Germany

Where will your dreams take you?

Germany is a modern and cosmopolitan country steeped in history (countless museums, castles, quaint villages and cobblestone roads) and rich in amazing natural beauty (the country boasts 16 national parks, 104 nature reserves and 15 recognized biosphere reserves). Between the North Sea and Baltic coasts in the north and the peaks of the Alps in the south there are checkerboard agricultural areas, vineyards, forests, rolling hillsides and craggy mountains. Use our many stories below to begin planning your next visit to Germany.

Entry Requirements (Passports and Visas)PASSPORTS: Citizens of European Union countries simply need a valid identity card. Citizens of any other country seeking to enter Germany will need a passport that is valid for at least four months from the date of your entry into Germany. VISAS: Any citizen of a country outside of the EU will need a visa with the exception of certain countries, such as the United States of America (currently, though this may and likely will change). Citizens of the U.S. do not currently need a visa as long as their stay lasts no more than three months within a six-month period within the Schengen area (of which Germany is a part).

By Plane – Most international flights will arrive and depart from one of five major international airports – Frankfurt, Munich, Dusseldorf, Hamburg, and Berlin.

By Train – It is easy to get to almost anywhere in Germany on either the fast train (InterCityExpress) or the other lines (InterCity, EuroCity, and InterRegio). For booking information, go to the Deutsche Bahn website here.

By BusFlixBus / MeinFernbus offer affordable and convenient intercity bus service connecting many towns and cities in Germany, as well as other international European destinations.

By Car – Travel by car is very easy in Germany and renting a car relatively uncomplicated. But there are a  few things to keep top of mind. First, many German towns and cities have designated low emission zones, meaning only certain vehicles meeting established low emission standards and bearing a color-coded sticker are permitted. Learn more about the emission stickers here. Second, while the autobahn has suggested speed limits in places, in other places and most certainly on most roads, speed limits are strictly enforced. And those speed limits can change in a blink of an eye, typically right before a speed-trap camera catches you flying by. If you rent a car, stay within the speed limits at all times and drive carefully!!!

Language – The main language in Germany is Deutsch (German). Many Germans, especially younger ones and those living in larger cities speak English sufficiently well that tourists and visitors who do not speak German and those whose Deutsch is “nicht sehr gut” (not so good) will be able to communicate just fine. Still, it’s always a good idea to learn a few German language basics so that you feel more comfortable shopping and in a restaurant.

Learn to speak a bit of German so you can get around more easily and don’t stand out as a tourist! Read our story Start to learn languages – Top language learning apps and websites.

Health – Ticks are prevalent in many forested regions in Germany and carry Lyme disease and tick-borne encephalitis (TBE). Be sure to use insect repellent and wear insect repellent clothing when walking in forests and fields. Ask your doctor about needing a TBE vaccination if you plan to spend significant time walking in forested areas.

For over-the-counter medications and seeking minor health issue advice (sore muscles, cough, cold, etc.) you will go to an Apotheka. Should you need a doctor or emergency care while in Germany, be sure your health insurance will cover you internationally — and at what level. We strongly advise purchasing travel insurance that that has emergency medical coverage sufficient enough to cover you in the event of an emergency.

Emergencies – To reach the police, fire department or ambulance service, dial 112. Calling 112 is free from any landline or mobile phone. This is throughout Europe.

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Managing Money — The Euro is the currency in Germany. Use the calculator from Oanda below to help you manage your money exchanges and know how much something selling in Euro would cost in dollars. Be sure to read our advice on getting or managing foreign currency before travel.

 

 

Currency Converter by OANDA

Late spring to early autumn (think May through early October) are the best times to visit if you are seeking warmer, sunnier weather — this is also the most crowded time to visit as a result.

To check the latest weather for any destination you are thinking of heading to in Germany, visit our weather page complete with weather radar and minute-by-minute forecasting.

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