consent
Same sex marriages are allowed in Germany.
If your German spouse has dependent children, this does not affect the German Marriage document application.
If you have dependent children, they have no effect on the application to marry a German citizen.
List of German Consulates in Canada
Calling Germany from Canada
- The exit code for Canada is 011
- The country code for Germany is 49
- Dial 011 – 49 – area code – local number
The phone system in Germany is very complicated. Until 2010, there were no fixed lengths for German phone numbers. Since 2010, new phone numbers are 11 digits long (including the are code but omitting the 0). There are 5200 separate area codes in Germany including both geographic and non-geographic (cell) area codes. The map below shows the prefixes for each state in Germany. The actual area code is of the form 04xx or 05xx, etc.
Regional Codes in Germany
Non-Geographicl Phone Prefixes (Cells and VOIP)
|150||Group3G (Quam) (GSM/UMTS), defunct|
|0151, 0160, 0170, 0171, 0175||T-Mobile (GSM/UMTS)|
|0152, 0162, 0172, 0173, 0174||Vodafone D2 (GSM/UMTS)|
|1521||let by Vodafone D2 to Lycamobile (MVNO)|
|1529||let by Vodafone D2 to Truphone (MVNO)|
|0155, 0157, 0163, 0177, 0178||E-Plus (GSM/UMTS)|
|1570||formerly let by E-Plus to defunct Telogic (formerly ViStream) (MVNO)|
|1575||let by E-Plus to Ring Mobilfunk (MVNO)|
|1579||let by E-Plus to sipgate subsidiary Vintage Wireless (MVNO)|
|0159, 0176, 0179||o2 Germany (GSM/UMTS)|
|161||reserved, originally 1G cell phones (C-Netz)|
|0164, 0168, 0169||e*message (pagers)|
|167||trunked radio systems, currently no assignments|
Calling Canada from Germany
- The international calling code is 00
- The country code for Canada is 1
- Dial 00 – 1 – area code – local numbers
List of Canadian Area Codes
403 / 587 (southern Alberta)
587 / 780 (central and northern Alberta)
236 / 250 / 778 (majority of BC)
236 / 604 / 778 (Metro Vancouver)
226 / 519 (southwestern Ontario)
249 / 705 (northeastern Ontario)
289 / 365 / 905 (Greater Toronto Area)
343 / 613 (eastern Ontario)
416 / 647 (Toronto)
807 (northwestern Ontario)
|Manitoba||204 / 431||PEI||782 / 902|
418 / 581 (eastern Quebec)
438 / 514 (Montreal)
450 / 579 (Greater Montreal)
819 / 873 (remainder of Quebec)
|Newfoundland and Labrador||709||Saskatchewan||306 / 639|
|Nova Scotia||782 / 902|
Germany is on Central European Time (GMT+1). Germany participates in Daylight Saving Time but due to a difference between Europe and North America on when DST is in effect, there is a brief period at the end of October - and again at the end of March - when the time difference is 1 hour less than in the above chart. Also, Saskatchewan does not participate in DST so in the summer, Germany is another hour ahead.
|Canadian Time Zone||
# of Hours Germany is Ahead
|Pacific (BC, Yukon)||9 hours|
|Mountain (Alberta, western Nunvaut, Lloydminster, Saskatchewan)||8 hours|
|Central (Manitoba, Northwest Territories, central Nunavut, northwestern Ontario)||7 hours|
|Eastern (most of Ontario, most of Quebec)||6 hours|
|Atlantic (Labrador, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, eastern Quebec)||5 hours|
The Euro is the second largest currency in the world after the American dollar with more than 700 Billion Euros in circulation.
Coins are distributed in denominations of 1c, 2c, 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c, €1 and €2 and bank notes are distributed in €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200 and €500.
The euro is distributed by the European System of Central Banks (ESCB), which is comprised of the European Central Bank (ECB) and a combination of Eurozone central banks.
The headquarters are in Frankfurt, Germany and the ECB is the sole authority that sets monetary policy.
