• Germany edition
 
Happiest Germans live in Hamburg
Photo: DPA

Happiest Germans live in Hamburg

Published: 20 Sep 2011 13:48 GMT+02:00
Updated: 20 Sep 2011 13:48 GMT+02:00

Happy in Hamburg: People living in the northern port city are the most content Germans, according to a study published on Tuesday. While the eastern state of Thuringia has the grumpiest residents, overall the country is the happiest it's been in a decade.

“The Germans are more satisfied today than they have been for the last ten years,” said study director Professor Bernd Reffelhüschen in statement. The survey, called “The Happiness Atlas 2011,” was conducted in conjunction with the Allensbach polling institute, for logistics company Deutsche Post.

Plumbing the mood of 19 regions in Germany, Hamburg citizens recorded the highest level of happiness, ranking their feelings a positive 7.38 points from a possible ten.

Other regions with the jolliest Germans included Lower Saxony along the North Sea (7.14), and southern Bavaria (7.10). Residents in the eastern German states of Thuringia (6.45) and Brandenburg (6.56) were least satisfied with their lot in life.

Nonetheless, the difference in contentment between states belonging to former communist East Germany and the western states has shrunk to a mere 0.3 points. Twenty years ago, after the after the fall of the wall, the gap was 1.3 points.

Deutsche Post sponsored the survey with the aim of spurring social discussion about what's important in life.

“The significance of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as the sole indicator of prosperity is increasingly criticised in science and politics. The Happiness Atlas 2011 helps us understand what is really important to the Germans for their life satisfaction,” said Jürgen Gerdes, Deutsche Post board member.

Although having a good salary was ranked among the study’s top ten happiness factors, the most important influences in determining satisfaction were good health, a stable marriage or relationship and spending time with friends and acquaintances.

Weekly sports activities and decision-making authority at work also played a part in determining overall well-being, along with the age of participants. Men and women aged 20 to 30 reported being happiest, while middle-aged Germans were less content.

But Germans older than 65 had happiness levels matching the those of 30-year-olds.

Data in the Happiness Atlas is based on an annual survey of 12,000 German households made since 1984.

The Local/emh

Related links:

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

14:24 September 20, 2011 by freechoice
Köln is number 1 in 3 categories!!
16:26 September 20, 2011 by melbournite
If they are the happiest here in Hamburg, how come noone smiles?
18:28 September 20, 2011 by Ludinwolf
lol Hannover is close to hamburg and people are just so unfriendly and moody that at the beginning i thought all the germans were like that... then discovered that is not. But hamburg with happiest people in the country... i don think so.
10:10 September 21, 2011 by trallallero
What ?!? In Thuringia the grumpiest ?!?

Believe me, lot of smiles and kindness here.
10:41 September 21, 2011 by So36
You people are mixing up happiness and being content with friendliness. I'm pretty sure people in Thuringia are friendlier than Brandenburgers.
10:48 September 21, 2011 by jimscott
I wasn,t aware there was such a thing as a happy German.
11:20 September 21, 2011 by USA_NUMBER_ONE
I thought Eastern Germany looked like a Russian gulag....messed up ..and the people were country and poor
18:56 September 21, 2011 by opalala
That study was probably made by the same company who did a similar inquiry in North Korea and found out they are the happiest country on Earth.
19:13 September 21, 2011 by Lost in Germany
What are they so happa about? They have constant rain!!
10:51 September 22, 2011 by Johnne
I challenge this survey.
17:29 September 24, 2011 by marktshark
Yes I think it is true, those in Erfurt don't smile so much
08:10 September 30, 2011 by JCBearss
Wiesbaden...epicenter of misery and mean Germans...WOW I MISS BAYERN
20:32 October 1, 2011 by mikel taylor
so i back my car out of the driveway this morning and right into another car, oh darn I'm thinking, so i get out to talk with this other driver, when he gets out of his car i notice he's a midget, first thing he says is I'M NOT HAPPY ! so i say to him, so which one are you then!!

