Moving to North Rhine in Germany? Several questions in mind? Looking for answers? You are at the right place! We know that a decent ground work to learn about the place you are relocating to (either for a brief period or for long term) is a must. But that calls for a thorough research and dedicated long hours of planning and management. However, if you are relocating to Bochum city in Germany, we've got some quick tips and recommendations ready for you. Please note that we came to Bochum from India, so in this article you might find a little inclination towards the German vis-a-vis Indian lifestyle vs German vis-a-vis any other country. Nevertheless, we are hoping this will help you to some extent, irrespective of where you are coming from.
All citizens (either living temporarily, or permanently) need to get themselves registered within two weeks of moving in the city. Depending on which German city you are going to be in, you have to register at their respective administration, known as Bürgerbüro. In Bochum, Bürgerbüro is located at Willy-Brandt-Platz 2 -6, 44787 Bochum. It is next to the city center so quite easily accessible via local transport! Please note that you will have to take someone who knows German (as your translator) incase German language is alien to you. The authorities will not communicate in any language other than German. Skipping registeration might not be a good idea, so you must plan a isit as soon as you land here.
Finding a house is difficult anywhere in the world, and so is the case in Bochum. With a continous rise of students joining the Ruhr University, Bochum is becoming a hub of active student life resulting in increasing demands of house rentals. And if you are moving in close to the new session time, you are in for a trouble. While there are several options via AirBnB, we are listing down some very useful websites / applications that will help you find an accomodation tha suits your needs. You must book an appointment and make a decision as fast as you can so that you don't loose the accomodation of your choice. The owners will not wait for your call if there are others in line.
Connectivity in Bochum is comfortable. If you have to commute everyday in Bochum, you can consider buying the Bochum Ticket 2000 that allows to to travel hassle free. More information about Ticket 2000 can be found here. Since Bochum is not a very large city, travelling in Bochum is quick and easy. The trams and buses operate regularly, except on national holidays when you can expect a long wait time. All large cities and neighboring countries are well connected via local and Regional trains that run in and out from Bochum Hauptbhanhof. Take a look at Omio, VRR and DB apps while planning travel.
Most people of Bochum prefer to communicate only in German, that includes the shop owners, restaurant owners and staff. Hence communication is a difficult area if you are not well versed of German langauge. The only saviour is Google translator if German is not your forte. Be prepared to translate everything--from grocery to medicines, to directions and sign boards, to communicating with Doctors and officials. Only a handful will be considerate to try and make you understand in English.
If you are sucker for winters, you are in the right place. Weather in Bochum is mostly cold. It can go to 3 degrees Celsius even in the mid of May. Needless to say, winters are very cold. Expect snowfall anytime in January and February and chilly days and nights begin from October. While the spring is officially announced in April, the evening and nights are still chilly. It will not be a good idea to pack your woollens back and store them for next winters, because you know, winter never bid good-bye here (except only for a few days of June and July-September). Also, never forget your umbrella. It rains perpetually here!
Rewe, Aldi, Lidl, Penny, Netto are some big brands that will provide you everything for your daily needs. If you are looking for special Indian grocery items, some effort is required here to locate the shops. Only a handful of Indo-Pak and/or Asian shops are available here. Look out for Kashmir Bazaar and Orient Bazaar near Bochum Hbf and the Asian super market in Rathaus. Do keep a tab of the expiry date on a all perishable items when buying food from these shops. You would not want to buy an expired food item that you found out after putting in that extra effort.
These were some quick tips if you are planning to come to Bochum. If there are more questions, please comment in the box below and we will be happy to help. If there is anything missed or needs correction, please feel free to comment. We are open for constructive critisicm.