Emergency Information for Canadians in Germany
Embassy of Canada in Berlin
Leipziger Platz 17
Telephone: 49 (30) 20312 470 or 49 (30) 20312 0
Embassy of Canada in Dusseldorf
Benrather Strasse 8
Telephone: 49 (211) 17 21 70
Consulate of Canada in Munich
Telephone: 49 (89) 21 99 57 0
Consulate of Canada in Stuttgart
Telephone: 49 (711) 22 39 67 8
The Government of Canada's Travel Alerts for Germany
German Wedding Customs
Germans have retained most of their traditions that date back to the communist ages. One of the upheld cultures is the marriage customs.
However the customs differ from region to region.
This term describes a night out a few days before the wedding where the groom and his male friends go to a pub to drink and have fun.
Kidnapping of the Bride
In some areas remote areas in Germany, friends kidnap the bride and the groom has to find her. He goes to look for her in pubs and invites all people in there to help him, or pays for everyone’s bill.
Sometimes this ritual has been known to end badly.
This is a party held in the evening on the eve of the wedding day where plates and dishes are smashed, it is believe that the broken pieces bring good luck to the bride. The bride and groom have to clean up afterwards.
Germans wear wedding rings on the right hand, the groom and the bride wear identical rings but without diamonds or precious metals.
After the wedding when the bride leaves the church, friends throw rice on them and it is said that they will get as many children as rice grains stay in the hair of the bride.
After a wedding ceremony in Germany, it is customary to drive in a procession honking horns as a sign of wishing the newly married couple good luck.
The bride’s father pays for all the wedding costs however both parents can share the costs.
Many events take place at the wedding evening including lots of games, speeches and the first person to speak is the father of the bride.
Song and dance follow throughout the night.
At the reception the first dance is usually opened by the couple which is always a Waltz. The next dance is for the bride and her father and the groom with mother.
The groom’s mother can dance with the groom’s father.
There are lots of fun games and activities on the wedding night that are meant to poke at the couple like hiding rooms with balloons, alarms clocks and take the bed apart.
This is a popular game that is held in the evening of the wedding day. Everyone who wants to dance with the groom or bride has to pay first.
The wedding cake is decorated with lots of ornaments and is cut by the bride and the groom together.
Bacon stew is a German favorite made with potatoes and thyme.
Creamed Spinach with Bacon and Onion
Creamed spinach is another German favorite made with bacon, onions and cream to make it smooth.
This stew is made with beer, paprika and beef. It can be served as an entrée in a wedding reception or other celebrations.
This salad is a German classic made with a tangy dressing, bacon, spinach and feta cheese.
Chicken Roulade Westphalia
This is a chicken and bacon dish made by wrapping pounded chicken breasts with ham and cheese then slightly fried before stewing with wine and stock.
Frankfurter Kranz Torte
A classic German cake with almond filling spread in different sliced layers then put together. This can be served as dessert for wedding reception guests.
This is a smoked pork chops with a German seasoning called kraut dish. Apples are also added and all the ingredients simmered till cooked. It can be served with mashed potatoes and apples for a wedding reception.
German Potato Salad
This salad is made with iceberg lettuce, German potatoes and seasoning. Bacon can be added for taste, this makes a lovely dessert or starter menu for a wedding reception.
This is a German version of spicy chicken wings but a twist of tangy and spicy additives.
Roast goose is traditionally served in German for seasons like advent or special occasions like wedding reception.
These are the German version of Christmas cookies made with nutmegs, cinnamon, citron and cloves. They can be served as dessert or starter bites for a wedding reception.
Zimt is the German word for cinnamon so this is a cinnamon and nut recipe for cookies served with tea, or any hot beverage.
German Mulled or Spiced Wine
This drink is called Gluhwein which is spiced wine served on any occasion especially during cold weather.
This is an apple filled dumpling made with sweetened milk and baked. They are the perfect starter menu for a wedding reception.
German-style Chicken Fettucine
This is a German version of Italian pasta that is made with ham, cheese and German Riesling wine.
