Tips for Finding Apartment in Germany: Insider Secrets 2023

Finding an apartment in Germany can be an exhilarating yet challenging journey. With soaring demand and limited supply, it’s essential to equip yourself with the right strategies to increase your chances of success.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll share valuable insights and expert tips that will give you a competitive edge in securing your dream apartment. Get ready to navigate the German housing market like a pro!

The Challenges and Opportunities of Finding an Apartment in Different German Cities

City Cost Ease of Finding Expat Friendly Effort Required
Berlin Affordable Challenging Yes Moderate
Munich Expensive Challenging Yes High
Hamburg High Challenging Yes High
Cologne Moderately Expensive Moderate Yes Moderate
Frankfurt High Challenging Yes High
Stuttgart High Competitive Moderate Moderate to High
Heidelberg High Challenging Moderate Moderate to High
Freiburg Expensive Challenging Moderate High
Leipzig Affordable Easy Developing Less Effort
Düsseldorf Moderately Expensive Moderate Yes Moderate

Required Documents for Renting an Apartment in Germany

When renting a flat in Germany, several documents are typically required by landlords. These documents serve as proof of your identity, financial stability, and reliability as a tenant. Here are the most common documents you will need:

1. Valid Passport or Identification Card: You will need to provide a valid form of identification to verify your identity.

2. Proof of Income: This can include recent pay slips, employment contracts, or bank statements showing regular income. Landlords want to ensure that you have a stable financial situation to afford the rent.

3. Schufa Credit Report: Schufa is a credit reporting agency in Germany. Landlords often request a Schufa credit report to assess your creditworthiness and determine if you have any outstanding debts.

4. Mietschuldenfreiheitsbescheinigung (Rent Clearance Certificate): This document, obtained from your previous landlord, confirms that you have paid your rent on time and have no outstanding rental debts.

5. Completed Rental Application: Landlords may require you to fill out a rental application form that includes personal information, employment details, and references.

6. Bank Statements: Some landlords may request recent bank statements to verify your financial stability and ensure that you can cover the rental costs.

7. Residence Permit: If you are a non-EU citizen, you will need to provide a valid residence permit or visa that allows you to live and work in Germany.

Renting with the Assistance of an Estate Agent

In Germany, renting an apartment through an estate agent can be convenient but often involves additional costs. Estate agents are employed by property owners to assist with the sale or rental process, and their services come with fees. 

However, when renting, it is typically the landlord who bears the commission fees, leading many people to opt for online platforms instead of engaging an agent. Before finalizing any agreement, it is crucial to clarify the payment terms for these commission fees.

In Germany, there are multiple online platforms where you can search for and rent flats. Here is a list of popular online renting portals that helps you with finding apartment in germany:

  • Mr. Lodge (Available in multiple languages – Munich only)

An Extra Affordable Option for Students

When it comes to students looking for accommodation in Germany, one popular platform is WG-Gesucht. This website specializes in shared housing options, also known as Wohngemeinschaften or “WG” in German. Living with international roommates can be a rewarding experience as it provides an opportunity for cultural interaction and language practice. It allows you to build a global network and learn about different perspectives while adapting to life in a WG-Gesucht environment.

When searching for a room on WG-Gesucht, it’s essential to create a detailed profile that highlights your interests, hobbies, and language skills. This can help you connect with like-minded individuals or find roommates who can assist you in adjusting to your new surroundings. Additionally, it’s crucial to be proactive in your search by reaching out to potential roommates and attending viewings promptly.

What Typical Information is Included in a Rental Contract in Germany?

Having a rental contract is generally beneficial for both landlords and tenants in Germany. It provides legal protection, clearly defines rights and responsibilities, outlines rental terms and conditions, and helps prevent misunderstandings or disputes that may arise during the tenancy. 

Some of the components rental contracts usually contain are:

  • Duration of the agreement
  • Deposit amount
  • Amount of monthly rent
  • Amount of additional costs, depending on your use
  • Rent increases information
  • A complete list of furniture, if you rent a furnished apartment
  • Pet rules (whether or not you’re allowed to keep them inside)
  • House rules set by the landlord, regarding the repair expenses they will and will not cover
  • Notice length (usually three months, if you or your landlord want to cancel the agreement)

What are the Typical Rental Prices in Germany?

The cost of renting in Germany varies depending on factors such as location and apartment size. Rental prices are often quoted per square meter, with central and larger locations commanding higher prices compared to suburbs.

On average, apartments in Germany are rented out at €7.04 per square meter. Prices can be higher in cities like Stuttgart (€10.41 per square meter) and Munich (€9.74 cold rent). Munich’s Karlsfeld municipality is the most expensive, with an average net cold rent of €10.86 per square meter.

For a one-bedroom apartment, the average rent in a German city is around €700, while outside the city it’s around €530.

When renting in Germany, a deposit equal to three months’ rent is typically required. Utilities are often not included in the rent and are specified in the rental contract. Apartments without utilities included are referred to as “cold rent” (Kaltmiete), while “Warmmiete” includes heating and additional costs.

What to Expect in a German Apartment

When renting a German apartment, it’s important to consider the following aspects:

1. Room Terminology: Germans use a different system for room classification. For example, a 1-room apartment in Germany refers to a studio, while a 2-room apartment indicates a separate bedroom and living space. Bathrooms and kitchens are typically not counted as rooms.

2. Kitchen Considerations: Pay attention to the term “Küche” (kitchen) in advertisements. Sometimes, it may only indicate the provision of water, gas, and electrical outlets, while the actual kitchen fixtures and appliances may not be included. Germans sometimes take their kitchens with them when they move.

3. Kitchen Requirements: In Berlin, kitchens are generally expected to have an oven and a sink. However, in other states, only the necessary utility connections are provided. Make sure you are aware of the kitchen arrangement to avoid surprises.

4. Fitted Kitchen: If you prefer an apartment in Germany with a pre-installed kitchen, look for listings specifically mentioning an “EBK” (Einbauküche).

