Germany Vs. France For Expat part 1 – Pros and Cons of Living in Germany for Expats

Germany Vs France For Expat part 1 – that will be the topic of today’s article.

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There are many differences between France and Germany, but which one is the best fit for Expats to live in? Well, like everything else, it all depends on what you’re looking for. If you have a family, or you’re planning to stay long-term, Germany might be better for your future. But what about the short-term expat assignments? What about the weather?

Germany Vs France For Expat

Is a good salary enough to make you want to move countries? Well, then you should consider France. You might even get paid more than with your previous job. On merit, this would be Germany. But do expats receive benefits in their French work contract as well? Very often not! And with such a high cost of living, likely your salary won’t be enough to enjoy your life in France.

In today’s digital world, the relevant question is how easy it is to get internet at home? The answer for this would be France. Germany still lags in the broadband world, even though their government has been trying hard to keep up with countries like France or Luxembourg.

But when it comes to football games, you should go with Germany! Although the French national team might be better at looking good, they aren’t as successful as the German team. The reason is that the French football league is controlled by the players’ unions and not by the clubs themselves.

However, we’ve compiled this article to meet your requirements. Not only is that, but we will walk you through the pros and cons of living in these countries. This way, you’d be able to choose the right one within your budget. Are you ready to explore what we’ve unleashed? If that sounds like a yes, read further!

Differences between Germany and France for Expat

If you’re moving to Germany from France, you might be surprised by a few small but important differences between the two countries. Here are some of the key things that an expatriate should know about German and French culture before starting their relocation process.

Germany Vs France For Expat

Cultural Differences between Germany and France

In general, the cultures of Germany and France have a few things in common. For example, both countries are known for their rich cultural histories and diverse populations. However, there are also some notable differences between these two nations; certain aspects of life may be drastically different from one country to the other.

Any expatriate moving to Germany from France must understand these differences before beginning their relocation process. By understanding the cultural cues and social expectations of those around them, expatriates can feel more comfortable adjusting to life in another part of the world.

Germany Is More Punctual Than France

One notable difference between Germany and France is that Germans tend to be much more punctual than their French counterparts. For example, French businesspeople often show up late to meetings and appointments without explanation or apology.

While Germans like to give themselves plenty of time before scheduled appointments, they also expect visitors to arrive on time; tardiness is generally viewed as disrespectful in German society. Another aspect of punctuality that might surprise an expatriate is how Germans keep track of the time.

For example, most German clocks are set to Berlin Standard Time, or one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time. This means that when it’s noon in Berlin, it’s only 11 am in Paris. This can lead to some confusion for employees who commute long distances across international borders; if a French worker leaves for work at 9 am and arrives in Germany at 10 am, it might appear as though they have a late start to the day.

Adults Don’t Always Practice Good Table Manners

It’s no secret that German food has a reputation for being extremely delicious. However, French expatriates who eat with their German colleagues often report being surprised by the lack of table manners. For example, it’s not uncommon for Germans to slurp their soup or chew with their mouths open.

While not all Germans engage in poor table manners, expatriates must be ready to adapt when they find themselves at a formal dinner or business meal. Proper etiquette will make an impression on those around them, and it will also help prevent embarrassing accidents.

Women Enjoy More Equality in Germany

In many respects, women have a better deal in German society than in French. For example, French businesswomen often express frustration over the lack of support from both sexes.

This can be especially true for female entrepreneurs who try to start their businesses; even though they may work just as hard or be just as qualified, many French businesswomen report facing opposition from men who refuse to take them seriously.

In Germany, female entrepreneurs often receive more support and encouragement than in France. Women are also better represented in government and the media; currently, about 40 percent of the Bundestag (Germany’s primary legislative body) is female representatives.

Germany Vs France For Expat

Germans Are More Comfortable With Nudity

France isn’t exactly known for its prudishness, but compared to Germany, it still has a somewhat limited view on nudity. For example, French beaches often require men and women to wear bathing suits, and even if they don’t, the average person is much more likely to feel shy about their body.

On the other hand, Germans are known for their comfort with nudity. For example, during Oktoberfest (a famous German festival), people often walk around in costumes that leave little to the imagination. While this might make French people feel somewhat awkward, Germans tend to be more comfortable with the human body.

German Employees Enjoy More Rights

As Germany has become one of the most economically-developed countries in Europe, an increasing number of its citizens enjoy a strong social system. For example, German companies are generally required by law to provide their workers with several days or weeks of vacation time each year.

