Daily Life at EURASIA: Everything you need to know about living in Berlin

14. June 2024

New to Berlin and not sure what to do? Never fear, because EURASIA is here to help! From shopping to taking public transportation, there is nothing you cannot do as you tackle this new city. Here are a few tips to get you started.

Getting Around Berlin

Public transit in Berlin can be intimidating: so many different subway lines, so many ways of getting around the city, bus stops and ticket booths. There are two subway lines here, the U-bahn and the S-bahn, not to mention the bus lines, tram lines, and larger trains that go in and out of the city.

While the sheer scope of transportation here may be overwhelming, it can help to break down your journey into a few simple steps. Firstly, figure out which zone you need to go to. Berlin is divided into A, B, and C zones. A simple search online will tell you which zone you are in, and which zone your destination is in. Next, get the BVG ticket app. You can buy a ticket on the app easily and quickly, based on which zone you are in and which zone you are going to–it’s all online! If you have difficulties with the app, or if you dislike contactless tickets, find the nearest ticket booth in a subway or train terminal. You can buy a physical ticket easily here. And if you need help along the way, most employees will speak English.

After identifying your destination and purchasing your ticket, use the BVG Fahrinfo app, Google Maps, or Apple Maps to route yourself to your destination. This super-helpful app will tell you exactly which station and subway line to go to, which bus or tram number to take, and which routes to walk in order to get to your destination.

When you arrive at the train station or step onto the bus, be sure to punch or scan your ticket before boarding. Transit authorities will sometimes conduct random checks to see if passengers have their ticket punched or not. Even if you have your ticket with you, if it is not punched, you will have to pay an extra fee. Locations for punching your ticket are available on most U-bahn, S-bahn and intercity train station platforms.

Are you trying to get more exercise? You can also rent or buy a bike and join the huge numbers of commuters biking all around the city! International companies like Swapfiets will rent reliable bikes monthly to customers at cheap prices. For destinations close by, biking may be faster than taking a bus or train, and a great way to enjoy both the natural and man-made beauty around the city.

Shopping and Pricing in Germany

Shopping in Berlin can be another challenging experience while navigating life in Germany. But we at EURASIA know you can do it! To begin, it is helpful to remember that due to conversion rates, the value of the European euro is not exactly the same as currency from your home country. Do some research before coming to Berlin on the value of the euro compared to your home currency, and be prepared to change your budget a bit to accommodate local prices. It may be helpful to purchase an international card with Revolut, Wise or another international banking company to make purchases and ATM withdrawals easier during your stay.

Always be aware of potential scammers. Many ATMs are not safe or reliable to use, so double-check before you withdraw. Using ATMs at banks is often the surest way to keep your money safe. Many vendors or store owners in Germany will only accept cash, so make sure to have somecash on hand so that you can fully enjoy experiences such as local markets and Turkish kebab stands.

Berlin features many fun attractions, malls, and museums. Always look for student discounts, which are available at events around the city. Thrift stores, which are almost everywhere in Berlin, give you opportunities to buy clothing and accessories at lower prices. If you are looking for a world-class shopping experience, shopping centers like the Mall of Berlin and Bikini Berlin, or the luxury shopping street on Kurfürstendamm, are sure to deliver.

Living in a new place can be difficult, even frightening. However, with a few simple skills to succeed and a little preparation, you will be ready to tackle anything. With some practice and exploration, you will be living like a Berliner in no time. As you fully embrace the experience of living in your new home, your time at EURASIA will be better than you could ever imagine.

EURASIA: Your Trusted Academic Guide

While embarking on an academic journey in a foreign country may seem scary, EURASIA is here to support you from day one. We have the expertise and experience to guide you through the entire process, from initial applications to visa requirements. With EURASIA by your side, you can embrace this new adventure with confidence.