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Dusseldorf, Germany

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Feb 02, 2023

Summary: Dusseldorf, Germany is a vibrant and modern city with a rich cultural heritage. Expats love the city's excellent public transportation system, its lively nightlife, and its proximity to other major cities in Germany. The weather in Dusseldorf is generally mild, with temperatures ranging from the mid-30s to the mid-60s Fahrenheit (0-20 Celsius). The average cost of living for an expat is estimated to be around $2,000 per month. The cost of a one bedroom apartment in Dusseldorf is around $1,000 per month, while a two bedroom apartment can cost up to $1,500 per month. The population of Dusseldorf is 618,000.

Is the cost of living in Dusseldorf high?

We asked people about the cost of living in Dusseldorf, they wrote:

"Here are some of the cost of living figures for Dusseldorf, Germany. Flat rent 1000-1500 Eur Flat buy 3000 Eur/m2 Avg Restaurant 8-10Eur/meal Car leasing 300-500 Eur/month Car insurance vary 1000-2000 Eur/year Insurances 300Eur/year Health insurance private 400 Eur/month Health insurance public 400-800 Eur/month Income tax vary depending family status," said another expat in living in Dusseldorf, Germany.

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What are the visa & residency requirements in Dusseldorf?

"If you are from the EU, you don't need a visa nor are their residency requirements. If you are from outside of the EE, a visa & work permit are needed, but easy to get if you come to work," said one member in Dusseldorf.

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What do I need to know about living in Dusseldorf?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Dusseldorf, they said:

"An understanding of the German language is recommended when retiring in Dusseldorf as this is the primary language used throughout the city. To remain within the boundaries of the German laws, you will also need to register with the local authority (the Ausländerbehörde) and obtain a valid residency permit. It is advisable to open up a German bank account, register your address with the local authority and learn how to navigate the local public transport network. The cost of living in Dusseldorf is relatively high, including rent and the cost of necessities such as food and utilities, so potential retirees are advised to research these costs beforehand. Dusseldorf has a diverse cultural offering, with plenty of galleries, museums, cinemas and theatres available for exploration. Additionally, retirees can also enjoy the nearby Rhine River, with its waterfront parks and trails," said another expat in Dusseldorf.

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What do I need to know before moving to Dusseldorf?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Dusseldorf, they said:

"- Dusseldorf is a city in western Germany, located on the banks of the Rhine. - It has a population of just under 600,000 and has a bustling economy based in investment banking, IT, and technology. - Dusseldorf has a distinct architecture and cultural identity, and is home to the world-renowned Dusseldorf Academy of Arts. - The climate in Dusseldorf is moderate, with warm summers and mild winters. - Being the capital of North Rhine-Westphalia, Dusseldorf is home to a wide variety of museums, galleries, and other attractions. - There are numerous parks, green open spaces, and pedestrian zones in the city centre. - Dusseldorf is well-connected by public transport, with trains and buses running regularly throughout the city and beyond. - The official language of Dusseldorf is German; however English is spoken by many, making it relatively easy for expats to settle in. - Dusseldorf is an expensive city, so if you plan to move, do your research and budget accordingly," remarked another expat in Dusseldorf.

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How do I find a place to live in Dusseldorf?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"Finding a place to live in Dusseldorf can be made easier with the help of a range of websites and resources. Popular real estate websites such as Immobilienscout24, Immowelt and Immobilien allow users to search through a range of rental properties, including apartments, houses and condos. There are also websites dedicated to helping people find a place to stay in the city, such as www.wg-suche.de. Additionally, tenants should contact the local housing authority to learn about available rentals and assistance programs. Finally, when in Dusseldorf, people can drop into other real estate agencies around town to ask about vacancies," explained one expat.

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What is a typical expat home or apartment like in Dusseldorf?

"Expat homes and apartments in Dusseldorf tend to be modern, light and airy, with plenty of natural light and open-plan spaces that are warm and inviting. Most properties enjoy up-to-date furnishings and appliances, and the majority of apartments come with large balconies or terraces for outdoor entertaining. Dusseldorf’s residential neighborhoods are generally composed of smaller buildings and complexes, more so than highrise structures; as such, expat apartments tend to be quieter and feature more green spaces," remarked another expat in Dusseldorf.

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What is the average cost of housing in Dusseldorf?

If you are thinking about moving to Dusseldorf, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"The average cost of housing in Dusseldorf is quite high. The average monthly rent for a one bedroom apartment in the city centre is around €980, while a three bedroom apartment in the suburbs can be had for around €650," explained one expat living in Dusseldorf.

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How do I meet people in Dusseldorf?

When we asked people living in Dusseldorf about club and activities where newcomers can meet others, they responded:

"There are many ways to meet people in Düsseldorf. One of the best ways is to join a local organization or group - many cities have groups such as expat meetups, language exchanges, business networks, and hobby groups that are easy to join online. Alternatively, a good way to meet people is to attend local events and festivals. Additionally, many bars, cafes and pubs offer a great meeting place for like-minded people and for making contacts. Finally, you may also want to try some online platforms, such as Meetup, Couchsurfing, or social media networks, to find fellow expats or people in the same area," replied an expat in Dusseldorf.

"The Duesseldorf Group on meetin.org (http://www.meetin.org/city/MEETinDUESSELDORF) is the easiest way to meet new people. Alternatives are the Irish pubs (such as Buck Mulligans and O'Reily's, both in the Old Town) and the International Library," remarked another in Dusseldorf.

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What should I bring when moving to Dusseldorf?