Happy people will get this joke, Hamburg people will not, Americans will most definitely get it,

I will respectfully disagree with the happiest Germans thing my vote goes for Bavarians, Hamburg although i love it and it's close to where I'm from they are a little stuck up.. great city,great people, but a little cold,

the happiest people live closest to the brewery, or in the area with the most sunshine
16:14 September 14, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
Well they most certainly don't live in Berlin. One only has to look at the sour faces on the tram to work every morning. Jeeeez, life is too short to be like that.
Today's headlines
April wraps up with stormy week ahead
Lightning over Lake Starnberg, in Bavaria. Photo: DPA

April wraps up with stormy week ahead

The end of April is looking stormy for Germany with hot and cold air mixing and making for wild spring weather over the coming few days, state forecasters DWD said on Wednesday. READ () »

Germany sold €40 million of arms to Russia
Russian troops pictured in March in Crimea. Photo: DPA

Germany sold €40 million of arms to Russia

German arms sales to Russia have come under fire following the crisis in Ukraine. In 2012 Germany sold €40 million worth of rifles, pistols and armoured vehicles to the country. READ () »

Munich to get 'Tetris cube' hotel
Photo: Nieto Sobejano Architects, Berlin

Munich to get 'Tetris cube' hotel

Munich's old city centre is to receive an ultra modern addition to its skyline in the shape of a new hotel dubbed 'the Tetris cube'. READ () »

The Local List
German beer culture in 11 gulps
Photo: DPA

German beer culture in 11 gulps

Wednesday marks the 498th anniversary of Germany's celebrated beer purity law, so in honour of nearly half a millennium of hoppy history, this week's Local List tells some beer truths you may not know. READ () »

Feminist's apartment advert goes viral
Photo: Screenshot/Facebook

Feminist's apartment advert goes viral

Finding accommodation in Berlin is notoriously tricky. But one woman on the hunt might have a particularly hard time of it, with an advert for an apartment so absurd it has gone viral. READ () »

Russian spies step up activity in Germany
The Russian embassy building in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Russian spies step up activity in Germany

Russian spies are increasingly targeting potential informants in German politics and business by taking them out to dinner, according to counterintelligence services. READ () »

Jobless benefits to get leaner and meaner
Photo: DPA

Jobless benefits to get leaner and meaner

The German government is planning a shake-up of the country’s unemployment benefit system, Hartz IV, by introducing stricter rules on claimants in a move which supporters say will cut bureaucracy. READ () »

Germany's oldest woman dies aged 112
Gertrud Henze. Photo: DPA

Germany's oldest woman dies aged 112

Germany’s oldest woman died at the age of 112 on Tuesday. Gertrud Henze was born on December 8th 1901 and joked her long life was down to never getting married. READ () »

Exchange student 'murderer' stays silent
Police search the area near where Gabriele's body was found in October 2013. Photo: DPA

Exchange student 'murderer' stays silent

The alleged murderer of an exchange student in southern Germany stayed silent in the dock on Tuesday on the first day of his trial. READ () »

European Elections 2014
'If Britain goes, Europe is lost'
Hans-Olaf Henkel (r) celebrates the one-year anniversary of the AfD with leader Bernd Lücke. Photo: DPA

'If Britain goes, Europe is lost'

In an interview with The Local, one of the leaders of Germany's eurosceptic party talks about Europe's future, why Britain is a model country and why he will not work with UKIP's Nigel Farage. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Politics
Interview with AfD - 'If Britain goes, Europe is lost'
Photo: DPA
National
Police damage own water cannon with eggs
Photo: DPA
National
Let us start work later after World Cup nights, unions says
Photo: DPA
Society
Crystal meth use hits record level
Photo: DPA
Rhineland
Elderly man taped €200,000 to his genitals
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
What's the unemployment rate in your area of Germany?
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Nine ways to celebrate Easter like a German
Photo: Galerie Bilderwelt
Gallery
World War I in colour photos
Photo: DPA
Society
JobTalk: Why you should teach English in Germany
Photo: DPA
National
330,000 sign up against TV licence fee
Photo: DPA
Hamburg
School kids hospitalized after 'porno' party
Photo: Submitted
Frankfurt
'I'll get even with my old pal Schwarzenegger'
Advertisement:
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Ten great inventions you (probably) didn't know were German
Photo: J. Arthur White
Berlin
Clashes in Berlin as refugees tear down their own camp
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Munich's baby polar bears are finally named
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The 10 best German employers to work for
CurrencyFair
Sponsored Article
Why it pays to avoid banks when making overseas transfers
Mr. Lodge
Sponsored Article
How to find a furnished rental in Munich
Sponsored Article
How to make a lasting impression in business
Hult International Business School
Sponsored Article
What they don't teach you at Business School
Photo: DPA
Society
Nine jobs you can only do in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,070
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd