Dating In Germany [The Ultimate Guide For Foreigners] (2023)

You are an expat who didn’t move to Germany for love, but would instead like to find your love in Germany? This dating in Germany guide is for you as we dive into German dating culture, etiquette, and do’s and don’t.

This is a rather personal article, where I introduce you to some stereotypical dating rules and my own experiences dating German and foreign guys and girls. Would you agree that qualifies me to give you valuable ‘survival guide’ advice on dating in Germany? 😄

Table of Contents

Where To Meet People In Germany?

Before any dating can happen, of course, the biggest challenge is to meet someone date-worthy, especially as an expat.

Related Guide: How to make friends in Germany?

Let’s look at some numbers from the latestwedding studydone in Germany.

(Video) Dating German Women ❤️😍 Our Ultimate Guide

Germans like to date within their social circle. They listen to and, more importantly, trust their friends’ judgment. So it is no surprise that the number 1 answer in the survey was that 26% met their partners through friends. Followed byonline dating sites and apps(23%) and meeting at a party, bar, or disco (14%).

When it comes to same-sex couples meeting through friends is only number 2 with 29%, and number 1 isdating sites and appswith 39%. The third most popular way of meeting a same-sex partner is through social clubs and hobbies.

I had met my German boyfriends through friends and my German girlfriends via an online dating site. Jen, my wife from Guatemala, and I met through a sports club. It seems like I check all the boxes.

Related Guide:

What Is Dating In Germany Like?

Compared to other nations famous for their dating culture, like Italy and France, Germans are far more rational than emotional. That can be exhausting, but also refreshing, depending on what you are used to and what you are looking for. Here arethe 13 most prevailing factors in German dating culture.

1. Dating A German Is Not Necessarily Romantic In The Beginning

When you agree with a German on meeting alone, you might consider it a romantic date. In contrast, the German will consider it as getting to know each other better, without having decided yet, whether there is a common romantic connection.

2. Dating A German Means Exclusivity

When dating a German, the worst thing you can do is date other people simultaneously. Germans don’t mess around, and when they give you their valuable time and energy, they expect the same from the other person wholeheartedly.

Going out with other people at the same time is pretty much like cheating and conveying that you are not seriously interested.Dating while being exclusive; however, does not mean that you are in a relationship already.

(Video) Love, Dating And Sex in Germany | Meet the Germans

Dating In Germany [The Ultimate Guide For Foreigners] (1)

3. You Have To Be Punctual For Dates

Germans are punctual. Germans are punctual at pretty much everything, dating included. Being late is rude and will end your possible relationship before it even started.Instead, be there five to ten minutes early to make a good impression.

4. Flirting With Germans Is Difficult

Germans are not good at small talk, and when it comes to dating or even worse, flirting, Germans can become awkward quite fast when approached with small talk. Instead, Germans like to get into long detailed conversations. Those are not always the most romantic kind, as it is about getting to know the other person, their thoughts, opinions, and values.

5.Be Ready For Honest And Direct Conversation

Germans are very direct. They speak their minds, also when it comes to dating. They will let you know how they feel and whether you are their type or not. Protecting your feelings is not the number one priority when dating. On the flip side, Germans mean and do what they say. So if a German tells you they like you, they really like you. When they tell you they will call you tomorrow, you better make sure to have your phone around.

6. Dress Nice But Not Too Nice

Germans like to take care of their physical appearance. That being said, they like to look decent, but not over the top. They expect the same from their date.

7. Gender Equality Is Significant In German Dating

Gender equality is strong in Germany. A man’s expectations for a German woman to become a stay at home mom while dating is a slap in her face. A man having issues with a woman earning a higher salary should reconsider dating in Germany. Machismo is growled at by German women, which doesn’t mean that German women don’t appreciate a gentleman.

On the other hand, German women might not be able to handle compliments confidently. They will be confused as to whether the guy means it or whether he is messing with her.

8. Who Pays The Bill On A First Date In Germany?

‘Do German guys pay for dates?’ is one of the most common questions amongst expats. The answer is no. Due to the strong gender equality, it is common to split the bill on a first date in Germany. Inviting a woman on the first date would be considered a sign of disrespect. Down the line, Germans tend to talk about finances and put up a rule of handling things. It is also quite common that men and women in exchange invite each other for dinner. Staying equal, in the partnership as well as with finances, is quite essential when dating in Germany.