Moreover, German employees also enjoy significant legal protections that don’t exist in France. For example, some French companies practice the controversial practice of laying off their employees when business is slow. At the same time, German employers are only allowed to do so under very specific circumstances.

German workers are also legally entitled to several weeks of paid maternity leave each year, while French women are only guaranteed six weeks.

Germans Take More Vacations than French People

While Germans might work hard, they also ensure that they get plenty of time to relax by taking several weeks of vacation each year. Most German companies allow their employees 25 – 30 days off during the summer months, and even during the rest of the year, it’s not unusual to have three or four long weekends.

On the other hand, French workers are notoriously overworked. For example, many French employees are only granted two weeks of vacation time per year – one of the lowest figures in Europe. Since some people receive even less vacation time, many French people feel too busy to take their allotted time off.

The French Labour Market Is More Rigid

While Germany has also had to reform its labor laws in recent decades, the German system is still more flexible than the French. For example, while short-term hiring and firing employees have always been relatively easy in Germany (and was even encouraged by the government before it was abolished), France only recently began loosening its laws to make it easier for companies to hire people.

On the other hand, German employment laws tend to favor workers over employers (although this is also beginning to change). For example, German employees are legally entitled to 14-weeks of paid leave each year, and many receive even more than this.

France doesn’t guarantee its workers as much vacation time, and if they receive more than two or three weeks off, it’s usually only because the company is especially generous.

Pros and Cons of Living in Germany for Expats

Germany Vs France For Expat

Moving to another country comes with a certain set of risks and rewards that either make or break an expat’s life living abroad. Germany is no exception and has its unique characteristics that add to the mix when deciding whether one should incorporate in Germany. Below is a list of the Pros and Cons of moving to Germany.


Living as an expatriate in a foreign country can be a unique cultural experience that can broaden your horizons and help you discover things about yourself. In order to help those who are interested in spending some time as an expat, we have put together a list of five great pros of living in Germany as an expat.

Low Living Costs

There is a common misconception that living in Germany is very expensive. This might have been true years ago, but it has become one of the most inexpensive places to live in all of Europe. As an expat, you will be able to get by spending less than 1/5th on your living expenses compared to what you would if you were to live in the United States.

This includes housing, food, and entertainment. Housing prices can be up to 70% cheaper than where you are from, while groceries and entertainment are a fraction of the price.

Moving Around Europe with Ease

If you choose not to buy a car while living in Germany, you will most likely use public transportation. Getting around in Germany is easy and convenient, making it great for those who like to travel or simply want to save money. Several high-speed trains can take you all over Europe, including other parts of Germany.

Joining Clubs and Societies

Joining clubs and societies is a great way to get involved in Germany at an early stage of your stay. This will allow you to meet new people, learn the language faster, join activities or events, and make lasting friendships. You can always ask your employers for recommendations of clubs or societies that might suit your interests better.

Getting a Great Education

A great number of international schools have opened up in the past decade to add to the already existent ones. This can be a huge benefit for expats who wish to send their kids to school while living in Germany. Getting your children’s education from a young age will help them adapt better when moving around and knowing multiple languages.

Great Healthcare

If you are moving to Germany, you will be able to experience the excellent healthcare system that is known for its quality care and efficiency. You can expect to have access to great hospital care while having other various medical services available at your disposal too.

Whether it’s for regular check-ups or emergency medical treatment, the healthcare system in Germany is top-notch. In Germany, expats can enjoy many benefits while living there for an extended period.

The low costs of living and the ease of transportation make this a desirable option for many people worldwide. If you are interested in becoming an expat yourself, look at this article for more information.


The Bureaucracy

Germans like their bureaucratic processes and forms, and there are no shortages of them when resettling in Germany. From getting a German bank account to opening the proverbial door to your new apartment (leave your rental contract at least three weeks before you move in), settling down can be costly and time-consuming.

The Small Talk

You don’t need to be best friends with the cashier lady at the supermarket, but it is considered polite in Germany to ask about one’s partner, children, and job. This might feel stifling if you’re an old soul who prefers keeping your private life private (even within your inner circle) or not ready to share personal information about your life in Germany.

The weather

The average daily high in Berlin in January is 34 degrees Fahrenheit, and it can reach as low as 20 degrees. That’s a big change from the 70s and 80s you may be accustomed to! If you’re moving here from somewhere hot, make sure to bring sturdy boots for winter and cool summery clothes if you’re moving from somewhere cold.

The Rules

In Germany, it’s best to not drink too much before driving a car, for example – especially as alcohol limits are lower than average in Europe. In bars, make sure to keep your phone and bag within sight at all times: free-range pickpocketing is the norm here.

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