Helpful hints & links

You might have seen some laughing emojis on the left hand side throughout my website. These are already helpful hints, I've marked for you. Here, I've listed some more.

About your travel documents
  • International vaccination card - essential for the proof of some vaccinations in order to enter the country. If you don't have a vaccination card yet, simply go to your family doctor. They can issue one again (mostly free of charge)

  • International driving license - you will need it for foreign countries. Bring your driving license, a biometric photo and 16€ to your traffic office and they will issue you one

  • International student ID is good for discounts etc.

  • Get a waterproof case for stowing away your documents as well as copies

  • Save all your documents and ID's digital in a cloud etc.

  • Take a passport photo / biometric photo with you as well as one digital, if you need it for visa / job application 

About your passport:

  • For validity please keep in mind: traveling period + 6 months as buffer 

  • Number of empty sites: for countries with visa plan 1,5 sites / for countries without visa 1/3 site

  • Apply for a new one in your local city office 4-8 weeks in advance! Express issuance is possible but expensive (around 80€)

How to save your unemployment money 

You have to fulfill 2 conditions in order to get unemployment money after your journey.

  1. You have been employed for at least 12 months in the last 2 years

  2. You are seeking work

 

In order to get unemployment money you need to do the following steps before you can leave your home country:

  1. You need to register yourself at your local job center as seeking employment (online possible). You need to do this within 3 days after you quit your job. Otherwise the job center will freeze your money for one week which is not that bad as you will be on your journey anyway.

  2. After you registered yourself online you will receive a letter from your job center with a consultation appointment. This appointment is essential in order to explain your situation and even get the unemployment money.

  3. For the appointment you will need the following documents: your ID, social security number, termination letter with confirmation and your bank details for the transfer. They also want to know about your career (if you haven't entered it already online).

  4. The following documents can be uploaded later: salary statement of the last 12 months as well as the certificate of employment which your company needs to hand over.

  5. After submitting/uploading all documents the entitlement of your unemployment money will be calculated. Usually you have entitlement to unemployment money for 4 years.

  6. However, it is essential that you are seeking work in Germany for at least one day before you can go on your trip. (Otherwise you won't get your unemployment money right away when you come back, plus you are getting a lower entitlement.)

 

If you have finished this process you can go unconcerned on your journey!

 

As soon as you come back you need to visit your local job center again and re-register yourself, telling them you are here again, so that they will pay you. 

Deregister yourself from your home country?

This question should be well considered. It's up to the traveling period and what you plan to give up. If you plan traveling for only 3 months it's allowed to stay registered. If you plan an open-end trip it's recommended to deregister yourself. The corresponding act indicates that every resident in Germany has the obligation to register themselves (within 2 weeks at your local agency when moving into a new apartment) . And you need to deregister yourself as you move out of your apartment without moving into a new one and having no permanent residence in Germany anymore.

However, there is no official act which says that you need to deregister yourself when subleasing your apartment or still living at your parents. 

 

Cons:

  • As you deregister yourself it will be shown on your passport (your ID will be withheld by the local downhall). Thats why you might get problems in getting visa or entering some countries if you don't have a permanent residence 

  • You won't be entitled to vote for your home country 

  • You are not allowed to be a holder of a vehicle anymore

Pros:

  • It's easier to terminate contracts/insurances as you can make use of your exceptional right of termination

  • It's easier to get a new passport abroad as you will loose it or it will be stolen

What to do with your phone contract?
1. Terminate your current mobile contract

As the most mobile contracts do not include surfing etc. in third countries, your contract won't be necessary anymore. In order to get out of your contract, there are 3 possibilities:

  1. You are able to terminate the contract within the agreed period of notice

  2. If you decide to deregister yourself from your home country, you will get out of the contract more easily with that proof of deregistration 

  3. If you're still registered, it's actually not possible to terminate the contract earlier. You have to wait until you can terminate your contract within the agreed period of notice. This means unnecessary costs. Ask your family/friends if they need a new contract by chance and give them your SIM card. This is also good because they can keep your old phone number which you might need for some TAN methods.

 

2. Get a prepaid card of your home country 

As you got rid of your SIM card & contract, get yourself a German prepaid card with favorable terms for telephoning/messaging in third countries. That way you will have an official phone number which you can give your close ones / insurances etc. Plus, many banks using there TAN-mobile-method only through German phone numbers! So, either you are using another TAN-method or you will need a German phone number in order to make transactions online.

3. Get a prepaid card in the current country 

The cheapest and best option is to get a prepaid card in the current country. You will get them right at the airport or in several stores. At the airport there are most of the time a bit more pricy than in the stores. 

About the vaccinations

There are unnecessary costs which can be saved.

  • Vaccination consultation - The best thing you can do is to go to your family doctor and ask if he is educated for tropical vaccinations. If yes he will give you detailed advice without any costs for the consultation. If not he may know another doctor who is allowed to do that. The last option is the tropical institute, but they will charge you for the consultation with about 20€

  • Vaccination costs - Your health insurance usually doesn't bear the travel vaccination costs. You have to go to the pharmacy and pay the vaccine, but take the receipt and bring it to your health insurance. AOK takes 200€ a year (I got the 10 vaccinations through the turn of the year), the BKK takes almost all travel vaccinations 

About the correct packing 
  • Pack half of your clothes and twice your money!

  • Repack your backpack several times in order to decide yourself more easily what to take with you and what to leave behind

  • In order to wash your clothes take a hand wash lotion with you. Test to wash your cloth with that before your trip!

  • Pack everything in stuffing boxes in order to organize your backpack!

  • Pack your valuables (e.g. passport, vaccination card, tickets) in a waterproof case!

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About Me

I grew up in a small village in Germany and went the "normal, given" way, as I went to school, graduated my Abitur (general university entrance certificate), had a few part-time jobs, finished my apprenticeship in wholesale and foreign trade and gained some working experience in this field. By now, I'm living in my own flat, have my own car, travelled to a few places - actually a pretty nice and wealthy german standardized life.

However, there is no 100% fulfillment and I wondered if this is it what life has prepared for me?! 

I've always had that deep desire to go abroad and see the world. So, I decided to leave every prosperity I had, family and friends behind and realize my plans - exploring the world by my own!

 

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