(Video) dating in Germany (as a foreigner)

Dating In Germany [The Ultimate Guide For Foreigners] (2)

9. Love Your Independence

On top of wanting to be considered as equal, Germans love their independence. Don’t be surprised to take things slow. Just because you might think you have met your significant other does not mean that he or she will drop everything, to spend every single minute with you and woo you all the time. On the contrary, Germans keep up their normal lifestyle, go to their sports groups, meet their friends, and fit you in between.

The moment a German prioritizes you over a regular habit is a big sign of ‘I’m in it for good’.

10.There Are No Written Rules

There are no rules about steps to take on the first, second, or third date in Germany. When to kiss, when to have sex, and when to say ‘I love you’. Germans do all of the above when they feel it’s right, and they mean it, at least when they are looking for a serious relationship and not just a fling.

11. Vacation Together – Yes Or No?

Germans love to travel and will expect you to travel with them. At the same time, though, they will also expect you to respect them traveling with friends without you. Whether that is to go party at‘Ballermann’in Mallorca with their best friends or on a city weekend trip with their family. Don’t become jealous – remember the importance of independence.

Dating In Germany [The Ultimate Guide For Foreigners] (3)

A German is serious about you when they join you to visit your home country. Jen asked me whether I wanted to visit Guatemala with her in our first year together. Four years later, we took my sister and her husband to Guatemala, and the following year my parents. That says it all.

12. Be Prepared To Plan Your Life

Being German basically stands for being a planner in every life aspect. When dating a German, you better start maintaining a calendar, as Germans do plan ahead weeks, months, heck sometimes even years. On top of that, when Germans commit to attending an event or accept an invite, they mean it and expect all involved parties to live up to it. Germans would never say yes to something out of politeness when they know that they will not live up to it.

(Video) The Ultimate Guide To German Culture In Germany | Get Germanized

Jen had to learn about the German ‘no’ on various occasions and appreciates it a lot, as a German ‘yes’ means you won’t be disappointed but instead that you can rely on that person.

13. The Role Of The Family In Dating A German

When a German introduces you to their family, that is a sign of serious commitment. You better learn some German, as by far not all parents of Germans will speak English. The rest is on you, just like in any other country in the world, the relationship with your potential parents in law can be tricky. Some embrace you as part of the family and keep in touch with you long after your relationship is over; others will give you a tough time and see you as a threat.

Moving Into A Relationship With A German

Be prepared to bring some patience into German dating – you have to be in it to win it. Just like there are no rules about when to kiss, have sex, etc., there are also no rules as to how many dates it takes to be officially in a relationship.

When you have made it to the relationship level, the next step, and test for the relationship, is moving together to a new apartment. It is relatively uncommon that one person moves into the place of the other.

Remember the planning part? Well, a relationship with a German is nothing else but planned life. Dinners alone, dinners with friends, doing sports, jobs, vacations, weddings, children, retirement. Don’t get scared now; Germans just don’t like leaving things to chance.

Getting Married To A German

When it comes to getting married, Germans are private people. As the latestwedding studyshows, 36% of all proposals happen at home and 29% while being on vacation. Well, and 18% of German couples get married without an actual proposal – say what?! Maybe those are the same couples that get married for tax reasons (24%). No reason to panic, though, for 96% of Germans, the biggest reason to get married is love.

Are you wondering who typically proposes? In straight couples, it still is traditionally the man (75%), and only 3% of German women take gender equality to the next level.

Related Guides: How to get married in Germany & 15 German Wedding Traditions and Customs

(Video) Things I Dislike about Foreign guys & How to date Japanese Girls?

Dating In Germany [The Ultimate Guide For Foreigners] (4)

Stereotypes Are Just That

Everything you have read above about dating in Germany is highly stereotypical. It can be the absolute truth or further from the one German that will sweep you off your feet. And isn’t that the beauty of it all? Be prepared for the Germanness as well as for surprises. When Jen started to kiss me, I exclaimed in a very stereotypical way, ‘I don’t date Latinas’ and look where that got me – I married one 😅.

Final Thoughts

I hope you are ready and excited to start your German dating adventure. Don’t try too hard though, the best things happen when you least expect them, including meeting that special someone. Good luck! ❤️


What is the German dating habit? ›

The German approach to dating: slow and steady

They prefer to go on casual dates and use the dating phase to get to know you better. So, the first date or even the first few dates might not be as romantic as you hope. Although casual dating is the norm, it's implied that you won't be playing the field.

