Shopping in Germany

Shopping at the US Military Base

Shopping at the US Military Base


Being able to shop on the United States Military Base is a privilege that is afforded to the members of the United States Military and their families. This is not something just about anyone can enjoy. The shops on the US Military Base are the dreams of many American expatriates who have been in Germany for a long period of time. There are so many items that they offer that one can only find in American grocery stores. In addition to this, they are relatively cheap. Things like, vanilla extract, Ranch dressing, Lucky Charms you can find it all.


Of course, you can have your family members and friends back home ship you your favourite items so that you will be able to get a touch of home while you're living in Germany. Or you can do what many do, and stick it out until you return home. But sometimes, there is just that one thing that you crave. Having to wait a week or so for your family in the United States to go to the grocery store for you and pick up some treats to have them shipped to you sometimes feels like a burden. After all, how much do you really want to pay for a bottle of ranch? The truth is, care packages are nice, but they're not something that you can get used to every week without feeling the weight of the monetary burden.


And when you know that all these things are available in a Military Base that is so close to you, you can almost smell it, you may feel a bit of disappointment. However, provided you do have a family member or friend who lives on base, you may be granted access. Be sure to bring your passport with you and keep in mind that you will not be allowed in all areas. You will also not be allowed to make any purchases and the person you are with may get in trouble if the supervisors learn that the shopping being done is for your benefit. So if you are willing to take the risk, be very, very cautious.


Many expats have made friends who live on the base and are happy to take a list of goodies that they can pick up for them. However, there are many people who are unhappy about the occurrence and are adamant to report anyone they find breaking the law.



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Shopping from Your Home in Germany

One of the amazing things about technology is the ability to shop without ever leaving the comfort of your own home. In Germany it is as common as in other developed nations to shop online, out of catalogs, and off of television programs.

Catalog Shopping

Catalog shopping is actually quite popular in Germany. There are many catalogs available to you, should you choose to shop this way. Catalog shopping is so popular that it is likely you will get solicitations in the mail to order catalogs, if not get the catalogs themselves in the mail. If you do decide to sign up for a catalog, be prepared to get many requests in the mail to sign up for more. If there is a specific catalog you are looking for, you can often order the catalog off of its website.

Some of the major German catalog companies include Otto, Klingel, Wenz, Bader, and Schwab, which send out the larger catalogs. There are also many smaller specialty catalogs that individual companies will also send out. Most German catalogs are only available in German, while some extend to the surrounding countries.

You only need to know very little German to order from German catalogs, as the system for ordering is very simple and straightforward. To place the order, simple fill out the form and mail or fax it in, or if you prefer you can call in the order as well. For some catalogs, you can order products online if you have the item number.


Germany has many shopping channels available to those who prefer to order products they see demonstrated on television. If you have a satellite television, there are even more shopping channels available to you. If you should choose to order off of a shopping channel, be sure to pay attention to the shipping fees and the like, as there are sometimes hidden fees for some products.

Online shopping

Online shopping in Germany is the same as online shopping in most other developed countries. There are websites that offer a wide variety of products, specialty online shopping websites, online shopping only websites, and online shopping options for existing physical stores. There are even German versions of Ebay and Amazon available. Ordering items online is easy. Simply select the item you wish to purchase, add it to your cart, and when you are ready to check out, input your payment information. Then sit at home and wait patiently for your packages to arrive.


The best part of shopping from home is that when your package finally does arrive, opening it can feel like Christmas. There are multiple shipping companies in Germany, so your packages should arrive in a decent amount of time, depending from where your package is being shipped.

For information on return policies, consult the catalog, television program, or website from where you ordered the item.


Shopping from home is great. You can stay in your pajamas and shop while you have breakfast, and no one has to know. [...]

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Germany’s Luxury Outlet Shopping

After moving to a new country, it is beneficial to find ways to relax, unwind, and pamper yourself. One way to accomplish that is through shopping. You get to walk around, take in the sights of this new and fascinating place, and you get to treat yourself to whatever foods and items strike your fancy. It is often referred to as retail therapy for a reason.

In the United States, outlet shopping is not as popular as shopping at a traditional mall. In fact, outlet stores in the United States are often associated with bargain bins, messy sales racks, and poor neighborhoods. In Europe, however, outlet malls and outlet shopping centers are places of luxury and comfort, and Germany is no exception to this.

Why Shop at an Outlet?



With the many chic and posh European designers, there needed to be a place to sell their clothing, accessories, and items that had gone out of season and out of style. With outlet shopping malls, those designers can take the out of season items out of their stores, but still make a small profit off of those items. Those items are then placed in outlet shops and the prices are heavily discounted. Outlet shops are win-win for both the designers and the customers.

Outlet Shopping Centers

Major outlet developer, Value Retail, opened luxury outlet shopping malls throughout Europe, including the three largest outlet shopping centers in Germany. These outlet shopping centers are the Ingolstadt Village, the Wertheim Village, and the Maasmechelen Village. The Ingolstadt Village, which is located near the city of Munich, offers over 70 boutiques and over 75 designer label shops. The Wertheim Village, which is near the city of Frankfurt, offers over 85 boutiques and over 00 designer label shops. These outlet shopping centers offer high quality luxury shopping for visitors, with adorable cafes and comfortable restaurants, where you can stop to relax and have a bite to eat or grab a coffee before continuing with your shopping experience.

Other Outlet Shops

In addition to the main outlet shopping centers mentioned above, there are also many outlet shops scattered all over Germany. With a simple internet search, you should be able to find the locations of the nearest outlet shops to you, or the nearest specific outlet shops if you have a certain store or brand in mind. There are outlet shops and shopping centers in or near most every major city in Germany, so the shopping experience you are looking for is never far away.

The major outlet shopping centers sometimes have information available in English, if you still are not good with German yet. Also, the large outlet shopping centers accept most major credit cards.


Outlet shopping can be a fun, relaxing, and extravagant event. When you get the opportunity, treat yourself to a day of shopping. You will have the chance to enjoy your new home country, and get to observe and interact with new people in this culture that is still new to you. Plus, you get to spoil yourself with some gifts.[...]

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