5. Furnished Apartments: Fully furnished apartment in Germany is relatively rare, so don’t expect every rental to come with furniture. Be prepared to furnish the apartment yourself or consider partially furnished options.

The Challenges of Finding Apartment in Germany

Limited Availability: The demand for housing often exceeds the supply in major German cities, leading to a scarcity of available apartments. This results in fierce competition among prospective tenants, making it challenging to secure a desirable rental.

Stringent Requirements: Landlords in Germany often have strict criteria for selecting tenants. They may require proof of steady income, a positive credit history (Schufa), and sometimes even a guarantor. Meeting these requirements can be difficult, particularly for ex-pats who are new to the country and may not have established credit or financial history.

Long-Term Lease Expectations: Many landlords in Germany prefer long-term leases, typically lasting one to three years or even longer. This can pose a problem for individuals who require more flexible or short-term rental arrangements.

Language Barriers: The majority of property listings, rental agreements, and communication with landlords are in German. Non-German speakers may face challenges in understanding the terms and conditions, negotiating, and navigating the rental process effectively.

Rising Rental Prices: Rental costs in German cities, especially in popular areas, have been increasing steadily in recent years. High demand and limited supply contribute to this trend, making affordable housing harder to find, particularly in sought-after locations.

Discrimination and Bias: Discrimination in the rental market can be a concern, with some landlords preferring certain nationalities or profiles over others. Expats, especially those with non-German names or non-European backgrounds, may encounter biased treatment while finding apartment in germany.

Time and Effort: Finding apartment in Germany can be a time-consuming and energy-draining process. It often requires regularly checking various platforms, attending viewings, and submitting numerous applications before securing a suitable place.

In terms of big cities, Berlin stands out as an extremely competitive housing market. Its popularity as a cultural and economic hub has led to a significant influx of people seeking accommodation. The demand often surpasses the available housing stock, resulting in a highly competitive environment and long waiting lists for desirable apartments.

Frankfurt, being a major financial center, also presents challenges for apartment seekers. The city’s attractiveness to professionals and expatriates, coupled with limited housing options, makes finding an apartment in Frankfurt a daunting task. The rental prices in both Berlin and Frankfurt have risen significantly in recent years, adding another layer of difficulty for individuals searching for affordable housing.

This leads to a scarcity of available apartments, resulting in intense competition among potential tenants. Navigating these problematic issues requires patience, perseverance, and strategic planning. Expanding the search to different platforms, networking, seeking assistance from relocation agencies, and being prepared with the necessary documents can increase the chances of finding an apartment that meets one’s needs and preferences.

Key Factors to Consider when Finding Apartment in Germany

  1. Start Early: Begin your search well in advance, as finding apartment in Germany can take time, especially in cities like Frankfurt and Berlin. Many landlords require a three-month notice period, so it’s best to begin searching at least two to three months before your intended move-in date.
  1. Expand Your Options: Don’t limit yourself to a single platform or method of searching. Explore different resources such as online platforms (WG-Gesucht, ImmobilienScout24, eBay Kleinanzeigen), local newspapers, university notice boards, and social media groups dedicated to housing.
  1. Be Prepared: Have all necessary documents ready, including copies of your ID/passport, proof of income or financial support, and a Schufa (credit) report if available. Landlords often require these documents to assess your suitability as a tenant.
  1. Language Considerations: While it’s true that knowing German can significantly expand your options, there are still opportunities for non-German speakers. Consider utilizing online translation tools or seeking assistance from friends, colleagues, or relocation agencies to overcome language barriers during the search process.
  1. Networking and Referrals: Tap into your network of friends, colleagues, and fellow ex-pats. They may have leads on available apartments or be aware of upcoming vacancies. Personal referrals can increase your chances of securing an apartment, as landlords often prioritize tenants recommended by trusted sources.
  1. Persistence and Patience: Understand that finding apartment in Germany can be a competitive and challenging process. It’s common to view multiple apartments before finding the right one. Don’t get discouraged; persistence and patience are key to success.

By combining these insider tips with a comprehensive understanding of the German apartment search process, you can increase their chances of finding suitable accommodation.

Choosing a city to study and live in Germany can be a daunting task, as there are many factors to consider. To make it easier for you, we have done the research and analysis for you. We have ranked the top 10 best cities for students in Germany based on various criteria such as cost of living, quality of education, social life, and more.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article on finding apartment in Germany. We hope that the information provided has been valuable in your search for the perfect apartment. 

Finding a suitable rental can be a challenge, but armed with the knowledge of key terms, guidelines, and popular online platforms, you are well-equipped to navigate the process.

For more helpful articles and resources, we invite you to explore our website further. Best of luck in finding your ideal apartment in Germany!

Public Transport In Germany: Your Guide to Seamless Travel 2023

Get ready to embark on a transportation journey like no other! Germany boasts an extraordinary public transport system that seamlessly connects bustling cities, links towns of all sizes, and ensures hassle-free commuting for locals and ex-pats alike.

Renowned for its reliability, comfort, and impressive speed, Public Transport In Germany is a well-kept secret, even among car enthusiasts. Whether you’re a busy commuter or a curious explorer, rest assured that Germany’s extensive network has you covered.

Discover Germany’s World-Class Public Transport System

With an impeccably organized national railway network, journeying across the country becomes a breeze with Deutsche Bahn at your service. On a local scale, buses, trams, metro networks, suburban trains, and even ferries are seamlessly managed by Germany’s states.

Discover a transportation revolution in Germany. Embrace safe, efficient, and user-friendly public transport that has reshaped car-centric cities like Berlin (30% reliance on cars) and Munich (33% reliance). With an astounding 30 million passengers traveling daily, Germany stands as a true transportation haven. Get ready for a remarkable voyage alluring Public Transport In Germany by your side.

