You’ve been living in Germany for a while and the cost and process of renewing your visa is becoming tiring and hanging out at the Ausländerbehörde is nobody’s idea of fun. On the flipside, you aren’t ready to lose your Kenyan citizenship and have to pay for visas to enter the country you’ve called home all your life. And let’s face it, applying for visas via the Kenyan Embassy for every visit home isn’t any fun either. So what options do you have?
Permanent Residence Permit (Unbefristete Aufenthaltstitel)
This option saves you the constant renewal of a German visa and you can keep your Kenyan passport. However, you aren’t allowed to stay outside Germany for longer than 6 months. This is perfect if you plan on staying in Germany, may be only travel abroad once in a while and eventually return to Kenya or continue staying in Germany.
You can find the requirements for this here. (READ: Unbefristete Aufenthaltserlaubnis a.k.a Niederlassungserlaubnis (Permanent Residence Permit): What do you Need to Get One?)
Erlaubnis zum Dauerhaftaufenthalt-EU
This is a great alternative to the permanent residence permit, as it offers you the option to live outside Germany but within the EU. It allows you to move to another EU country without having to start the visa process a new in the other country. With this one, you can live outside Germany for the rest of your time, but you have to be within the EU. (READ: Erlaubnis zum Daueraufenthalt-EU (permanent EC residence))
Kenyan Permanent Residence Permit
This is for those who have taken the plunge and taken the German citizenship but aren’t willing to take the risk of reapplying for the Kenyan passport and lose the German one. This saves you from applying for the tourist visas to enter Kenya. Also unlike the tourist visa, this one allows you to stay in Kenya much longer. You’re only allowed to stay in Kenya for 30 days with a tourist visa. You can apply for this during your holiday to Kenya, it takes between 2 and 4 weeks and you can get it from Nyayo House in Nairobi.
If you’re interested in applying for this, read here Kenyan Permanent Residence Permit for Diasporans Who Renounce Citizenship.
Dual Citizenship: German + Kenyan Passport
Want to enjoy the best of both worlds? Want to be able to live elsewhere in the world for whatever amount of time and be able to return to Germany and Kenya whenever you feel like without applying for visas? Apply to keep your Kenyan citizenship before going through with the Einbürgerung, Germany ALLOWS dual citizenship. (READ: Beibehaltungsgesetz: How German Dual Citizenship Works)
Ready to take a BIG risk? Ready for a bit more adrenaline rush? Just go ahead and reapply for your Kenyan citizenship after getting the German one. You get to enjoy both nationalities, but if the Germans find out, then you might lose the German one.