Good morning and happy Friday, readers! I’ve been away for a few weeks, so there was a lot to catch up on. This is more like a month in Germany than a week, but there you have it. Lots of good stuff was happening on the internet while I was away. Here are my favorite links from around the expat web:
How to Do Graduate School in Germany
Thinking about adding a “Dr” to your title? Want to do it in Germany? The blogger behind Nine and ninety nine has some advice and information about the process right here.
Did you know Germans make whiskey?
This is a preview of The Week in Germany: Graduate School, German Whisky, and Summer Trips.
Germany’s small towns are great at creating and hosting small businesses that specialise in something very particular and quickly take on the world in their own market. Birkenstock, Huf, and Playmobil are some names you may have heard of.
When I was a kid, my brother and I had quite a collection of Playmobil. We would save pocket money to buy some, trade some at toy fairs and ask Santa for more. We still have quite a collection stashed away in my parents’ attic as my younger brother refused to get rid of them. Our children now enjoy them when they visit their grandparents.
My Erasmus year has come full circle. Ten months ago I sat in an empty room with only Skype and my kettle for company, surrounded by white walls and unpacked suitcases. Yesterday morning I did the same, although the kettle had already deserted me. It sounds a bit sad when I put it like that, but it’s all for dramatic effect, dontcha know?
Want to work or study in Germany? Or just want to visit the country? Read the requirements below & fill in the visa application forms at the end of this article.
EU nationals do not require a visa to enter the Federal Republic of Germany.
Non-EU nationals, generally speaking, require a visa for stays in Germany. A visa is not required for semi-annual visits of up to 90 days for nationals of those countries for which the European Community has abolished the visa requirement.
While your overseas travel insurance was sufficient until you reached Germany, a German insurance is mandatory while in the country. You cannot be enrolled at the university (except for the citizens from EU & EEA) or apply for a residence permit unless you have a German insurance. You need to apply for it after registering your address in Germany. There are two kinds of health insurances: Public (GKV – Krankenversicherung) and Private (PKV – Private Krankenversicherung). The Public insurance is likely to be more economical than a private insurance and easier to apply for.
This is a preview of Expat Survival Basics: Ten Facts About German Health Insurance.
And I am back to not understanding a single word of what is going on around me. I feel like I have rewound back to 2010, when I landed in Münster with three words of German – danke, bitte and polizei – and existed in perpetual terror the bus driver was going to want to say something to me over the speaker and I wouldn’t understand it (which happened, often. I still have the irrational feeling bus drivers will call me out in front of the whole bus based on a few consecutive Münster experiences.)
This is a preview of Learning German: Bavarian Dialects.
Too cold to remember summer? Try one of Liv Hambrett’s favorite summer drinks to remind yourself. Only four, five, six more months to go…
Perhaps because Summer is such a short-lived, hard-earned novelty over here, the Germans go bananas when it comes and celebrate it in all manner of ways. They crack out their sandals, dust off their mini-portable grills and grill turkey breast and pork steaks like maniacs. They flock to parks and cafes with outdoor seating – indeed cafes you hitherto had no idea could actually have outdoor seating, manage to cram their portion of the pathway full of chairs (topped with the obligatory blanket in case the weather turns) and stay there until the sun starts to dip. Spring-time Spargel madness gives way to summer-time strawberry madness. People eat ice cream all the time.
This is a preview of German Cuisine: Summer Drinks.