Going to Germany will certainly provide you with a unique culinary experience –…
As Europe's largest economy and second most populous nation (after Russia), Germany is a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defense organizations. European power struggles immersed Germany in two devastating world wars in the first half of the 20th century and left the country occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key western economic and security organizations, the EC (now the EU) and NATO, while the communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German reunification in 1990.
There are more than 1,500 different beers and 1,000 varieties of sausages in Germany.
The philosophy periodical Erbauliche Monaths-Unterredungen, published in Germany in 1663, is considered to be the first magazine in the world.
Germany has more than 400 zoos, more than any other country in the world.
The x-ray machine, aspirin, the pocket watch and gummy bears were all invented in Germany.
Religion and Ethnic Groups
Roman Catholic 27.7%, Protestant 25.5%, Muslim 5.1%, Orthodox 1.9%, other Christian 1.1%, other .9%, none 37.8% (2018 est.)
German 87.2%, Turkish 1.8%, Polish 1%, Syrian 1%, other 9% (2017 est.)
- Chewing gum or having your hands in your pockets while talking to someone is considered rude.
- Germans value directness and clarity. So, it’s best to give straightforward answers. By the same token, expect Germans to be open and honest when when they disagree with you.
- Use sensitivity when broaching topics such as the World Wars and the Cold War.
- Being punctual is taken very seriously. If you are running late, let your German counterpart know ahead of time and avoid cancelling plans at the last minute
- Germans prefer socializing as a group in public rather than in people’s homes. They don’t invite people over their house regularly, except for family or close friends.
- When visiting a German home, it’s customary to bring flowers, wine or sweets. If bringing flowers, avoid carnations, lillies and chrysanthemums since they are given at funerals and make sure they’re an odd number.
- After the host has said “Guten Apetit,” it’s okay to start eating.
- Germans rarely drink tap water with their meals. If alcohol is served, wait for the host to make a toast before drinking.
- If you are giving a toast, it’s important to look people in the eye.
- People generally serve themselves from plates of food that are passed around the table.
- Eat everything on your plate to let the host know you enjoyed the meal. Leaving food on your plate is considered wasteful.
Germany has an excellent public transport system that includes an extensive rail network. In cities like Berlin and Munich, one ticket gives you access to buses, trams, subways, and above ground trains. When traveling between cities, trains are the quickest. The InterCity Express (ICE) high-speed trains are among Europe’s fastest, though they can be quite expensive.
Driving in Germany can be stressful, especially on the Autobahn. Some sections of these highways don’t have an official speed limit, and drivers are constantly trying to pass you at very high speeds if you’re in the left lane.
Good day/Good evening: Guten Tag/Guten Abend (formal)
Hello: Hallo (informal)
Goodbye: Auf Wiedersehen (formal); Tschüss (among friends)
Good morning: Guten Morgen
See you later: Bis später.
Have a nice day!: Einen schönen Tag noch
Thank you: Danke
You’re welcome: Bitte
Excuse me: Entschuldigung
What is your name?: Wie heißen sie? (formal) or Wie heißt du? (informal)
My name is…: Ich heiße…
I don't understand: Ich verstehe nicht
Please speak more slowly?: Bitte sprechen Sie langsamer
How are you?: Wie geht es Ihnen?
I’m doing well: Mir geht’s gut.
I’m not doing well: Mir geht’s nicht gut.
Pleased to meet you: Freut mich, Sie kennenzulernen
I don’t know: Ich weiß nicht
Where do I find?: Wo finde ich…?
How much does that cost?: Wie viel kostet das?