Lentil Soup with Frankfurters
This is a lentil soup German style eaten with Frankfurters. It can make a perfect starter or appetizer for a wedding reception.
Frankishe sausages are the main ingredients for this dish which are roasted in vinegar, wine and onions. Carrots can also be added for added flavor.
Potatoes and ham are cooked together in this dish and served as a stew or mashed. Green beans can be added also.
This is a German style apple pie that can be garnished with cream as a side option. This can be served as dessert after the main course in a wedding reception.
Zwetschgenkuchen is a German plum cake made with Zwetschgen or Italian Plums. Served as a dessert on a wedding reception, this is one of Germans best known pies.
Two different kinds of vegetables make up this salad, radish is added together with celery.
This is a simple recipe that consists of grated potatoes mixed with flour and eggs then fried like pancakes. The potato pancakes can be served with apple sauce or sour cream as dessert.
This salad features smoked German sausage, Swiss cheese and often served with potato pancakes.
This is a kebab dish made with chicken breast cut into pieces and barbecued with spices and vegetables.
This is a beef hash made with chopped beets popular in the Hamburg area of Germany.
Religion in Germany
Christianity is the major and largest religion in Germany with 52 million of the population which is about 62% of the population.
The second largest religion is Islam with 4 million followers, about 5% of the population followed by Buddhism and Judaism.
There is freedom of worship in Germany thanks to the constitution which has favored religious freedom since 1949. The constitution also ensures there is no discrimination based on religion or faith.
Germany does not have a state religion, rather religious communities have large followers who are loyal to the constitution.
This ensures that of some privileges such as influence in School policies and membership fees through church tax.
This religion has 25 million with the Evangelical church leading with 23.9 million followers. Other smaller churches under this wing are;
- New Apostolic church 400,000 members
- Aussiedler-Baptisten 300,000-380,000 members
- Charismatic 232,000 members
- Methodist 65,638 members
- Baptist 86,500 members
- Christliche Versammlungen 45,000 members
- Pentecostal 40,000 members
- United Methodist Church 38,000 members
- Mennonites 39 members
- SDA 36,000 members
- Church of the Nazarene 1,984 members
The total population of Catholics in Germany is 24.5 million, Roman rite follow closely with 24.4 million, Old Catholics 15,000 and lastly Maronite Rite Catholics 6,000 members.
This is a major religion in Germany under the Christianity umbrella with 1.5 million followers which is about 2% of the population. There are many sub-divisions as follows;
- Orthodox Church of Constantinople 450,000 members
- Greek Orthodox 380,000 members
- Romanian Orthodox 300,000 members
- Serbian Orthodox 250,000 members
- Russian Orthodox 150,000 members
- Bulgarian Orthodox 66,000 members
- Syriac Orthodox 55,000 members
- Armenian Apostolic Church 55,000
- Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo 13,000
- Assyrian Church 10,000 members
- Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox 3,600 members
- Coptic Orthodox 3,000 members
- Ukrainian Orthodox 1,000 members
Islam is the largest minority religion in Germany most of them being of Turkish origin. They constitute about 63.2% from Turkey and others from other countries like former Yugoslav, Iran and Arab countries.
Islam was introduced into Germany during the Ottoman Empire in the 18th century through diplomacy, military and economic relations.
The total population of Muslims in Germany is 3.6 million of which 1.1% have German citizenship. The other sub tribes consist of Sunni 2.5 million, Alevite 441,000, Shia 225,000, Ahmadiyya 50,000, Ismaiili 12,000 and Sufi 10,000.
The Jewish community in Germany is the fastest growing in the world, most of them immigrated from the former Soviet Union states and settled in Germany after the Berlin wall was destroyed.
Most of the Jews from Russia and other former communist countries follow the Reform Judaism.
The total population of Judaism followers is about 200,000.
There is a large part of the German population that is non-religious, according to a survey carried out on young people between 12-24 years in 2006, 30% of German youths believe in God, 19% believe in a supernatural power, 23% are Agnostic and 28% are atheists.
