5 new German laws in 2017
As we get ready to usher in 2017, it’s good to know about new laws in Germany that will take effect in the new year. Some changes won’t be too noticeable, while others may have a slight impact on your wallet. Here’s a rundown of new German regulations:
Cellphone roaming charges. Tired of those pesky roaming fees and charges on your cell bill? As of June 15, 2017, the European Union (EU) will be dropping all of its roaming charges for data, texts and calls.
A new holiday … sort of. In honor of the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his 95 theses to the door at Schloss Wittemberg, Germany has introduced a new federal holiday — for 2017 only. Reformation Day will be observed Oct. 31.
Driving gets a little pricier. For those wanting to get a German driver’s license, the written test and driving test fees will increase slightly in 2017.
New rules for cyclists. Bicycles, both traditional and electronic-assisted (E-bikes), have a few new rules in 2017. E-bikes with speeds up to 25 kilometer per hour will be allowed to use bike trails designated with an “E-Bikes erlaubt” sign.
All cyclists will be required to observe traffic lights rather than pedestrian signals. Designated bike paths with their own signals are exempt from this regulation. Also, parents riding alongside their children will able to utilize the sidewalk, rather than the street.
Electricity rates go up. To help support renewable energy, the Erneuerbare-Energien-Gesetz (EEG) fee will increase from 6.35 euro cents per kilowatt-hour to 6.88 euro cents.