(Closed) Germany!!! USAF wives :-)

posted 6 years ago in Military
Post # 3
Member
3501 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2002

im not a USAF wife but i was born in and am from germany and i just got excited when i saw the post so i had to read! congratulations darling! wish you both the best!

Post # 4
Member
1370 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

Yay, awesome!!

I’ve never been to Ramstein, but that sounds like a really cool opportunity! Enjoy it!

Post # 6
Member
201 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

Hello!  I’m in the AF and stationed at Ramstein, but on my way out next week.  You’re going to love it!  Don’t be surprised if it’s tough or you feel homesick for about the first 6-12 months though. It took a while to stop missing what I was used to having in the U.S. and just enjoy Germany, but once I did I really liked it here. I think the trick is to travel and see as much as you can, and don’t be afraid to just go out and check things out.  Don’t worry about not knowing the language, most people speak some English, and even if you don’t there is always a way to communicate.  Even if you’re only taking day trips, it is better to be out and seeing things.  I struggled most when I was cooped up in the apartment.

Good luck and have fun!

Also, feel free to PM me with any additional questions!  I don’t mind at all!

Post # 8
Member
290 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

We’re not stationed there, but I grew up in Germany and spent a lot of time there. Hoping that we get stationed there in the future, though we’re dual Army and that’s not very likely.

If you’re open to the experience, you’ll love it there!

Learn to use the trains! The train system is incredible, and you can go pretty much anywhere at anytime. It’s a lot cheaper if you book online in advance, or use tickets that allow unlimed rides on the slower regional trains in one region (Laenderkarte). 

Many Germans are fluent in English, so don’t be afraid to ask if you need help.

If you’re going off base, carry a parking clock and lots of bags, as many public parking lots will need you to display the clock on the dash set to the time you parked and grocery stores charge for plastic bags.

Don’t be surprised if store clerks and cashiers seem quite rude at first. They’re not mad at you, it’s just a cultural thing. Some see the friendliness we demand as customers here as a superficial, fake thing. 

Don’t just go to the restaurants and stores right around base, especially those that cater to airmen. You’ll get a better experience if you head out to those frequented mostly by Germans. This is very true for bars and pubs as well.

Sadly, some Germans living around base aren’t too fond of USAF personnel, usually due to the stupid actions of a few. Just be friendly and try to follow some of their customs, that’ll bring them around.

If you’re going shopping, even to the grocery store, dress up more than you would in the states. Jeans and a t-shirt are more casual than the norm, and can be perceived as a bit lazy or sloppy.

Doener! This incredibly yummy Turkish fast food has sustained many a late night outing.

Post # 10
Member
873 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

You’re a better wife than I.  I refuse to go through the medical clearance, so here in the US I will stay.  Enjoy Germany!

Post # 12
Member
873 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@Dimples723:  

Glad it was so easy.  My issue is that I don’t even have a PCP, and don’t feel like dealing with the fallout from not having any good medical records.  And the pap smear  within six months requirement…hello, if my midwife says every 5 years is good enough for her, who is the military to say otherwise?

But I am a little jealous of Germany.  Four years is a little long, yes, but it’s a really great country and I’ve never had any issues traveling there.  The people are really friendly too.

Post # 13
Member
1285 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

German bee here. Feel free to ask me anything πŸ™‚

Post # 15
Member
2889 posts
Sugar bee

Just came across this post and while I am not military, I am an American living in Germany. I think you have gotten a lot of good advice. I especially cannot stress enough the advice to get out and involve yourself in society and don’t get discouraged if the first year is hard and even miserable at times. I have been here for just about 5 years now and really feel so different than I did that first year. Things you can leave at home include sweat pants and any form of yoga/athletic pants unless you are actually wearing them to play sports. You may as well leave most of your heels home too, Germany is a pedestrian society and most sidewalks are not flat cement so heels are a challenge in daily life, wedges are better. I also second or third the suggestion to travel, Germany is so close to so many places and if you have car access, weekend road trips can put you in the Alps, Amsterdam, Brussels, France, Switzerland, etc. Visit small cities too, you will be glad you did. Get a bicycle, I waited 2 years before getting one and it is so useful for transportation and also bike tours. I had previously gave up my bike when I was 15 so I laughed at the idea but now I can’t believe I was so stupid. Join some sort of team, class, group off base. I have had success with pilates and yoga at my local “abend academy” like a community center type place where they offer all sorts of courses from sewing, to languages to sports, even adult ballet and you can take a short course without the commitment of a gym or University. You really don’t need to understand the language in a pilates type course where the instructor demonstrates everything. I also joined a softball team for a season but that was a greater commitment although a great way to meet people and share an American interest. Usually baseball fans, many of my teammates were interested in and spoke English while others taught me regional German dialect. I know this is all over the place, I’m really excited for you and it sounds like you are excited too! Feel free to PM me if you have any questions at all about adjusting to Geman life, Deutsche Bahn, etc. I know it can be hard and I experienced a lot of homesickness so I promise I will understand if you are looking for a good source for something random like scented candles or chocolate chips (I still have not found a good version of these though, maybe you can get them on base). You will arrive at the perfect time to catch end of summer festivals – look for wine fests. Then in December Christmarkets are a must do. http://www.toytown.de is a great resource for English speakers, meet ups and there is a lot of military on that forum. 

Post # 16
Member
175 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Hubs and I went through the exact thing a year and a half ago to get me here (Japan). Paperwork, medical clearance, time difference… ugh! But TOTALLY worth it in the end πŸ™‚ Enjoy being with your hubby!

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