Do I need German (Deutsch) language to live and work in Germany?
Germany is the largest European country in terms of a number of population. As you probably could have noticed in Europe usually the smaller is a country – the more it “speaks English”. If we take into consideration Nordic countries like Sweden, Norway, Danemark or Finland – everybody speaks English there. People in high-populated countries like France, Italy, Spain – don’t speak English as much in general. And Germany is not an exception… A lot of people don’t speak English well enough in Germany. But it probably won’t be a problem for you, if you are a high-qualified professional.
There are three main aspects that you should keep in mind while choosing Germany as a place to live and work in:
- If a company invites you to relocate to Germany and tells you that English language is enough to communicate with colleagues – you shouldn’t worry about anything. In this case, you will feel comfortable with your colleagues. Probably the team in the company is multinational. They communicate in English within the company. And you will be a part of this multinational team and will easily find friends.
- The more qualified is a person in Germany, the better he/she speaks English. From my own experience, people with high education and good job in Germany speak English quite well. On the contrary, “blue collars” often don’t speak English good enough… Shop assistants, nurses bus drivers – I’ve met a lot of them who almost didn’t speak English…
- Berlin is an exception. As people say “Berlin is not Germany”. And it is also true in terms of language. Berlin is a very multinational city. You can easily live in Berlin the whole of your life without knowing German language. In case of emergency, Google Translate will help you 🙂
To sum up: you can live and work in Germany without Deutsch. But keep in mind that if you relocate to Germany, you will probably have to start studying German language. Not for work and office reasons, but in order to tackle successfully with all daily situations that you will face during your life in Germany.