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Become a digital nomad in Germany

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Unlike many countries in the digital nomad community destination list, Germany needs no special introduction. The largest country in Central Europe, it is bordered by Denmark, Poland, the Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands, and is one of the world’s biggest economic powers and influencers.

Why Germany?

What attracts travellers and freelancers to Germany are the country’s character that brings together high tech culture, a vibrant start-up scene, a broad range of artist projects, exciting nightlife, and quaint old world charm. It, thus, comes as no surprise that the country’s capital, Berlin, has been featured in Tim Ferris’s famous 2007 bestseller “The 4-Hour Work Week” as one of the best places for the working nomad lifestyle.

Things may have changed significantly since 2007 — especially when it comes to the cost of living — but the country’s nomadic culture is as thriving as ever.

First, you have all the needed facilities to work remotely: a large number of coworking spaces (second in Europe) and cosy coffee shops, fast Internet and a large friendly community of like-minded nomads. Second, easy access for most international travellers makes Germany a very convenient destination, easy to get to and easy to continue exploring other countries from. Finally, there is a mix of things to see locally — from modern urban attractions and historical sights to a large variety of natural landscapes and picturesque old towns.

Best cities to work from

Berlin has the biggest number of coworking spaces in Germany and second biggest in Europe (after Barcelona). With a pronounced start-up ecosystem, coworking spaces are a big part of the city’s culture — as are a large number of work-friendly coffee shops. As a matter of fact, one of Berlin’s coffee shops, St. Oberholz, was where the famous streaming app SoundCloud came to life.

The one somewhat complicated thing about settling in the capital city for a longer stay would be finding accommodation in Berlin. Prices even for a studio tend to be on the high side, and legal restrictions have significantly limited the choice of apartments on Airbnb. Travellers are recommended to brave the less familiar online resources such as WG-gesucht for better deals, especially for long term rentals.

Bavaria’s capital and one of Germany’s economic powers, Munich is most suited for experienced and high-earning nomads due to its rather expensive lifestyle. Despite the more upscale setting, Munich offers a laid back urban atmosphere with a strong start-up base and a good selection of coworking spaces.

Leipzig is the largest city in Saxony and another popular nomad destination. Some say the city is what Berlin used to be about a decade ago — and by this, they mean the abundance of remote working facilities — but the city's nomad community is still in the budding stage. On the leisure side, Leipzig offers interesting sights and a vibrant night life.

The Internet and coworking spaces

Germany offers the average Internet speed of 18.8Mbps. Free Wi-Fi access is a bit more complicated. The Störerhaftung law states that any Wi-Fi network provider is liable for all the illegal activity taking place on the network, which significantly limits open wireless networks in cafes and coffee shops — something that most freelancers have come to take for granted. With that said, there are over 33,000 Wi-Fi hotspots spread across 300 German cities provided by decentralised organisations.

As one of the most developed nomad destinations, Germany knows no shortage of coworking spaces, and whether you are in Berlin or in Leipzig, you are sure to find a space to fit your budget and schedule.

Coworking spaces in Berlin

Launch/CO, Rudolfstraße 14, Freidrichshain

Betahaus, Prinzessinnenstraße 19-20, Kreuzberg

Spott Box, Seestraße 97, Wedding

ESDIP Berlin, Grünberger Straße 48B, Freidrichshain

Ahoy!Berlin, Wattstraße 11, Mitte

Coworking spaces in Munich

IDEA KITCHEN, Hansastr. 181

Impact Hub, Gotzinger Straße 8

Work Republic, Viktualienmarkt 8

Coworking spaces in Leipzig

Raumstation Coworking, Lützner Straße 91

Basislager Coworking, Peterssteinweg 14

Chaos Coworking, Erich-Zeigner-Allee 45

Leisure in Germany

Germany offers a fascinating mix of leisure activities to explore: from the modern hip art galleries of its large urban centres to the old architecture of quaint smaller towns. Stretching from the Alps to the Baltic Sea, there is a wide variety of natural beauty to discover when travelling beyond the country’s cityscapes. From the mystical charm of the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) and Lake Mummelsee to the breathtaking mountainous landscapes of the Bastei and the freshness of Lüneburg Heath woodlands.

What to know before arriving

As a member state of the Schengen Agreement, Germany offers visa-free travel to the residents of all other Schengen member states. If you come from a country that is not allowed visa-free travel, you will need to apply for a Schengen Visa — a great thing about it is that with the Schengen Visa you will also be able to visit 26 other countries (member states of the Schengen Zone) visa-free.

 Useful links:

Free Wi-Fi hotspots in Berlin

Germany Official Travel Portal

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.
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