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Travel to the US and back.

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Germany announced last week that as of July 1, it will begin lifting bans against non-essential travel into Germany from countries outside the EU.

 

However, the process is expected to be staged over a period of a month or more, and given the COVID-19 situation in the US, it seems unlikely to me that the US will be part of the first wave of countries.

 

In addition, Germany announced the extension of its warning against non-essential travel outside of the EU until 1 August.

 

None of this will prevent a US citizen with a DE residence permit from traveling to/from the US; however, the continuing dearth of business and tourist travel between the US and the EU indicates a strong likelihood that airlines which do not regularly engage in transport of essential personnel (such as US military) will continue to maintain skeleton schedules and abruptly cancel scheduled flights.

 

So, for now, if you must travel to/from the US, my recommendation is to avoid European carriers, and only book on a US carrier flying in/out of airports with substantial US military presence in the area.

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Thinking about flying home later in July - has anyone heard of issues with non-resident alien spouses getting in? I've found a thread on FlyerTalk about ESTA's getting canceled even though spouses/close family members are specifically permitted to enter. Would prefer to not have to deal with the hassle of getting down to the Consulate and apply/pay for an actual B2 visa or being told the day of the flight the wife can't board the plane.

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On 6/6/2020, 11:57:55, tor said:
Non-US citizens and residents who have visited/transited through one or more of the following countries/regions in the past 14 days are not permitted to enter:
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany,
 
 


OK this explains why in an articlea while back about Frankfurt airport why the reporter heard only American accents and no German. 
 

 

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3 hours ago, Gold and a Pager said:

Thinking about flying home later in July - has anyone heard of issues with non-resident alien spouses getting in? I've found a thread on FlyerTalk about ESTA's getting canceled even though spouses/close family members are specifically permitted to enter. Would prefer to not have to deal with the hassle of getting down to the Consulate and apply/pay for an actual B2 visa or being told the day of the flight the wife can't board the plane.


I have the same question. Would love to know if any US citizens have flown into the US with their non-citizen (non US resident) spouse. The law is clear but I don’t trust the immigration agents to follow it correctly.

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Hi, I am am searching for information. I already emailed the Ausländerbehörde asking if travel is allowed or what to do.  No response yet.  I have been out of the country since December. My widereinreisfrist will expire middle of July, my residency will expire if I don't return.  Is Germany allowing entry for u.s. citizens? I have  Daueraufenthalt EU.  I deregister in Germany in November to attend school in the u.s.a. Now need to come back. I have had no health issues and take safety precautions concerning covid.  I know the borders are subject to change at anytime. Worried if I can enter or if I buy a plane ticket and borders close again.  

 

How are thing improving concerning covid?

Thanks!

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12 minutes ago, broadway_pixie said:

Hi, I am am searching for information. I already emailed the Ausländerbehörde asking if travel is allowed or what to do.  No response yet.  I have been out of the country since December. My widereinreisfrist will expire middle of July, my residency will expire if I don't return.  Is Germany allowing entry for u.s. citizens? I have  Daueraufenthalt EU.  I deregister in Germany in November to attend school in the u.s.a. Now need to come back.

 

Read this:

https://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/en/einreiseundaufenthalt/coronavirus

 

Like other Americans I know, you very probably CANNOT enter Germany just now.
However, as you have a Daueraufenthalt EU residency, things might look slightly better for you IF you have a very good reason to return to Germany (medical, family, education maybe).

I would suggest you immediately call the nearest Germany embassy and explain your situation. You also might have to call the Auswaertiges Amt (Foreign Office) .

Your goal is to either get an exemption to reenter Germany, or a Fiktionsbescheinigung to let you not lose your residency even though you overstay outside of the EU.

 

Good luck, and keep us posted.

 

 

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Hi metall, I would only be returning because of it being required. I would return because I want to keep my residency

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Quote

I have  Daueraufenthalt EU.  I deregister in Germany in November to attend school in the u.s.a

 

52 minutes ago, broadway_pixie said:

I would only be returning because of it being required. I would return because I want to keep my residency

 

1. It not sufficient to just come for a visit to prevent your DA-EU from becoming void.

 

2. Your ABH could theoretically give you permission to stay out of the country for longer.

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As a datapoint, I’m an American and flew into Munich from Los Angeles on Lufthansa with my 2 cats on June 9th. I had zero issues being let back in the country. The immigration officer took one look at the Niederlassungserlaubnis sticker in my US passport, said “Willkommen” and waved me through.
 

I also had very good experience with Lufthansa after they cancelled my original flights. I was supposed to come back end of April and my rescheduled flights got cancelled multiple times, so I ended up staying about 5 weeks longer than expected. They were very helpful on the phone though, and rebooked everything (including the cats) several times without charge or fuss.

The flight itself had 97 passengers and we all pretty much got our own row. They were very strict about enforcing the mask policy.

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10 hours ago, ansi said:

As a datapoint, I’m an American and flew into Munich from Los Angeles on Lufthansa with my 2 cats on June 9th. I had zero issues being let back in the country.

 

Are you registered in Germany (angemeldet)

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13 minutes ago, engelchen said:

 

Are you registered in Germany (angemeldet)

 

Yes, which makes my case less applicable to broadway_pixie since they aren't and that might give them trouble. The immigration officer really didn't seem to care once she saw my Niederlassungserlaubnis. I always hand them my passport open to that page. YMMV of course.