Do German girls kiss on the first date? ›

Go on a First Date: drinks, sometimes dinner, an event, whatever. A kiss or three is expected if both have a good time. If one/both did NOT have a good time (or if it fails to develop into a romantic spark), they will often never see each other again.

Is dating in Germany easy? ›

Meeting new people is relatively easy in Germany and dating practices are similar to other European countries. Teenagers generally begin to socialize with peers at school, within their neighborhood, or through social activities and local clubs.

What is exclusivity in German dating? ›

Dating A German Means Exclusivity

Germans don't mess around, and when they give you their valuable time and energy, they expect the same from the other person wholeheartedly. Going out with other people at the same time is pretty much like cheating and conveying that you are not seriously interested.

Do Germans kiss when they meet? ›

The most common greeting is a handshake with direct eye contact. Men usually greet women first and wait for them to extend their hand. Close friends may hug to greet and younger people may kiss one another on the cheek. "Guten Tag" (Good day) or “Hallo” (Hello) are the most common verbal greetings used in Germany.

How do Germans flirt? ›

Flirting In German: It's All In The Eyes

It just means sexy eye contact could involve a little more “innuendo” than usual. This does not mean it'll necessarily be accompanied by a smile, or that you'll be invited with a lingering gaze. A favorite move when flirting in German is the “look, but then quickly look away.”

How many kisses do Germans give? ›

Two Kisses: Spain, Italy, Greece, Germany, Hungary, Romania, Croatia, Bosnia, Brazil (though, like France, the number can differ by region), and some Middle Eastern countries (though not between opposite sexes)

Do German men ask you to be their girlfriend? ›

Oftentimes, they don't explicitly ask you out on a date but rather phrase it like “do you want to go for coffee sometime?” so it becomes hard to tell what their intention is. Furthermore, many Germans like to keep their distance until they get to know you better, so it may be best not to get too personal too quickly.

Which German city is best for singles? ›

Berlin, Germany

Berlin's open attitude to sex and relationships make it one of the best cities for singles in Europe, where over 51% of the population is single.

How much does it cost to love in Germany? ›

The cost of living: average values for Germany in 2022

According to Destatis, it adds up to €2,507 a month, with 37% of this going towards housing and energy costs and 15% on food, alcohol, and tobacco (as of September 2022). If you calculate this on an annual basis, the average cost of living in Germany is €30,084.

What is best before date in Germany? ›

The best-before date (“Mindesthaltbarkeit / MHD” in German) is a date that comes with a recommended storage temperature. It can usually be found on processed food, such as cookies and yogurt.

What is the age limit for dating in Germany? ›

The lowest minimum age is 14 years, set in seven Member States: Austria, Bulgaria, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Italy and Portugal. The highest is set at 18 years – in Malta. About half of the Member States apply different age limits to sexual acts between young persons.

How do singles meet in Germany? ›

Parship. Parship is the most popular dating website in Germany, thanks to its aggressive marketing. They promise that every 11 minutes, a single is falling in love via Parship. Their focus is also long-term serious relationships.

Are Germans touchy feely people? ›

Germans are, as a whole, not especially touchy-feely type people, so the lack of intimate physical touch also functions as a bonus lifehack of living and working in Germany. Organize yourself and pay attention to details.

What does 3 kisses in a row mean? ›

Three kisses in a row is a new type of kiss that a person in love gives to the one they love. These kisses are short ones that come one after the other. If they give you these magical three kisses, one after the other, they want to make sure that you know that they love you.

What is butterfly kiss? ›

Butterfly kisses are when you gently flutter your eyelids against another person's check or arm. It tickles, and feels a bit like butterfly wings on your skin.

What is considered rude to Germans? ›

Germans are extremely punctual and well-mannered. Showing up late, losing your cool, or raising your voice are all considered rude and thoughtless. If you step out of line, don't be surprised or offended if someone corrects your behavior, as this is very common in the German culture.

How do Germans feel about touch? ›

Physical Contact: People tend not to touch one another very much during communication unless they are close friends. Touching someone on the shoulder or arm to emphasise a point is generally acceptable, but can otherwise be seen as a sexual advance.

Why do Germans stare a lot? ›

In Germany, intense eye contact is a daily occurrence – to such an extend that expats and visitors have dubbed it “The Germanic Stare Down.” German pedestrians also use it to communicate, and the right amount of eye contact at the right time can mean “I am walking here, and it's not my fault if you don't move over and ...

