When Ellie and I first moved to Germany, we had so many things to figure out. Ellie had lived in Germany multiple other times, but never to the full extent that we are just embarked on. Of course, that meant we had certain needs that a tourist wouldn’t regularly have. Where do you buy medicine? How do Germans purchase nails for building. Obviously, these are all SO SIMPLE!!! But there we were, a little lost and confused, especially me (Lucas).

Today we think back a little bit to what it was like starting out in Germany and trying to find the German equivalent of American stores. We figured it out eventually, but there were some rough patches. Plus, you won’t believe which of these common German stores is actually EXTREMELY difficult to find in the USA…at least if you want quality that is.

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  1. Well baking bread is no rocket science. Look for some recipes, there are tons of different bread recipes…and also tons of recipes for how to make a sourdough which is essential for almost any type of good bread as well.

    I´ll go shopping Monday, Wednesday, Friday..heavily avoiding Saturday.

  2. Retail in Germany: Real and Kaufland are hypermarkets, "Vollsortimenter" (shops with full assortment [food and non-food]). In addition there are department stores like Karstadt and Galeria Kaufhof (merged to Galeria Karstadt Kaufhof).
    Germans buy their groceries very differently. There are people that go every day or even several times at the same day in different stores with a similar assortment. But in my opinion the biggest part does grocery shopping twice a week or less. Weekly or once or twice a month is common. Only fresh items are shopped more frequently. But it also depends on the income and social status. If you have a big car and appartment it is easier to store food than a family with welfare housing and dependent on public transportation.

  3. Baumarkt (hardware store) und Bastelladen (craft store) sind Geschäfte die viel Fläche brauchen. Deshalb findet man diese selten in Innenstädten sonder eher am Rand der Städte wo die Mieten billiger sind. Wer will auch 2 Sack Zement per Hand und öffentlichen Nahverkehr nach Hause bringen?

    Mit einer Familie, zwei Erwachsene, zwei Kinder, gehen wir einmal in der Woche einkaufen.
    Aber es kommt vor, das etwas vergessen wurde, etwas nicht im Geschäft war oder die Planung geändert wird und etwas fehlt. Dann gehen wir zwischen durch noch mal einkaufen, wenn wir von der Arbeit kommen.
    Samstags schaut man noch mal ob man alles hat.

    Kleidung, Brillen, Elektronik werden extra gekauft.

    An diesem Wochenende war eine Reparatur am Haus nötig, bis ich alles hatte und bis ich wusste was ich brauche war ich 4x im Baumarkt. Davon habe ich 2x Dinge wieder zurück gebracht und neu gekauft.

  4. Walmart Germany

    In Deutschland war Walmart ab 1997 präsent, konnte sich aber nicht durchsetzen. Die 85 Filialen wurden im Juli 2006 an die Metro AG verkauft und anschließend auf die Marke Real umgeflaggt (→ Walmart in Deutschland). … Der größte Konkurrent, die französische Carrefour-Gruppe, ist nicht einmal halb so groß wie Walmart.
    Auf die Frage wie oft man einkaufen geht in Deutschland beantworte ich das mit "Einmal in der Woche ".

  5. Craft stores: The last time I was in the US (2019) I was looking for a fiber glas pencil erazer. And I virtually visited every store that was dealing with paints and crafts (Micheals, Hobby Lobby, hardware store, automotive supplies etc.). I was able to turn up only with one pen! While in Germany I could get them from Staedler and other makers easily.

  6. Shopping habits are a vicious circle. In the USA the shopping centers where built according to the income concentration. Which is known to developers and merchants from the use of credit cards. So the developer takes that data finds a convenient spot and builds somewhere near the center of gravity with regards to income structures. So everybody has to drive to that place anyway. And while you drive that long distance you better fill up for the full week or even weeks on items. On sale of course. So then you rarely have a need to buy locally. And there are no more locol shops. So you do have to drive. And have a big fridge.

  7. I go grocery shopping every day (except Sundays of course) but to different stores, like twice or three times a week to the bakery and the butcher's resp., once a week to a local farmer for fresh produce, once a week or fortnight to the weekly farmers' market, Globus, Real, Rewe, and Aldi, 4 times a week to Lidl because I can walk there whereas the other supermarkets are not in walking distance.

  8. Jo Ellie & Lucas, hello my fellow Ruhrgebiet residents! How are you? You've said you'd like to gain more followers. I know this doesn't really fit to the content you've uploaded so far but maybe consider doing a music reaction video to "Nightwish – Ghost Love Score (WACKEN 2013)". It's a Band from Finland, performing at the legendary Wacken music festival in northern Germany. This will attract thousands of viewers and I'm sure some will notice your other videos and stay. Have a nice week! 🙂

  9. In small villages most People shops one or twice a week because They often must drive With the car to the "Dorf" where they live. And for older people it is normal to buy things for one ore twoo weeks. Not Fruits but Toilet paper, Noodles, Rice, "Mehl" chocolate, washing Powder,……

  10. Let me make a comment on "craft stores", please. In my city you can see a similar shop opening every now and then, but it closes again after a year at the latest. Such a deal is apparently not worthwhile, at least in my city. This may also be due to the fact that part of the range is also covered by classic stationery stores. One could ask now, where do all the kindergartens stock up on handicrafts?

  11. Mal schauen, ob ich am 19.6. Zeit habe. Übrigens habt ihr wieder diese witzige Zeitangabe gemacht, die kein Deutscher versteht. Da sie sich aber gerade an in Deutschland Lebende richtet, wäre 'at sixteen o'clock' sinnvoller gewesen.
    Oder 'at 4 in the afternoon'.
    Ich finde es übrigens mehr als komisch, dass ihr amerikanische Militärzeit kennt. Ich habe in meinem ganzen Leben noch keinen Film gesehen, der von der Bundeswehr handelt. In Krimis kommen schon mal einzelne Soldaten vor, die nach einem Einsatz in Afghanistan traumatisiert sind. Das ist alles. Ich kenne jedenfalls keine deutschen Militärausdrücke. Für euch dagegen scheinen 'movies about the US army' so selbstverständlich zu sein, dass ihr sogar Ausdrücke wie at sixteenhundred übernehmt. Absolutely weird!!
    Bäckereien würde ich in den USA und überhaupt fast überall auf der Welt vermissen.
    Und ich bin froh, dass sich Walmart in Deutschland nicht durchsetzen konnte. Ich finde schon den REALmarkt viel zu groß. Ich habe lieber kleinere Geschäfte. Und ich mag die günstigen Sonder-Saisonangebote bei den Discountern.
    Wenn man es in den USA hinnehmen muss, dass einem der Einkauf eingepackt wird, kann man wenigstens darauf hoffen, dass alles genau so gut gepackt wird wie wenn man es selber machen würde:
    Möglichst wenige von meinen mitgebrachten Tüten verbrauchen, nach Sparten sortiert, große und schwere Sachen nach unten, leichtere und zerbrechlichere Sachen nach oben?
    Achja, ich kaufe meistens 1x pro Woche groß ein und ein weiteres Mal Kleinigkeiten. Es sei denn, ich reise und besuche dabei irgendwelche Fußgängerzonen. Dann bummle ich durch die Läden und kaufe zusätzliche Dinge ein.