People living in Dusseldorf were asked what three things they wish they had brought and three they wish they had left behind. They wrote:

"When moving to Dusseldorf, packing should include clothes for all seasons, any necessary medical supplies, toiletries and hygiene products, a first aid kit, passport/driving license, and other important personal documents, electronics and chargers, kitchen utensils, bedding and towels, furniture and appliances, cleaning supplies, and any additional items or supplies necessary for day-to-day living," remarked another expat in Dusseldorf.

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Where should I setup a bank account in Dusseldorf?

We asked expats in Dusseldorf what banks they use and there advice about banking. They advised:

"The most convenient place to set up a bank account in Dusseldorf is at an of the many large banks located in the city. Most of these banks offer online and mobile account set-up, as well as assistance with opening accounts in-person. Popular banks include Deutsche Bank, Commerzbank, Sparkasse, and Volksbank. Each bank offers various services and different numbers of locations throughout the city. Depending on your preferences and criteria, one may be better suited for your needs than another. Researching each bank in-depth beforehand and speaking with a representative are both recommended steps to ensure the best fit for your needs," added another person living in Dusseldorf.

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Will I be able to find a job in Dusseldorf?

When we asked people about industries and career opportunities in Dusseldorf, they reponded:

"It can be quite competitive to find a job in Dusseldorf. However, there are plenty of opportunities available in this vibrant city. The best way to find them is to use online job search engines like Indeed or LinkedIn, or by networking with local businesses and contacts. If you have the right qualifications and experience, you will be well-placed to land a job in Dusseldorf," explained one expat living in Dusseldorf.

"Having a portable career that you can do from anywhere eliminates the stress of trying to find a new job every time you move to a new city. For people who are looking for jobs in Dusseldorf, it is good to get involved with the German-American business club or American Women's Club to start networking. It is not always easy if you do not have a work permit or language skills. That is why I recommend having multiple streams of income to support your international lifestyle," said another expat in Dusseldorf.

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What is life like in Dusseldorf?

When we asked people living in Dusseldorf what life is like and how people spend their time, they said:

"Living as an expat in the area can be both rewarding and challenging. The local culture, language, and lifestyle can take some time to get used to, but with the help of locals and other expats, it can be an enriching experience. The area has a vibrant community and many opportunities to engage with the locals through festivals, markets, and more. The transportation network is reliable and easy to use, and there are plenty of cafes, restaurants, and entertainment venues to explore. Cost of living can be high depending on a few factors but overall the area is an attractive and desirable place to live and work," said another person in Dusseldorf.

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What do expats in Dusseldorf appreciate most about the local culture?

"Expats in Dusseldorf appreciate the city's strong local identity, vibrant cultural scene, as well as its welcoming and open-minded people. They also appreciate the local cuisine, with its influence from neighbouring countries, and the famous Altbier beer brewed in the area. Public transport is also efficient, making it easy to explore the area and its many welcoming cultural institutions, such as the internationally renowned Kunstakademie art academy. Sports fans are also catered for, with its local ice hockey, basketball and football teams. The city also prides itself on providing an array of interesting local festivals, from Carnival and light festivals to the one of a kind fruit-tasting event during spring in the Damenviertel neighbourhood. It is easy to see why Dusseldorf is such an attractive destination for expats," replied an expat in Dusseldorf.

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What do expats find most challenging?

"Expats often find it difficult to adjust to a new culture, language, and lifestyle in a new place. They must learn to navigate through unfamiliar language, laws, bureaucracy, and customs. It can be a challenge to find work and secure a steady income. Additionally, expats have to build a whole new social network and can find it difficult to make new friends or even find a sense of community to belong to. Establishing a feeling of home away from home is also challenging, as most expat apartments are temporary, and lifestyle and home comforts can become limited," explained one expat.

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Is there a lot of crime in Dusseldorf?

We asked people if there is a lot of crime. They answered:

"Dusseldorf is generally considered to be a safe city. While there is some crime, it is generally low and is mainly related to pickpocketing, car break ins and opportunistic theft. In general, visitors should take the usual precautions when travelling to ensure their safety and security," explained one expat living in Dusseldorf.

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Is there a lot of diversity? Are people in Dusseldorf accepting of differences?

"Düsseldorf is characterised by a strong presence of international communities and cultures, with much of the population of German and Turkish descent. There is also a significant number of people with backgrounds from Eastern European countries such as Poland, Russia and Ukraine. The city is known for its open-minded and tolerant attitude towards diversity, with positive relations between different ethnic and cultural groups. Most people in Düsseldorf are accepting and welcoming of differences, and the city is renowned for its warm and friendly atmosphere," replied an expat in Dusseldorf.

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What are the schools in Dusseldorf like?

"Dusseldorf offers an excellent range of schools ranging from public schools to private, international and specialised schools. The public school system, known as "Grundschule", provides free education for children and adolescents up to the tenth grade. These schools offer courses from German, Math and Art to Japanese, Spanish and French. Private schools offer additional courses with a more flexible teaching approach. These may include advanced language courses, specialised sport departments and other extracurricular activities. International schools such as the Dusseldorf International School have classes taught in English, as well as a variety of languages. Other schools in Dusseldorf include specialised institutions such as Montessori, Waldorf, Steiner and Reggio Emilia based schools," remarked another parent with kids at in Dusseldorf.

"Follow the life of the Website and do not hesitate to ask questions, make one or several appointments for visits and visit the school with your children," explained one expat living in Duesseldorf, Germany.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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