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What Is the Address Format of Germany?

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Did you know that Germans don't typically use apartment numbers in addresses?

Instead, they tend to use recipient names to identify to whom a letter or a package is for. Let's take a look at the proper German address format below.

What Is the Address Format of Germany?
Featured article photo: Berlin in Germany, by Florian Wehde (Unsplash License)

The Address Format of Germany 🇩🇪

[Recipient Name]
[Street Name][Building No.]
[Postal Code][City or Town]

The address format in Germany is essentially a reverse of what you would find in the United States and Canada. Building numbers come after the street names, and postal codes are written before the city or town.

Here is an example of the German address format above using a dummy address: 

Alex Müller
Himmelstraße 123
98760 Dresden

What is -straße? How do you pronounce it?

Many German addresses end with -straße, which means "street" in English. ß is not an uppercase [b], it is a letter on its own, and it is pronounced like an [s]. Here's how the word is pronounced:

German postal codes

Postal codes in Germany are known as Postleitzahl, or PLZ for short. It takes the form of a 5-digit number. In a German address, it is written before the name of the city or town.

Apartment numbers are rarely used in Germany

As mentioned above, Germans don't typically use apartment numbers in addresses. Mailboxes in German apartments are labelled with the recipient's name, so make sure you use the correct recipient name when sending out a letter or a package.

However, in student dormitory or office buildings where specific unit or room numbers are sometimes used, you can add Zimmer [Room No] above the street name. Here is an example: 

Jan Schmidt
Zimmer 45
Wunderstraße 123
98760 Frankfurt

Are there any street endings aside from -straße in Germany?

Yes. Aside from -straße, which means "Street", here are a few other common street endings you may come across in Germany. These aren't all of them, but they're amongst the most common. Note that the examples given are mostly made-up street names (but they might actually exist somewhere in Germany...)

  • Weg
    This suffix is used for paths or trails. For example, Waldblickweg (Forest View Path).

  • Platz
    This suffix is used for squares or plazas. For example, Rathausplatz (Town Hall Square).

  • Gasse
    This suffix is used for narrow lanes or alleys. For example, Blumengasse (Flower Alley).

  • Allee
    This suffix is used for boulevards or tree-lined avenues. For example, Lindenallee (Linden Avenue).

  • Ring
    This suffix is used for circular or ring-shaped roads. For example, Bismarckring (Bismarck Ring).