Hamburg - Useful facts & practical advice

Photo: C. Spahrbier

WUU 02 q 018Language

The official language in Germany is German. However, in Germany English is widely spoken in all major cities including Hamburg.


357.021 km².


82 million inhabitants, 19 percent of whom have an immigrant background. In Hamburg live around 1,7 million people.

Capital City

Berlin with around 3.4 million inhabitants.

Weather in Hamburg

The weather in Hamburg during June and July is moderately hot. However, rain may fall throughout the year.

Time Zones


Driving License

Most international driver´s licenses are accepted in Germany. Car rental companies require a valid national or international license. In Germany it is mandatory to wear a seat belt and please keep in mind that the traffic travels on the right side.

Speed Limits

Contrary to popular belief, there are speed limits on various motorways, especially in urban areas.

Visa Requirements

As a European citizen no Visa is required to enter Germany. However, as a non-European resident you require a Visa. Please make sure to retrieve information before planning your journey. More information concerning an overview of the Visa regulations can be obtained from the Federal Foreign Office.

Photo: C. Spahrbier

ABU 09 002Banks and Currency Exchange

Germany is a member of the Euro zone; therefore the currency is the Euro. Foreign currency can be exchanged at the airport as well as at commercial banks which can be found throughout the city. All major credit cards (such as Visa, MasterCard) are accepted in most German restaurants and shops. You will find ATMs (cash point machines) of all national and international banks throughout the city. With foreign debit and credit cards you have the possibility to cash withdraw cash.

Communication and Internet

Germany operates on a GSM network. Wireless Internet connections will be provided to you at the HSBA Innovation centre, where the conference takes place. Additionally all hotels, several restaurants, bars and coffee shops throughout the city offer free WiFi access.

Health Services

In Germany we have various hospitals with excellent standards. In case of Emergency please dial 112 or 110 you will be connected to a call center where you can report any case of emergency. Please make sure that you have a proof of your health insurance with you. Depending on your insurance doctors and hospitals may expect immediate payment in cash. In case you need help, please contact the IFERA team we will assist you to find appropriate medical care.


No vaccinations are required for entry into Germany.


In Germany the electric current is 220V AC with a frequency of 50 Hertz. European standard plugs with two round pins are used.

Safety Issues

Violent crime is rare in Germany, but can occur. Please take the same precautions that you would in any large city. Don’t leave your bags and personal belongings unattended in high-risk areas such as on the central train station.


From Monday to Saturday most shops are open from 10 am to 8 pm. However, especially super markets have extended opening hours until 11 pm. Please keep in mind that on Sundays all shops are closed.te