Top 5 Shopping Destinations in Germany

Top 5 Shopping Destinations in Germany

The country that fascinates us with its rich culture and bountiful beauty is also a place where all the shopaholics around the world would love to be. Shopping in Germany can definitely be a joyous and satisfying experience. The best of things at the cheapest prices will be offered to you only in this prime country. It does not stop there; the prices dip even deeper during the sale season when Germany becomes an absolute shopping hub! Check the post for the Shopping Destinations in Germany.

Though shopping malls are not a major thing in this country, you can find the best luxury brand outlet boutique stores on the streets stocked with some of the best things to buy. If you are a tourist with a good eye for great products, Germany is the place for you!

Here we have listed down 5 of the best streets to go shopping when you are in Germany: –

Schildergasse, Cologne

Schildergasse has to be one of the busiest streets in all of Europe. With people walking everywhere shopping for the best of brands such as Zara, H&M, etc, it is an absolute delight to visit. This street has a long history which marks its dates to the olden Roman Times. A street so old with a touch of the ancient times, now is a shopping hub for the modern Germans. Welstadthaus, a huge glass structure resembling a whale which also happens to house a cloth store is known to be the centre of attraction for the shoppers walking down this street.

Mauerpark Flea Market, Berlin

The Mauerpark flea market in Berlin is one of the vibrant and fun places to shop from on a lovely Sunday afternoon. From souvenirs, to clothes, to some cool second-hand furniture, this place will not disappoint you with it’s shopping options. This market is entirely situated on the street and is clubbed with some scrumptious street food, live music and colours. If you are in Berlin on a Sunday, you should definitely visit the Mauerpark flea market to witness the unreal vibe!

Kleinmarkthalle, Frankfurt

If you are in the mood to have a unique experience of grocery shopping in Germany, you have to check out the Kleinmarkthalle in Frankfurt. Bustling with people and activity, this market stretches to accommodate about 150 stalls selling gourmet products, wine, flowers, fresh produce, etc. This place comprises of everything a cooking enthusiast could dream of; and that also, at some really good prices!

Ingolstadt Village Designer Outlet

The shopping village of Germany is home to outlets of some crazy luxury brands such as Gucci, Prada and Versace. If you are game for a different and relaxing shopping experience, you should definitely include this place in your travel list. During the sale season, you can get products from these brands at some stellar prices. While it is just an hour away from Munich, you can reach here by a local bus which will turn out to be very reasonable.

Ku’damm, Berlin

Ku’ damm is one of the best streets in Berlin if you are looking for an enjoyable evening filled with loads of shopping. Here, you will get a dose of the best on going fashion trends. You can get your hands on some classy and chic stuff from Chanel, Armani and YSL at amazing prices during the promotional discount season.

Conclusion

Every city in Germany has their own little shopping streets where you can get the best of clothes and souvenirs. If you are a shopaholic looking for some good stuff at the best prices in Germany, here is an article with the list of places you can visit!

Click here to know more about Top Ten Places to visit in Germany.

How to Open a German Bank Account

How to Open a German Bank Account

To open a German bank account is the first and the most important step that comes to your mind when you step foot on the German grounds. You need to arrange utilities and finances for a new home, basic groceries, a mobile connection and German insurance. All this can only be made possible only  if you have a German bank account.

Once you are in Germany and are all set to make your new bank account with the necessary funds, you would want to do some research as to where you want to open your bank account. A thing about Germany is that it has more banks than heads in the country so you definitely have a wide variety to choose from. For the starters, the German banking system is made of 3 main pillars that are –

  • Private Commercial Banks
  • Public Savings Banks
  • Cooperative Banks

The Deutsche Bundesbank is the National Central Bank of Germany whereas the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority is the regulator of the country’s banking and financing services.

Types of Accounts in German Banks

Current Account (Girokonto)

A current account in Germany is some what like a basic account. With this account, you can receive payments and salaries and pay off bills. A lot of banks in Germany offer general current accounts and special current accounts for students and youngsters.

Savings Accounts (Sparkonto)

A Sparkonto account is usually opened alongside a Girokonto account because that allows you to save money and earn interest on it. Interest rates in Germany are way lower than interest rates in most other countries but saving an extra buck is always beneficial!

How to Open a Bank Account

German banking laws are pretty strict when it comes to admiting a new bank account holder. While most of the EU nationals will have absolutely no problem with getting a bank account, a non-EU national is going to face a few hardships. Non- EU nationals have to prove their registration by producing a German Work Permit. If you do not have a financial history in Germany, you might have to struggle a little in order to get somewhere with a bank account. If you are new to Germany, it is always advisable to personally head to the German bank branch and present your documentation.

The documentation includes: –

  • A valid passport/ photo id with German Residence Permit.
  • Address proof.
  • Evidence of Income and financial history in Germany.
  • Proof that you are a student if you are opening a student account such as college id.
  • SCHUFA credit rating.

To add on to this, you must prove your identity online or at a post office nearby.

