Spanish Expat Living in Germany - Interview with Marta

Published: 4 Nov at 9 AM
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Filed: Interviews,Germany
Marta likes to travel and to discover the world. Since almost two years she decided to start a new life in Germany. The country, the people, the culture... She likes to learn from them and to share her experiences with others. Marta's expat blog is called Expat life in Düsseldorf (see listing here)

Here's the interview with Marta...

Where are you originally from?
I am originally from Spain

In which country and city are you living now?
I am living in Düsseldorf, Germany

How long have you lived in Germany and how long are you planning to stay?
I live here since almost 2 years ago and I would like to stay time enough to discover the country and to learn more from its culture.

Why did you move to Germany and what do you do?
I moved because I found a job in a Spanish company in Düsseldorf, now I changed and I am working for a German company.

Did you bring family with you?
No, but I am lucky to say I found one here :)

How did you find the transition to living in a foreign country?
I like to live in foreign countries, it is easy for me. I think being open-minded and being ready to discover and learn as much as possible is really helpful for the transition.

Was it easy making friends and meeting people; do you mainly socialise with other expats?
Sure! Socializing with other expats is always a good way to know new people and to make friends. There are many forums, organizations and groups which help to get in contact with other expats.

What are the best things to do in the area; anything to recommend to future expats?
The best moments of the year are: Carnival, July (Kirmes times) and Christmas. People enjoy these special times. Those traditional dates are really important. Everybody is ready to enjoy and have a great time.

Another good part of living in Düsseldorf is the proximity to other cities and countries. Which allows you to discover the region (NRW), there are beautiful places like Benrath, Köln, Duisburg...

What do you enjoy most about living in Germany?
I like to enjoy the city. There is always something to do: an exhibition to visit, a food festival, a flohmarkt... Also people are really nice and open-minded with foreigners.

How does the cost of living in Germany compare to home?
It depends, compare to the south of Spain Düsseldorf is expensive. However, compare to Madrid, Barcelona, the Basque Country... it is not so expensive.

What negatives, if any, are there to living in Germany?
The only negative thing about living here is the public transport. If you need to take the train to go to work you have to get used to the lack of punctuality of the German trains.

If you could pick one piece of advice to anyone moving to Germany, what would it be?
I would recommend people who are moving here to enjoy it. This part of Germany is a really nice one, Düsseldorf and Köln are international cities where people are tolerant and open-minded. All the region is full with open air events, festivals... There is something to do during the whole year.

If someone wants to move here I would tell he or she to be ready to meet new people, to discover the culture and to try different types of beer :). And, of course!, to learn the language. German is not an easy language but if you want to you can do it, and people here are really nice and happy when foreigners speak their language.

What has been the hardest aspect to your expat experience so far?
The hardest aspect for me was to get a job. Finding a new job in Germany is not as easy as people think. If you are looking for a qualified job then you need to learn German and to prepare each interview. If you are just coming here to have a chance and you are looking for unqualified jobs then it is easier because you do not need so many requirements to work.

When you finally return home, how do you think you'll cope with repatriation?
I have no idea. Actually I did not even think about it since my future plans are to discover more countries before coming back to mine.

What are your top 5 expat tips for anyone following in your footsteps?
  1. Be ready to discover new things, to have new experiences and to meet new people.
  2. Do not hesitate to contact with different people, to ask, to read forums... It is important to get as much information as possible about the place where you are moving to.
  3. Learn the language. I find it helpful to integrate yourself in the country.
  4. Do not compare everything with your home country. Sometimes comparisons are unavoidable, however, every culture is different and we just have to get used to it.
  5. Once in the country meet other expats.
    Getting in touch with other people is helpful not only to make friends but also to get information about the city, to discover the best way to look for jobs, to find out different activities and places to visit... Listening to others´ experiences is always a good way to learn.
Tell us a bit about your own expat blog.
duesseldorfmoments is a blog about how to enjoy expat time. Living abroad can be an amazing experience and I like to share mine. I write about different events, which take place in Düsseldorf, about other regions of Germany (as expats we should try to discover the whole country where we live) and about some practical information (restaurants, museums, how to rent a flat...). I try to share my experience while helping others.

How can you be contacted for further advice to future expats coming to your area?
You can always contact me in this website, by twitter or in my blog.

About the author

Expat Blog ListingMarta is a Spanish expat living in Germany. Blog description: A Spanish point of view to discover Germany. A Spanish expat living in Germany
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