SHARE
COPY LINK

LIVING IN GERMANY

The 10 things that you really love about living in Germany

What is the thing about living in Germany that is most important to expats? On Wednesday many readers shared their views with us, giving answers ranging from cute guys to affordable healthcare.

The 10 things that you really love about living in Germany
Photo: DPA

1. Sensible laws and an open society

Several readers said they valued Germany as a country with a good and inclusive legal system.

“The sovereignty of law over all and protections for all,” are what Musa Ibrahim described as Germany’s biggest strengths.

Umair Anwar wrote on Facebook that “law and order and safety, gender equality and a modern society” all made Germany “one of the best countries in the world.”

“A beautiful country, laws that make sense and the food is fabulous,” wrote Rebecca Freyler.

In a (very unscientific) straw poll we conducted on Thursday, sensible laws and an open society came out on top among 14 options, with a third of respondents saying these were the best things about living in Germany.

2. Good transport infrastructure

Photo: DPA

Whether it be the world famous autobahn or inner city trams, readers seem to love the fact that it’s easy to get around the Bundesrepublik.

“There are so many things I love about this beautiful country, I don’t know where to start,” wrote Merrie Arnold-Schultz. “One thing that makes my life here so enjoyable: I’m able to walk to the supermarket, bakery etc. Not being forced to drive everywhere is absolutely fabulous and improves my well-being.”

“Let’s not forget how driving can be a pleasure in Germany with the excellent autobahn system and the skilful, courteous drivers,” Joseph Beckett wrote.

3. Funding for science

There were a couple of shout outs for Germany's funding for the sciences.

“I'm a scientist (that happens to be female) and the wonderful scientific funding and research opportunities are truly fantastic in Deutschland,” wrote Francis Kirigin. “Also … German guys are incredibly cute and the gender equality in Deutschland is incredibly fantastic. I mean, with Dr. Angela Merkel leading the country – a female scientist herself – what do you expect?”

4. Football

Photo: DPA

Murtada Bazo was just one of the readers who declared his love for German football.

“A great country with really nice people, wonderful nature, good economy, law rules the country, safe land, [and the] wonderful Bundesliga. God bless Germany,” he wrote.

But not everyone seems to like the top tier of German football, which is famously dominated by one very wealthy Bavarian club.

“You were doing so well up until you mentioned the Bundesliga, which makes even the Scottish League look competitive!” Colin Maclean said in response to Bazo’s post.

5. Affordable healthcare

Germany’s healthcare system, which works largely through public health insurance schemes, was praised by Michelle Scofield Schröder.

“I love knowing that if I or someone in my family gets very sick, in addition to the emotional stress of that time, it won't be an additional financial burden and I won't have to beg others for help,” she wrote.

6. The landscape

Photo: DPA

The country that stretches from the Alpine peaks in the south to the white cliffs of Rügen in the north was also praised for its beauty.

“The people are fantastic. Your economy is good. The food and wine and lifestyle, I was drawn to. I'm eager to go back to live. The landscape [is] by far the most beautiful. Great cars – shall I continue?” wrote Sue-Ellen Hillier.

7. The people

Expat surveys often tend to find that people who migrate to Germany find it a struggle to make friends with the locals. But quite a few of our readers seem to have a rather different view.

SEE ALSO: How I made friends during my first year in Germany

“Germany is a great and lovely country. The people of Germany are filled with personality, that's way I love Germany,” Robel Berhe wrote.

“Great people, great food, everyone's basically mostly friendly to me… …I love the Bundesliga I love the atmosphere,” another reader said.

8. Beer

Photo: DPA

Obviously the national drink got a mention in quite a few Facebook posts.

“Awesome beer, awesome people, awesome science,” wrote one commentor.

“Food is cheap. Beer is cheap and excellent. Best bread in the world. Functioning government. Great infrastructure (perfect highways),” enthused Roland Saucier.

Well, Germany might not have the most functioning government at the moment, but we certainly agree with him on the bread and the beer.

9. Goth festivals

Certainly a niche one here, but Rhiannon Beswick insisted the best thing about German are its goth and medieval festivals. Oh, and Deutsche Post.