All about Germany’s €49 Ticket

If you love traveling around Germany and exploring its diverse regions and cities, you might be interested in a new offer from Deutsche Bahn: the €49 ticket. This ticket allows you to use all public transport in Germany for a flat monthly fee of €49. Sounds too good to be true? Here’s what you need to know about this amazing deal.

The €49 ticket, also known as the “Deutschlandticket”, is a monthly subscription ticket that gives you access to all public transport throughout Germany (excluding ICE, IC, or EC trains). Once you’ve signed up for the subscription, €49 will be debited from your account every month. You can cancel the subscription at any time, with no minimum contract duration or notice period.

The ticket is valid on all local public transport, including buses, trams, subways, regional trains, and ferries. You can use it to travel within and between cities, as long as you don’t board any long-distance trains. You can also take other people with you using the €49 ticket, as long as they are children under 15 years old or dogs.

The €49 ticket is a great way to save money and enjoy the convenience of traveling without having to buy individual tickets or worry about zones and fares. You can discover new places and attractions in Germany, or visit your friends and family more often. You can also reduce your carbon footprint by using public transport instead of driving or flying.

The €49 ticket is available to purchase online, in the app, and at DB travel centers from 3 April 2023. You can start using it from 1 May 2023. All you need is a valid ID card or passport and a bank account. You will receive a mobile ticket or a chip card that you can show to the ticket inspectors.

If you are looking for a flexible and affordable way to travel around Germany, don’t miss this opportunity. The €49 ticket is a limited offer that will only be available until 31 December 2023. So hurry up and get yours today!

Modes Of Public Transportation In Germany

Germany’s bustling urban centers offer an array of transportation options that cater to every traveler’s needs. The go-to choice for speed and popularity lies in the Rapid transit system, comprising five U-Bahn lines covering city centers, complemented by thirteen S-Bahn lines that seamlessly navigate underground and overground routes, extending towards the suburbs.

The reliable Straßenbahn (tramlines) and the trusty bus system are complementing this network. Buses prove invaluable during nighttime journeys, offering affordability and availability, although they may sacrifice speed and comfort. Meanwhile, the tramlines boast higher capacity and faster speeds, running on dedicated tracks, but with fixed routes that limit flexibility.

U-Bahn (subway/underground)

U-Bahn (subway/underground)

Germany’s major cities boast an extensive underground transportation network called the U-Bahn, which stands for Untergrundbahn, meaning underground railway. 

These rapid transit systems predominantly operate beneath the city, emerging above ground as they approach the outskirts. The lines are well-ordered and designated with a U followed by a numerical identifier. Commuters can rely on frequent service intervals, with trains arriving every 5 to 15 minutes.

There are four U-Bahnen (urban metro networks) in Germany:

  • Berlin
  • Hamburg
  • Munich
  • Nuremberg

S-Bahn (suburban commuter rail)

S-Bahn (suburban commuter rail)

The S-Bahn is a commuter rail network that operates within the city center and extends to the suburbs and neighboring towns. 

In major cities like Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Frankfurt-Mainz-Wiesbaden, Stuttgart, Cologne-Düsseldorf-Ruhr District, Nuremberg, Dresden, Leipzig-Halle, Mannheim-Heidelberg-Karlsruhe, Magdeburg, and Rostock, express trains efficiently connect the city center with the outskirts. 

In the largest cities, the S-Bahn system closely resembles a metro system, offering frequent service every 20-30 minutes. The train makes multiple stops in and around the city center before continuing its journey into the suburbs.

Weekday service differs from weekends, with reduced frequency, especially on Sundays and holidays.


In Germany, bus stops are identifiable by the capital letter H. The number of bus systems operating within a city tends to rise with its size.

 Berlin, being a large city, has multiple bus systems operating concurrently, including a night bus service. Conversely, smaller towns typically operate under the GermanRail system for their bus transportation needs.

Straßenbahn/Trambahn (streetcar/tram)

Streetcars, also known as trams, are a common mode of above-ground transportation in many cities, particularly in the eastern regions of Germany. 

In larger cities, the streetcar network may even have underground sections in the central areas, strategically avoiding densely populated areas.

 Interestingly, streetcars are often referred to as the “tube” by locals, emphasizing their significance in urban transportation.

Stadtbahn (light rail)

Germany has a transportation system known as Stadtbahn, or light rail, which is similar to the U-Bahn but primarily operates above ground in suburban areas. It offers a faster service compared to the streetcar system, Trambahn, as it has its own dedicated route.

Stadtbahn translates to ‘city railway’. Stadtbahn trains run at a frequency of approximately every 10-20 minutes. The Stadtbahn stations are marked with the same “U” symbol as U-Bahn stations, but they are clearly labeled as Stadtbahn below the symbol to avoid confusion.

Ticket (Fahrkarte)

Tickets for public transport in Germany are available in various options, including single-use passes, daily passes, weekly passes, and monthly passes. These tickets grant passengers access to all modes of public transportation within the city, including S-Bahn, U-Bahn, buses, trams, and ferries.

To purchase tickets, one can use the multilingual ticket machines located on the platforms of S-Bahn and U-Bahn stations, which is convenient for expatriates. Alternatively, when boarding buses, passengers can pay the fare directly to the bus driver in the traditional manner. In trams, tickets can be obtained from ticket machines inside the trains.

It is crucial to validate tickets before starting the journey. This can be done by stamping the ticket at the yellow or red validation machines on the platforms. In buses or trams, the ticket is manually validated by the responsible personnel. Failure to validate a ticket can result in a fine of approximately 40 Euros during ticket inspections.

Pets in Public Transportation

Pets and public transportation

Traveling with a dog is permitted under certain conditions. Dogs must be leashed and wear a muzzle (mouth mask). Small dogs that can be held, approximately the size of a cat, do not require a ticket. However, for larger dogs, a ticket fee of 1.5 euros is typically required.

