While Duisburg is not the most attractive corner in Germany, moving to Duisburg is well worth considering for any expat and German citizens because the cost of living here is low and there are plenty of things to do. This town is quiet, but it has modern facilities and job property prices are affordable.
Is Duisburg a good place to live? Duisburg is strategically located near other major cities like Essen, Dortmund and Dusseldorf. There are numerous companies here, so professionals and university/college students have promising prospects for getting work. In addition to that, property prices are relatively affordable.
Whether you are moving to Duisburg because of a job offer or are just seeking a new place to live in Germany, you have landed on this webpage because you are seeking more information.
- How’s the transport system?
- Are the schools in the area good?
- Which neighbourhoods are the best?
This article seeks to answer most of your questions.
Is Duisburg a good place to Live?
There are many nice parts in this city like Bergheim, Rahm, Grossenbaum, Huckingen and Trompet. On the other hand, Marxloh, Hamborn, Neumühl, Beckerwerth are some of the less desirable areas.
Generally speaking, the crime levels in Duisburg are relatively high. According to numbeo.com, the crime index for Duisburg is 45.03 while the safety index is 54.97 (as of May 2019). Major crimes in the area are vandalism, theft and drug dealing.
Though the German government offers free education, many expatriates living in Duisburg prefer to send their children to international schools, because these schools teach English. An example is St. George’s British International School, which offers International Baccalaureate and British Curriculum. Students in this school learn English, German, French and Spanish.
For those who do not mind German schools, some of the best middle schools and high schools are Landfermann-Gymnasium, Christian-Zeller-Schule, Gustav-Heinemann-Realschule, Gottfried-Könzgen-Schule, Gymnasium Clauberg-Gymnasium, Comenius-Schule, Anne-Frank-Schule, Gottfried-Wilh,-Leibniz-Schule and Steinbart-Gymnasium.
Higher education is offered in the University of Duisburg, University of Duisburg-Essen and Gerhard Mercator University.
In terms of transport, Duisburg has several autobahns, with three East to West routes and two North to South routes. Residents are also travel by rail to other cities in the Rhine-Ruhr region. Dusseldorf is just 15 minutes away by train. There are also tram and bus networks.
Social life in this city is fairly lively. It is not easy to get bored in this town as there are plenty of things to do and see. There are good shopping facilities, restaurants, cafes, a zoo and sporting facilities.
Is Duisburg a good place to Work?
Duisburg’s economy is majorly based on the port (Duisburg-Ruhrorter Häfen), which is the largest inland port worldwide. The city is also a coal-mining and iron & steel-manufacturing hub. Other manufactured products are chemicals, paint, beer, foodstuffs and ships.
Being the host to the largest inland port, 80% of trains travelling from China have in the recent times made Duisburg their first European stop. The Chinese trains arrive at the port carrying clothes, toys and high-technology electronics and leave carrying German vehicles, whisky from Scotland, wine from France and textiles from Milan.
Duisburg’s unemployment rate stood at 12% in 2018, which is higher than the national average of 4.9%. However, there is hope that this rate will go lower due to the growing Chinese influence in the city.
Popular occupations in the area include SAP Consultant, Mechanical Engineer and Industrial Engineer. The most popular industries in this city are Information Technology, Logistics and Banking. Syncreon, Stryker, Targobank, University of Duisburg-Essen, Siemens, DPD, Rhenus and Lidl are some of the major companies in this city.
Moving to Duisburg to work is not a bad idea because the average salary of a person working here is €46,316. In terms of a university degree, Bachelor of Science degree holders earn an average salary of €36,960.
Is Duisburg a good place to buy a House?
Compared to Berlin, Hamburg and Munich, Duisburg has lower property prices. The real-estate costs are low in this city majorly because of the decline in population. In 1975, there were 594,000 inhabitants, but in 2015 there were 494,000 inhabitants.
The monthly rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in the city centre is €396.67 while an apartment of the same size in the outskirts is €326.67 per calendar month. A 3-bedroomed apartments in the city centre costs €620 monthly and a similar apartment in the outskirts costs €780 per calendar month.
The price per square metre for an apartment for sale in the city centre is €2,500 and €2,000 outside the city centre. For those who choose to take a mortgage, the yearly mortgage interest rate for 20 years is 1.86% in this city.
Is Duisburg a good place to Retire?
Moving to Germany soon? Retiring in Duisburg has many perks with good healthcare and good standard of living. There are plenty of outdoor leisure activities and state-of-the-art amenities. Moreover, if Duisburg is a bit too boring Dusseldorf is just a few minutes away by train.
