Everything you need to know
Your sponsoring Rotary Club and District in your Home Country will prepare you for your stay in Germany. However, we will try to ease your preparations with some specifics about Germany and the Rotary Youth Exchange program in our country.
To apply for the exchange to Germany you have to be between 16 and 18 years of age at the begin of your exchange year (1st of August).
German schools break only for six weeks in summer. We expect your arrival some days before school starts after the summer break. Districts have set up a time window during which you have to arrive in Germany. Check early with your travel agent to book your flight. You have to have an open end return ticket. In case you have any problems with the dates, contact your Host District Chair immediately and before you book.
Young Leaders Exchange Management
After we have received your application, we will set up your account in our German Young Leaders Exchange Management. You automatically will receive an E-Mail, send to your E-Mail Address as listed in the application. Please complete your data and do not forget to update your database account regularly during YoLEM your exchange year. Visit .
After you have received your hosting information – latest after you got back the completed Guarantee Form – you should contact your District Chairman, your Host Club and Host Parents to introduce yourself.
Duration of Exchange
The end of the exchange is the end of the school year.
For unforeseen expenses which you might have to cover bring 400 Euro. They must be given to the student’s Host Club YEO after arrival in cash. At the end of the exchange, you will get the money back which is not used.
First nights at your new hostfamily aren´t always easy. To help you communicate and to check out rules and habits in Germany and of your hostfamilies, we developed the questionaire „Let´s talk about“ for you.
Health, Accident, Liability Insurance
All Inbound students have to buy a Health, Accident and Liability Insurance from the German Insurance Company HanseMerkur. The insurance cover begins when you leave your home country on the direct flight to your Host District/Club. You have to enroll online as early as possible, your completed Guarantee Form can only be sent back after you have bought your insurance. Please enroll your insurance online.
It is very helpful and necessary for Inbounds to communicate in German when they are in Germany; the language is an important integration factor. However we know that not all schools in your home country offer German classes. So we expect you to start learning the German language immediately after your assignment to Germany. We suggest that you buy the online based Rosetta Stone language course. It costs about 100 Euro. To get more information about Rosetta Stone please contact your German Host District. You need be able to conduct a basic conversation in German when you arrive. The host Districts will conduct a language test shortly after arrival. For students with limited knowledge of German the Host Rotary Club/District organizes German language courses. You are required to bring 250 Euro to pay for the course.
The school system is different in most countries. Attending school regularly is a requirement; you have to go to school during your exchange year, even if you have finished with school at home. You should familiarize yourself with the German school system.
In your application you have accepted the rules for the exchange year, which will also be a topic during your Outbound Orientation at home and the Inbound Orientation Briefing of your Host District.
German Rotary Clubs do not accept students who smoke.
Inbound students are not allowed to travel alone. Travel is only permitted with host parents, school or for Rotary Club or District functions. It needs to be authorized by the hosting Rotary Club or District, with adult chaperones. All other travel is only permitted for exceptional reasons; it must be approved by the host District and Club; host family; and the student’s own parents/guardians (in writing), exempting Rotary from responsibility and liability. Students may not travel alone or be accompanied only by other students. Breaking this rule might lead to an early return.
Citizens of most countries need a visa for their exchange year in Germany. The visa has to be obtained with the German Consulate in the home country. As it takes some weeks before your visa application will be approved, you should apply immediately after you have been assigned to Germany. Citizens of Australia, Brazil, Canada, the European Union, Israel, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Switzerland and the USA do not need a visa to enter Germany for the exchange year. After arrival in Germany all nationalities, including citizens of above mentioned countries, have to obtain a one year residents title for special purposes from the local alien police.
Visits by Parents
Visits by student’s parents/guardians are not wanted. Such visits may only take place with the prior consent by the host Club and host District and only within the last quarter of the exchange. Visits by siblings and/or friends are allowed only if they are accompanied by parent(s)/guardian(s).