5 reasons why expats love life in Aachen
Fed up of the prices in Munich or Berlin, or moving to Germany and just looking for somewhere a bit different? Daniela Stoyanova from relocation experts Crown Relocations explains why Aachen could be the best city you’ve ever called home.
When considering a move to Germany, most people’s immediate first thought is of places like Berlin, Munich, Hamburg or Cologne. But with metropolises like these plagued by severe housing shortages, skyrocketing rents, and high living costs, an increasing number of expats are reaping the benefits of looking further afield in their search for a place to live.
One of these places is Aachen, a relatively unknown - but thoroughly underrated - city in western Germany that has a whole lot of feathers in its cap when it comes to things expats are looking for. Like many of Germany’s other smaller cities, Aachen has a vibrant international community, bags of cultural and leisure activities, a lively nightlife, good day trip opportunities and - best of all - a much lower cost of living.
Here are five reasons why Aachen is slowly but surely becoming a more popular choice for people searching for somewhere to live in Germany.
1. It offers a very high standard of living
It’s no secret that expats who live in Aachen love it. The western German city is regularly voted one of the country’s best by the expats who live there. Not only are rents and other living expenses lower here than in bigger cities like Berlin and Munich, but salaries remain high and jobs come with a range of perks, meaning that most expats find they have a good amount of disposable income. A high number of IT and engineering professionals call the city home.
2. It’s home to a thriving international community
The population of Aachen may be relatively small at around only 250.000 people, but it’s diverse: as of 2017 more than 18 percent of people living in Aachen had a migration background. This foreign population is fed by the city’s prestigious university, RWTH Aachen, as well as the number of large international companies that have their headquarters here. Aachen is a real melting pot of cultures, with around 160 different nationalities represented among its small population. Thanks to this, the city also has a rich and varied food scene.
3. It has a convenient, central European location
Not only is Aachen conveniently-located within North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous federal state, and so within easy reach of major cities like Cologne, Bonn and Düsselforf and their busy international airports, but it’s also uniquely placed on the border triangle between Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, meaning that cities like Liege and Maastricht, and the Eifel National Park, are just a stone’s throw away. Expats in Aachen will find ample opportunities for fun-filled day trips to neighbouring cities and countries.
4. It’s a city oozing with history
History buffs and culture-seekers will feel truly at home in Aachen, which has a unique, fascinating history stretching all the way back to Roman times, when imperial troops would bathe in its springs. It was once the centre of the Holy Roman Empire and has the glorious, imperial architecture to prove it. Its famous, UNESCO-designated cathedral is where the Holy Roman Emperors were crowned and in 814 became the final resting place of the period’s most famous emperor, Charlemagne. Nowadays, the charming cobbled streets and ancient architecture of Aachen’s historic old town make for a fabulous day of exploring.
5. It has bags of cultural activities
As well as having more than enough bars, clubs, restaurants, cafes and green spaces to go around, Aachen is a hub of events and activities the whole year through, giving expats plenty to keep them occupied. In February each year, Aachen hosts its own raucous carnival celebrations, while the Christmas market in the old town is one of the most famous in Germany. As a historic spa resort, Aachen is also well-served by thermal spas, perfect for unwinding after a long week at the office!
Planning a move to Germany? Speak to the experts at Crown Relocations. They have over 50 years of experience helping their clients move and settle abroad. Get in touch to discuss their range of services.