Germany is a country that is positively jam-packed with history and culture. It has been crowned as the fifth most popular country to relocate to, with around 21,000 people having moved to Germany to set up home in the past 30 years. This is unsurprisingly, as it is a country that offers a wealth of options for a secure and affordable life for many. Not to mention, there is so much to see and do in Germany – with a strong historic background, there is a plethora of sights to see, countless fascinating museums, and so much more.
There are many reasons why people migrate to Germany – whether it be for a gap year, to study abroad, to set up a new life, or for work. Though no matter the reason, it is undoubtedly a huge step to take, and it inevitably calls for major planning. We’ve pulled together some of the most important things you should know before moving to Germany.
- Requirements for gaining entry into Germany.
This is perhaps the most important thing to consider before making any plans. Each and every country will have a different immigration process with thresholds that applicants must meet. To gain entry into Germany, you will need to have at least basic proficiency in German. You will also need to prove financial stability. This simply means that you must prove that you will be able to finance yourself in Germany – even if you will be working, you must be able to prove that you will have the initial funds to cover your expenses until you receive your salary.
Perhaps the most important criteria that you must fill in order to gain entry into Germany is holding valid health insurance coverage. Without it, you will not be able to immigrate to Germany. It can’t always be guaranteed that German authorities will accept foreign health insurance, so the recommended way is to get German health insurance. It can be expensive, so be sure to shop around for it. There are plenty of ways to find different coverage online.
- You should register with the local authorities.
Registering with your local authorities in Germany can be a complicated process, but you should treat it as a top priority, as it is something that needs to be done no later than one week after moving in. It applies to those renting property too, so just be sure to have your landlord’s details with you when registering. Don’t forget to keep a copy of your documents, as you will need them in the future, such as when signing for a new bank account.
- Transporting your belongings.
One thing that we don’t often think of straight away when relocating is how we will get our personal belongings there in one piece. Thankfully, you do have some options. For larger items such as sofas, beds or even your car, you could hire a traditional international removals company. For smaller pieces of luggage, you could always just carry these with you on your flight to Germany. However, with so much luggage, you could end up paying out a surprisingly huge amount for extortionate excess baggage fees, leaving you out of pocket.
Thankfully, there is another alternative. Luggage shipping companies can help you to transport all of your unaccompanied baggage to Germany for a low-cost, helping you to save time and money. Most luggage shipping companies offer a door to door service, meaning your bags can meet you at your destination. All in all, it makes your relocation easier!
- Learning to speak German.
Not only is having a basic proficiency in German a requirement for gaining entry to live in the country, but it will also help you out a great deal throughout the daunting first few months in a new, unfamiliar country. Learning to speak the language will help you to interact with locals, allowing you to make friends and integrate better into your new community. There are a number of great language glasses in Germany specifically for migrants. So, if you have some basic knowledge but want to improve your skills, look into attending a regular class.
- Opening a bank account.
If you hope to stay in Germany long-term or even on a permanent basis, you will need to open a German bank account. After all, you’ll need somewhere for your wages to go in, as well as an account where your rent/mortgage can conveniently be taken from. If you know your intentions early on, work on getting a German bank account sorted early on.