10. Things that aren't German

Some people were less than keen to lavish praise on the land of beer and breeches, though.

“Turkish food, Scottish whiskey, Dutch cheese, cars made in Czech republic, Belgian Beer, yup, Germany has it all,” Jonney Gardner guffawed.

Meanwhile Monica Loizzo said “I love living in Hamburg because it doesn't really feel like living in Germany.” Ouch.

LIVING IN GERMANY

REVEALED: The most commonly asked questions about Germans and Germany

Ever wondered what the world is asking about Germany and the Germans? We looked at Google’s most searched results to find out – and help clear some of these queries up.

Oktoberfest
Hasan Salihamidzic, the sports director of FC Bayern, arrives with his wife at Oktoberfest in full traditional dress. Photo: picture alliance/dpa |

According to popular searches, Germany is the go-to place for good coffee and bread (although only if you like the hard kind) and the place to avoid if what you’re looking for is good food, good internet connection and low taxes. Of course, this is subjective; some people will travel long stretches to get a fresh, hot pretzel or a juicy Bratwurst, while others will take a hard pass.

When it comes to the question on the bad Internet – there is some truth to this. Germany is known for being behind other rich nations when it comes to connectivity. And from personal experience, the internet connection can seem a little medieval. The incoming German coalition government has, however, vowed to improve internet connectivity as part of their plans to modernise the country.

There are also frequent questions on learning the German language, and people pointing out that it is hard and complicated. This is probably due to the long compound words and its extensive grammar rules, however, as both English and German are Germanic languages with similar words in common, it’s not impossible to learn as an English-speaker.

Here’s a look at some of those questions…

Why is German called Deutsch? Whereas ‘German’ comes from the Latin, ‘Deutsch’ instead derives itself from the Indo-European root “þeudō”, meaning “people”. This slowly became “Deutsch” as we know it today. It can be a bit confusing to English-speakers, who are right to think it sounds a little more like “Dutch”, however the two languages do have the same roots which may explain it.

And why is Germany so boring? Again, probably a generalisation, especially given that Germany has a landmass of over 350,000 km² with areas ranging from high rise, industrial cities to traditional old town villages and even mountain ranges, so you’re sure to find a place that doesn’t bore you to tears.

Perhaps it is a question that comes from the stereotype that Germans are obsessed with being strict about rules, organised and analytical. Or that they have no sense of humour – all of these things being not the most exciting traits. 

Either way, from my experience I can confirm that, even though there is truth to German society enjoying order and rules, the vast majority of people are not boring, and I’m sure if you come to Germany you’ll meet many interesting, funny and exciting people. 

READ ALSO: 12 mistakes foreigners make when moving to Germany

When it comes to the German weather, most people assume a cold and cloudy climate, however this isn’t entirely true. While the autumn and winter, especially in the north, come with grey skies and sub-zero temperatures, Germany can have some beautiful summers, with temperatures frequently rising above 30C in some places.

Unsurprisingly, the power and wealth of the German nation is mentioned – Germany is the largest economy in Europe after all, with a GDP of 3.8 trillion dollars. This could be due to strong industry sectors in the country, including vehicle constructions (I was a little surprised to find no questions posed on German cars), chemical and electrical industry and engineering. There are also many strong economic cities in Germany, most notably Munich, Frankfurt am Main and Hamburg.

READ ALSO: Eight unique words and phrases that tell us something about Germany

Smart and tall?

Why are Germans so tall? They are indeed taller than many other nations, with the average German measuring a good 172.87cm (or 5 feet 8.06 inches), however this may be a question better posed to the Dutch, who make up the tallest people in the world.

Why are Germans so smart? While this is again a generalisation – as individuals have different levels of intelligence in all countries – this question may stem from Germany’s free higher education system or their seemingly efficient work ethic. Plus there does seem to be some scientific research behind this question, with a study done in 2006 finding that Germans had the highest IQ in Europe.

So, while many of the questions posed about Germany and Germans on Google stem from stereotypes, we can confirm that some aren’t entirely made up. If you’re looking to debunk some frequently asked questions about France and the French, check out this article by our sister site HERE.

SHOW COMMENTS