Public Transportation Apps

In Germany, several convenient apps are available to facilitate the use of public transportation. These apps serve different purposes such as route planning and ticketing. Here are some notable examples:

– Citymapper: This app is available in multiple German cities, including Berlin, Cologne, Dortmund, and Hamburg. It can be accessed on Android, iOS, and web browsers.

– FAIRTIQ: An alternative ticketing app that collaborates with local transportation authorities in cities such as Aschaffenburg, Flensburg, Göttingen, Halle, Lörrach, Mittelthuringen, and Oberelbe. FAIRTIQ is available for Android and iOS.

– Google Maps: Widely used, Google Maps offers integrated timetables and route planning for public transportation across most of Germany. It can be accessed on Android, iOS, and web browsers.

– Öffi: This comprehensive app covers nearly all local and regional transportation networks in Germany and is available exclusively for Android.

RMVGo: RMVgo is the smart and personal companion for all residents and visitors of the Rhine-Main region in terms of mobility.

Additionally, many local transportation authorities and companies have their own dedicated apps. 

Examples include BVG for Berlin, VRS for Cologne and Bonn, DVB for Dresden, RMV for Frankfurt am Main, HVV for Hamburg, MVV for Munich, VGN for Nuremberg, VRN for Rhein-Neckar, and VRR for Rhein-Ruhr. 

For train passengers, Deutsche Bahn, the national railway company, offers the DB Navigator app. It allows users to search for itineraries, book tickets, and check train compositions.

In Germany, ex-pats can significantly benefit from utilizing the excellent public transportation system. With extensive coverage, frequent services, and efficient connections, it offers a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way to navigate cities. 

Public transportation grants access to a variety of modes, including trains, trams, buses, and subways, ensuring convenient travel options. 

Expats can avoid the hassle of driving, parking, and the high costs associated with taxis. Embracing public transportation facilitates exploration, integration, and a deeper understanding of the local culture and lifestyle.

Thank you for taking the time to read this guide on public transportation in Germany. We hope it has provided valuable insights and helpful information for ex-pats navigating the country’s transportation system. 

Stay tuned for our upcoming content. We appreciate your readership and look forward to serving you with more valuable content in the future.

Healthcare System in Germany – Complete Explanation for Better Relocation

healthcare system in Germany

The healthcare system in Germany is excellent, but the familiarity with the substructure is one of the most important checkboxes you need to tick in your relocation checklists before planning that move. This helpful guide will cover the basic information you need about the healthcare system in Germany.

  • Overview of the healthcare system in Germany
  • Health insurance in Germany
  • Healthcare costs in Germany
  • Registration for healthcare in Germany
  • Hospitals and Pharmacies
  • Healthcare for Women
  • Dental Insurance
  • Emergency Services

Overview of the healthcare system in Germany

To begin with, all Germans and legal residents of Germany are entitled to free “medically necessary” public healthcare, funded by their social security contributions. However, citizens should still have either state or private health insurance cover for hospitalization, outpatient medical treatment, and pregnancy. It is legally mandatory for everyone in Germany to have health insurance coverage whether public or private depending on their incomes.

The development of Health Policies in Germany is done by the Federal Ministry of Health and the sector is regulated by the Joint Federal Committee.

The healthcare plans in Germany are divided into two sectors – Public Healthcare System i.e. Government’s Healthcare Plans and Private Healthcare System

Public Healthcare Scheme (gesetzliche Krankenkasse, GKV)

The public healthcare system in Germany covers treatments and services, such as immunizations, prescriptions, and dental checks across the country. This sort of national coverage facilitates low average healthcare costs in Germany contributing as an effective healthcare system in the world.

Public Health Insurance Costs in Germany

Salaried workers in Germany with gross monthly income less than 5,213 EUR and gross annual income less than 62,550 EUR as of 2020, must have public health insurance.

Even if you earn more than 62,550 EUR, you can continue with the public health system, as a voluntary user and agree to pay the maximum premiums.

Germany’s healthcare contribution costs are 14.6 to 15.6% of the total income, which equally split between the employer and the employee. An additional “Contribution rate” is charged by the state German health insurer at an average of 0.9%, paid solely by the employee.

Non-working dependents living at the same address and registered with the German Authorities are covered at no extra cost. Pensioners and people who receive unemployment benefits or assistance are also eligible for state healthcare.

Public Healthcare Registration

Generally every employer will register you with a regional German health insurance company. You are free to choose the insurer of your choice, and can do so by informing your employer within a definite period of starting work.

In other cases, when you need to arrange your own German health insurer you simply need to register with the German authorities at your local town hall. Factors to consider before opting are the insurer’s contribution rate, additional services, ease of contact, or availability of English-language information.

Once you’re registered with a social security number and begin your premium payments, you will have access to public healthcare with your health insurance card (Krankenversichertenkarte).

GKV maintains the list of all state German insurance companies to compare health insurance rates.

Public Health Insurance Coverage in Germany

The Public Health Insurance covers you for primary care with registered doctors, hospital care (in and out), and basic dental treatment.

Public Health Insurance however does not cover consultations with private doctors, private rooms in hospitals, alternative or complementary treatments such as dental implants, glasses/contact lenses for adults.

Private Health Insurance Scheme (Private Krankenversicherung or PKV)

The Private Health Insurance Scheme is limited to a set of people, you are only eligible to apply if you fall in the below criteria list:

  • An employee earning more than 62,550 EUR annually as of 2020
  • Self-employed
  • Working part-time and earning less than 450 EUR a month
  • freelance professional
  • Artist
  • A civil servant or certain other public employees

Private Health Insurance Costs in Germany

Unlike State Health Insurance which are priced based on your income the private health insurance costs are rather risk and patient profile based which might increase with age, health risks and added family members.

If you are eligible for private insurance, you can change from public to private health insurance but, you have to opt-out of the State health insurance first—you cannot have both.

Private health insurance entitle you to services and facilities not covered by public scheme, such as private healthcare, private hospital rooms, dental implants and complementary therapies.

