Relatively speaking, Germany is a safe country, with a trustworthy police force that you can rely on in case of an emergency. In the 2020 Global Peace Index, the country was among the top 20 safest countries in the world. It is even safer than other European countries such as Norway and the Netherlands.
However, for international students, since they are staying in a country unfamiliar to them, it is important to know some safety precautions to make their stay a good one.
Read below to know some tips to stay safe in Germany.
Common Crimes You Might Experience in Germany
Before learning the tips to stay safe in Germany, know first the most common crimes you are most likely to experience in case you are not lucky enough.
One of the most common crimes in Germany, the same with other relatively safe countries is theft, which includes pickpocketing and even bag snatching. For travelers or people unfamiliar with Germany, aside from theft, they may be even more vulnerable to different kinds of scams, such as travel scams, and panhandlers. Violent types of crimes rarely happen in the country.
Tips to Stay Safe in Germany
Below are the most useful tips you can use while in Germany.
Know Important Contact Numbers
There are two numbers you can call for free from any telephone, mobile phone, or payphone in Germany.
- 112 – In case of fire or medical emergencies
- 110 – To call the police in case of emergencies where you need them (ex: theft, assault, etc.)
The average time you may have to wait when calling these numbers is nine seconds, and you can speak with operators in German or English.
Aside from those two numbers, other useful contact numbers that you should always have are the following:
- International Office
- Your dorm supervisor
- Your homestay parents or landlord
- Family members
- Your country’s consulate or embassy in Germany
Always Keep Your Belongings Close to Your Body
Do not leave your things unattended, especially when going to crowded events or public areas, including public transportation. If you have valuable things, as much as possible, do not bring them when you travel. In case you have to bring them, keep them close to your body.
Stay Alert and Always Be Aware of Your Surroundings
When you go out, especially in places unfamiliar to you, do not let your guard down, check your surroundings, and always be on the lookout. In case you are using the ATM to withdraw money, for example, observe the people around you, and check if anyone is acting strangely.
Moreover, try to avoid empty streets or parks, especially at night. When going out to drink, even with friends, avoid getting too intoxicated. When demonstrations and protests are happening, avoid joining them.
Listen to the news to know what’s happening around you, so that you can avoid dangerous places or activities around you.
Also, always get updates on advisories and travel warnings from the German government and your country, in case they announce something that is of importance to international students in Germany.
Overall, Germany is a safe country. If you practice these tips and use your common sense in different types of situations, you can stay safe in Germany. Moreover, remember that in any kind of situation, once you feel unsafe, you should call the police.
Check out MSM Unify’s articles about Germany to know more tips you can use while living in this beautiful country in Europe. To start, check out our article on A Guide to Apartment Renting in Germany.