Phase 3: Living in Munich

Now that you've settled in, it is time to get to know your new home. Below, you will find some information on aspects regarding daily life and the various leisure activities Munich has to offer. There are many different means of transport to discover this beautiful city. We therefore recommend for you to go out and start exploring!

Transport

  • The airport of Munich is located outside of the city. Suburban trains depart from the airport every 20 minutes. The travel time from the airport to Munich's Central Train Station, for example, is about 45 minutes.
  • Munich's Central Train Station is located in the city centre and has connections to regional and long distance trains as well as the entire public transport network in Munich called the MVV.
  • The MVV network includes underground and suburban trains, buses and trams. They all use the same ticketing system. Ticket machines can be found at every station. Most tickets must be stamped before travel to be validated.
  • Munich is a very bike-friendly city and many people use this way of transport for getting around.
  • Make sure to check whether your foreign driving licence is valid in Germany. If you are a car owner, you will need to register your car and take out car insurance.

How to get to LMU Munich

LMU Munich has several locations throughout the city, therefore it is important to know your destination before planning your arrival itinerary.

For transport options either from the airport or the Central Train Station to each LMU Munich campus, please view the LMU Munich website.

How to get to LMU Gateway

Please visit our Contact page for exact directions on how to get to the offices of LMU Gateway.

By public transport

Munich has a great public transport network that is run by the Munich Transport and Tariff Association (MVV). This network includes underground and suburban trains, buses and trams. To find the best connection for your journey, you can use the journey planner on the MVV's website.

NOTE: As an LMU Munich employee, you are eligible to buy the Jobticket, which is a train ticket for the whole year at a discounted price. Please contact us for more information.

By bicycle

Many people living in Munich use their bicycles as a means of transport. Munich is very bike-friendly with bike paths throughout the whole city. The city of Munich has even set up a bike route planner (DE) to help you find the quickest way to get to your destination.
For further information on biking in and around Munich, please refer to the City's website.

NOTE: For safety reasons, pedestrians should avoid walking on the bicycle paths. Most cyclists speed along these and sometimes forget that foreigners are not accustomed to these designated paths.

By car

Some people prefer to use their car for getting around. Over the past few years, car sharing options have become increasingly popular as an alternative to owning a car. LMU Munich has a cooperating partner, which offers discounts for LMU employees. Please contact us for more details.

Similar to any big city, traffic and parking can be a problem in Munich. In most areas within the city, you will find parking metres or assigned parking zones for residents only. If you plan on using a car in Munich, it may be advisable to register for a residential parking permit (DE).

Driving licence (Führerschein)

The office responsible for the issuance of driving licences is called the Führerscheinstelle. The address and opening hours (Öffnungszeiten) can be found by accessing the official website (DE). Please feel free to contact us on any questions regarding your foreign driving licence.

NOTE: If a German licence has not been acquired within three years after establishing residency in Germany, the foreign licence holder will be required to go through the entire procedure of lessons and testing as a first-time applicant.

Car registration

In order to register your foreign car here in Munich, the responsible authority is the vehicle licensing authority (Zulassungsbehörde). The address and the opening hours (Öffnungszeiten) can be found by accessing the official website (DE). Please contact us for further information and queries regarding the registration of your car and taking out insurance.

For journeys towards the mountains in the South of Munich, there are good connections with the Bayerische Oberlandbahn (DE) in direction of Bayrischzell, Lenggries or Tegernsee.
If you would like to visit the city of Rosenheim or cross the border to Austria and visit Salzburg or Kufstein, the Meridian (DE) offers train connections.

For long-distance travel, the Deutsche Bahn covers the entire German railway network and is connected to other European railway lines.

There are certain MVV group day tickets & specific children's tickets available for families.

The CityTourCard is also great for families as this includes a day ticket for selected zones of travel as well as discounts for more than 70 attractions in and around Munich.

LMU Gateway is here to support you with questions you may have related to getting around in Munich. We can help you with queries such as:

  • Where can I find detailed information on public transport in Munich?
  • Can you help me figure out the best travel itinerary to reach my destination in Munich?
  • I am having trouble understanding the ticketing system - can you help?
  • I would like to purchase/rent a bicycle - do you have any recommendations?
  • What special offers exist for LMU employees regarding transport?
  • Do I need to get my driving licence exchanged and what are the conditions?
  • What is there to consider when registering my car?

Please contact us at LMU Gateway for more information. In addition, feel free to ask for a list of specific vocabulary (German and English) containing the most important terms in this field.

Culture & everyday life

  • Munich is the state capital of the Free State of Bavaria (Freistaat Bayern) with more than 1,5 million inhabitants.
  • In general, Germans value punctuality - whether it be for a business meeting, a flat viewing or a private appointment. Within Germany, Bavarians tend to be quite open-hearted people.
  • On Sundays, shops are normally closed in Munich, apart from a few bakeries.
  • Medical care in Munich has a very high standard. The number for medical emergencies is 112.
  • Munich offers a wide range of indoor and outdoor leisure and sports activities for adults and children. Tips can be found below.

