As a person who experienced life in both the US and Germany first-hand, I can attest that there are some things Germany definitely does better than the US.
I lived in NYC, and now I live in Berlin. Both are metropoleis with a large cosmopolitan population, but I’ve only ever felt safe in one of them: Berlin. As a woman who bikes, walks, and uses public transports to get around, this matters a lot.
Also, compare the number of mass shootings in Germany and the US and you’ll know right away where it is more dangerous to live. According to the New York Times, “In Germany, being murdered with a gun is as uncommon as being killed by a falling object in the United States.”
2. Wurst (or sausages if you must)
Of course, the first country that comes to your mind when we talk about sausage is Germany. And for good reasons — Wurst are fantastic! Their variety, flavors, and textures are endless. Believe me when I say that bratwurst mit brötchen are vastly superior to hotdogs.
Berlin is a city that never requires you to use a car. Even during the winter months, it is perfectly feasible to go everywhere on your bike.
In Germany, there are bike lanes in every big city, which makes doing your share for the environment a lot easier and safer. Also, Germany’s bike lanes are connected to a large European biking network so you can go from Berlin to Copenhagen or Prague by bike if you want! How cool is that?
Germany’s dark bread is incredible and I will go as far as saying it is the best bread in the world. Compared to it, America’s Wonder bread and other pre-sliced, plastic-wrapped, white-flour crap is nothing but an unhealthy joke.
5. Rent prices
Many German cities are suffering from gentrification which is leading to an increase in rent prices, but nothing compares to the absurd prices you pay for accommodation in America.
In Berlin, I pay 800 Euros monthly for a 150-sq. meters apartment in an amazing area while in NYC, I would pay $3000 for a studio in a similarly trendy neighborhood. I have lived in Berlin for five years now and my rent has barely increased, while my friend who lives in Brooklyn has seen her rent double within 10 years. Who can afford to pay 3 grand for an apartment?
6. Football (or soccer if you must)
The results of the FIFA World Cup over the years speak for themselves: Germans are much better than everyone else (almost)! We’re almost as good as the Brazilians and that says a lot.
7. Free education
All of my American friends in Berlin came here to study for cheap and I don’t blame them. Here, you can do the course you want for nearly nothing. You just pay a small fee every semester, and it includes your 6-month ticket to use public transports!
8. Workers’ rights
In the US, employers are not required to grant any vacation or holidays to their employees. In Germany, by law, you have a minimum of 21 per year.
In the US, employers have to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for the birth of a baby. In Germany, “A parent who interrupts his or her career to raise a child receives 67 percent of their last net income. This benefit lasts for one year, which can be extended to 14 months if the second parent likewise stays at home for at least two months”, explains Expatica.
I’m leaving this here for you to think about.
In Germany, the Reinheitsgebot (Beer Purity Law) forbids outrageous and grotesque concoctions such as beer made with anything but malt, water, and hops. Also, here, ‘light’ beer is nothing short of blasphemy.
In Germany, we all pay for healthcare based on how much we earn and we have some of the highest-quality doctors and hospitals in the world! If you lose your job or if you can’t work, you can remain healthy without spending a penny.
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