Conclusion

Setting up life in Germany from scratch can be a task but once you have these banking guidelines in hand, it gets super easy at least when it comes to financing. We hope you have got an idea of how the German Banking System works and what you need to do in order to open a German bank account.

Read more about top job websites in Germany here.

 

How to Apply for a German Work Visa

How to Apply for a German Work Visa

Considering the low unemployment rates and the career opportunities Germany has to offer, it is an ideal location for job seekers to try their hand at getting employed. People internationally would love to join the German workforce for the amount of benefits they gain once they get a job in Germany.

A few people get lucky and get to enter Germany freely. These people start looking for a job only after they are in Germany, while the others have to go through the normal process of getting themselves a visa to enter the country for work purposes.

If you ask any non-EU national about their experience with their work visa applications. You’re sure to hear a dozen of horror stories. In this article, we will tell you exactly what you need to do in order to get your German work visa granted without any hassle.

How to Get a German Work Visa

First things first, if you need a work visa to enter Germany, you need to have a job offer/ contract to get your visa issued upon. After that apply with all the other necessary documents in order to get your Work visa approved.

Next in line, you have to produce a list of documents to obtain the visa. The documents are: –

  1. Standard German Visa Documents
  2. A properly signed document wherein you have been hired by your future employer.
  3. A Certificate of Health Insurance.

Every individual who wishes to seek a job in Germany and belongs to another country, needs to have a residence permit in order to go ahead with the visa application process.

The Process

The process of work visa application in Germany is very simple. You have applied for the work visa from a German embassy closest to your home with all the necessary documents. Next thing in line is getting your future employer into the picture. All the employer has to do is provide the German government with proof which says that the work you are undertaking cannot be done by a German national. About 75 Euros fee will be charged for the visa application.

Towards the end of it a small interview round will help the authority know why you are going to Germany. If the work visa application gets rejected, fee amount is not reimbursed. The duration of your German work visa is valid only up to one year from the date of visa approval. Work visa can be re-apply forrenewed the minute it gets expired.

Conclusion

Working in Germany surely comes with its perks, doesn’t it? A highly skilled professional who believes he can get a job Germany, shouldn’t  let the visa application process scare him. This article contains everything that will let you ace the visa application process with ease. Giving you a sure shot visa to get the job you’ve been longing for!

Also read about other general visa and its requirements here. Read more about the perfect German CV format here to get your CVs ready for Germany.

5 Interesting aspects of German Life you didn’t know

5 Interesting aspects of German Life you didn’t know

Germany is the second most popular country in the world for immigration. Every year thousands of migrants come to Germany for better life. People with different nationalities, religions, educations, and professions made Germany the cultural mosaic. Be it a student or a professional Germany can open up better avenues for education as well as quality lifestyle for family with security, health assurance, clean environment and lots of leisure time. Here is a list of 5 key German life aspects and reasons which could be a destination of your choice.

Germany is the second most popular country in the world for immigration. Every year thousands of migrants come to Germany for better life. People with different nationalities, religions, educations, and professions made Germany the cultural mosaic. Be it a student or a professional Germany can open up better avenues for education as well as quality lifestyle for family with security, health assurance, clean environment and lots of leisure time. Here is a list of 5 key reasons it could be a destination of your choice.

 1. Hanging lost items in trees

Germans are customarily friendly and helpful than other European nations where people usually keep to one. German people really tend to look out for one another and value them. If you happen to drop your hand glove in a cold winter and retrace your steps searching for it, or even after a week, you will very likely find it hung on a branch of a tree. It’s a common practice to hang lost items on trees or sign post where they will be easily visible when the owner comes backs. Most walkways and trails are decorated in this way and no one would dare take your stuff as their own. So when you find something, hang it up so it can be reunited with its owner.

2. Speak to the Government officials with utmost respect

It is always advisable to be polite when interacting with Police or Government officials in any country, when it comes to Germany, the laws get more specific with regards to the decorum of behavior. When speaking to Polizei, they have be addressed with a formal, ‘Sie’ and not informa , ‘Du’. If you fail to do so, it could result in criminal punishment and fines upto 600Euros as its illegal to do so. This policy applies for all German civil servants.

3. Free body Culture, an uncanny level of comfort with nudity

If you are in Germany and someone strikes a conversation with you in his or her birthday suit don’t be taken aback.  Germans are very comfortable with nudity and don’t think much of going au naturel. Germany, nudism is known as Freikoerperkultur (FKK), Free Body Culture. When you travel there, you’ll see that baring all is normal in saunas, swimming pools, and the park and on the beach.

Forget sausages and beer, the sign of true German-ness is publicly disrobing with absolutely zero self-consciousness. Summer in the parks of Berlin and Munich brings the chance of encountering a middle-aged, bronzed German wearing only a hat and performing hour long naked dance called the knackarschwiese in German, as a means of commemorating the start of summer each year.

