Places to Visit
Germany Travel Guide:
|Tourism Rating Travel Safety Entry Requirements Avoiding Petty Theft|
|Tourism Rating||Top of Page|
Germany is one jewels of world travel: it is, justifiably, one of the most popular tourist destinations. Germany offers numerous world-class tourist destinations. Its industrious culture has produced a country that mixes the old with the new, the historic with technologically innovative. Scenic landscapes, beautiful villages, quaint castles and a sense of history pervade the country, making it a wonderful place for exploration.
|Travel Safety||Top of Page|
Overall, Germany is a safe travel destination for tourists.
|Entry Requirements||Top of Page|
A passport is required. A visa is not required for tourist/business stays
up to 90 days within the Schengen Group of countries, which includes
(that period begins when entering any of
the following countries which are parties to the Schengen agreement:
Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece,
Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway,
Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia Spain, and
Further information on entry, visa and passport requirements may be obtained from the German Embassy at 4645 Reservoir Road N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007, telephone ( 202) 298 -4000, or the German Consulates General in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, or San Francisco, and on the Internet at www.germany.info/relaunch/info/consular_services/visa.html . Inquiries from outside the United States may be made to the nearest German embassy or consulate.
In an effort to prevent international child abduction, many governments have initiated procedures at entry/exit points. These often include requiring documentary evidence of relationship and permission for the child's travel from the parents or legal guardian not present. Having such documentation on hand, even if not required, may facilitate entry/departure
Dual nationals, who are German citizens as well as U.S. citizens, are subject to all German laws that affect U.S. citizens. Moreover, dual nationals also may be subject to other laws that impose special obligations on German citizens.
instances, dual nationality may hamper U.S. Government efforts to provide
protection abroad. For additional information, please see the State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet home page at
|Avoiding Petty Theft||Top of Page|
Most incidents of "tourist" crime consist of theft of unattended items and pick-pocketing.
Before you travel, read our articles on Pickpockets, Con Artists, and ATM safety in the ThereArePlaces Information Guide on Personal Safety for travelers.
The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If you are the victim of any crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance.
If you are the victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate for assistance. The embassy/consulate staff can, for example, assist you to find appropriate medical care, to contact family members of friends, and explain how funds could be transferred. Although the investigation and prosecution for the crime is solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you to understand the local criminal justice process and to find an attorney
|Special Note||Top of Page|
1. When calling another city from within Germany, dial a zero before
the city code (for example, when calling Berlin from Munich, the city code
for Berlin is 030).
2. The official unit of currency in Germany is the Euro. Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) are widely available throughout Germany. They utilize many of the same account networks that are found in the U.S., so it is possible in most cases to get German currency directly from your U.S. bank while you are in Germany without paying any inordinate fees for currency exchange.
3. Credit cards are not accepted as widely as in the United States.
4. When calling another city from within Germany, dial a zero before the city code (for example, when calling Berlin from Munich, the city code for Berlin is 030).
5. ThereArePlaces makes every attempt to ensure that the travel information we present to you is current. Before you depart, be sure to check with official government sources to determine the status of critical information relating to a particular county.
|Road Safety||Top of Page|
While in Germany, you may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. The information below concerning Germany is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance:
Safety of Public Transportation: Excellent Urban Roads Conditions/Maintenance: Excellent Rural Roads Conditions/Maintenance: Excellent Availability of Roadside Assistance: Excellent
Road conditions in general are excellent, although caution should be exercised while traveling on older roads in eastern Germany. The high speed permitted on the German autobahn, weather, and unfamiliar road markings can pose significant hazards, and driver error is a leading cause of accidents involving American motorists in Germany.
Tourists driving rented vehicles should pay close attention to the provisions of their rental contracts. Failure to do so could result in fines or confiscation of the car during your travels. Make sure that you are familiar with the terms, restrictions and costs related to your car rental (see our article on Rental Car Costs).
Rules on right-of-way differ significantly from the U.S. Notice should be taken that it is generally illegal in Germany to pass vehicles from the right.
ThereArePlaces recommends that you do not drink and drive. In most foreign countries, especially in Europe and the UK, the maximum permitted blood alcohol levels are lower than those enforced in the United States. Penalties and punishments are significant. See our article on drinking and driving in foreign countries.
Speed Limits in Germany:
Our information on speed limits is as current as possible. Always confirm the speed limits with your rental car agent and observe the posted speeds limits whenever and wherever you drive.
Travelers should also note that railroad crossings are differently marked in Germany than in the U.S. There have been several accidents involving Americans in recent years at railroad crossings. In addition to the standard crossbuck (X-shaped) sign, railroad crossings are often marked by signal lights. Signal lights flash only when a train is approaching. Regardless of the color of the light, a flashing light at a railroad crossing means that a train is approaching and that all vehicles should stop.
Individuals holding U.S. drivers' licenses may drive in Germany for up to six months without acquiring a German driver's license.
For information on obtaining international drivers licenses, contact AAA or the American Automobile Touring Alliance. For additional general information about road safety, including links to foreign government sites, see the Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet home page at http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/safety/safety_1179.html#safety .
|Medical Care||Top of Page|
Good medical care is widely available. Doctors and hospitals may expect immediate payment in cash for health services from tourists and persons with no permanent address in Germany. Most doctors, hospitals, and pharmacies do not accept credit cards.
We strongly urge you to consult your medical insurance company prior to traveling abroad to confirm whether their policy applies overseas and whether it will cover emergency expenses such as a medical evacuation. U.S. medical insurance plans seldom cover health costs incurred outside the United States unless supplemental coverage is purchased. Further, U.S. Medicare and Medicaid programs do not provide payment for medical services outside the United States. However, many travel agents and private companies offer insurance plans that will cover health care expenses incurred overseas including emergency services such as medical evacuations.
When making a decision regarding health insurance, you should consider that many foreign doctors and hospitals require payment in cash prior to providing medical service and that a medical evacuation to the U.S. may cost in excess of $50,000. Uninsured travelers who require medical care overseas often face extreme difficulties. When consulting with your insurer prior to your departure, please ascertain whether payment will be made to the overseas healthcare provider or if you will be reimbursed later for expenses you incur.
Your existing medical insurance carrier may cover "customary and reasonable" medical care while you are abroad. Usually, if reimbursement is provided, it is paid at a reduced rate (due to the use of an "out of system" provider). Check with your insurance carrier before you depart to determine the type and amount of coverage that may be provided. If coverage is provided, be sure to ask how claims should be filed and ask them to send some claim forms, in case you require any medical treatment while on vacation.
Read our article on travel insurance to learn the factors that you should consider before you purchase or decline to purchase a travel related insurance policy.
ThereArePlaces Information Guide on Health contains valuable health related advice for the traveler considering a trip abroad.
|U.S. Consular Locations|
U.S. Embassy Berlin is located at:
U.S. Consulates General are located at:
Dusseldorf: Willi-Becker-Allee 10,
Frankfurt: Giessner Str. 30,
Hamburg: Alsterufer 27/28,
Leipzig: Wilhelm-Seyfferth-Strasse 4, Tel. (49)(341) 213-8418; Fax: (49)(341) 2138417 (emergency service only).
Munich: Koenigstrasse 5,
There is also a U.S. consular agency in
Bremen located at Bremen World Trade Center, Birkenstrasse
|Germany:||Best Places to Visit Country Facts Other Countries Top of Page|
|ThereArePlaces Home Destination Guides Travel Planning Guides|