Migration is a conditio humana, firmly rooted in the cultural matrix of human society. The current discourse has been shaped by problematic concepts and research approaches. Migration has been and often is seen as an irregular occurrence and exception. But even pre-modern societies were characterized by high mobility. Numerous studies at pre-modern and modern migrations show that individual migration is usually part of a comprehensive and superordinate historical process and can only be understood within this frame of reference. Migratory movements mostly have pioneers, run along tightly defined routes, occur in networks, immigrants of same origin settle in spatial proximity, migrations are demographically selective and accompanied by return migrants. In combination with new methods from life sciences, for archaeological migration research, this opens up new perspectives.