It is well said that “true friends are the people in your life who make you laugh louder, smile brighter, and live better.” Being an expat in Germany, you must look for new and real friends who can be part of your good and bad times. Whether you move to Germany for work, study, or business, you always need friends to spend your leisure time with and get help and support through thick and thin. Making new relationships in a new place like Germany might be challenging. While moving to Germany, you will see that Germans are more distant than other countries. They prefer to retain old friends and have small long-term groups of real and true friends. Germans do not like to have new friends and do not like to be part of large groups. You might be confused while making new friends in Germany because of the cultural differences. Here, we develop ideas that work perfectly while making new friends in Germany, so keep reading till the end.
Related Topic: Dating Apps in Germany
Why It is Important to Have Friends in Foreign Country?
Some people are extrovert and some are introvert. Some of them also identify themselves as ambivert. In all cases, poeple need some friends around to whom they can talk. Either in their own language or maybe about their own interest. It is always good to have somebody around. Even your family see this as a positive chnage in your life. According to research, two in five international students experience homesickness in foreign country. It is important to overcome this feeling otherwise it leads to having a depression.
Qualities of Germans as Friends
Germans, compared to other countries and cultures, have different qualities. Let’s learn about Germans and their special traits. These might help you attract Germans, making it easy and speeding up the process of finding friends in Germany.
- Germans are very disciplined and hardworking.
- Germans tend to have a deep meaning of friendship, so once you have a German friend, you will have them for longer.
- Germans are comparatively more sincere and expect the same from their friends.
- Germans are very energetic, friendly, and cheerful.
- Everyone in Germany respects human beings and their rights.
Dos and Don’ts
Things You Should Do to Make German Friends
If you are looking to make new friends in Germany, you need to do the following activities to make new friends in Germany.
- Get to know about the new culture so you may have a better idea about German people.
- When you are starting a conversation with a German, try to discuss your insurance policy or the doctor’s appointment. If they discuss their health issues, show understanding and soothe them by saying phrases like “get well soon”.
- If you are saying something as a joke, you must tell people you are joking. Otherwise, Germans may consider it serious.
- Try to identify common hobbies and interests with others. Common interests will attract people to be in friendship with you.
- If you say something and your German acquaintance does not understand, they can ask you for an explanation, so be ready to explain what you said.
- Get yourself socialized in both online and offline events or gatherings so you may interact with new people.
- Join classes, groups, online apps, events, functions, and other platforms to make new friends in Germany.
Things You Should Avoid to Make German Friends
There are a few things that you should never do with Germans, as they do not like anyone doing such things. Keep reading to learn about what you must avoid making Germans your friends.
- Please do not make fun of Germans; they hate people when they laugh at someone.
- Do not say something you cannot explain if a German asks you for an explanation.
- When a German asks you something, do not give short answers. Try to be clear and explain your answer for better understanding.
- Do not say something that is not meaningful.
How to Make Friends in Germany?
It is never possible to make friends with random meetings. With technological advancement, people spend more time on their mobile devices and are registered on social media platforms and applications. As we shared earlier, learning German will help you make new friends in Germany, so you need to learn German at a B1 level. Other than that, here are a few ways to help you make new friends in Germany. Let’s discuss other ways in detail.
Join Social Media Platforms
As mentioned earlier, people nowadays spend their free time on different social media platforms. You can register on one or more social media platforms and contact people of common interests. You can join a lot of platforms as listed below;
- Volkshochschule \ Language School
Let’s know more about them.
Sign up on Facebook and make your Facebook account. There are a lot of Facebook pages and groups you may like and join to interact with new people in Germany. You can also search for the Facebook group of your interests and hobbies so you may find people with similar interests and hobbies. It is one of the great ways to make friends. You can join Facebook groups to ask questions and get help.
Benefits of Facebook
- A lot of expats and local and international groups are available.
- Mobile application is available.
- Connect with people across the globe, especially in Germany, if you moved there recently.
- You can share pictures, videos, and thoughts with your new German friends.
- You can wish them special days like birthdays, anniversaries, and childbirth to strengthen the friendship bond with your new German friends.
Free or Paid
Both, website and mobile applications are free for their users. The only thing you need to have to use is an active internet connection.
It is a website where you get ideas and news about local events and gatherings. Registered users on this website arrange online and offline events for the local expats. You can join announced activities to meet new people and make new friends. You will find activities in English and German, but German would be your plus point to making friends in Germany.
