How much does it cost to move to Germany?

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Written by
Team Worldify
Published on
May 2, 2023

You're probably excited about your upcoming international move, but still wondering what it will cost to move to Germany. You will need money for things like housing, food and transportation before you arrive. We highly recommend that you also consider setting aside some funds for unexpected expenses that could arise during your stay. Let’s dive into what you can plan for financially as you move to Germany.

What does it cost to move to Germany?

The cost of moving to Germany can vary greatly, depending on several factors. Things like mode of transportation, the distance between the current location and Germany, the amount and type of belongings being moved, and your individual specific needs and preferences all play a role into the overall expenses.

If you are moving from a neighboring country, the cost may be relatively low, with options such as bus or train travel being affordable. However, if you are moving from a faraway location such as the United States or Australia, air travel can be expensive, ranging from around 500€ to 1500€ or more, depending on the airline, travel dates, and time of year.

In addition to transportation costs, there are several other expenses to consider when moving to Germany, such as visa fees, rent, utilities, and transportation within the country, as well as the cost of living in your chosen city. We'll go into some detail now to help you plan:

Visa Fees

Your visa costs will depend on your nationality and the type of visa you apply for. The typical costs associated with obtaining a residence title in Germany can vary, but generally range from €60 to €110. 

Housing Costs in Germany

Housing costs are one of the most important expenses to consider when factoring the cost to move to Germany. You can expect to pay around 30% of your income on housing in Germany, which is less than in most other countries. However, if you're looking for something more upscale or want better amenities than a standard apartment offers, expect to spend closer to 40%.

Housing costs include rent or mortgage payments, utilities (including electricity and water), property taxes and insurance. 

The first step in estimating your housing costs is to determine whether you'll be renting or buying a home.

If you're planning on purchasing a property in Germany, it's important that you understand how much this will cost as well as what kind of mortgage options are available for expats looking for financing options outside their home country.

However, contrary to practices in other countries, it’s not typical to buy property in Germany. Most Germans rent their housing long-term, and that will probably be the easiest option for you as a new arrival. If you are renting, there are several factors that will affect how much money goes out each month. 

Rental Costs

Depending on the region you choose to live in, the cost of rent can vary dramatically.

In major cities like Berlin or Munich, you can expect to pay upwards of €800 per month for a one-bedroom apartment (Germans refer to this set-up as a “2-room apartment”). In smaller towns or rural areas, you may be able to find more affordable housing options, with rent ranging from €300 to €700 per month.

When it comes to finding a place to live in Germany, it's important to consider factors beyond just the cost of rent. For example, you'll want to think about the neighborhood you'll be living in and the amenities that are available nearby. Some neighborhoods may be more expensive, but offer better access to public transportation or have more restaurants and shops within walking distance.

💡 Worldify Tip - Initial Deposit

When renting, keep in mind that most landlords will expect a deposit of 1-3 months rent when you move in. Depending on the cost of your rent, this can total 2000€+. As you’re planning the cost to move to Germany, make sure to factor this into your cash budget, as you’ll likely need to pay this before you start working in Germany. 

Utilities in Germany

Utilities are a major expense for most people. If you're moving to Germany, it's important to know how much utilities will cost and how much they might vary from your current home.

Utility costs vary widely depending on where you live in Germany, so it's difficult to estimate exactly what they'll be without knowing where exactly you'll be living. However, there are some general guidelines that can help give an idea of what your monthly utility expenses might look like:

  • Electricity: 0-30€/month (depending on if heating is included)
  • Water: 0-10€/month (depending on whether or not there's a water meter)
  • Gas/Oil: 10-20€/month (varies by apartment size)
  • Internet: 20-50€/month (varies by provider)


Transportation costs can be a significant part of your budget, especially if you have to travel frequently for work. The cost of transportation can vary greatly depending on where in Germany you live and how far away your job is from home. To estimate the potential costs for getting around Germany, consider these factors:

  • How often will I need to travel?
  • Which mode of transportation (car, bus or train) will work best for me?
  • How much time do I have before my move date?

For reference, we’ve included some transportation costs in Germany (averaged): 

  • One-way Ticket (Local Transport)- 2.90€
  • Monthly Ticket - 70€
  • Taxi Start (Normal Tariff) starts at - 3.50€
  • Bicycle purchase - 70€
  • Bicycle rental - 20€/mo

Health Insurance

Health insurance is a big expense, but it's important to know that you have options. The cost of insurance can vary depending on your age and where you live in Germany. If you're under 30 years old, the government will cover 70% of your health care costs; for those over 30, this drops to 40%.

If you opt out of getting insurance through the government program (which we strongly recommend against), then expect to pay anywhere from $100-$600 per month for private coverage. Depending on what type of policy and provider works best for your needs will determine how much money goes toward premiums each month. In addition, there may be additional fees associated with visiting doctors outside of normal office hours or using clinics outside of their network--so keep these things in mind when considering what kind of plan works best for your situation! 


Germany has a progressive tax system, which means that the more money you earn, the higher your tax rate will be, with rates ranging from 14% to 45%. Beyond income tax, you'll also need to pay social security contributions, which are approximately 20% of your gross income. To help you plan, we recommend using a tax calculator to forecast your income after taxes.

Additional Cost of Living in Germany

Though the following aren't necessarily a cost to move to Germany, we find it helpful to know how expensive daily life in your new country will be.

Once you arrive in Germany, you'll also need to consider the cost of food, transportation, and entertainment, in addition to housing. We’ve summed up some examples to help give you an idea of what things cost here on average (major cities may be more expensive, rural areas cheaper):

Food - Dining Out

  • Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant - 12€
  • Meal, Expensive Restaurants (Multi-course) - 55€
  • Domestic (German) beer, .5L - 5€
  • Imported beer, .33L - 4.5€
  • Cappuccino (regular) - 3€
  • Water (small bottle) - 2.25€

Food - Groceries

  • Dozen Eggs (non-bio) - 3.25€
  • 1kg Chicken Fillets - 8.25€
  • 1kg Potatoes - 1.60€
  • 1kg Apples - 2.25€
  • 1kg Rice (white)- 2.09€
  • Loaf of bread - 1.05€
  • Bottle of Wine (Mid-Range) - 5€


  • Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult - 33 €
  • Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour on Weekend)- 21€
  • Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat - 12€
  • Club / Concert Ticket - 20€
  • Cocktail - 10€

Overall, it is difficult to provide an exact cost to move to Germany, as it varies greatly based on individual circumstances. However, as a rough estimate, the cost to move to Germany for an individual could range from several thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars, depending on the specific factors involved. As you plan, consider all the expenses associated with living in Germany, so that you can make sure you're prepared for the costs and enjoy your new home to the fullest.  🔵

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