Resources for Germans moving to the San Francisco Bay Area

I get asked a lot from people who think about moving here. I tell them there is quite a large and active German community in the San Francisco Bay Area. My guess is that whatever question you have, someone must have already figured it out. So here is a list of resources I usually mention:

  • San Francisco Stammtisch — They meet once a month and have about 1,000 people on their mailing list. Check the archives and find answers to the most common questions for newbies (moving, job search, health insurance, driver’s licence, bank account etc.)
  • German American Business Association of California (GABA) — GABA is a member-driven non-profit organization that fosters transatlantic knowledge-sharing and networking among German-American and Californian business and tech communities. They do one or two networking events every month, which address critical business, technical and leadership issues, with specific industry programs focused on life science, semiconductors, venture capital, and legal corporate governance, among others.
  • GABA-Stammtisch — This discussion group is over 7 year old and has 700+ members. It deals with all sorts of business issues that are relevant to the German community in Silicon Valley. Members discuss issues ranging from visa, employement to where one can get real German bread in Silicon Valley.
  • Craigslist — Local listings for everything from jobs, cars and apartments to language courses, restaurants and nannies.
  • Software Development Forum (SDForum) — If you’re in IT, SDForum is a great place to get involved. Their programs cover a broad range of topics and are usually of superb quality.
  • More job search tools: LinkedIn, Simply Hired, Craigslist, KITlist, KITlist Tech, Yahoo! Hotjobs, Dice

From my personal experience, the German expatriates who live here have generally been very helpful, willing to share their information and their professional networks.

3 Responses to “Resources for Germans moving to the San Francisco Bay Area”

  1. hilke thor straten Says:

    hallo to san name is hilke thor straten,i am a german artist and have lived for a little bit in san francisco.i have traveled around the world and painted in all the countries i have been so far. i make wonderworlds out of mirrormosaics,lightskulptures, pappermache and have learnd originally socialwork. i inspire children and am a very colorful person with a lot to give. i exhibite right now in berlin and as soon i have done my finisage i would love to come back and think san fran is the best citty to get chances and to life my full potential. the only thing is of curse the very expancive rent, also since silicon valley became so big…..what do you do for the artscene…. is there any option , thatanyone outthere sponsers… the talents we have….someone , who overs a room or little studioplace for free…¿¿¿
    that would be so beautyful i would bring a lot of light andcolors… maybe you could find out if there is a chance.or a over for a mosaicbathroom, kitchen or something like that i would be super thankfull want to have a chance in san fran like you….alsoviele herzliche grüße hilke

  2. hilke thor straten Says:


  3. Tim Says:

    Don’t know if I can help much. My best guess is to contact the San Francisco Stammtisch newslist mentioned above and tell them precisely what you are looking for (and when) and what it is you have to offer.

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