Benefits of Meetup
- You can learn a language by joining as many events as you want to.
- You can meet people who have similar interests and hobbies as yours.
- Another benefit of the meetup is creating your group and announcing your event.
- The application for this website is also available.
- You can join a professional group to discuss your work-related issues and get solutions for them.
- You can search for a group within your area and make friends in the community where you live.
Free or Paid
Registration and profile creation is free for its users. There are a lot of free groups which you can join. Individuals can pay the membership fee through PayPal for the paid groups, but most do not charge any fee.
It is a non-profit organization that allows people to connect from different cities. You can connect with people according to your choice or with harmonious people. Through DEGIS, you can grow in your career as you meet different internationals in these non-profit organizations.
Benefits of DEGIS
- Such organizations are designed and constructed for international students to overcome the gap between international students and the German community.
- By joining DEGIS, you can learn new leadership skills and practical experience.
- You can start your own DEGIS in your area, which will give you a lot of other benefits from this initiative.
- It offers scholarships to students to help them in their studies.
- You can offer your services as a volunteer.
- They have a blog team that publishes updated information on their blog.
Free or Paid
There is no membership fee, and it will always be free for international students coming to German universities and schools.
Stammtisch is an event that happens at the same time and location. It is a German term that means an informal meeting or a friendly get-together. You can easily find where and when it will happen in your city. You will find such events to learn a new language and German skills while conversing with relevant people.
Benefits of Stammtisch
- It is best for those who want to regularly meet new people in Germany.
- It usually happens on large or round tables where a large group discusses a topic or matter, shares their ideas, and exchanges their thoughts.
- You will enjoy a get-together with German locals while holding a beer.
Free or Paid
A few of the events are free, while others are paid. If you do not register for a free event, you must pay an amount to attend the event.
A Tandem is a bicycle with pedals for two riders. It is a strategic bicycle that two people of different cultures may adopt to exchange their native languages. You can do tandem face-to-face, but Skype tandems are getting more popular these days.
Benefits of Tandem
- A greater advantage is the division of time to learn a language. As you meet your tandem partner, half of the time, both of you will focus on one language while the other half will be on another.
- You can prepare for your university seminar, lecture, or examination with your tandem partner.
- You can enhance your communication skills if you choose a native tandem partner.
- You can learn any language you want to learn.
- The mobile application is also available.
Free or Paid
Learning a language or taking a course is not free in German, so you should find another tandem if you want to learn German for free. It’s a great exchange and trading of two languages so you can practice your German speaking skills in tandem.
6.) Verein (Non-Profit Club)
No worries if you do not know about the term Verein. Let us tell you that Verein is the German term used to describe a non-profit club, organization, or association.
Benefits of Verein
- You can choose Verein for any hobby you are interested in, like; hiking, mountain climbing, camping, cycling, hangouts, table tennis, football, gardening, writing, photography, baking, and much more. You need to look for your hobby online by searching on Google “hobby + Verein”.
- Learning German or any other language through Verein is easy, as you can interact with locals and internationals.
Free or Paid
Verein is not a free platform, and you must pay a membership fee to register.
7.) Volkshochschule / Language School
VHS is the short form for Volkshochschule. It is a community school that offers classes for continuing education for a very economical price. A VHS offers a wide range of topics to the people in Germany. Whether you are interested in cooking or want to join an art class, you can find and go to the nearest VHS to meet your goals and objectives. While joining class sessions, you will meet new people with the same interests as yours.
Benefits of Volkshochschule
- VHS offers various courses for adults.
- You can learn the language at any VHS, and you do not need to join a separate language course to learn a language.
- You can easily find people who like to do the same activities that you like to do.
Free or Paid
Volkshochschule courses require the applicants to pay the registration or subscription fee. They would pay the cancellation fee if they needed to unsubscribe from a course. Once the course starts, they can’t get any refunds.
Make Your Colleagues, Your Friends at Work
If you are in Germany because of your job, you can start making friends at your workplace. Drink coffee or have lunch with your colleagues to know more about them. Have great conversations and discussions on your mutual interests.
If you do not have an office and work online, you can ask your co-worker for a virtual coffee and lunch. If a German invites you, say yes even if you do not have time. Manage your time and attend the meetup as you have achieved the important step of making a new friend.
Spend Time with Your Roommates
No worries if you do not feel comfortable about living with strangers. Not everyone in Germany moves with their family, so if you are also moving without your family, living with your roommates is the best way to live and minimize your expenses. This will enhance your chances of making more friends, and you will learn German soon.
