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5 Things you Should Absolutely Take With You to Berlin

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Gettysburg chapter.

Traveling internationally is always a learning experience, so learn from mistakes of the past and bring these things with you when you travel to Germany.

A Coin Purse

These have pretty much fallen out of fashion in America. The country is so card-based now that a lot of people have even given up their wallets for just carrying around cards. This will not work in Berlin. Germany in general, and Berlin specifically, has a very cash-based economy that requires you to carry cash money and doesn’t make it strange to pay for even $50 worth of stuff with paper money. Add in coins that go all the way up to 2 euros and you will quickly have a large collection of coins that will require a coin purse, either attached or separate to your regular wallet.

Waterproof Shoes

Berliners generally have great shoe ware. Leather and sport shoes are both popular, but considering that travel is limited by the weight of your suitcase, it can be tricky to bring along the full range of shoes that you might prefer. As such, it becomes necessary to bring along at least one pair of waterproof shoes. Rain is pretty common, and you don’t want to be stuck with waterlogged shoes and socks halfway through the day.

More than one Converter

Converters are pretty common for packing lists when traveling internationally. If you find one you like, though, make sure to at least two if not more. It sucks to be stuck without a converter but is only slightly less sucky to be stuck having to pick between charging your phone or your computer. If you’re able to find a converter that includes more than one port, then that’s a great solution! It is still a good idea to bring at least one backup, though, just in case your converter breaks unexpectedly. 


Practically every travel packing advice article will talk about layers, and the emphasis is not unjustified! Especially when it comes to jackets, layers are your best friend. It may be scalding cold outside on the streets then boiling hot on the U-Bhan due to the huge amount of people packed in during rush hour. When faced with this quick change, hastily removable hats, zippers, and other such removable layers become your savior.

Reusable Grocery Bags

Unlike most places in America, pretty much every bag you get in the store to carry what you bought will cost you money. People will most likely not assume that you need a bag, either. This is navigable when you’re in a smaller store and can quickly ask for a bag, but if you’re in a busy grocery store then your items will just be passed along the conveyor belt to pile at the end unless you brought bags with you to load stuff into. Of course, reusable bags are pretty easy to find, but if you have a small collection of free or nicer bags at home already, then don’t forget to throw those into your suitcase before you leave.

Chances are pretty high that there’s something you’re going to leave behind accidentally or forget, but if you have these five items then you’ll be well on your way to looking like a native Berliner.

Zoe Philippou

Gettysburg '20

(she/her) From Arizona, Zoe is officially a Psychology and Anthropology double major, a German minor, and an unofficial a Theater inhabitor. She loves all thing having to do with culture or really just people in general. She's also a huge nerd who loves crafts.