Buddhists are about 245,000, Hindus 97,500, Sikh 50,000 and Baha’i 5,000.
Romantic, Scenic and Historic Places in Germany
The Berlin wall is one of the most famous landmarks in the world and attracts many tourists from all over the world to Germany.
It separated West and East Germany and was brought down in 1990.
Berlin Wall Memorial
This wall is also called Dokumentationszentrum Berliner Mauer which gives tourists a sense of how the communist era was like, there are movies and documentaries that talk about this era.
Hohenschoenhausen Prison - Berlin
This prison was used in the cold war to house prisoners of war and also served as torture chambers. German history and the Nazi regime are preserved here.
Holocaust Memorial - Berlin
This memorial is the home of the history of the Jewish holocaust during the Nazi regime in Germany.
Potsdam Gardens - Berlin
These are beautiful gardens in the city of berlin where tourists like honeymooning couples can relax and enjoy nature.
Bethmannpark - Frankfurt
This a garden outside of Frankfurt a few minutes’ walk from the city.
Garden of Heavenly Freedom - Frankfurt
This Chinese garden was created in 1990 and is the perfect place for couples to enjoy outdoors in Frankfurt.
Goethe Museum - Frankfurt
This museum is located in the birthplace of the famous German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and showcases his work as well.
Gunthersburgpark - Frankfurt
This is a public park where couples on a honeymoon can enjoy fun outdoor activities like swings.
Judisches Museum - Frankfurt
This is a museum of Jewish culture and history in the city of Frankfurt.
Mainkai Street - Frankfurt
This is a landmark in the city of Frankfurt which is a street with many lovely sites to see for visitors.
Zoologischer Garten - Frankfurt
Founded in 1858 this zoo is one of the most important zoos in Europe with over 5,000 different species of animals.
Allianz Arena - Munich
This is a football stadium in Munich and also serves as an arena for a variety of events in Germany.
Bayerische Staatsoper - Munich
Germany is known for being a country with the culture of opera and ballet originating from the renaissance period.
There are many opera and ballet houses including this one in the city of Munich.
BMW Welt - Munich
BMW is a world-renowned German brand of cars that has put Germany on the map as a top producer of luxury cars.
There is a special museum of BMW cars and bikes that showcases models produced, the technology used and design. Visitors and tourists from all over the world get to learn the history behind this great brand.
Eisbach River - Munich
This is a large body of water located in the city of Munich that visitors and couples on a honeymoon can enjoy water sports like water rafting, jet skiing and swimming.
English Garden - Munich
This is a picnic park and outdoor gardens that also has a temple, Chinese and Japanese tea houses.
Friedensengel - Munich
This statue is also known as angel of peace and it is a famous monument in the city of Munich.
It was put up in 1896.
Haus der Kunst - Munich
This museum is also known as house of the arts located in Munich and showcases contemporary art galleries.
Katholisches Pfarramt St. Kajetan - Munich
This Catholic Church is painted in bright yellow colors and is located in the Odeonsplatz facing the Residenz Palace. It is the entry into Munich's old town.
Munich Botnischer Garden
This is a botanical garden in the city of Munich where tourists can visit to enjoy nature and see a variety of plant species.
This is Munich’s most modern theater and also where the most prominent orchestra in Munich plays. The theater is also used as a ballroom and plays.
This is one of Munich’s most fascinating zoos with activities suitable for everyone from children to adults.
This is a museum in Munich open to the public and all art lovers from across the globe.
Old Pinakothek - Munich
This is a museum in Munich with a collection of art dating back to 14th century to the 18th century.
Olympiapark - Munich
This is an amusement park with so many different options on what to indulge in from ropes to bungee jumping to roof climbing, this is the ultimate outdoor activities heaven for couples on a honeymoon in Germany looking for that adventure and thrill.
The 1972 Olympics were held here.
Palmengarten - Munich
These are botanical gardens in Munich full of tropical trees and orchids.
