Get Out There
I highly suggest making German friends.
If you surround yourself with too many expats, your isolate yourself to that circle and you’ll miss out on some great opportunities, experiences and resources. German people have the stereotype of being direct, cold and aloof. And I’ll be honest, there are times when individual’s live up to that stereotype. But on the whole, I have found Germans to be friendly, fun loving and helpful. It takes a little longer to make friends, but when you do, they are very rewarding relationships.
How do you meet German friends? I met my friends through work and through mutual acquaintances. I have also heard of people befriending neighbors and language speaking partners (through organizations like Tandem .) Tandem is great because the website matches you to people with similar interests, and you get to practice your German.
But, sometimes you just want the effortlessness of a friend from “back home.”
General information and tips for expats in Germany, and specifically Düsseldorf.
I can recommend the meetup site and facebook page to search for events in English. For example, I have been to a few English comedy shows at Irish pubs, which were really fun. There are two that I know of: one at O’Riley’s and one at Mclaughlins.
Want to meet other expats? I have not used joined any of these clubs, but you might find this list helpful. I met most of my friends through teaching language classes and through contacts with others.