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Will I need to drive my own vehicle to conduct my everyday life (work/school/shopping) at my destination?
This depends on where you plan to live.
In the suburbs, a car is a rather important necessity.
In the city, finding a parking place can be problematic and public transportation is quick and easy.
How can I legally drive a vehicle in this city?
An EU citizen driver may use his or her home country license in Germany. Those from outside of the
European Union are required to have their licenses transferred within the first six months.
Germany has agreements with certain foreign countries (and individual US states) that allow an easy transfer of a driver’s license. Unfortunately, many countries and several states do not fall into this agreement.
If you are lucky enough to have a driver’s license from one of these countries or states, all that needs to be taken care of is a simple procedure of getting your current license translated into German, going to the Department of Motor Vehicles (Führerscheinstelle ), filling out the necessary paperwork, paying a small fee and submitting the application. The office will then take your application into consideration and, after six to eight weeks, send you a letter to confirm that your license is ready to be picked up.
If you do not have a driver’s license from one of the states or countries in the agreement, you will need to take either a written test (available in a variety of languages), practical test or both, depending on the agreement and requirements. Once you have passed these exams, you will be granted a license.
Preparation for the written and practical tests is generally very time-consuming, costs a great deal and provides a significant challenge to a new transferee in Germany.
What side of the road do people drive on?
In Germany, people drive on the right side of the road.
Describe typical public transportation an expat might use to get around the city.
All major German cities offer both subways and suburban trains as well as buses and trams. Smaller
German towns are generally serviced by buses and sometimes trams.
Could an expat also use public transportation to get out of the city—to surrounding towns, recreation areas or suburbs? If so, list options.
Suburban trains cover the majority of the region surrounding Frankfurt. Trains run frequently during business hours (typically every 15 minutes), but run reduced schedules over weekends and on holidays.
Buses often make the connections between suburban train stations and parts of smaller towns or suburbs.
In regards to transportation, are there any safety issues I should be aware of?
German public transportation is safe, reliable and relatively inexpensive.
Where do I buy tickets/tokens/etc. for the major public transportation?
Tickets are available in every subway or suburban train station at a ticket machine. Prices vary between peak and off-hours. There are several ticket options, including short trips (under 1km) and normal tickets within the Frankfurt Zone, as well as weekly, monthly and year-long passes.
An information booth at the main train station and on the major shopping street, the Zeil, can provide more information.
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.