Ali has been working at Scout24 since 2020. In the interview with us he talked about his challenges of moving to another country, what he likes about Berlin and the things he misses from home.
Hi Ali, where are you originally from and what is your job at Scout24?
Ali: I’m originally from Pakistan and currently work as the Chief of Staff for the Scout24 Group.
What has been the biggest challenge moving to and working in a new country such as Germany?
Ali: I think the biggest challenge definitely has to do with the language. In general, Berlin’s very easy for non-German speakers but in several situations you struggle without knowledge of German. For example, the first time I visited the “Bürgeramt” (civil service office) to register myself, I was very surprised to see that they have signs throughout the office stating that they only speak with you in German and if you don’t speak German then it would be best to bring someone with you who does. For someone who is new in the country and still trying to navigate their way through all the necessary bureaucratic steps, this can be very overwhelming. Also, having a controller yell at you in German for buying the wrong ticket in the tram within your first week in the country isn’t much fun either!
What are your advices or recommendations for people who are interested In moving to Germany?
Ali: Learn the language! It will make your life so much simpler and would allow you to easily understand and integrate into the social fabric. Also, stock up on winter clothing — it’s cold and grey for most part of the year.
Name three things that you love about Berlin.
Ali: Ack! That’s really tough since it’s a pretty long list but if I really have to pick just three then I’d say:
- Freedom & tolerance — Berlin prides itself on the fact that it’s for everyone and it really is! I love how there’s something for everyone in this city and it lets you be whoever you want to be.
- The summer — never have I ever seen a city transform as much as Berlin does when summer comes around. It truly comes to life and the entire city buzzes for a few months — that said, summer is always too short here!
- Food — Berlin has a fantastic food scene and the diversity of cuisines is just mind-boggling. One of the hardest things is deciding what to order-in through a delivery app — you’re just so spoilt for all the choices!
Do you miss anything here that you had in your home country?
Ali: Yes! Mangoes — we have the best mangoes in Pakistan and while you do get some here in Germany, it’s really difficult to find them.
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