How do Germans express love? ›

Unlike other languages, the German expression “Ich liebe dich” is almost exclusively used in romantic relationships. Nevertheless, Germans like to express their love for their friends and family too. In most cases, they say “Ich hab' dich lieb,” which could be translated as “I have love for you.”

How do Germans distinguish between friend and girlfriend? ›

All of these relationships are expressed by the same word Freund for a male friend/boyfriend and Freundin for female friend/girlfriend.

How do Germans show respect? ›

A quick, firm handshake is the traditional greeting. Titles are very important and denote respect. Use a person's title and their surname until invited to use their first name. You should say Herr or Frau and the person's title and their surname.

Do Germans show affection in public? ›

In Germany you will probably see couples holding hands or kissing openly on the streets. Do not feel uncomfortable or angry about this as it is considered normal. Holding hands is an expression of love and affection; good friends will usually not walk side by side holding hands.

Can you hug in Germany? ›

While in other countries, such as France or most parts of South America, a hug or a kiss on the cheek are common, even in daily business culture. In Germany, however, you shake hands with both genders. In more relaxed situations, you can give hugs and people won't refuse them.

How do Germans greet someone with kisses? ›

Kisses on the lips or cheeks as a way to greet someone in Germany is not a common practice at all. Even among close family and friends, it's a rare occurrence. However, kissing on the cheeks is more culturally accepted in neighboring Austria but still reserved for close family and friends.

How can I impress a German person? ›

Still, there may be some things about your friend's next dinner party that will surprise you, so here's a brief heads up about what to expect.
  1. Gifts are definitely Willkommen.
  2. Greet the German way.
  3. 3. ' Keep your hands where we can see 'em'
  4. Don't forget to make eye contact.
  5. Knowing when it's time to dig in.
May 24, 2016

Do I need to speak German to marry a German? ›

Unless both persons to be wed speak German fluently, you will need to bring a translator or interpreter with you to the Town Hall when you give notice of the impending marriage. Preferably, the same translator or interpreter should also translate during the wedding ceremony.

How do you get German people to like you? ›

3 Tips To Make German Friends
  1. Learn The German Language. Germans are more receptive to foreigners when they make an effort to speak German. ...
  2. Be Patient When Making Friends In Germany. Germans need time to warm up to new people. ...
  3. Stick To Your Word. One of the main foundations of friendship for Germans is trust.
May 13, 2022

What do German girls call their boyfriends? ›

Schatz (treasure)

You don't have to go to the end of the rainbow to find it, because "Schatz" is by far the most common German term of endearment. It's popular among lovers and old married couples, but also used for children.

What are German guys like in dating? ›

They tend to be quite calculated and patient at the start of a new relationship. You will also notice that sex isn't always the first thing on the German mind. Many foreigners, especially women, find this very refreshing when going out with German men.

What is the most English friendly city in Germany? ›

If you're an international looking to move to Germany, you'll want to find a city where English is spoken a lot. Which cities are these in Germany? A study shows: The German cities with best English are Karlsruhe, Munich, Dresden, Bremen and Düsseldorf.

Which city in Germany has the most foreigners? ›

The German city which has most immigrants is Frankfurt.

It is continental Europe's largest financial center and has a population of approximately 2.5 million in the city and surrounding urban area. The city is in great demand of software developers, programmers, architects, IT consultants, nurses, teachers, etc.

Which part of Germany is best for foreigners? ›

The Best Big Cities in Germany for Expats
  • Berlin. Berlin is an obvious choice because it is the largest city in Germany. It is also one of the best cities for expats for many reasons. ...
  • Munich. Munich is another great city for expats. ...
  • Hamburg. Hamburg is an excellent option for internationals.

Is it cheaper to live in Germany than the US? ›

While the cost of living in Germany is slightly above the EU average, it is still cheaper to live there than in France, the Netherlands, or even Italy! When considering the cost of living in Germany vs. the U.S., you'll find that the cost of living in Germany is nearly 19% lower.

Is Germany expensive for Americans? ›

The cost of living in Germany is quite reasonable compared to other European countries. You will need around 934 euros a month to cover your living expenses in Germany as of 2022.

What salary is needed to live comfortably in Germany? ›

According to Statista, in 2021, the average gross annual salary in Germany was 47.700 euros a year, or 3.975 euros a month. The numbers above are for all of Germany. However, the average gross salary will depend greatly on your location, professional experience, education, size of the company, and gender.

