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Pre-Arrival Checklist for Hosts


  • Contact the Welcome Centre and announce the arrival of your guest scholar or new staff member.
    The Welcome Centre will strive to answer any questions arising in connection to the visit of international scholars at your institute or research facility. Please announce the arrival of your guest scholar via e-mail ( If the guest scholar requires assistance with the search of an accomodation in Cologne, please take into account that we need to know at least six weeks before the arrival of the visiting scholar.
  • Write an invitation letter.
    If the international scholar requires a visa in order to enter Germany, an invitation letter by the faculty or institute which has to be submitted with all the other necessary documents at the embassy or consulate is necessary. The invitation letter includes information regarding the duration and funding of the stay as well as the research the guest scholars plans to conduct.
  • In case the guest scholar is to receive an employment contract, please contact the HR department of the university as soon as possible.
    Please hand in the required documents at the HR department with enough time in advance in order for it to be ready for signing on time. Employment contracts of international staff are usually concluded under reserve of the issuance of a residence permit. English templates can be found here:
  •  Check and consult with the Welcome Centre whether a hosting agreement for the guest scholar is benefitial
    The hosting agreement is necessary for the issuance of a residence permit according to §18d of the German Residence Act. In case the guest scholar comes from a non-EU country and is planning to stay longer than three months as well as either 1) being funded by a scholarship or 2) planning to execute family reunification or 3) planning to conduct research in several European countries, this regulation can result benefitial.
  • Provide all further necessary documents for the application of the visa of the international scholar
    Further necessary documents could include a draft of the employment contract or scholarship agreement as well as a scholarship acceptance letter.
  • Arrange for a suitable work station or office
    Take into consideration that the computer might have to be adjusted to the needs of the international researcher, e. g. by installing an adequate operation system.
  • For all further bureaucreatic procedures we recommend your guest to contact the Welcome Centre.
    We are available via e-mail at