Private Healthcare Registration

The application process for private health insurance is quite complicated as it might require you to take medical tests, answer questionnaire concerning your medical history and submit a proof of income.

Most private insurers in Germany require you to pay medical costs upfront and then claim reimbursements, whereas public insurance usually covers everything upfront through your social security contributions. 

The health insurance costs from private providers widely varies according to profiles, you can compare private health insurance providers in Germany on this website PKV.

Some of the top private insurance providers contact can be found through the list of members of PKV

It is mindful to always inquire which treatments and hospitals do your insurance company cover with the cost coverage percent as Co-payments have been increasing for certain treatments and medicines in Germany. In some areas such as dental, orthodontic treatment, and optical care, state health insurance only covers a small portion of the cost.


All the German states share responsibility with the central government for hospital provision in the Healthcare system in Germany.

There are three types of hospital (Krankenhauser) in Germany:

  • Public hospitals (Offentliche Krankenhauser) – run by local or federal state authorities. These include Germany’s university hospitals. Most number of hospitals in Germany are Public Hospitals.
  • Voluntary charitable hospitals (Frei gemeinnutzige Krankenhauser) – run by churches or German Red Cross organizations.
  • Private hospitals (privatkrankenhauser) – run by private companies.

You should take your German health insurance card when you visit. Generally, the hospitals in Germany charge a daily fee of about 10 – 15 EUR with additional costs for diagnostics, surgery, and other medical procedures. Children aged under 18 years of age do not have to pay any costs.

It is important to note that hospitals have a certain amount of definite space allotted to patients with public insurance and with private insurance but the medical treatment for both public and private insurance holders is almost identical. Patients with private healthcare can demand to be treated by one of the hospital’s chief doctors and there are some private clinics that are open only to patients with private health insurance.

Hospitals in Germany do not provide personal items. You would be required to bring your own bathrobe, toiletries, and slippers.

German websites like and can be of assistance to find doctors based on ratings from other patients.

Pharmacies and Medication

Prescription and non-prescription drugs can be easily obtained at pharmacies (Apotheken) and can refer this to search for local pharmacies.

Patients enrolled in the public health insurance scheme (with prescription on a pink slip of paper) have to pay only 10% of the costs i.e. about 5-10 EUR.

Private Insurance holders mostly get prescriptions on a blue sheet of paper which requires them to pay the full price of the drug up front and then send the receipt to your insurance company for reimbursement.

Healthcare for Women

Gynecologists are accessible in Germany through public health insurance. Public health insurance doesn’t cover most contraception costs.

Statutory insurance covers annual screenings for every woman aged over 20 for cervical cancer, breast cancer, and ovarian cancer.

State health insurance also covers the basic costs of pregnancy and childbirth. However, additional costs may be applicable for the paperwork involved in giving birth.

Private health insurance holders in Germany should check with the insurer for details about medical care for mother and baby.

Healthcare For Children

Public health insurance covers children until the age of 18. Vaccinations for children in Germany are free.

Dental insurance in Germany

If you have state German health insurance, simple routine dental procedures (filling, dental hygiene) or dental emergencies are more likely to be covered with the dentists who operate within the statutory health insurance scheme.

Otherwise, dental work in Germany can be quite expensive, and would often require you to present a cost estimate to your insurance provider prior to getting treatment.

The coverage for dental work varies greatly depending on the procedure and the individual.

There is additional private health insurance available for dental treatment. This is usually presented as a top-up insurance option called Zahnzusatzversicherung or Zahnschutz-Zusatzversicherung.

Emergency Services

The primary responders in Germany for emergencies are – Emergency Medical Services (Rettungsdienst), Fire Services (Feuerwehr) and the police (Polizei).

Pan European Emergency Number – 112

Police – 110

Ambulance (Rettungswagen or Krankenwagen) – 19222 

Non-emergency medical (doctor on call): 116 117 you can also visit the website for further details.

To find an emergency pharmacy call 0800 002 28 33 from a landline or 22 8 33 from a mobile.

Useful phrases:

Call an ambulance!: Rufen Sie einen Krankenwagen!

It’s an emergency: Es ist ein Notfall/dringend.

I’m in pain: Ich habe Schmerzen.

I need a doctor: Ich brauche einen Arzt.

I need a hospital: Ich brauche ein Krankenhaus.

There’s been an accident: Es gab einen Unfall.

Top 5 delicious desserts you must try in Germany

delicious desserts

Wondering which desserts to try in Germany? Here is the list of German delicious desserts that you should definitely try.

Germans have great love and respect for sweet treats combined with a passion for local and seasonal ingredients. Enjoying various kitchen with afternoon coffee or tea is a deeply ingrained cultural practice and the overall daily lives of the people include many traditional specialties catering to one’s sweet tooth.

When it comes to delicious desserts, Germany has a vast and rich culinary heritage. From simple fruit tarts to decadent bundt cakes our selection of authentic German delicious desserts will surely satisfy your sweet tooth.

Delicious Desserts:

Lebkuchen (Gingerbread Cookies)

A true German Christmas favorite. If there is one thing you will find at pretty much every German market, its Lebkuchen. These are a version of gingerbread cookies with dark chocolate coating, nuts, or powdered sugar. The German gingerbread is often found in the shape of a heart and decorated with cute pet names or words of encouragement.

Marmorkuchen (Marble Cake)

The marble cake is the super moist easy cake recipe baked in a bundt pan marbling two different colored batters into a cake. Wondering making two different batters Surprisingly you don’t need two completely different batters to make a marble cake. You simply take one-third of vanilla batter and mix with melted chocolate and cocoa powder and bingo that’s your chocolate batter. It also tastes luscious when paired with pineapple, guava, coconut cream, Bavarian cream, or vanilla buttercream fillings.

Apfelkuchen (Apple Cake)

A kind of apple cake that everyone loves. It is great for people who are new to baking and has a high apple to cake ratio. The apples are soaked in sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice and then baked into buttery pastry mixture. It is a great companion with coffee or sweetened whipped cream and usually served as an afternoon dessert.

