Not every expatriate will need the same services and the same level of service. A family will need and expect different services than will a single expatriate; experienced expatriates will probably need less assistance than inexperienced ones.
Many of us will pack some sadness and regrets when we eventually have to leave Germany, even though we may be returning home to loved ones and familiar settings.
Even if the shipment of household goods and home search is flawless, a transferred employee is less likely to succeed if the relocation has a negative impact on the children. However, there is much that can be done to assist a child with the stress of relocation.
The transition from one country to another, as you say goodbye to one place and travel to the next, can be a very traumatic experience. Not knowing what will happen when you arrive – being unsure of what you will have to do when you walk out of the airport, or even how to get from the airport to your new accommodation – can be very stressful.
The range of services on offer to assist in international relocations is extensive, but not all of the services will be applicable to, or suitable for, every expatriate.
Now that you’re here in Germany, you probably can’t wait to take on the challenge of the Autobahn, to tour the beautiful countryside or to grind to a halt in a Stau. But to do any of these, you first need to have a valid driver’s license.
When you sign up as a German taxpayer, you’ll see a line on the form asking for your religious affiliation. This is not a totally innocuous question.
Germany, you’ll soon discover, is a very well-run country. But bureaucracy is a price for keeping a well-run operation. Your very first duty is to let the local authorities know where you are – not at every minute, but the location of your official residence.
In today’s world of working parents, it has become increasingly popular for families to bring an au pair into their home. Germany is no exception. But remember that “au pair” means “on par” or “equal to” in French.
So now you know about items that are good to pack and bring along. But there are also some things you should definitely discard: namely, prejudices and preconceptions that may severely hinder you in adjusting to Germany and enjoying your time here.
You won’t be in Germany long before you’ve acquired a tidy little pile of new official documents, but you won’t be able to stay here long unless you bring a number of documents with you. Passports are, of course, absolutely essential, and you can’t do anything without them.
Before you move to Germany, there are certain things you should do in order to make your early weeks, if not indeed your entire stay, a much more pleasant experience. Remember the golden rule of living in Germany: everything is available here…at a price.