How do you get to Hamburg? Is there a hub airport nearby, good road and rail connections?
Hamburg is well-connected with the world. You can reach it easily by plane via Hamburg Airport Helmut Schmidt (named after the former German chancellor) or by train via the Central Station, which has good public transport connections. Of course, you can also reach Hamburg by car via Autobahn (motorway), but bear in mind that it might be busy during peak hours.
What’s the public transport and taxi service like within the city? Are there any innovative ways of getting around?
In Hamburg, it is very easy to get around by public transport. There are several train and bus lines, but you can also rent bikes for free and use ferries in the harbour of Hamburg. If you don’t like to take a taxi but want to drive yourself, you can do so with car-sharing services like car2go, DriveNow and more.
Do you have any suggestions for business hotels in Hamburg for a couple of nights?
The Motel One Group offers a chain of affordable hotels for business travellers. These are design hotels with good breakfast options and are well located all over the city. The Ibis Hotel Group also offers good quality accommodation. If you would like be close to the harbour, you can look for accommodation in St Pauli, next to the legendary Reeperbahn.
Do you have any suggestions for shared working or a coffee shop to catch up with some paperwork while travelling in Hamburg?
There are a lot of cafés in the hip Schanzen quarter, or in Ottensen, close to the campus of the University of Applied Sciences Europe. If you prefer shared working, check out Hamburg’s options, as listed on CoworkingGuide.de
What are some of the industries and organisations associated with Hamburg?
The main industry that’s associated with Hamburg is the media business. Hamburg, as the German capital of media, is home to many publishing companies and broadcast stations like Gruner + Jahr, Der Spiegel, Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR), Erstes Deutsches Fernsehen (known as ‘Das Erste’, or simply ‘ARD’, the channel’s broadcaster) and many more.
But there are also businesses like Daimler, Airbus, Lufthansa, business consultancies, advertising and PR agencies, banking houses, software studios and shipping companies like Blohm+Voss located in Hamburg.
Are there any major business events or conferences taking place in Hamburg over the coming year?
There are a lot of fairs and conferences throughout the year on just about every topic you can imagine. In February 2019, for example, we were proud to host one the social media conference, Social Media Week, for the second time at the Hamburg campus of the University of Applied Sciences Europe.
Where would you recommend for a lunch meeting in Hamburg?
For lunch, there are a lot of options around the city. If you would like to have a view of the Alster – the lake in the heart of the city – visit the Alex alongside the inner part of the lake. You can also have lunch at Alster Cliff if you want to enjoy the maritime feeling.
Where would you recommend for a client dinner in Hamburg?
For a very exclusive dinner with clients, we recommend Restaurant Port, Hotel Hafen Hamburg, where you have a wonderful view of the harbour. For a casual evening with colleagues, just take a walk through the Schanzen quarter or Ottensen to find a bar or restaurant you like!
Are there any challenging aspects to Hamburg that business travellers should consider beforehand?
The infrastructure in Hamburg is generally very well developed, but during peak hours it can get crowded on the main streets and public transport lines. Be prepared to reserve a little more time before a meeting.
Most Germans normally speak at least a little English, so you will be able to navigate the city easily. If you are lucky, you also get the chance to hear people talking in Lower Saxon or Low German, a regional northern German language.
Can you tell us a bit about some of the unmissable attractions in Hamburg?
The Harbour of Hamburg is the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about sightseeing in the city. The best way to get to know it is not by the rather expensive tours, but with the ferries on Hamburg’s public transport system. At ‘Landungsbrücken’ you can get on one of the Line 62 ferries to ‘Finkenwerder’. On the way to your next destination you will have a stunning view of the harbour. Stop at the pier ‘Ovelgönne’ to take a stroll at the beach and admire the beautiful houses by the shore. If you want to take a wider look at the harbour, you can go to the ‘Altonaer Balkon’, which is not far from Ovelgönne.
The legendary Reeperbahn in St Pauli is also very well known, and you can explore the old sailors quarter on your own or with a guide.
One of the newest spots in the historical Speicherstadt district is the concert hall Elbphilharmonie. If you are lucky, maybe you can get a ticket for a concert! And don’t miss the chance to climb the bell tower of our biggest church, St Michaelis - the ‘Michel’. From there, you have a great view of the city.
Is there any local cuisine that’s worth a try?
In the north of Germany, we eat a lot of fish. So, please try dishes like Hamburger Pannfisch, Finkenwerder Scholle, Kieler Sprotten and Fischfrikadellen with Remoulade. If you are braver, try Labskaus, a tasty, traditional sailor’s dish.
During winter, the whole north eats Grünkohl (kale) with Pinkel or Bregenwurst, which is a good and solid dish for workers, fishermen and farmers. For dessert, we recommend Apfel-Streuselkuchen (a kind of apple crumble) with cream or Rote Grütze with vanilla sauce.
If you visit bars in the countryside where the locals come together, you will see that in the north people like to drink Lütt un Lütt and Herrengedeck - which are traditional German drinks made of beer and schnapps - in the evening.
Why do you love Hamburg?
Hamburg is a very diverse city with a great many things to do and see. However, there is always a place where you can relax, enjoy a little bit of silent nature and get away from the crowds.
Why would you recommend Hamburg as a place to do business?
Hamburg is a place with many social activities and you will always have the chance to meet new and interesting people. It is also a city with a wide range of businesses, from small and innovative startups to international corporations. If you are doing business in or with the media, Hamburg, as Germany’s media capital, will be the best choice.