4. No need to Queue but follow your place in a mass

In Germany, you will seldom find a machine that requests or gives out tokens for numbers neither you will find queues in which you need to stand and wait when at the bakery or butches shop. It’s strange but orderly as you just stand in a mass and know who is in front or you and who is behind you. You just have to go when the person ahead is done, in case you don’t know your place the rest of the crowd will surely let you know. If someone tries to barge in before his or her turn in front of you, just shout hallo and wave your hand in front of your face. This indicates that you saw the person cut, the rest of the mass will stare and look down on the offender, and it shames the person back into waiting for their turn.

5. No one is allowed to be hateful

Following the events of the Second World War, the country decided freedom of expression was less important than dealing with the harrowing events of the 1930s and 40s. As a result, flags of hateful, extremist ideologies like Nazis and Daesh are banned in Germany, and displaying them is punishable by up to three years in prison. Germany takes this kind of act seriously – understandably.

Conclusion

There is more to a country than the factors that influence quality of life, like political stability, a strong economy, environmental awareness, a good education system, seamless public transport and that is the culture, deeply rooted into the lives of the people. German way of life is special and if you are planning to move to Germany  this blog will help you open up to the quintessential ways of German lifestyle and adapt to them.

To understand the Germany culture better, do have a look here.

5 Good Reasons to move to Germany

5 Good Reasons to move to Germany

Germany is the second most popular country in the world for immigration. Every year thousands of migrants come to Germany for better life. People with different nationalities, religions, educations, and professions made Germany the cultural mosaic. Be it a student or a professional Germany can open up better avenues for education as well as quality lifestyle for family with security, health assurance, clean environment and lots of leisure time. Here is a list of 5 key reasons to move to Germany.

Germany is the second most popular country in the world for immigration. Every year thousands of migrants come to Germany for better life. People with different nationalities, religions, educations, and professions made Germany the cultural mosaic. Be it a student or a professional Germany can open up better avenues for education as well as quality lifestyle for family with security, health assurance, clean environment and lots of leisure time. Here is a list of 5 key reasons it could be a destination of your choice.

Germany gives you good healthcare options

According to WHO Germany’s Healthcare system is ranked on number 5 in top 10 healthcare system rankings. Germany has a universal healthcare system, meaning that everyone can receive healthcare treatment. People in Germany live 2-3 years longer on an average as compared to people in the west. If you plan to move and start living in Germany, you have to get health insurance. You can choose to take it from the public health system that covers around 90%of German residents or with a private company.

Working hours in Germany are shorter than in any other developed nation.

In Germany Businesses and shops can stay open only unto legally permitted hours. Hence a working in Germany means spending fewer hours at your desk as compared to other countries. Average working week in Germany is less than 48 hours a week and paid leave of 25 days on an average per year is applicable for any employee across Germany. There are also 10-13 public holidays per year in Germany, depending on which state you choose to live. So get ready to spend more family, personal time and sweat fewer hours at your workplace.

46 World heritage sites that you can visit, all in one country.

Whenever you feel like taking a break from your everyday life, apart from multiple leisure activities, you can choose from over 46 world heritage sites to explore. From the Black Forest, the Alps, countless gorgeous towns and most beautiful beaches, Germany has more than 2500 castles and miles and miles of hiking trails. Listing a few of them: Messel Pit Fossil Site, Wadden Sea, Wartburg Castle, Prehistoric Pile Dwellings around the Alps, Town of Bramburg etc. If you like long drives, you will enjoy driving on Germanys Autobahn (Highway system) 75% of which has no speed limit.

Public Transport in Germany is more than just efficient.

Germany like many Western European countries has one of the best public transport systems. The fastest and vastly used is the Rapid transit system involving five U-Bahn systems covering the city center and thirteen S-Bahn systems that operate underground in the city center and over ground towards the suburbs. Most big cities like Munich and Berlin have integrated Buses, trams, U-Bahn (underground subway) trains and S-Bahn (suburban trains) into a single network. Fares are determined by zones or time travelled, sometimes by both. A day pass or mutli-ticket offers a better value and must be stamped upon boarding in order to be valid.

German food and drink culture will make you feel at home.

When in Germany you need not worry about familiarizing with the German cuisine as it pretty simple and satisfying. Indulge yourself in some good hearty meals such as pork, beef and poultry in that order, usually pot-roasted or as sausages. Breakfast usually comprises variety of breads, marmalades and spreads along with various cheeses. If you are a vegetarian, fresh vegetable along with potatoes is easy choice along with some good cheeses and sauerkraut, a national delicacy. Beer is very common throughout all parts of Germany, with many local and regional breweries producing a wide variety of beers. It is generally not very expensive and of good quality.

Conclusion

Germany is a beautiful and diverse country to work and stay. With good healthcare, work hours regulations, good infrastructure and food and drink culture, Germany has so much to offer. No matter what your interest is, you will be able to find something to do in Germany.

To understand how you can get a visa to Germany and what are the categories available, do have a look here.

 

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