German Culture

Other Considerations

  • Sunday is a day of rest in Germany. Most shops close and people tend not to do hard work.
  • German children are usually given a comprehensive sexual education from a young age. As such, society tends to be quite honest and open about sex and sexuality. The appropriateness of conversations around these topics clearly varies depending on the social context, and people’s opinions cannot be presumed.
  • Some Germans may be quite relaxed about nudity. There is a tradition of ‘Freikörperkultur’ (FKK) or ‘free body culture’ in Northern Germany and in the East particularly.
  • Many Germans consider themselves ‘Weltmeister’ (world champions) at taking vacations. Indeed, when travelling elsewhere in the world, one is likely to bump into a German. Schools are closed for a total of 13 weeks every year, and employees get at least 24 days of paid leave each year.
  • In Germany, regular immersion in nature is thought to be good for your ‘Seele’ (soul). Many Germans like to ‘Wandern’ (go hiking) to enjoy the environment.
  • Cigarette smoking is a common habit in Germany. People are still allowed to smoke in many public places, even on the property of some schools. Until relatively recently people were still allowed to smoke in all restaurants and bars. Today, to do so, it needs to be labelled 'Raucherbar' (smoker bar). The late ban on smoking in Germany is partly due to the fact that the Nazi’s outlawed smoking during their time in power. Therefore, the German government has been hesitant to copy Nazi policy.
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