Relocation Service

We provide support on the following topics:

Living in Germany - general explanations

People with a nationality from one of the following countries are allowed to work in Germany without restrictions:

  • A member state of the European Union (EU)
  • A country of the European Economic Area (EEA)
  • Or Switzerland


People from a third country require a residence title, such as a visa.

People from the following countries may obtain a residence permit from the Foreigners Authority after entering the country:

  • Australia
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Canada
  • Republic of Korea
  • New Zealand
  • USA


Nationals of other countries must apply for a visa at the embassy or consulate in your country before entering.

Where to find a suitable apartment:

  • Most apartments can be found through various online portals for example: Immobilienscout24, Immonet and via Ebay.


Shared apartments (WGs):

  • Shared apartments are a good option to save rent and meet people, which directly improves language skills. Among students, a shared apartment is a popular alternative. Shared flats can be found on the following sites: wg-gesucht, Immobilienscout24 but also on Ebay. 


Rental contract:

  • In Germany, the rental contract must be concluded in writing. The rental contract states the cold rent, which is the price for the use of the room. The warm rent includes the cold rent and all extra charges. What is included in the extra charges can be found in the rental agreement. Electricity and gas usually have to be registered separately.


Moving in (registration with the residents’ registration office; registration for gas, water, electricity; registration for telephone, Internet, television; broadcasting fees):

  • All people living in Germany must be registered. This must be done at the latest two weeks after moving in at the registration office (Einwohnermeldeamt) or citizen center (Bürgeramt). For this you need a valid identity card and a housing provider confirmation, which you get from your landlord.
  • If the incidental rental costs do not include electricity, hot water or heating gas, then you must find a provider and enter into a contract with him.
  • There are many different providers in Germany where an Internet or telephone contract can be concluded. There are numerous online portals on the Internet where you can compare providers. Setting up an Internet, telephone and TV connection can take several weeks.
  • A broadcasting fee (Rundfunkgebühren) must be paid per apartment in Germany. This amounts to about 18€ per month and is transferred to the public service “Beitragsservice ARD, ZDF und Deutschlandradio”. A few weeks after you have registered at the citizen center (Bürgeramt), you will receive mail from the Beitragsservice.
  • In order to live in Germany for a longer period of time, you need a bank account. You will need this to rent an apartment and to transfer your salary from work.
  • Keep in mind that different banks charge different fees.


What banks are there (difference direct bank vs. branch bank)?

  • A direct bank is a bank or credit institution that does not operate its own network of branches and offices. The services and communication channels usually take place only via the Internet. The direct bank is often cheaper and they do not have to adhere to any opening hours.
  • A branch bank is a credit institution with a large branch network. It usually operates branches in all major cities. A branch bank usually has higher fees, but they also have a direct contact person at their branch.


How to open a bank account?

  • To open a bank account you need a valid passport, a residence permit, a registration certificate and a wage certificate (depending on the type of account).
  • A comparison of all banks can be found here.


How to pay (cash, EC or credit card)?

  • In most stores you can pay with EC card, cash and credit card. Only in rural areas you can pay in small stores and at the market only with cash.

How does the registration work?

  • Every employee must have health insurance. In Germany there are two systems, statutory and private health insurance, these cannot be chosen arbitrarily. Most people in Germany have statutory health insurance. This means that the partner and any children are also insured without higher costs. A list of all statutory health insurance companies can be found here.


Benefits of a health insurance

  • The statutory health insurance covers all urgently needed medical treatments. The following benefits are covered:
    • Dental care
    • Outpatient medical treatment
    • Benefits for pregnant women and during childbirth
    • Medically necessary rehabilitation measures
    • Inpatient stays and treatments
    • Medication and remedies or aids
  • Through the health insurance you are automatically also insured for nursing care. This insurance covers you if you are no longer able to care for yourself due to a serious illness and need a caregiver.


What is the health card?

  • The health card is like a membership card from your health insurance company. You must bring this card with you to every doctor’s visit.

The following insurances are not mandatory in Germany, but it is still useful to have them.

Liability insurance:

  • This insurance pays for you if you damage or destroy things belonging to other people. It is not expensive and protects you from having to pay for the damage out of your own money.


Household insurance:

  • Homeowner’s insurance pays if items in your home or apartment are damaged. It pays, for example, for burglaries, storm damage, and water damage.


Accident insurance:

  • Through your employer, you are covered for accidents at work and on the way there. For accidents during your free time, you can take out private accident insurance. This takes effect, for example, if you suffer a disability as a result of an accident and can no longer work as before.


Old-age provision:

  • Through your job you are in the statutory pension insurance. You can build up an additional pension through an additional pension plan. This is subsidized by the state.

Does my driver’s license apply

  • People from the EU, Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland can use their driver’s license in Germany
  • People from other countries can use their driver’s license for six months. The six months start from the day they registered their residence. After the six months, they must obtain a German driver’s license.


Register your car and have it checked

  • You must register your car at a vehicle registration office. For this you need your vehicle registration document and the policy of your car insurance.



  • Every two years, your car must be inspected by the Technical Inspection Agency (TÜV). You have to pay for this inspection.


Car insurance

  • The liability insurance for your car (motor vehicle) is a compulsory insurance. The insurance pays for damages if you cause an accident with the car yourself or if you injure someone.

Youth Welfare Office (Jugendamt)

  • The Youth Welfare Office is an organizational unit in Germany that supports parents in raising their children.

Where can I have my child looked after (difference between day care center / day parents)?

  • Daycare center (Kita) This refers to various forms of childcare. In a daycare center, children are usually cared for all day.
  • Day parents offer a family-oriented, flexible and individual care by a permanent caregiver. Depending on the arrangement, children can be cared for in their own home or in external premises.
  • How to find the right childcare:

    First, go to the website of the city and municipal administrations. There you will find enough information relevant to your childcare needs at the Youth Welfare Office.
    o You can find contacts for childcare services in the vicinity here.



  • Children from the age of six must go to school in Germany, as there is a so-called compulsory school attendance in Germany.
  • Your child starts at the elementary school at the age of six. Elementary school goes up to the fourth grade, in Berlin and Brandenburg elementary school goes up to the sixth grade. After that, a decision is made together with the teacher on which of the four secondary schools your child should go to.
    • Secondary modern school (Hauptschule) (grades 5-9/10)
    • Secondary school (Realschule) (grades 5-10)
    • Comprehensive school (Gesamtschule) (grades 5-12/13)
    • Grammar school (Gymnasium) (grade 5-12/13)


Education / Study

  • An apprenticeship in Germany offers many opportunities. Many apprenticeships do not find new recruits; for example, 63,200 positions were not filled in October 2021. After the apprenticeship, there is usually a high chance of being taken on. You can find more on this topic at Agentur Für Arbeit here.
  • To study in Germany, you need a university entrance qualification. If you do not know whether your degree from your country of origin is accepted, you can check here. Fore more information about higher education click here.
    • If your degree is not accepted, you can take a Studienkolleg to obtain a university entrance qualification. You can find more information about the Studienkolleg here.

Your career contacts

Do you have questions of your own that you can’t find an answer for? Our contact partners are happy to help you.

Zentrale Hafencity

Vanessa Hoang

DSR Hotel Holding GmbH

Tel.: +49 40 300322164