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Moving to Leipzig?

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Leipzig at a Glance

Moving to Leipzig

The city's thriving creative scene has earned Leipzig the nickname 'Hypezig' in the last few years and it is clear that moving to Leipzig is becoming a very popular option, especially with young people who are attracted to the busy nightlife and independent local music scene.

Leipzig is an appealing place to live for professionals, with the city being home to a growing biotechnology industry and world-leading medical research. Top-level culture rounds out the reasons why moving to Leipzig is such a good idea for many people. The city is in the top three European cities for standard of living.

About the City

As of 2014, around 540,000 people live in the city itself, but this figure rises to well over a million once the wider metropolitan area is included. Leipzig's population hit a peak of more than 700,000 in the 1930s but steadily declined for the next 60 years before the recent resurgence of the city after German reunification. Inward migration reached +10,800 in 2012 and this trend is contributing to the rise of Leipzig.

Compared to a lot of other major German cities, Leipzig is not home to a large immigrant population, with just 5.6% of people residing in Leipzig being born outside of Germany. Despite this, there are still significant Russian and Polish communities in Leipzig.

German is the local language but many of Leipzig’s inhabitants have a decent grasp of English, which is more common than in many other cities due to Leipzig's position as an important regional economic center.

The Climate in Leipzig

According to the Köppen climate classification, Leipzig has an oceanic climate, which means that the city benefits from generally warm but not uncomfortably hot summers, while the winters tend to be quite mild and cool.

Temperatures during the summer are usually around the 25°C mark, although on the hottest days during July and August the mercury can tip over 35°C. Winters tend to be quite wet in Leipzig, but the temperatures usually stay above freezing.

The city benefits from around 7.4 hours a day of sun during the height of summer, but this figure drops to just 1.7 hours a day in December.

Visas for Germany

Germany is a member of the European Union and as such, anyone from a fellow EU country has the right to live and work in the country. However, people from others countries, unless they are visa-exempt nations, must have a visa to move to Leipzig.

Leipzig adheres to the visa policy of the Schengen Area, which includes all 22 EU member states and Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, while the visa policies of Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania are also very similar.

Citizens of other states should apply for a visa to move to Leipzig in their home country. Applications ought to be submitted to the German mission that is responsible for the individual's place of residence. People from the US, Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, Korea and New Zealand can enter Germany without a visa and then apply for a residence permit.

Please see our article: How to Get a German Visa for more information.

InterNations Expat Magazine