Schwarzwalder kirschtorte ( Black Forest Cake)

The hugely popular dessert around that made German’s culinary skills known to the world. It is full of cherries, chocolate, liquor, and whipped cream. Traditionally, kirschwasser, a clear spirit made from sour cherries are added to the cake. Sometimes rum is used commonly in Austrian recipes.

Zimtsterne (cinnamon star)

Christmas simply isn’t Christmas without these German ‘cinnamon star’ cookies. You can find them in any grocery store and Christmas market around Germany, also in Austria and Switzerland. These cookies are made from a combination of almost entirely groundnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts, topped with icing.

Let us know if you have tried these tempting delicious desserts in the comments. Make sure to follow our facebook page to keep up to date with latest information.

Complete guide to getting a Tax ID in Germany

tax id

The tax ID (Steueridentifikationsnummer) is a tax identification number. This series of numbers is assigned to a person permanently and is recognized as the national standard. Every employer asks for a Tax ID in Germany and every resident’s earnings are subject to a basic tax allowance, including researchers and scientists coming from abroad. Worried about how to get one? Let’s have a look.

In this guide, we look at the tax numbers in Germany and how to get yours.

  • The Tax ID (Steueridentifikationsnummer)
  • The Tax number (Steuernummer)
  • The VAT number (Umsatzsteuer-Identifikationsnummer)

What is Tax ID/Steueridentifikationsnummer?

Your tax ID number (Identifikationsnummer) is given to you by the Federal Tax Office of Germany automatically the first time you register in any given German city. It is an 11-digit number that you will use in order to gain employment in Germany. This Tax ID is also assigned to a newborn child in Germany upon registration.

The Tax ID must be included on all applications, declarations, and communications you submit to the German tax authorities. You will receive your tax ID automatically by post between two-to-four weeks after you register your address upon arrival in Germany.

What is Tax number/Steuernummer?

The tax number is assigned by the local tax office and will change if you move to e.g. another city. Being an employee you do not need to apply for a tax number. It will be assigned to you automatically when you file your tax return.

The VAT number (Umsatzsteuer-Identifikationsnummer)

The Umsatzsteuer-Identifikationsnummer, USt-Identifikationsnummer or USt-IdNr. is the German term for the VAT number. It’s a 9 digit number with the format “DE123456789“.

This is only applicable to businesses. You also get a VAT number by filling the Fragebogen zur Steuerlichen Erfassung. You will not get a number if you declare a small business (Kleintunternehmer), because small businesses do not need to charge VAT.


I lost my tax id, Can I find it again?

Check some of your documents like finanzamt or payslips from the employer. If you still cannot find it, do not worry. You can find it in one of these two ways

  • You can request Tax ID online again, but it might take up to 4 weeks.
  • Or simply head to your local Finanzamt with your identification in hand. And they will check your details and give you the details on the spot. Find your local Finanzamt with postal code.

When will I get the tax id after registration?

Once you arrive in Germany and complete your residence registration, you will get the tax id automatically within 2 weeks. If you need it immediately, head to the Finanzamt and provide your details to get it on the spot.

I live in abroad and receive wages from Germany, Should I pay tax in Germany?

If an employee does not live in Germany but receives wages in Germany, he is subject to limited taxation. In these cases, the German tax liability is only subject to domestic income, e.g. payment of remuneration from the LBV. Employees with limited tax liability are classified in tax class I. More information here

Tax number for freelancers?

Freelancers and those self-employed must apply for a tax number (Steuernummer) at their respective tax office. You will have to fill out a questionnaire and then, in a couple of weeks, you are the proud owner of your very own, brand-new tax number.

Those who run a commercial business do not have to apply for a tax number. The trade office (Gewerbeamt) automatically sends the tax office the respective tax number.

Additionally, income generated by freelance work is generally taxable for VAT (Mehrwertsteuer or MwSt).

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Complete guide to find accommodation in Germany

Accommodation in Germany

Once you decided to move to Germany, the next vital part is finding accommodation in Germany. Before finding it, it’s also important to know the terminologies.

Zimmer – room

2 Zimmer Apartment – In some cities, the living room also considered a room. 2 Zimmer apartment means 1 bedroom, 1 living room, and of course the bathroom and kitchens are included.

1 Zimmer apartment – 1 bedroom, combined living, and kitchen. But varies in some cities. Please look at the details clearly when searching.

Being a foreigner, it is not so easy to find one. But, don’t worry this post might show the path to find the accommodation for you.

Now, let’s go through types of accommodation in Germany. Almost all the rental agreement runs for 12 months or 24 months or more.

Private accommodation in Germany:

Private apartments meant renting the entire space. This will be expensive as all the costs bear by you. The price variation depends on the region and you can choose outside of the city which costs a bit less if you are not a regular traveler.

Where you can find:

  • Facebook groups – This is one the best way to find accommodation in Germany. There are a lot of Facebook groups as per region. Please post your requirements or find ads posted in the groups.
  • immobilienscout24

Shared accommodation in Germany:

The shared accommodation is really famous in Germany, also called WG (Wohngemeinschaft) and it’s sharing the apartment with others. This can be strangers who will become friends later 🙂 or you can share with your friends. You will get a separate bedroom with shared kitchen and bathroom.

Where you can find:

  • Facebook groups

Student accommodation in Germany:

The student accommodation is quite cheap than all others. If you are a student, look for help at your university. Basically, this is applicable only for students with student id. However, some students go on vacation for a few months, then they will do subletting their space. If you are lucky, you might get one which is cheaper than any other accommodation

Where you can find:

  • Facebook groups
  • University portals
  • Friends at University

Temporary accommodation in Germany:

This can be your last choice. After trying all other accommodation options, if you still not holding any rental agreement then you can book temporary accommodation on websites like Airbnb, hostels, hotels, booking. Remember, you can’t do Residence registration which is required if you are staying more than 3 months in Germany and should be done before 14 days of your arrival.