  • Bavarians are generally quite open-hearted. Therefore, a complete stranger may approach you with the informal "Du" and a casual "Servus" (Hello). In a working environment and when dealing with authorities, the formal approach "Sie" is more appropriate.
  • Bavarian cuisine: Generally, the culinary offer in Bavarian restaurants consists of meat predominantely and is rather hearty. Please note that some restaurants only accept cash payment.
  • Beer garden tradition: Beer gardens are a popular meeting point for people of all ages. Traditional beergardens allow you to bring your own food and solely buy drinks there.
  • The traditional costumes called Dirndl (for women) and Lederhosen (for men) are not only worn at the festival called Oktoberfest. Generally, they can be worn on any day and for any special occasion such as weddings or going to church. Check the following website to get an overview of typical Bavarian traditions and customs.
  • Within Germany, Bavaria has the most public holidays.
  • If you are interested in our intercultural training "Understanding the Germans" for international researchers and their spouses please contact the LMU Gateway team.

Opening hours & quiet times

  • Generally, stores in Munich are open from Monday to Saturday according to their individual opening hours. On Sundays, stores usually stay closed and only a few bakeries open.
  • The German quiet times (Ruhezeiten) within an apartment building are normally from 1pm-3pm and from 10pm-7am on weekdays, on Sundays and on public holidays.

Getting around

Please find detailed information on transportation options in and around Munich in our section Transport.

Medical Care & Emergency numbers

In order to facilitate your search for doctors in Munich, there are a few online portals that allow you to specify your search. The City of Munich has put together a list of hospitals and clinics (DE).

NOTE: It is recommended to make a doctor's appointment in advance in order to avoid long waiting times.

To find pharmacies (DE) near your home, the city of Munich has also compiled a comprehensive list.

NOTE: The most important emergency numbers:

112 - Emergency doctor, Fire brigade
110 - Police
116 117 - Medical on-call service
089 19240 - Poisoning hotline

Sports activities

  • Every employee of LMU Munich can participate in the wide range of courses offered by the University Sports Center Munich (Zentraler Hochschulsport München), which is generally a more economical alternative to a membership at one of the private sports clubs.
  • Moreover, LMU Munich has special offers for employees with cooperating partners. For more information, please contact LMU Gateway.
  • The HR Department at LMU Munich has also launched an initiative called "Gesundheit am Arbeitsplatz" (DE) to support university employees in actively managing their health.

Leisure activities

Munich is a very green city and has a lot to offer in regards to various leisure activities and recreational possibilities.

  • The City of Munich has put together an events calendar with all upcoming events.
  • For detailed information regarding art & culture, sightseeing and leisure activities, please contact LMU Gateway and we will provide you with tips and links.

  • Overview of the Bavarian school holidays.
  • The city of Munich has put together a list of hospitals and clinics in Munich, including children's clinics.
  • Leisure activities for children: There are a lot of offers for families in Munich. The city of Munich has also set up an official online children's portal called Pomki (DE). Please contact LMU Gateway for more information on children's activities in Munich.

LMU Gateway is here to support you with questions you may have regarding culture and everyday life in Munich. This is how we can support you:

  • Providing you with information on cultural aspects and traditions in Bavaria and Munich.
  • Introducing you to sights and events in Munich, for more information please see our section LMU Gateway Events.
  • Information on special offers/benefits for LMU Munich employees.
  • Guidance on how to find a doctor that speaks your language and further information on medical care.
  • More detailed information on leisure and sports activities in Munich for you (and your family).

German language courses

  • Two hundred million people around the globe speak German as their first or second language.
  • Speaking German will increase both your personal and professional options.
  • Numerous institutions in Munich offer German language courses, therefore you have a variety of courses to choose from.
  • Depending on your individual needs, time and budget, you can select between private lessons, group courses, intensive courses, exam preparation courses, specialised language courses, etc.
  • Sufficient German language skills are not only very helpful in everyday life but are often a requirement for finding employment.

Reasons to learn German

  • German is the second most used language in academia. Germany is the third largest contributor to research and development.
  • Germany is ranked number 5 in terms of annual publication of new books. Knowledge of German therefore offers you extended access to information.
  • Make the most of your travels not only in German-speaking countries, but in many other European countries where German is widely spoken, especially in Eastern Europe.

Test your German

In order to evaluate your German skills, whether you are experienced or just starting to learn the language, you might want to test your skills before enrolling in a course. The Goethe Institut test will evaluate your knowledge of German grammar and vocabulary.

What is your language goal?

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) is a guideline used to describe achievements of learners of foreign languages. According to this, there are six levels of language proficiency.

Language school checklist

Consider the following aspects before enrolling:

  • Objectives and time frame
  • Costs
  • Quality of advice
  • Qualification of teachers
  • Possibility of changing a teacher
  • Class sizes
  • Teaching methods

The city of Munich offers German summer courses for children (7-13 years) and teenagers (14-17 years). Advantages for children:

  • Finding friends from all over the world.
  • Additional leisure activities and excursions are a fun way to practice German.
  • Placement tests and certification of participation are included in the fees.

For more details on German courses for your children please contact LMU Gateway.

LMU Gateway is here to support you with any questions you might have concerning German language courses. This is how we can support you:

  • Help you with your choice of language school according to your individual needs.
  • Offer guidance concerning the German language courses offered at LMU Munich.
  • Offer information concerning language courses for your children.

Please contact us at LMU Gateway for more information or refer to the official website of the City of Munich for a list of further options.

Please find below a checklist for your stay in Munich. In addition, feel free to ask for a list of specific vocabulary (German and English) containing the most important terms in the different fields.
Checklist - Living in Munich (PDF, 136 KB)