Studyıng ın Germany

My Personal Research and Experıences

Expatrio blocked account


After you have been accepted to study in Germany, you need to apply for a student visa. I have tried to explain some tips and tricks on how to get a visa in an article. One of the things that will be required for visa application will be a “Blocked Account”. In the following article, I will try to give information about what is “Expatrio blocked account” and how to open it.

What is a blocked account?

The German state wants to know how the costs of your stay and living in Germany will be covered if you want to study there for a bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degree. There are two ways to show this: first, a sponsor and second, a “blocked account”. If you have a sponsor, you are not the subject of these pages. Here I will talk about the “blocked account” that I have experienced.

The minimum cost of living for a student studying in Germany is determined by the “Bafög” institution on the basis of average values. These values are published on an annual basis. German students studying in Germany receive loans or scholarships based on these values. Foreign students have to cover these living expenses themselves.

The German state requires the sum of 1 year (3 months or 6 months if your study plan is shorter) of the average living costs calculated for foreign students to be blocked in a bank account in Germany and pays you monthly. The account you need to open for this is called a “Blocked Account”.

How many euros is the blocked account?

The blocked account amount was announced as 11,208 euros per year for 2023. There are several institutions authorized to open blocked accounts. The most well-known of these are Expatrio and Fintiba. Expatrio has lower commissions.

How to Open an Expatrio Blocked Account?

Let’s apply it step by step:

We open an account via the link *.

We register on the site by clicking the “Open Blocked Account” button on the home page. Registration is free. You are not under any commitment until you send the money. During registration, you can select “Overseas” in the address section and write your Turkey address. You select the school where you have been accepted and write your planned departure date and the start date of the school. After this registration is completed, you will need to upload a picture of the photo page of your passport under the “Uploads” tab in the “Documents” section under your profile. At the first stage, only the passport is enough. Once you have received your visa, you will also upload the visa page for the account to be resolved. 

When you become a member of Expatrio you must upload a picture of the illustrated page of your passport.

There is an approval process before your account can be created. It will take a few hours for your passport to be reviewed and approved for account opening. During this time, you will see the phrase “In review” in the “Blocked Accounts Overview” section on your Blocked account page. After approval, the button will change to Awaiting money transfer.

This is how the blocked account button will look like when the Expatrio account opening is approved

After the account opening is confirmed, you can now enter the screens where you will specify the money transfer options. When you click on the blocked account button, you will be shown the amount of money in the blocked account (since you have opened it for the first time, this number is “0” for now), the amount you need to deposit into your blocked account (the total amount according to the period you specified in the application you made in the previous step) You will be presented with a screen containing the amount to be paid to you monthly (934 EUR for 2023), the activation fee (49 EUR for 2023), the monthly service fee (5 EUR) and an “Account Buffer” of 100 EUR. This “Account Buffer” is charged specifically for unforeseen charges levied by correspondent banks during money transfers. This “Buffer” is returned to you with the final monthly payment. 

Summary screenshot of the money to be deposited for the blocked account

You can continue by clicking on the “My Payments” button. At this stage, you will be presented with a series of forms where you can choose where and how you want to transfer money. We start by selecting the country and continue with other details.

Expatrio payment selection screen country selection

In my example, I selected the country “Turkey”. After you have completed by selecting the country from which country you will send your money and click on the box at the bottom, click on the “NEXT” button.

Expatrio – the screen where you specify how much you want to transfer

The incoming screen asks how much you will transfer. You can transfer all or part of the money. However, you will not be able to get a blocked account confirmation until the entire amount specified at the beginning is transferred to the account (Annual, 6 Monthly or whatever period you have selected, the entire calculated amount must be sent. Asking for the amount here is presented as an option for partial payments to be made from other accounts or countries. In our example, since we will send the whole amount from Turkey, we entered the whole amount (11417 EUR). We continue by clicking NEXT. An information page will appear, we can click NEXT and continue.

Currency options for transfer to Expatrio (Example country is Turkey. Different options will open according to your country. )

On the screen that opens, you are shown payment options according to the country where your account is located. A new option for Turkey is the local currency TL transfer. On this screen, you can see how much you need to transfer in TL, USD or EUR. You do not pay commission for USD or TL transfers, but you will have to pay commission for EUR transfers as you need to do Swift. Take currency conversions into account and make your calculation accordingly. Tick your preferred option and click NEXT. In the next screens, you will be prompted with some warnings about the money transfer, click NEXT until the confirmation.

Expatrio money transfer method selection confirmation screen

From the confirmation screen, you can go to the payment screen with the “GO TO MY PAYMENTS” button.

Blocked account payment screen

You will see a button named “Transfers” on this screen. A reference code has been generated for the transfer you will make and given in brackets. You should use this code in your transfer. When you click on this button, the screen will scroll down and you will see the “Opening Confirmation” document number 05 created for you to download. Download this document. In the document you will find information on how to send the money to which account. After transferring the money, upload the receipt to the “Transfer Proof” section. Now you have to wait for the money to be credited. After the money has been credited, document 06 will be generated and you will be able to download it. 

Open an account now and start the application

How to Transfer Money to an Expatrio Blocked Account?

It is possible to Swift money from banks or use transfer platforms such as Wise. When making a swift, “OUR” must be selected so that the costs are deducted from you. Swift fees of banks may vary. It is useful to ask for no surprises. However, as I wrote above, ask about the commission rate for the “OUR” option. In Expatrio, though, there is an extra fee sent for these possible deductions. Therefore, I do not think there will be any problems even if there is a deduction.

“I am writing because a reader warned me that international money transfers (Swift) can take longer than expected. At the time the money is sent, you are given optional choices. “Same Day”, “Next Day”, “Spot”, etc. These options affect the time it takes to send the money and the commission you pay. If you choose the “Spot” option to pay less commission, your bank and the correspondent bank will deliver the money later for less commission. Since Expatrio checks the accounts once a day, even if you send it on the same day, you can see it in the account the next day in the afternoon. With the “Spot” option, this can take up to 5 days. If a long time has passed and you still don’t see the money in your account, get in touch using the contact form on the website.”

If your current money is in a national currency and not in Euro, the Euro conversion rates of the banks may be high. I can recommend Wise as an alternative secure transfer method. Both the rates will be lower and the costs will be less. You can easily make your transfer as a member from this link * Wise can save you 100 to 200 Euros.

A day or a few days after you have transferred the money, you will see in the “Downloads” tab that the “Blocked Amount Confirmation” file number 06 has been created. You can download this file and use it in your visa application.

Your feedback is very important to me, for any questions you may have, you can reach me at recep[at] e-mail address, my social media accounts or the comment section below.

*In order to prevent the publication of irrelevant advertisements on the site, I am going to partnership agreements with reliable corporate companies instead of buying advertisements. You will not have any additional obligations or payments for these corporate services you will access through the site.

2 thoughts on “Expatrio blocked account

  1. How much local currency in NGN do I need to block my account for a master’s program in Germany?
    Thank you in advance.

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