Residentztheater - Munich
The Cuvillies Theater was built in 1751-55. The gilt Rococo interior was dismantled and stored in a safe place during World War II bombing raids and it still survives up to date.
Schloss Nymphenburg - Munich
This castle was built in 1663 in Italian style architecture and features vast gardens and a porcelain factory. Now it is open to the public as a historic site and museum. It is located in Munich.
Stadtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus - Munich
This is an art museum and gallery in Munich open to the public. Honeymooners in Germany can visit this museum and get to learn about art and Germany’s history as well.
Theatinerkirche - Munich
This church was built in 1690 and the interior was done by the famous Italian designer Giovanni Antonio Viscardi. It is a major tourist destination in the city of Munich.
Westpark - Munich
This is an outdoor park in Munich where tourists and visitors can enjoy the outdoors and the scenery.
Amphitheater - Trier
These are ruins of a huge amphitheater built in 2nd Century, it is one of the largest structures that were built in the entire ancient Roman Empire.
Kaiserthermen - Trier
This site is over 2,000 years old and used to be a spa with baths and saunas which was frequented by Constantine during the Roman Empire rule.
Bitter und Zart Choclaterie - Frankfurt
This is a coffee shop and café outside of Frankfurt that is a lovely place for a couple visiting Frankfurt to have a romantic date.
Commerzbank-Arena - Frankfurt
This is a football stadium in Frankfurt where couples on a honeymoon can watch soccer matches and enjoy interacting with football-crazy Germans.
Heliflieger - Munich
This company offers helicopter tours round the city of Munich, Bavaria and visitors get a chance to view the city in a bird’s eye view.
Theresienwiese - Munich
This is an amusement park in the city of Munich where the whole family can enjoy outdoor activities.
Wages in Germany
Germany does not have a mandatory minimum wage and because of this, 23% of the total working population makes less than 9.5 Euros per hour and the gross monthly salary is less than 1,000 Euros.
Germans working in the export economy earn more than those in the service economy and have more job security. The most affected are women and young people.
Statistics show that legally-employed workers who are about 1.4 million earn less than 4 Euros/hour, 1 million work on short-term contracts, 7 million are categorized as small jobs workers earning 400 Euros per month and 70% of them are jobless.
Many Germans work in unskilled jobs or at subordinate level therefore they rely on state subsidies to make ends meet, in many cases employers use the state to pay their workers.
Many sectors on the other hand do agree on a minimum wage system. Skilled workers in the construction industry earn 13.40Euros per hour, while the unskilled ones earn 11.05 Euros. Trainers and teachers in vocational learning earn 12.60 Euros an hour and cleaners 8.82 Euros an hour.
50% of the population has no forms of savings, assets or social security and because of this fact low pay is not just a problem restricted to the unskilled sector.
Example Wages (Euros per month)
|IT Project Manager||58601|
Sponsoring Your German Spouse to Canada
The sponsorship process can be complicated and time-consuming. To find out more about the details, click the button below:
Staying in Germany with Your New Spouse
If one is planning to marry a German citizen and remain in Germany a fiancé visa is required which in Germany is referred to as “visa for marriage in Germany”.
The first step is to secure an appointment at the registrar’s office called ‘standesamt’ to obtain a certificate.
A German marriage visa allows a Canadian national to enter Germany and live with the German spouse. The visa is valid for 90 days and within this period the Canadian must secure a residence title to be able to stay longer.
There are two residence titles:
- Niederlassungserlaubnis which means untitled settlement permit
- Aufenthaltserlaubnis which means limited resident permit
The requirements vary depending on the couple’s status in Germany but generally the requirements for the visa are:
- Ledigkeitsbescheinigung which is a certificate of non-impediment to marriage that verifies single status
- Ability to speak German
- Proof of validity of the marriage
- 2 filled visa application forms
- Passport photos
- Valid passport for 3 months beyond visa period
- Original copy of marriage certificate together with duplicates
- Copy of passport of German spouse
- Copy of residence permit of spouse
- Visa fee payment
These documents need to be translated into German.