I have always had this question since I started to learn German that when to use auf and when to use an . As an example I can name the word "Antrag". When to use preposition "an" and when to use preposition "auf". Can they be used interchangeably? If not, what's the difference?

For example:

Einen Antrag an den Betriebsrat stellen.


Einen Antrag auf den Betriebsrat stellen.

Thanks in advance.

2 Answers 2


With Antrag auf you indicate what someone is applying for; with Antrag an you indicate to whom someone is applying for something.

So in your example, an is correct:

Einen Antrag an den Betriebsrat stellen.

More examples with Antrag auf and Antrag an.


It is Antrag auf etwas an jemanden stellen. For example you say

Ich werde einen Antrag auf Kindergeld (what you want) an das Sozialamt (who will grant it) stellen.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.