Student Life

Money and Banking

Cash is king

The currency used in Germany as well as in most of the European Union is the Euro. Contrary to many other countries, Germany has not fully embraced the cashless economy yet and cash still reigns supreme.


The currency used in Germany is the Euro. As monetary values fluctuate, currency exchange rates may change daily. It is best to consult a bank or designated websites for the most up-to-date rates of exchange. Currency exchange is possible upon arrival at the airport; it should be noted however that it is not possible at all banks. A better way to obtain Euros in cash would be to use a debit card or major credit card (Master Card, Visa) at one of the numerous automated bank machines throughout the city. 

Credit cards and bank accounts

It is important to note that while it is possible to use debit or credit cards to withdraw cash at most bank machines, credit cards are not always accepted as a form of payment at many restaurants, shops, agencies, etc. It is always good to have some cash (Bargeld) on hand for those stores that do not accept credit cards.

It is possible to open a bank account with a German bank in order to get a Euro Check Card, or EC Karte, which is a Maestro, or European debit card. It is much more widely accepted than credit cards, but still, not everywhere. As the German saying goes, Nur Bares ist Wahres. Translation: Cash is King.

More on the different kinds of bank accounts

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