Live and Work in Germany: Alles Ist Gut! (It’s All Good!)
Willing to find a job in Germany? Find out what are the most in demand jobs, necessary paperwork or what's the cost of living in Germany
With its high employment rates, excellent workers’ rights, free universities, and unrivalled infrastructure, it’s easy to see why people flock to live and work in Germany.
From Berlin to Bavaria and the Black Forest to the Baltic, Germany’s diverse cultures and landscapes offer a variety of wonderful places to call your home. If you’re thinking of moving abroad, you should certainly look into the opportunities this welcoming country affords.
The German economy
Germany is the undisputed economic powerhouse of Europe. With a GDP of $3.8 trillion, an average income of €43,205, and an unemployment rate of 3.9%, it’s fair to say that the economy is running as smoothly as a BMW.
Germany is the world’s third largest exporter, raking in €1.2 trillion in exports last year alone. The country has booming automotive, aerospace, mechanical, electronic, and precision engineering industries as well as strong IT, chemical, medical, pharmaceutical, and construction sectors. It’s also a leading light in innovation, with the Industry 4.0 and renewable energy sectors well supported. The tourism sector is massive, too. In fact, Germany is the seventh-most visited country in the world.
In-demand jobs in Germany
Germany needs a large number of both academically and vocationally trained workers at the moment. In-demand jobs include IT, sales, and tourism professionals as well as engineers, scientists, managers, doctors, nurses, metalworkers, and builders. There is also a high demand for technicians and tradespeople (plumbers, carpenters, locksmiths, etc.).
Naturally, the ability to speak German will greatly improve your chances of finding employment, but many English-speaking jobs are available, too. Check out these fantastic English-language Germany jobsites:
Cost of living
So, jobs are plentiful and wages are high… The cost of living must be sky-high too, right?
Wrong! In fact, German towns and cities across the board are quite cheap in comparison with their European counterparts. For instance, in the nation’s capital, Berlin, you can expect to pay about €710 a month for a central one-bedroom apartment. Basic utilities, an internet connection, and a monthly travel pass should set you back about €240, €25, and €81 respectively. A meal for two in a typical restaurant will cost between €16 and €40, with each pint of German beer adding just €3 to the bill.
Indeed, the German parliament legally defined the basic cost of living (not including rent) to be a mere €391 a month. With an average monthly salary of €3,600 (pre-tax), the potential savings are crystal clear.
EU, US, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, Swiss, Israeli, and South Korean citizens can all apply for a residence permit for work purposes after travelling to Germany. If you’re a citizen of another country, you must apply before you enter. Non-EU nationals can apply for three types of permits: one for general workers, one for specialist professionals, and one for self-employed workers. Basically, you need to prove that you have the requisite qualifications and either a contract of employment or a viable business plan.
Life in Germany
Home to 82 million people, 19.5% of whom are first or second generation immigrants, Germany is a wonderfully welcoming land of variety and contrast. It has a bustling urban culture, yet one third of its land is covered in forest. Work hours are filled with business-like efficiency, yet it ranks fourth in the world when it comes to beer consumption.
Germany’s sausages, sauerkraut, and beautiful beers are world famous. But nowadays, you can also get food from all over the world in most towns and cities. Dining and drinking out are popular pastimes, and there’s no better way to make new friends than sharing stories over a stein of German beer.
The arts are well-supported across the country, with numerous museums, galleries, and festivals making life more interesting all year round. Outdoor pursuits are also common, with hiking, swimming, soccer, skiing, and snowboarding particularly popular. Sports clubs are everywhere, and it’s easy to get involved. If you’re looking for a great day out, Germany’s football league, the Bundesliga, is famed for its low entrance fees and high quality entertainment.
Potential culture shock
If you’re new to the country, life may be filled with surprises. Your new house or apartment, for example, will probably come without a stove, sink, or light fittings. If you choose to live in a town rather than the city, you may find regulations about when you can and can’t use your vacuum cleaner or lawnmower. American expat Katie Clemons has a fascinating blog about her life in Germany – it’s well worth checking out!
Are you thinking of living and working in Germany? If so, we here at Euspert would like to wish you the very best of luck with the move!