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19 British Habits I Lost When I Moved To Germany

For starters, you can forget shopping on a Sunday.

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1. Walking anywhere

Why would you walk anywhere when you can get there twice as fast on a bike? Thanks, Germany, for teaching me the ways of efficiency. And for all the bike lanes.

3. Wearing trackies out in public

Being the practical beings that they are, Germans will wear tracksuit bottoms for "making sports" (exercising) and making sports alone. No more slobby Sundays.

4. Making a run for it without the green man

Flickr: 16782093@N03

Jaywalking is against the law in Germany and people actually obey that law. To avoid being the odd one out, and getting shouted at by an old lady, it's best to wait for the green man too.


5. Popping over to someone's for a cup of tea

Flickr: zachinglis

Heaven forbid you ask a German to make you a cup of tea. Them pulling out a box of various fruity teas they've owned for the last 5 years will be enough to have you sticking to coffee. On the plus side, most German households have fancy coffee machines, so there's that.

6. Being too polite

If you open a door for someone in Germany, you will stand there for 20 minutes while puzzled Germans pass you wondering if you work for building security.

7. Eating warm dinners

In Germany it's quite common for dinner to consist of bread, pork, spreads, and possibly bretzels. This is a basically a good excuse to take an extra long lunch break and have a midday feast.

8. Carelessly throwing things into the bin

Flickr: mdvisser

Recycling is HUGE in Germany, with most households having 4+ bins for different things. First there's the plastic one, then the cardboard, then the bio waste, then the glass bottles, then the plastic bottles, and THEN the rest of it goes into a different bin. Confused yet?


9. Beating around the bush.

If you aren't direct in Germany then you won't get very far, which means you quickly have to adopt a much more direct way of talking. On the plus side, this means you're far more likely to get what you want.

11. Being sarcastic

Even though most Germans speak fluent English, sarcasm is often lost on them in conversation. It's best to avoid it, in case you're taken seriously and have to explain your humour, which we all know is painfully awkward.


13. Wearing a dress or shorts out come rain or shine

You'll only find people in dresses or shorts here during the really hot period of summer, which means panic buying shorts, skirts and dresses as soon as February's over is just not a thing.

14. Entering a shop without greeting a shop assistant

Via Flickr: shankaronline

If you don't say hello when you enter a shop in Germany, you're basically the rudest customer ever and the shop assistant will be visibly pissed with you. You're also supposed to say goodbye when you leave.

16. Assuming that being a few minutes late is the same as being on time

Via Flickr: listentothemountains

If I had a euro for every time a German person told me how late British people are, well, you get the point. Your German friend WILL text you if you are 2 minutes late to check you're still coming.


17. Hanging out with friends with the TV on in the background

Via Flickr: williamhook

When Germans have guests over, they sit around the table and talk. Without the TV on. In fact, it's considered very rude to watch TV if you have guests over.

19. Drinking too much on a night out

In England, we all have one friend who looks after the drunkest person on any night out. If you get too drunk in Germany, your friends will let everyone know you're British. It's like a secret code that explains your behaviour to other Germans. The shame.