Visa Wie?

For Fairness and Transparency in the Process of Granting Visa!

After our association has now been existing for two years and has repeatedly encountered difficulties in the According of Visa, now for the first time a claim has irrevocably been rejected. In doing that the responsible personnel did not act in a cooperative way and hence did not, regardless of our authorization, grant us insight into the respective documents and the status of the claim. As a reason for the rejection the German embassy presumed „fehlende Rückkehrbereitschaft“ (lack of will to return to the home country in due time) of the volunteer. This incident has grave consequences for the affected person, the project, the partner organization and our association. For the affected person the rejection is not only a disappointment but due to the already advanced preparations made has grave private consequences as well as difficulties regarding work. This all adds to future difficulties in applying for Visa. For the project in Germany it is also very hard to compensate the loss of a volunteer on such a short notice. The rejection of Visa claims is current practice of German agencies and is directed against people with different kinds of motivations such as travelers, refugees or students.

The everyday scandal – the basic problem

Current practice of according Visa

For the majority of people in the world there is a duty to obtain a visa when traveling to Germany. The Visa is accorded by the respective German representation (embassy). The person claiming the Visa has to fulfill the conditions of the embassy to obtain a Visa. These can also include, apart from official travel documents, financial disposals, plausibility of the reason to travel, invitation and ascertainment of the so called „Rückkehrbereitschaft“ (will to return to the home country).


The problem

The according of Visa is regarded by most people in Germany as completely “normal” and unproblematic. However, it is a fact the current system has discriminatory effects on a global scale.

What does actually happen? Claims to attain visa by people from economically underprivileged countries get rejected in a quantities above-averagre 1). Nevertheless, not only the rejection itself has discriminatory effects – a lot of people do not even have the chance to make their claim to a visa due to the existing preconditions for formulating such an application.

Concerning application from certain countries the lack of “Rückkehrbereitschaft“ is the most frequent criterion for rejection. The person somehow has to prove that he or she wants to return to his or her home-country after expiration of the Visa. The most problematic issue in this respect is, that the „Rückkehrbereitschaft“ can not be ascertained due to objective judgments. That implies that even if all the preconditions are met by the applicant his or her claim can be rejected. In the current practice the according of Visa does in that way depend solely on arbitrary decisions of the agencies.

The agency makes the presumption that the respective person plans to stay in the country illegally 2) after the expiration of the Visa.

„[…] The whole long bureaucratic procedure functions as an economic, political and cultural filter.“ 3) In that way the according of visa contributes to manifest power and privileges of the Glossary Link global north by creating inequalities and upholding unfairness. With very flexible general rules (Art. 32 Abs. 1B, EU Visakodex 2009) and euphemisms like „Rückkehrbereitschaft“ they practice racist and power motivated discrimination aiming at making it legitimate and hidden fact.


1) Claudia Finotelli & Giuseppe Sciortino (2013): Through the Gates of the Fortress: European Visa Policies and the Limits of Immigration Control, Perspectives on European Politics and Society, DOI:10.1080/15705854.2012.732390

2) We don't support the idea of an “illegal stay” but mean an illeagalised stay.

3) Gaibazzi, Paolo (2013): 'Die Reisefreiheit der anderen', Le Monde Diplomatique


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