Where you can find:

Sample email to landlord:

The landlords also get hundreds of emails like employers. It’s very hard to shortlist the tenants. All you need to do stand as unique in the competition. You have to include all your details in the email while sending it to the landlord. There should not be any question mark about you. Let’s have a look of sample email in German:

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,

Ich arbeite als {Your Position} bei der {Company details} (Or mention what you do in Germany, for example student)

Und interessiere mich für Ihre Wohnung, gerne möchte ich sie zeitnah besichtigen.

Termine kann ab dem {Date} ich zu folgenden Zeiten einrichten:
Vormittags bis {Time} Uhr
Abends unter der Woche ab {Time} Uhr oder
An Wochenenden
Telefonisch erreichen Sie mich unter: {Your contact number}

Also, mention about your hobbies, habits and how long you are living in Germany.(This could give an clear idea about you for landlord) and easy to shortlist you.

Herzlichen Dank vorab und viele Grüße,
{Your Name} 

Important tips:

  • Always read the contract carefully and completely, some landlords add rules like need to stay for 24 months if leaving early need to pay 3 months rent, etc.
  • If you don’t know to speak the German language, then it’s quite difficult to find accommodation quickly. As most of the landlords expect you to speak German. In this case, you can look for new projects or projects maintained by companies. Those companies look for the valid id, employment that you can pay the rent and good SHUFA score.


Can I pay before visiting the apartment?

No, don’t ever pay the deposit or rent amount before visiting the apartment. You will get a lot of spam emails like saying that they are not in Germany and will send keys by post. Please ignore such emails.

Can I sign the contract on visiting day?

No, normally the process here: The landlord invites a lot of people at different dates and different timings. After inviting all and landlord chose the best for their apartment and this process can take some days. If the landlord is asking to sign the contract on visiting, then you must think something wrong. If you have doubts about the apartment, please check the landlord details in Rathaus based on the region.

Can I pay as a cash to landlord?

No, basically all landlords expect the payment once you move into the apartment and signing the contract. And, to pay via the bank transfer. Don’t ever pay with cash as you will not be having any proof too.

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Top 5 cities to live and work in Germany


Germany is a favorite with travelers from all over the world. A destination that presents you with a wealth of tradition and leaves you with everlasting impressions. Germany is a beautiful country and one of the largest countries in Europe by population and area.

Here are the 5 best cities in Germany to live and work


Berlin is one of the most fascinating urban areas and isn’t just Germany’s capital and biggest city, it is likewise the social center point of the country. Berlin has an energetic culture and a developing populace of over 3.76 million individuals. It is home to the biggest populace of ex-pats from a wide range of countries, including the U.S., Italy, and Turkey.

Berlin is energetic and tense and is Germany’s middle for a lively blend of style, structure, music, and craftsmanship.

A social city consistently progressing and a spending voyager’s heaven, the German capital has something for everybody, from throbbing nightlife to in excess of 170 world-class exhibition halls, displays, and philharmonics, and from masterful relics that despite everything recount to the tale of its violent past to all the guarantees of a sparkling future.

Berlin is the startup capital of Europe and Berlin’s startup fascination depends on a blend of reasonable day to day environments, the general dynamic and inventive culture, a various pool of ability, and aptitude, just as appealing financing programs.

With around 500 new tech new startups every year, Berlin would be your next destination to live and work

Berlin startup ecosystem is ranked 1 in Germany and 7 globally.


When anyone hears about Frankfurt, skyline pops in mind. Frankfurt is conveniently situated at the core of both Germany and Europe.

Frankfurt is an extraordinary strolling city, and most by far of its midtown goals might be reached by walking. Its international airport, which is directly accessible from all across the globe, is just a couple of minutes from Frankfurt’s primary train station, one of the biggest in Germany.

With a population of 753,056+, there is a well-developed public transport system, which connects Frankfurt with the surrounding Rhine-Main Region both quickly and easily. Frankfurt is a global hub for finance and education. In Frankfurt, you’ll find HQs for the European Central Bank, German Federal Bank, Commerzbank, Frankfurt Stock Exchange, and Deutsche Bank.

As the startup ecosystem is growing rapidly, it can be your next destination to live and work in Germany

Frankfurt’s startup ecosystem is ranked 4 in Germany and 94 globally.


Munich is the capital of Bavaria and one of the most excellent and reasonable urban areas in Germany. It is one of the most lovely and enchanting urban communities in the entirety of Germany and is documented with exhibition halls and wonderful engineering. It is generally acclaimed for being the focal point of the Oktoberfest celebration, which pulls in more than 6 million guests consistently.

Munich is a cultural hub with a population of 1.47 million residents. With the most remarkable economy in Germany, Munich is home to outstanding corporates and prominent universities and research establishments. Simultaneously, its startup biological system is esteemed at $4.5 billion, as indicated by 2018 insights by Startup Genome.

Munich startup ecosystem is ranked 2 in Germany and 41 globally. Can it be your next destination to live and work in Germany?


Stuttgart was chosen as the least stressful city in the world and the heart of the automotive industry in Germany. It’s a home for global corporations such as Daimler AG,  Porsche, Bosch, Dinkelacker, and many more.

Stuttgart is likewise a vehicle intersection and has the 6th biggest air terminal in Germany. And might be your next destination live and work in Germany

 Stuttgart startup ecosystem is ranked 7 in Germany and 195 globally.


Hamburg is the second biggest city in Germany. With a population of roughly 1.84 million individuals, it is likewise a famous goal for sightseers from around the globe. Home to numerous elite athletics groups, Hamburg is an enormous financial city, and it is the most loved among ex-pats searching for occupations in finance.

