Bridging Assistance: The 10 Most Important Questions & Answers and Technical Advice

The bridging assistance supplied by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research will be continued for the summer semester 2021. On this page we address the most common problems.

More Information on Bridging Assistance

The bridging assistance supplied by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research for students in pandemic related emergency situations can be applied for via The briging assistance will be continued for the summer semester until September 2021. Because of the many questions, that arose last time, we have compiled the 10 most frequently asked questions by students on how to apply and some technical information here.

The 10 most frequently asked questions

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Then, your institution is not eligible and you cannot apply. Students are eligibly if they are enrolled at a public or publicly recognised higher education institution in Germany, and if they are not on leave.

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Because the bridging assistance is only available to students at a public  or publicly recognised higher education institution. Many other institutions for secondary or tertiary education exist in Germany, but they are not officially recognised higher education institutions.

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All students who are studying within a work or empoyment contract and thus have regular income are exempt from the bridging assistance.

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Please use the complete name of your higher education institution. Many institutions for applied science (Fachhochschulen) have changed their names to „Hochschule“ or „Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften“. If you are unsure about the official name of your institution, please refer to your certificate of enrollment.

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The main campus of your institution is relevant, please use the city or town where your institution is headquartered.  

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No, this is not possible. You must file your application online via the portal This is the only way to apply.

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Both are not relevant and you do not have to mention this when applying for bridging assistance, since the money in such contracts is not available at short notice.

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Yes, you can upload an additional pdf-document with your bank account balance where you can include explanations – the clearer, the better and the faster your application will be processed. 

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No, later uploads are not possible.

In the application process, please make sure that you have completely uploaded all the right documents before sending the application. Your documents are shown immediately after the upload, and you can is they are not the correct ones or not readably, delete and change them. You can also go back and verify if all documents are correct and complete before sending the application. If you do not have the documents ready at hand, please interrupt the work on your application and log in again later to upload the right documents. You should only send the application when it is completely finished!

The online application tool will automatically show you if and when your application is complete when uploading documents.

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Yes, the use of other loans and grants does not principally exclude the application for bridging assistance. Also, BAFöG-recipients or students who use a KfW student loan can receive the bridging assistance, if they can prove that they are nevertheless in a pandemic-related financial emergency.

Technical Advice regarding the online application process

What kind of hardware do you need:

  • A computer of smartphone that is connected to the Internet, if possible with the current version of Chrome, Firefox or Opera (see the first advice here below)
  • A digital camera or smartphone with camera option, since you must upload selfies for your identification
  • A scanner will be helpful to scan documents that you do not have available in a digital format  

Use the right browser!

  • Only online applications are possible. Please use the current version of internet browsers Crhome, Firefox or Opera – or the current standard browsers of mobile devices. If you use Edge as your browser, please update to Edge Chromium from version 83.x onwards. All versions of Internet Explorer are not supported.

Use an additional e-mail address if the e-mail from your higher education institution does not work!

  • When you begin the online application on the portal, you are asked to enter your educational e-mail address; the system then sends a code or “token” to this address that you need to confirm by typing it in the system. Apparently, many servers of these educational e-mail addresses need quite some time to send you the code/token. Therefore, we have extended the time slot that you have to enter the code to two hours.
  • If this should not work against all expectations, please use a different e-mail address.
  • However, once you are registered using a specific (educational) e-mail Address, you must continue to use this address.

Don’t despair with reCaptcha, please try again!

  • Please do not despair. For safety reasons, we cannot do without the reCaptcha. If this does not work or you are caught in a loop: please try again later.

Log in again after a break! 

  • When you have interrupted the online application for bridging assistance, you only need the e-mail address that you have used initially. You can login to the system again using this address, and you will receive another “token” in order to complete your application. Similarly, following a successful application, another login to the portal may be possible and meaningful: you can find status information on the processing of your application as well as the results of the verification.Please empty your browser-cache before you log in again!  

Do not change document endings!

  • The online application portal accepts only specific document formats, such as jpg/jpeg, png and pdf. If you have documents in a different format, please change the format using a suitable software. Please abstain from manually changing the format, e.g. by changing the document extensions from example.gif to example.png.

If necessary, merge your documents into one!

  • You can upload up to 10 documents to the application portal. If you have more than 10 documents, please merge several documents into one. You can use free software that can easily be found online.

If all else fails, send a screenshot of your problem to: ueberbrueckungshilfe-studierende {{ätt}} studentenwerke {{punkt}} de

  • If this advice does not help, please do not despair. Make a screenshot and send it to the Team Bridging Assisstance of Deutsches Studentenwerk, along with a short description of the problem: ueberbrueckungshilfe-studierende {{ätt}} studentenwerke {{punkt}} de


BMBF hotline for bridging assistance:
Telephone: +49 800 26 23 003
E-Mail: ueberbrueckungshilfe-studierende {{ätt}} bmbf {{punkt}} bund {{punkt}} de