Write a Letter to Christkind in Germany

If you believe in the Christkind, then send your letter to Himmelpforten, a small town west of Hamburg in the district of Stade in Lower Saxony.

You may start  your letter with ‘Dear Christkind’ or ‘Dear Santa’ (much less common). Here in Germany (mostly the central and southern part) as well as Austria, Czech Republic, Liechtenstein, Hungary, Slovakia and Switzerland, children get their presents from the Christkind on Christmas Eve. The word Christkind translates to Christ Child. If you write from northern Germany, you might address your letter to the Weihnachtsmann (Santa).
 

Frohe Weihnachten!

The post office in Himmelpforten, which translates to Heaven’s Gates, will process your wish list. I don’t know if you get anything from your list, this depends on whether you’ve been good or bad. 🙂
The post office lets you address your letter to either one of them, both the Christkind and the Weihnachtsmann (Santa).
An das Christkind
21709 Himmelpforten
But the address in itself, says: To the Christkind
No worries, if you don’t know German. Most Germans, placed in a professional setting, can handle letters written in English too.
In German, children write a Wunschzettel (wish list) to the Christkind (or Weihnachtsmann), which is a much more direct statement than just ‘writing a letter’ to Santa.

Palindromes

A palindrome is a word, phrase, verse, or sentence that reads the same backward or forward.

Here is a list of words:

3 letters : dad, did, ewe

4 letters: Anna, deed, kook, noon, Otto, peep, sees,

5 letters: civic, kayak, level, put up, radar, refer, rotor, sagas, sexes, shahs, solos, stats, tenet;

6 letters: Hannah, redder

7 letters: deified, race car, repaper, reviver, rotator

 

German Tax Information for Expats

This information was sent to us by the administration of Frankfurt International School and I found it very useful for expats living and working in Germany.

It contains a general explanation of the current tax situation. I am sure, not only newcomers to the German tax system will find this useful, but also current non-German employees such as my husband who frequently inquire about German tax terms and whether we have to act on it.

Edited e-mail version:

Within the next days and weeks, every German tax office (Finanzamt) will send letters to all registered employees in Germany.

The letter’s headline will read:

Information über die erstmals elektronisch gespeicherten Daten für den Lohnsteuerabzug (Elektronische Lohnsteuerabzugsmerkmale) – see explanation below.

This October, you will not receive a 2012 tax card from your town hall as your tax data 2012 is to be transferred electronically to the employer. Therefore, the Finanzamt is sending out this letter to have you double-check the information you have given previously. This letter is just for your information, and if the listed information is correct, it does not need to be handed to the employer, nor sent back to the Finanzamt.

Please check if your name and address are stated correctly.

Further please check the table with the headline Lohnsteuerabzugsmerkmale:

Steuerklasse (tax classification) should show one of the following:

“I” for singles or divorcees

“II” for singles with child/ren, raising child/ren without partner

“III” for married couples in which one earns considerably more than the spouse OR is the only one working

“IV” for married couples in which both are employed

“V” for married couples  in which one earns considerably less than the spouse

Kirchensteuermerkmal (church tax code) is only marked, if you have declared your membership to one of the official churches in Germany. If you have registered with a religious group, it will appear as follows:

“rk” catholic confession

“ev” protestant confession

“rk/ev” or “ev/rk” if you and your spouse have different confessions

Zahl der Kinderfreibeträge would show up if you have a child;

For example, 2,0 stands for 2 registered children.

If yours is marked with 0,5, this means that 0,5 child is counted towards your tax credit. The other half, for example, could be registered with a divorced partner.

Pauschbeträge für behinderte Menschen / Hinterbliebene  would only appear if you have applied for a tax credit due to a handicap/disability.

Report any changes/incorrect information to the Finanzamt. If there aren’t any, then just file it with your paperwork.

This does not apply to military spouses or consulate members.