Hamburg is a major European science, research, and education hub, with several universities and institutions. It has architecturally significant buildings in a wide range of styles and no skyscrapers

According to Wikipedia, The many streams, rivers, and canals are crossed by some 2,500 bridges, more than London, Amsterdam, and Venice put together. Hamburg has more bridges inside its city limits than any other city in the world

Hamburg’s startup ecosystem is ranked 3 in Germany and 61 globally. Would you consider Hamburg as your next destination to live and work in Germany?

Which among these fabulous cities would you choose to live and work in Germany? Let us know in the comments.

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Top 6 facts about Germans


Germany is one of the most powerful countries in the world. There is a lot of facts in Germany, home of more than 80 million people diversified in different ethnic groups. We will talk about the top 6 in this post.


Germans are very punctual and expect others to be. They always make it on time or 10-15 mins earlier for appointments. If you ever meet a German or have a date with a German girl or boy, make sure you arrive on time or earlier.


Most Germans like to plan their day earlier. They like to have a schedule each day of things they have to achieve and things they want to get done by the end of the day.

Following rules:

Most Germans are systematic and stick to the rules. If you break the rules like crossing the traffic signal when red, they might get offended. Over time, Germans have established a set of rules to manage every part of life.


Beer has a long tradition in Germany and is crafted only from 5 ingredients. Every city is proud of its own beer brand. Germans love beer on every occasion. All restaurants serve beer mostly regional brands based on region. And a lot of bars, restaurants advertise which beer they sell. You may not find water, but definitely beer 🙂


Germans love to speak their own language Deutsch and expect you to speak the same. Different parts of Germany has different dialects.


Most Germans are coffee lovers and Germany is the 3rd largest market for coffee in the world.

There are still many more interesting facts about the Germans. But these top 6 facts give you some idea. What do you think about the facts? Please add in comments if you know more

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Which income tax class you belong to in Germany?

Tax Class

Moving to Germany from another country and to work have to go through a lot of formalities and it is also important to know which income tax class you belong to. Before that, make sure you have Tax Id

All employees are classified into tax categories for the wage tax deduction (Einkommensteuer). The income tax is paid to the government from your gross salary and it is automatically deducted from your monthly paycheck.

The minimum taxable gross income is €9,169 (no tax is charged under this amount). The tax rate starts from 14% and goes up to 45% for the highest earners (over €265,327).

The income tax class depends on your marital status and divided into 6 tax classes (Steuerklassen)

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Class I:

All employees who are single, living in a registered civil partnership, divorced, widowed or married unless they fall under tax category II, III, or IV.

Class II:

Applies to employees who are single parent

Class III:

Applies to employees who are married and

  • Spouse reside in Germany
  • Spouse doesn’t earn a wage or Spouse earns a wage and classified under Tax Class V

Class IV:

Applies to married couple and earns a equivalent income and reside in Germany.

Class V:

Applies to married employees and earns a less income than partner (classified under class III)

Class VI:

Employees who are receiving multiple wages from more than one employer (Multiple jobs)

How can you change Tax Class?

When you married and your spouse is residing in Germany, then you are eligible to change the tax class.

  1. Fill and signed application from both partners, you can fill the application form online
  2. You can visit Finazamt or send a post based on your residence

They will process the form on the spot and give you newly printed Lohnsteuerkarte with new tax class

Important tips:

  1. If spouses belong to class III and V, it’s better to file as a Joint tax return and will receive only one tax assessment (Steuerbescheid), also will receive a refund to one account if any.
  2. If one of the partners earns a higher income (income ratio of 60:40), then it makes sense to change class to 3 and 5 and this might increase the net salary(Nettogehalt) of the higher earner.

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Residence Registration – First thing to do after your arrival in Germany

Residence Registration

One of the most common words you hear in Germany is Anmeldung also Registration. In this post, we will talk about the Residence Registration/City Registration that has to be done after your arrival in Germany.

If you are planning to stay for more than 3 months in Germany, you need to register yourself as a resident within 2 weeks of your arrival at the registration office (Anmeldeamt, Bürgerbüro or Bürgeramt) of the city you arrived in.

Why Residence Registration is important?

The residence registration certificate also known as Anmeldebestätigung or Meldebescheinigung is required for many purposes:

  1. Tax ID – After registration is completed, you will get the tax id in the post within 3-4 weeks which is required for your employer and for tax claims
  2. Health Insurance: once you arrive in Germany, Health insurance is one of the mandatory things and without proof of residence certificate, it is not possible to apply for Health insurance.
  3. Bank account: Without a residence registration, you cannot open a bank account in Germany.
  4. Residence Permit/work permit
  5. University registration
  6. Mobile Phone Contract
  7. Credit Card without Bank account – Some banks provide the Credit Card without a bank account. Residence Registration is required to apply for such credit cards.
  8. Landline internet
  9. Vehicle registration permit
  10. Pet registration – You read it right and the residence registration certificate is required to register your pet
  11. And many more

Documents required for Residence Registration:

You need the documents below to receive your certificate of registration as a resident in Germany

  1. Valid Passport or national ID card (original required)
  2. Rental agreement from your Landlord (also called Wohnungsgeberbestätigung)
  3. The registration form signed by landlord (Anmeldeformular/Meldeschein), you can get this form from the Bürgeramt
  4. Visa if you have one (optional)
  5. Marriage certificate if applicable

How and where to register?

Check your city website and get an appointment or directly visit Bürgeramt which can take more time especially in larger cities.

You can look for it here with your postal code

Please check the timings before directly visiting the registration office

Important things to note:

  1. At the time of registration, you will be asked about your religion. If you belong to either Protestant (evangelisch) or Catholic (katholisch), You are required to pay church tax (Kirchensteuer) which is about 8-9% annual income based on the region.
  2. According to law, Lately, registration or incorrect address details can make you pay fine up to 1000 euros
  3. You need to repeat the registration whenever you are moving to a new residence address.
  4. If you are moving out of Germany permanently, it is also mandatory to deregister within 2 weeks
  5. After your registration, You will also receive the Rundfunkbeitrag, the national TV and radio tax which costs €17.50 per month.