I am a Tunisian citizen. A few years ago, I used to hold a Turkish residence permit and I intended to apply for a student visa to TUM (Technical University of Munich). I asked the German Embassy of Istanbul by email if I could apply from either the embassy in my home country or from the one in Istanbul. I was told that "If you live in Turkey and have been living there for at least six months, you have to apply for your student visa at the German Consulate. You cannot apply for it at the German Embassy in Tunisia."
When I asked the German Embassy in Tunisia, I was told "If you are currently living in Istanbul, the Consulate General is responsible for you. You must then apply for a visa there." which doesn't sound like it forbids applying from my home country, merely allows from the country of residence too.
I also checked now their website and it conflicts with they told me in the emails:
When can I apply as a non-Turkish citizen in Turkey?
You can apply for a national visa at the German visa sections in Turkey without Turkish citizenship if your permanent residence is in Turkey. This means that the main focus of your life is in Turkey. It is not sufficient to have a Turkish residence permit or shares in a Turkish company and live elsewhere. Permanent residence is usually established by living in Turkey uninterruptedly for at least 6 months without longer stays in another country at the date of your visa application. Permanent residence is also established without a stay of 6 months minimum if you have a long-term right of residence in Turkey (i.e. as a registered refugee or with a residence permit for family reunion). The Turkish short-term residence permit („Kisa Dönem / Short Term“) – even if issued for 6 months or longer - does not establish permanent residence. In this case, the directive mentioned above for a stay of 6 months minimum applies. Please provide proof of permanent residence in Turkey when applying for your visa.
The problem back then was that national visa applications were handled through iDATA visa center, and iDATA had a separate queue for non-Turkish citizens applying through them in Turkey. While my Turkish friends were able to get an appointment within a week, I was told by iDATA that I had to wait between 10 and 12 weeks just for the appointment, and 8 more weeks processing, which would make me miss the deadline for university registration. If I had the option to apply from my home country, I would probably be able to get an appointment soon too.
I don't see how this makes sense. I was born in Tunisia, and lived a good chunk of my life there, and it is my permanent residence. Doesn't it make sense to allow applicants to apply from their home country in any case?
I am asking this because I am now close to the end of my current work permit in Turkey and I am thinking of not re-applying for an extension just in case I decide to apply for a work visa in Germany or elsewhere.