The cost of an international move can vary greatly depending on your circumstances. Below are some of the most common costs.
- Visa application costs
- Medical insurance
- Cost of living
- Storage costs
- Removal and packing costs
1. Visa application costs
To apply to live in Germany, you will incur a number of costs as a UK citizen. These include:
- Schengen Visa application costs: €80 per adult and $40 per child aged between six and 12 years, free if aged below six years
- Long-Stay Visa application: €75 per adult, €38 per child aged under 18 years
Visa application fees are non-refundable, so it is important to be confident of your decision before submitting an application.
2. Medical insurance
If you plan to live in Germany, you must have medical insurance. 90% of all German residents join the statutory insurer (known as gesetzliche Krankenkasse) where they pay a monthly fee.
The statutory public health insurance fee is 14.6% of an employee’s gross salary (half paid for by the employee, and half by the employer) and it is capped at a maximum of €360 per month.
It may also be possible to join a private healthcare provider (10% of the population have private plans).
3. Cost of living
The cost of living in Germany is lower than in Germany, and many other European countries. The estimated average cost of living in Germany is between €900 – €2,500 per month, depending on where you live and your circumstances.
This figure can vary widely from person to person, but it is recommended to have a basic idea of your living costs before moving, in order to ensure that you can financially manage. Comparison websites such as Numbeo can help you learn more about living costs in Germany compared to the UK.According to this website, you can expect the following differences in living costs:
- Consumer prices are higher in the UK by 3.89%
- Rent prices are 11.49% higher in the UK than in Germany
- Restaurant prices are 18.92% higher in the UK than in Germany
- Groceries cost 7.60% higher in the UK
- Local purchasing power is 14.49% lower in the UK than in Germany
4. Storage costs
This may or may not apply to your situation, but some people choose to place belongings or furniture in storage when they embark on an international move.
The cost of storage varies depending on the company you choose, how many items you wish to store, and how long you wish to store them. The average cost of self-storage in the UK is £23.94 per square foot per year.
5. Removal and packing costs
The average cost of moving your belongings from the UK to mainland Europe (including Germany) is between £2,000 and £3,000.
The cheaper option may be for road removal, however, this is likely to take longer. You can move your belongings by air, but this will likely be more expensive. If you choose to pay for packing services, this will likely be an additional cost. In some cases, it may also be cheaper to buy new furnishings in your new country rather than pay to transport them.