Stereotypes have a huge impact on our society. We are confronted with them nearly every day. But how many of them are actually true? Often, not that many. In this article I am going to present you some of the most typical stereotypes about Germans and tell you whether these are true or not.
Probably, the most popular impression of Germans is that they are quite boring. In Germany we would say “trocken” (dry). Germans are punctual, always on time, get up early in the morning, are hardworking and have no sense of fun, as they can’t party. To be fair, to a lot of the German folk punctuality is quite an important thing and you are expected to be on time. But why wouldn’t you? It is just fair to meet at the arranged time.
But once we meet up with our families or friends, it is totally wrong that we can’t have fun or are bad at partying. In fact, because the Germans are so good at organising, our parties are one of the best! It is also wrong that we can’t be funny – our humour may be a bit special, but trust me, once you’ll understand it, you’ll love it. Another factor that may or may not help with a good party atmosphere, especially later in the evening, is the good beer that we Germans have. Did you know that there are about 6,000 different brands for beer in Germany? And that about 92 litres of beer are being drunk per year, per person?
Beer leads us to our next very popular stereotype about Germans: The idea of them drinking beer, eating sausages and pretzels and wearing Dirndl all the time. These may be true in some parts of Germany – but mostly just in the south: Bavaria. This is where every year the crazy Oktoberfest takes place. Of course all the partying can be very exhausting. So, if it’s time for a German to go on holiday, most of them will already have a plan for that too:
Mallorca. We already call it our 17th state (Germany has 16 states) because so many Germans go on holiday there. In fact, 2.3 millions Germans make up 40 % of Mallorca’s tourists. And if you get to share a hotel with Germans you better get up early. Because for us it is definitely worth it to get up at 6am, despite being on holiday, just to make sure we are the first ones at the pool and so that we get to put our towels on the sun loungers and reserve them. But don’t you dare to do the same!
Last but not least, a piece of advice: Never wish a German ‘Happy Birthday’ before their actual birthday! They will probably look at you very angry because in Germany we believe that it is bad luck to congratulate someone before the actual day.