Establish why you want to move to Germany

For me this is the most important question and why this is the first step. The answer to “why” motivates us all to start certain things as well as continue to see them through when the going gets tough.

The reason for moving countries can be wide and varied. There can be both reasons pulling you towards another country as well as those pushing you away from your current country. It would be difficult to cover them all.

Below I have some questions to consider grouped under a number of topics. This is course is a very personal decision so use these questions however you wish in your decision making process or ignore them completely 🙂

My suggestion would be to put more weight on topics most important to you and should these be positive (even if the majority of the other ones are negative) your “why” should be well on the way to being sorted and you can move onto the next step.

Family

  • Will I have family support in Germany?
  • If not, how close will my family be?
  • Can I cope with family being far away?
  • Will I be able to visit them regularly, say once a year?
  • Can I bring my immediate family with me?
  • How will my family cope in a new country?
  • Can I handle moving somewhere I may have no family?

Friends

  • Will I have friends in Germany?
  • If not, how close will my friends be?
  • Can I cope with my friends being far away?
  • Will I be able to visit them regularly, say once a year?
  • Can I handle moving somewhere I may have no friends?
  • Am I open to trying new things and putting myself out there to meet new people?

Economics

  • Will I be better of financially in Germany?
  • How much will it cost to move to Germany?
  • Will the cost of living be more expensive than my current country?
  • Will I be able to find employment in Germany?
  • Will my employment in Germany be able to support me to the same or to a better living standard?
  • Will I be able to find employment that satisfies me both on an economic basis and on an intellectual basis?

Culture

  • Am I willing and able to learn a new language?
  • Am I open to change? This is a wide question but what you can or can’t do, and how you do it will all change
  • Does this excite you or give you a headache?
  • Can I accept moving somewhere I may never 100% understand or fit in?
  • Am I able to freely practice my religion and beliefs in Germany?

Leisure

  • Can I continue to pursue my sports or hobbies in Germany?
  • Are there German sports or hobbies that interest me?

Education

  • Will I be able to train in my chosen field?
  • How affordable is education?
  • What is the standard of education?
  • Will my qualifications be recognised in Germany?

Living standard

  • Will my living standard be improved by changing countries?
  • Where do I want to live in Germany?
  • What sized apartment/house do I require?
  • What is the rent/cost to buy for this?
  • What is the average cost of utilities?
  • What is the average cost of food?

Health

  • What is the public medical system like?
  • How much does medical insurance cost?
  • What is the standard of medical care?
  • If you have a current medical condition, how would this be supported in Germany and now much would it cost?

I really wish I could say we used such an analytical approach and because of this, everything is peachy. This was simply not the case and the jury is still out on whether our move to Germany is a happily ever after story.

If you look back at this post here we did consider a lot of the categories and where we saw benefits.

However looking back now I can clearly see we did not look at any of the downsides or if we did, we only skimmed the surface. While the process of moving countries is an exciting time I implore you to give due consideration to the potential downsides too.

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