Moving to Hamburg

Last updated: March 5, 2019

On this page you can find information about moving to Hamburg or get 5 free moving quotes. You can find for example different prices for moving companies, useful tips, information about different cities and buying a house, et cetera. 

Moving to Hamburg

Emigrating to Hamburg

Germany’s second city is located in the north of the country on the river Elbe. Despite being almost 100 kilometres from the nearest seafront Hamburg gives you the impression that it is a real coastal town. The city has a huge port and you everywhere you look can find fresh fish and maritime memorabilia. Furthermore the Fischmarkt in hamburg is by far the best in Germany. The nickname of the city is Hamburg – meine Perle’ which comes from the It really is the cultural centre of northern Germany.

Additionally, you don’t need to worry about living there an expat. A whopping 30 percent of all residents of Hamburg have emigrated at some point in their life!

How much does it cost to move to Hamburg?

When it comes to moving to Hamburg there are a whole host of factors to consider. Primarily, these include: how you want to transport your belongings and the amount of belongings you want to move.

For smaller moves you will be able to transport your belongings by air, this is incredibly expensive and in the long run it isn’t necessarily quicker. The most cost effective and popular mode of transport is to use a service with a removals van or lorry who transport your goods through the channel tunnel or ferry through France to Spain. Other ways of moving to Hamburg include renting a container and shipping your belongings port to port. Despite the cost of transport being cheaper often this doesn’t include the costs of moving from door to door.

For price estimates of moving your home to Hamburg with overland transport look at the table below.

Household sizeTimeCost
1 bed flat9 – 11 days£1,300 – £1,800
3 bed house2 – 4 days£2,100 – £2,900
5 bed house 2 – 4 days £3,400 – £4,700
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Moving tips for Hamburg

  • Health insurance – Being part of the EU means having an EHIC card is very handy. It protects you in any of the neighbouring EU countries for accidents. But doesn’t cover everything so it is advised to take out other health insurances for extra protection. Visit our page healthcare in Germany for more information.
  • Bank – It is important to open a bank account on arrival as there is not much you can get without one! Most German banks won’t let you sign up unless you have an address. DKB – Deutsche Kredit Bank is one of the bank accounts you can set up from abroad without an address. But other popular banks include:
    •  Deutsche Bank Filiale
    • Sparda-Bank eG – Filiale & Zentrale
    • GLS Bank
  • Mobile contract – Getting out a mobile contract will save you a lot of money if using your UK account. Some UK phone providers such as EE and Three offer EU coverage in their contracts. So if you are still wanting to communicate with home it could be useful to look into these.
  • Driving license – If you are staying longer than a year in Hamburg you will need to exchange for a German driving license. However you still need a Führerschein to drive in Germany after your first six months in country.
  • Pharmaceuticals – It can be tricky to pick up medications that are widely found in UK supermarket. So maybe bring a few packs of paracetamol etc before your move.

What do you need to remember before your move?

Before moving to Hamburg you need to arm yourself with all of the information possible. Not just about moving to Germany but also about moving abroad in general. At Sirelo we’ve combined our experience with the best information out there to write pages to make your move easier. Our moving tips page consists of useful information such as:

  • How to plan your move
  • The best way of labelling your boxes
  • How to protect your furniture
  • How not to lose the little things

Additionally, our moving checklist gives you a run down of all the information that you are going to need and the processes involved with moving abroad.

Moving to Hamburg 2

How and where to find a home

Hamburg is a diverse city with different areas that accommodate everyone. Below you can see a list of some of the most popular neighbourhoods for expats in Hamburg.

Mitte – This is the city centre and the busiest area. As well as it being the centre it also boasts the sea port and therefore there is a lot of business and historical importance here.

Altona – Northwest of Mitte is the neighbourhood Altona. This is seen as the trendy area to be. There are hip fashion shops there in addition to nightclubs, bars and restaurants.

Blankanese – The most prestigious neighbourhood in Hamburg. Blankanese boasts a whole host of mansions and industrial houses in addition to having the reputation for having a village like atmostphere.

Wandsbek – This is an option where you can get a lot of bang for your buck. As the area was rebuilt after the war apartments and houses tend to be more spacious than in the centre. There are a lot of spacious family homes and the area is known for being very safe and welcoming.

Harburg and Bergedorf – Venturing a little south of the river you will arrive at the residential and rural areas of the city known as Harburg and Bergedorf. These areas embed many rural areas in addition to the diverse quarter of Wilhelmsburg which is tipped to be the city’s next hip spot.

The rental market

As we have already seen, Hamburg has several options which suit all tastes and budgets. It is common for expats to rent for a few weeks or months to find somewhere that they are comfortable living. Furthermore there is a huge demand for rented accommodation in the city. It is also worth bearing in mind that most accommodation in Hamburg (and Germany in general) is rented unfurnished.

Where to find a job

Moving to Hamburg

Hamburg is often named as the commercial hub of northern Europe. It is Germany’s wealthiest city due to two main industries, finance and it’s port. The financial sector in Hamburg is a huge and only likely to become stronger after Brexit. Furthemore the port is one of the largest in Europe and drives the city’s economy forward as it is still able to accommodate huge ocean vessels despite being inland.

With a good level of English you shouldn’t struggle too much when it comes to finding work in Hamburg. The city’s job market is growing. Although it may seem difficult, there are jobs out there. Above all things, perseverance is important when looking for a job in Hamburg. Network online via LinkedIn and Upload your CV to websites such as EURES and other online portals as first steps to finding a job in Germany.

How is the transport in Hamburg?

There are several ways to get around Hamburg including the U-bahn, S-bahn, buses, trains and passenger ferries. The HVV is an integrated ticket and pricing system that works on most forms of public transport.

A single ticket in the Greater Hamburg area costs 3 Euro (2014), a day ticket for the same area for up to 5 people (after 9am Mon-Fri and all weekends and holidays) costs 10.80 Euro.

You can also purchase a “Hamburg CARD” which entitles you to unlimited travel by bus and train throughout the HVV service area. In addition, you enjoy discounts at or on over 150 tourist or other interesting offers. For detailed information on fares, routes and mode of transport check out the HVV website.

Request your free removal quote

Wanting to move to Hamburg?  You can save up to 40% extra on your moving costs. All you have to do here is to fill in the quote form. This will only take a few minutes and you can receive up to 5 quotes from moving companies that specialize in removals to Hamburg.