By Amy Gaffney, Student Brand Ambassador

Berlin – an interrail hotspot! The capital of Germany is a cultural phenomenon with an extensive nightlife and an abundance of daytime activities, making it the perfect place to travel no matter your age. 

Having lived in Germany for a year, I often visited this city, and have picked up some specific tips on how to stay safe in Berlin so you can make the most out of your visit. Plus, signing up to email alerts via Travel Advice on helps keep you up to date with important travel information.   

Get appropriate travel insurance:

It should cover your itinerary, planned activities and expenses in an emergency. Ensure you double check any small print your insurance may have, as certain activities you do may not be covered. Even if you do not have any activities planned, it is best to cover for them in case you decide to do anything impromptu (such as ice skating or fairground rides popular at the Christmas markets). And remember – Berlin is big on electric scooters, so make sure they are included in your insurance too!

Entry requirements: 

Your passport must be issued less than 10 years before the date you enter the country (check your ‘date of issue’) and valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave (check your ‘expiry date’). If you are planning to stay longer than 90 days for work or study, you will need to apply for either a visa or residence permit when in Germany, which can be organised in the local immigration office. 

Crime levels:

As in most major cities worldwide, pickpocketing is a risk. To reduce the risk of having my belongings stolen, I often use a money belt underneath my clothing and a bumbag close to my chest where I keep my phone, passport and wallet. I usually do not leave valuables in my hostel room. When walking around, I never put my valuables in my pockets.

Euro 2024:

Personally, I cannot wait for the Euros, but it does mean Berlin will be busy! If you are attending any games, remember you can only buy match tickets from UEFA and your tickets will need to be digitally downloaded onto the UEFA Mobile Ticket App. Ensure your phone is charged, pack a portable charger and double check your phone provider before leaving to see if you can get data there. Also, leave plenty of time when travelling to a game, remember that ticket holders get discounted train tickets and, if drinking, do so responsibly (you cannot drink on public transport in Germany). 


Apply for a free GHIC card, which entitles you to any necessary state-provided medical treatment during your trip. It means any treatment you need is provided on the same terms as German nationals, and if your EHIC has not expired, that is valid too. If you have lost your card, contact the NHS Overseas Healthcare Team. Remember this card is not the same as travel insurance, and it does not cover all health-related costs. 

Club etiquette:

If you do plan on going clubbing, be respectful. As commonly known, lots of the exclusive clubs in Berlin have a black dress-code, but it does not stop there. Do not be too drunk or rowdy in club queues, and try not to take pictures (especially if the club requires stickers over your camera). They are usually open later than British clubs, too, but do not tire yourself out! If you want to go home, you should – just keep your friends posted on your whereabouts and share your location. 

Local laws and customs:

Respect these and be aware of any cultural sensitivities. The FCDO travel advice pages have lots of information on local laws and customs so it’s worth checking out. 


Not everywhere accepts cards so make sure you carry some cash with you.

To get emergency help in Berlin, the emergency services number is 112 for medical and fire and 110 is used for police. Your travel insurer can also help you and will usually provide you with a 24/7 phone number if you need to use your travel insurance to seek medical assistance or something happens.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) has guidance on staying safe and what to do if you need help when there, such as if you are in hospital or arrested. To contact them, follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. For urgent assistance telephone +49 (0) 30 204570 if in Germany or the FCDO in London on 020 7008 5000 (24 hours).

Following these rules helps increase your chances of a smooth-sailing city break to one of the coolest capitals in Europe, no matter what you want to get out of your holiday.

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