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@engelchen was asking if you were registered (angemeldet) to a specific address in Germany, not the same thing as having a residency (Niederlassung, Aufenthaltserlaubnis).

Just wanted to point that out, as the official rules talk about foreigners returning to where they actually live in Germany.

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4 hours ago, Metall said:

@engelchen was asking if you were registered (angemeldet) to a specific address in Germany, not the same thing as having a residency (Niederlassung, Aufenthaltserlaubnis).

Just wanted to point that out, as the official rules talk about foreigners returning to where they actually live in Germany.

I answered "yes" to being angemeldet and pointed out that means my case doesn't apply directly to broadway_pixie. I assumed broadway_pixie was smart enough to read through the link to the official rules that you previously provided, hence the warning that it wouldn't apply directly to her. Given her other posts, it is pretty clear she also understood the official rules, and probably anyone else reading the thread too.
That said, the immigration officer did not seem to care if I was angemeldet or not. She literally took one look at my residence permit and waved me through. Just a datapoint, YMMV, don't try this at home kids, etc.

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I cancelled my trip. too many unkowns...  LH says full refund.  I am sad. my mom is gutted and relieved . strange world.

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Hi everyone,

 

I (American) wanted to share my (successful!) experience of flying to the US during corona with my German husband!

 

We flew to New York on March 21, a week after Trump passed the travel ban for people from Europe.  We were nervous about our travel plans, but everywhere we could check said that the ban exempted US citizens traveling with their non-US spouses, so we hoped we would be fine.  About 48 hours before our flight, my husband got an email from Homeland Security stating that his ESTA was no longer valid (though it was supposed to be valid till the end of the year).  This did cause us to panic and call the State Department and Homeland Security in the US.  The State Department couldn´t tell us anything but Homeland Security was friendly and said to just go ahead and reapply for the ESTA.  I didn´t think that this would work, but suprisingly, within 20 minutes my husband had a brand new ESTA for $14.  The only thing that changed was that they added a question to the list you have to answer about if you are showing signs of a respiratory illness, or have a cough/fever. 

 

The fact that our original flight was canceled because Lufthansa is not flying to/fro JFK is a whole different story... hours on hold for several days in a row waiting to get through to Lufthansa... what a mess... finally we were able to switch our former direct flight to fly into Newark via Frankfurt.

 

I was able to check in online 23 hours before our flight as usual without any trouble, but my husband was not.  He was advised to contact Lufthansa staff.  I had a funny feeling and said to him, "You know, let´s just grab the suitcase we wanted to check in anyway and take the S-Bahn out to the airport so we can get you checked in tonight already."   I had the foresight to find and take our marriage license with us. (We´ve been married for 20 years, I was happy I found it!)

 

Good thing!  When we got to the counter, the Lufthansa woman said my husband was German and therefore not able to fly to the US.  I politely said he was because we are married.  My husband chimed in, "Do you want to see our marriage license?"  The woman evidently took the remark as sarcasm because she said we should not get "pampig" (fresh) with her.  We said no, we really have it with us!  She stomped off to consult with a colleague and came back and lo and behold, meekly said she needed to see  - wait for it - our marriage license!:D

 

She had to make a few phone calls, including one to the US, to get the block taken out of the system so my husband could check in.  It took some time, but my husband got his boarding pass.  The next day, he was the only German on the plane (there were only a handful of people flying back anyway and the plane was mostly empty).

 

When we landed in Newark, the immigration officer said he wasn´t sure about the exceptions to the travel ban since it was so new, but I explained that it applied to spouses and showed him our marriage license.  Again, he went off to consult with a coworker, but came back quickly and said it was fine.  My husband was admitted to the US without further ado.

 

On our way back on June 16, my husband was fine but I was the one who had to show documentation!  I had to line up at the gate with all the other non-German/non-EU citizens and show the airline my residency permit.  Once they saw it, I was waved through.  Same thing in Frankfurt when we landed - no problem reentering Germany for me whatsoever.

 

We are actually planning on repeating the experience by flying back again at the end of July and staying for another 6-8 weeks.  (My parents are in their mid-80s now and are beginning to not be able to live on their own anymore.  They need home care and all sorts of other things that need to be organized, hence the long stays.)  We haven´t booked our flight yet, but although Lufthansa is still not flying into JFK; it seems they will be flying directly to Newark from Munich by mid-July, so that will make things even easier for us.

 

I think for anyone flying with a non-US spouse, you should apply for a new ESTA even if yours is theoretically still valid unless it was issued after mid-March.  Take your marriage license with you to be on the safe side, but I do think and hope that now, after over 3 months since the travel ban was passed, the airline and immigration officials have (probably, hopefully!) figured out that being a spouse of an American citizen is a valid exception to the ban.

 

Good luck to anyone traveling to the US and don´t worry too much.  Wear a mask, sanitize a lot during the whole trip, wipe your seats down with disinfectant wipes etc etc and just be careful - you should be ok!

 

 

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10 hours ago, tor said:

I cancelled my trip. too many unkowns...  LH says full refund.  I am sad. my mom is gutted and relieved . strange world.

 

*virtual hugs*

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