Germany had and continues to have ambitious plans for their digital growth. Their Digital Strategy for 2025 predicts that Germany’s GDP will increase by approximately €82 billion if the country will develop to its full technological potential over the next years.
As a result this makes Germany a desired destination for both technological corporations, start-ups and the techies who make all the magic happen. Although there are a lot of great places in Germany to live and work, one of the preferred locations is Berlin and here are 10 reasons why:
1. Culture and History
Berlin has gradually evolved and earned its reputation as a leading European city with its high art scene and dynamic, cutting-edge performances. The city has always impressed with the diversity of its numerous museums, palaces and historic structures. Berlin's landmarks reminding of the city's royal history, coupled with the multitude of its cultural venues including the world-famous Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, provide a remarkable cultural treat.
2. Realistic housing prices
Although above average when comparing to other European cities, rent in Berlin is fairly reasonably priced. The Berlin rent cap that prohibits raising rent prices by more than 10% of the area average is just one way the government controls how much landlords can charge. Also, homes in commutable locations that are in or close to the countryside are reasonable to buy.
Although an individual pays more tax in Germany than they do in the UK or Spain, the benefits seen in public services like transport are outstanding. Berlin has been noted as having some of the best transport systems in the world. And with minimal disruptions and such reasonably priced tickets it’s no wonder.
Chances are if you’re working in a different country you’re quite passionate about travelling. Which is great news if you chose Berlin as your home-away-from-home. Berlin is a travel friendly city from which you can get cheap flights or trains anywhere in Europe. Planning is also everything so make sure you book it well in advance for amazing deals.
5. Language matters
Most Berliners can speak English exceptionally well, which is very handy when you’ve only managed to master the basics of German! What’s also nice is that Berliners will switch to English almost without blinking if they detect that you’re not a native German speaker. This is handy when you’re struggling to express yourself in your broken German, but if you’re genuinely want to practise, it can also be frustrating!
6. Expat communities
A thriving expat community exists in Berlin, meaning that there are lots of others in a similar situation as you. You’ll find that bonding with other expats is easy, as you’re all connected by a shared experience. Some of your strongest friendships will be forged as an expat, as your expat circle quickly becomes almost like your family away from home.
7. Festivals and night-life
There are plenty of reasons why Berlin was named the ‘most fun’ city in the world by Telegraph Magazine. The nightlife in Berlin is world-renowned and the city has become the global centre of electronic music clubs. If you’re like me and clubbing is not your cub of tea, don’t worry! There are plenty of other fun things to keep you entertained. Fancy a book festival? Or a session of Sunday karaoke in the park? What about going to Berlin International Film Festival - world’s second largest international film festival after Cannes? There’s something for everyone.
8. Visa and work permits
Talking about expats, Berlin tech companies & start-ups are always inclusive and welcoming of international employees from within or outside of the EU. Not just that but Visa or Work permits applications are comparably easier than other countries such as USA or UK.
Save the best for (almost) last. Berlin has been the most talked-about start up hub in Europe for some time now, having all the ingredients for a dynamic, entrepreneurial city. The start-up scene in Berlin is energetic and offers a lot of variety. Berlin is also an ideal base for creatives and the self-employed. There is no shortage of co-working spaces available across the city either which makes networking with other like-minded people easy.
10. Life-work harmony
Let’s be honest, there is no such thing as a life-work balance because you’re always going to spend more time at the office or with your colleagues than with your loved ones, but that’s a topic for another article. However, in Germany you will be happy to discover that the German government also sees spending time with loved ones as important. German law mandates that every employee in the country receives a minimum of four weeks of paid vacation leave per year, although some can receive up to 30 days, and that working hours don’t exceed 40 per week.