What are German date rules? ›

The number version is pretty much like the American version of the date. Instead of using slashes, however, German uses periods, and you put the day before the month. So November 4, 1990 would be written in English as 11/4/1990, but in German as 4.11. 90 (and make sure you don't confuse this with April 11!).

What is an important German date? ›

German Unity Day | October, 3

The German Unity Day (Tag der Deutschen Einheit) is the most important non-religious holiday in Germany. It's a national holiday where Germans are granted a day off work on October 3rd. The holiday was founded in 1990 after the reunification of West and East Germany.

What is the German date format? ›


How do you ask a German girl out? ›

The Ins And Outs Of Asking Someone Out In German
  1. Ich mag dich. — I like you.
  2. Du hast schöne Augen. — You have beautiful eyes.
  3. Ich liebe dein Lächeln, es ist so charmant. — I love your smile, it's so charming.
  4. Du tanzt gut! — You dance well!
  5. Du siehst gut aus! ...
  6. Du bist schön. ...
  7. Ich finde dich sehr attraktiv.
Feb 11, 2022

Can a 30 year old date a 15 year old in Germany? ›

The age of consent in Germany is 14, as long as a person over the age of 21 does not exploit a 14- to 15-year-old person's lack of capacity for sexual self-determination, in which case a conviction of an individual over the age of 21 requires a complaint from the younger individual; being over 21 and engaging in sexual ...

What is considered flirting in Germany? ›

Flirting In German: It's All In The Eyes

It just means sexy eye contact could involve a little more “innuendo” than usual. This does not mean it'll necessarily be accompanied by a smile, or that you'll be invited with a lingering gaze. A favorite move when flirting in German is the “look, but then quickly look away.”

Do German girls kiss on first date? ›

Go on a First Date: drinks, sometimes dinner, an event, whatever. A kiss or three is expected if both have a good time. If one/both did NOT have a good time (or if it fails to develop into a romantic spark), they will often never see each other again.

What are common German behaviors? ›

German people tend to be thrifty, be sensible, and respect one another's privacy, and they typically respect the structure and laws of society to an above-average degree. There is no place that this sense of 'order' is more apparent than in German business culture.

What is stereotypical German behavior? ›

Attachment to order, organisation and planning is a stereotype of German culture. Germany is perceived to have an abundance of rules (for example, copyright trolls often come from Germany) and Germans are generalized as enjoying obeying them.

What is the German tradition for unmarried? ›

Tradition in the north and west of Germany states that unmarried men must sweep the steps of their town hall dressed as women until they are kissed by a virgin.

Who is Germany best partner? ›

China has retained its position as Germany's top trading partner in 2022, according to a recent report from Germany's Federal Statistical Office (Destatis). This marks the seventh consecutive year that China has held this position.

What is the biggest German stereotype? ›

Some of the things that are known as clichés about them are really lacking in Germans when they live in another country for a longer period of time.
  • Germans are hard-working. Germans don't work that much at all. ...
  • The weather is bad in Germany. Germans like to complain about the weather. ...
  • The Germans know everything better.
Mar 10, 2023

What are typical German values? ›

Despite all the changes in society, Germany remains a country with conservative values. The system of government, strong civil society and respect for human rights are considered the cornerstones of Germany, and are awarded due recognition as such.

What is considered rude in German culture? ›

Germans are extremely punctual and well-mannered. Showing up late, losing your cool, or raising your voice are all considered rude and thoughtless. If you step out of line, don't be surprised or offended if someone corrects your behavior, as this is very common in the German culture.

What qualities are Germans known for? ›

Six Distinct Stereotypical German Personality Traits
  • They are hardworking. ...
  • They are humorous. ...
  • They are well-organized. ...
  • They respect punctuality. ...
  • Traditions are important to Germans.
Oct 9, 2018

How do Germans view marriage? ›

Marriages are considered legal unions or "legally binding contracts" between the persons involved. Marriage has traditionally been protected from the outset under the Constitution. Everybody getting married in Germany must first appear physically at a Standesamt for a civil ceremony.

How to marry a German as an American? ›

All foreigners marrying in Germany require an official Affidavit of Eligibility to Marry or Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage (Ehefähigkeitszeugnis) or Certificate of Single Status (Ledigkeitsbescheinigung) to obtain a marriage license at a Civil Registry Office (Standesamt).

What age is first marriage in Germany? ›


It seems Germans are in no hurry to tie the knot—the average age at which people in Germany get married is 33.1 years.


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