Cooking with your roommates and watching movies at night will increase the bonding between you and your roommates, so who knows, you will find a best friend forever among your roommates. While you sign a contract to live in an apartment with the roommates, you must describe yourself truly and know about the roommates and the other people in the apartment at the time of filing your application.
Meet People in Your Surroundings
Of course, you will find a place and home to live in Germany after moving to Germany. You can interact with people in your surrounding area daily. Being new to Germany, you will find that Germans are very private and cold people.
You need to say hello first and introduce yourself to the people in your neighborhood. You will get a warm hello back and might find great and cool people in this way too
Offer Help and Support
Germans are very kind-hearted and generous. They love to help others and expect the same from their friends. Whenever you see a German in need, you must offer your support. Either it is about feeding their pet in their absence or cleaning the venue once the party ends up. This will increase your trust and respect in the heart of a German.
Join Private Organizations
If you do not want to join a Verein or VHS, you can learn new skills by joining private organizations. Private organizations offer classes for dance, yoga, fitness, cooking, stitching, gardening, art, painting, photography, baking, and a lot of other topics.
Respect Rules and Culture
Every country has different rules and cultures, and so does Germany. Germans love to follow the rules in everything, and they are very serious about their set rules. If you want to ingratiate a German, you must respect their rules and culture. Do not try to change them, but you must know about the cultural differences and adopt the German culture while staying there. Give them respect, and they will give you respect in return.
It is always great to step forward for a social cause. When you take the initiative, you meet new people and make new relationships. Some of them would be in your relationship as acquaintances, while others can be your best friends. Several German companies offer opportunities for those who want to present themselves and offer their services to the community and the environment. You can find such opportunities by joining groups or social media pages.
Key Instructions While Making New Friends in Germany
If lucky, you can spend time with your classmates or colleagues after school or during office time. You might still feel the thirst for making more friends in Germany. Here are the key instructions you need to follow if you struggle to make new friends. Follow them and get fruitful results out of your efforts.
Join Classes or Events
As you are new to Germany, you might find a class or an event where you can meet several Germans. While joining classes or attending events, remember that a few are free, but others might need to register with some membership fee. Consider monthly or yearly subscriptions to avoid unexpected charges before joining a class or event.
Learn a New Language – German
It is highly recommended to learn the local language, which is German. You might find people who can speak English, but you must learn German to increase your chances of making new and local friends in Germany. Germans prefer to make relationships with those people who try to learn their local and native languages.
Start learning a new language right after you reach Germany to make new friends easily. There are a lot of books, online forums, and applications where you can learn German easily. Do not worry if you cannot speak it fully and fluently. The best way to learn German is to hang out with people who know German perfectly.
Wait and Have Patience
It is not just the case in Germany, but the whole world that making new long-term relationships and friendships always takes time. Keep patience while making new friends in Germany. You can never be in a friendship right after meeting someone, so remember, it will take a few months. Take enough time to meet people in Germany and learn about each other.
Do Not Be Personal
Germans take time to get close to new friends. They are introverted and do not like sharing their personal information, so whenever you are interacting with someone, try avoiding personal questions. These questions might be;
- How much do you earn?
- Why are you not married?
- What is your religion?
- What is the cost of your rented home or car?
- Do you believe in God?
- When do you have your next baby?
They tend to keep their distance from others, so you should wait for others to share such information. Give them enough time to feel more comfortable with you, and they will start sharing personal and private information.
Do What You Say and Fulfill Commitments
The most important principle of long-term true friendship is that you do what you say. Do not make false commitments to your friends. Give them real advice if they discuss any matter. Build your trust and then retain that. For example, if you promise to attend someone’s birthday party, you should attend that. You can’t cancel it at the last moment. Make commitments when fully sure you can do what you are committing.
“Friendship is not a big thing; it’s a million little things.” Paulo Coelho says that well.
Whether you are new to Germany or find Germany the toughest country while making new friends, you can make new friends with the help of the strategies mentioned earlier. These are just a few ways to make friends in Germany. While living in Germany, it is always good to expand your network. To increase your network, you need to hope for the best, keep patience, wait, and find new friends so you may have a good time in Germany. It’s hard to find truly great friends, but once you have made a good friend in Germany, you will enjoy friendship with your German friend for a lifetime. Hope this works for you.
All the best in finding new friends.