1. Packing and good-byes
Being excited is actually pretty normal, it’s a new country and maybe a new continent, so it’s okay to be eager. But don’t forget to pack your luggage! And please, do not leave it for the night before your flight, do it at least two days before it so you can be 100% sure you are not forgetting anything. Also, if you are planning on buying souvenirs (which at the end will happen), try to pack the least amount of clothing possible or pack old ones that you can get rid of because if you don’t do this, the space in your luggage will not be enough.
Say goodbye to your family and friends, hug them and assure them that you will be okay. Be at the airport on time! The flight will not wait for you for more than five minutes if you are there on time good for you if not, I’m so sorry but you might miss your flight.
2. First impressions
Germany has cold weather, and by cold, I mean REALLY cold, so do not be impressed by it when you first arrive, have on hand a coat, scarf, gloves, and a good pair of socks (you’ll thank me later!). The subway system is really easy to understand, just get a map, be focused on the lines and the directions, and you will be okay.
You might feel exhausted after the flight, and confused with the time zone. Try to resist your tiredness until that night, so you can sleep properly and get used to Germany’s time zone.
3. Keeping in touch
Maintaining ties with the home seems hard and really necessary at first. Dealing with different time zones and being able to talk to your family just when you have a Wi-fi connection is hard. But remember you have FaceTime, Skype, WhatsApp, Facebook, or even E-mail, keeping in touch is not impossible, and the key is on establishing a time in which both sides can start a conversation.
It is important to understand that it is not necessary to talk every single day, nothing bad will happen if you are not able to communicate for one day; doing it every two or three days to check how everything is going is more than okay.
4. New places, new experiences
It’s time to get to know the place. First of all, be prepared to walk a lot! It’s better if you do this than just driving a car all the time. Germany is full of places you can visit and be impressed by them. First of all, do not hesitate on going to the central stations and to the main squares, like Marienplatz in Munich or Friederich straße (it’s actually a street) in Berlin, in this two you can walk and get to many different and relevant places. Do not forget to visit concentration camps like Dachau or Sachsenhausen. Also, you must visit the castles of Neuschwanstein and Linderhof, one of them is the one you can see in every Disney movie! Do not leave art aside! Visit the Alte Pinakothek and the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich or the Gemaldegalerie in Berlin.
But the most important thing is FOOD! Be prepared to taste a lot of different things, and not just German food, because here you can find food from a lot of different countries!
5. Too many souvenirs in one bag
Prepare your luggage two days before leaving, because you need to deal with all the souvenirs you bought, you probably have a lot of them, but also tons of chocolate. You need to be organized everything and make them fit in a way that delicate things will not be in danger and you can still close your luggage, if it’s necessary, buy a bigger bag. Here is where bringing a short amount of clothing makes sense (doesn’t it?). It’s time to say good-bye to Germany and go back home!
6. Going back to the routine
Coping with the return might be tough too, after being in an incredible country you have to go back to your routine. Again, you will struggle with the time zone change, don’t worry, if you resist your exhaustion until that night it won’t be that difficult to re-adapt to your time zone. Also, try not to sleep during the whole flight, it will not be comfortable and you will wake up really hungry (even more if it’s a +9 hrs flight!. You will be fine, even if you are not traveling anymore, you have a lot of memories to share and for yourself.