There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that Berlin is a fantastic city to live in. Well, as long as you have your own car. Whether you are only moving there for work or you want to start a family or even just to enjoy the city’s culture and nightlife, Berlin is the perfect place to move to.

Even though the city is very liberal, international, and generally a safe place, there are some cultural differences that you might want to avoid. To make your stay there a lot easier, we have compiled this list below with things that will help you understand the culture there a lot better.

Learn German

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Even if you are just starting to learn the language, it is seen as a major positive thing by the larger population. Even though there are a lot of cases when you can get by with only speaking English for some specific places, you can only speak German, and if you don’t know anything, you’re out of luck. For example, when you go to an insurance company and want to modify your existing contract from partial insurance to comprehensive, they ask you something about “Schadenfreiheitsklasse”. There is no word in English that properly translates to that, so you might be confused and later, you might figure out it’s a no-claims class, but if no one is there to translate for you, you would be done.


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It’s true that German love bureaucracy, so when you first arrive, be prepared to face lots of it. You’ll need a lot of time to go to these offices and fill out the necessary documents before you are truly done with moving there. You should hire someone to help you with them or you will be stuck in the wheels of bureaucracy and everything will take you a lot longer.

Explore your Neighborhood

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In Berlin there are twelve districts and each one of them has a unique charm and history behind it. You can find anything from rural districts with forests and medieval churches to the urban districts with a trendy look and lively nightlife.

Carry Cash on You Always

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Even though the city is really modernized and has moved with the times, paying with cards is not available at every place you look. In fact, outside of the touristy places, it is really difficult to pay with anything else other than cash. So it’s a good idea to carry a reasonable amount of cash with you any time you go out. And that doesn’t only mean to go out clubbing but also when you buy groceries or even bread.

Land the Job Before Moving

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Berlin has a huge startup culture, and the scene is growing rapidly, but that doesn’t mean that there is a job waiting for you. It’s better to do your research and land a job before moving to the city so you are prepared about what is happening. The rate of unemployment in Berlin is 11% and with that higher than the average of the country at 6.7%. That’s why it’s crucial to have a job waiting for you before you come to the city.

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