Retiring in Duisburg is also worth considering because there are numerous retirement homes in the area designated for seniors. Some good examples are Johanniter Krankerhaus, Seniorenheim Arbeiterwohlfahrt Kreisverband Duisburg, AWO Seniorendienste Niederrhein gGmbH, AWOcura gGmbH, AWOcura-Ernst-Ermert-Senirenzentrum, Alten-und Pflegeheim Welker-Stiftung and HEWAG Senirorenstift.
Is Duisburg a good place to Visit?
Duisburg is relatively admired for its amazing parks, lakes and leisure opportunities. Its museums, art galleries and the popular König Brewery are well-known throughout the country.
The Wilhelm Lehmbruck Museum houses sculptures from the twentieth century and it was named after the famous sculptor Lehmbruck. This sculptor’s creations form the main spotlight of this museum, but there also other art pieces created by internationally renowned artists.
Museum Küppersmühle is also another museum that is worth visiting. It is a modern art museum that exhibits precious artwork by talented German artists such as Abraham David Christian, Candida Höfer, Georg Baselitz, and Sigmar Polke. Furthermore, the museum also hosts 4 temporary exhibitions annually. The building itself is a sight to see as it is 7-storeys tall and has 42m-high steel grain silos.
The city has many historical churches that are worth visiting such as the Hamborn Abbey Church, Salvatorkirche, Liebfrauenkirche and Minoritenkirche.
Duisburg Zoo is a popular attraction in the area. It has an open enclosure, a large monkey house, a dolphin aquarium and a whale aquarium. Visitors are allowed to feed the animals with the fodder provided by the zoo. The zoo also has bistros and cafes. This is a great place for children to have fun and play.
Lifesaver-Brunnen (Lifesaver-Well) is the city’s symbol and it is located at the centre of the city. It features a 23ft-high, coloured sculpture that rotates on a metal foundation, surrounded by some sparkling water.
Another attraction is Tiger & Turtle, which is a special interactive art structure consisting of winding, twisting stairs made from galvanised steel. This art form is positioned on an artificial hill that was constructed using waste from a previous zinc-smelting factory and other abandoned factories. Tiger & Turtle provides good exercise and lovely views of the city’s landscape.
Landschaftpark Duisburg Nord is a former steelworks facility that was converted into an amazing park. Rather than dismantling the blast furnaces, sewage canals, bunkers, conveyor bridges and other factory infrastructure, Peter Latz chose to repurpose them into walking paths, beautiful gardens, climbing walls and a viewing tower. This park is on Ruhr’s Industrial Heritage trail and it is often ranked among the best city parks worldwide.
Visitors wishing to take a break from the city’s industrial landscape can visit Sechs-Seen-Platte. It is made up of a series of a total of 6 interconnected beautiful lakes. In the past, this area used to be a gravel pit, but now it is the ideal place for a relaxing stroll, playing golf or having a nice meal in one of the area’s restaurants.
Other popular attractions are the Inner Harbour, Museum der Deutschen Binnenschifffahrt, Slavatorkirche and Kultur-und Stadthistorisches Museum.
Visitors who plan on staying in the city for several days are well taken care of as the city has plenty of accommodation places ranging from luxury hotels to budget hotels. They can be found in the city centre and in the outskirts.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the cost of living in Duisburg, Germany?
Overall, the cost of living in Duisburg is 2% lower than the national average. Transportation and housing are the most affordable. The monthly cost of basic utilities (water, electricity, heating/cooling and garbage removal) for an 85m2 apartment in Duisburg is €188.89.
An expat moving to Germany should note that they are legally required to obtain health insurance, work-related insurance, and auto insurance. There are also plenty of banks and credit unions where people can borrow credit.
Is Duisburg a good place to invest in property?Though Duisburg is not as attractive as many other German cities, investing in property here may work out well because the rental and property prices continue to rise every year.
Is Duisburg a good place to raise a family?
Duisburg offers a good quality of life, affordable cost of living, good schools, and reliable transport networks. Being a historical city, there are plenty of exciting attractions that children can visit to learn and have fun. There are plenty of nice areas to live, but like most cities, there are some areas that are relatively unsafe.
About the author: Marta Kovachek is the author of this article. She graduated from the University of Chicago with a master’s degree in Economics. Marta enjoys writing about the current economic situation and loves helping our readers to find their next "destination". From places to live to complex social and economic topics, we always enjoy Marta's work. Please contact us in case of any questions.