This is probably the first thing you will want to do, when you arrive in Aachen. You need a German mobile-phone number to get in contact with landlords and other students. If you persist on using your old, national number, some people will just not reply you, because they consider it to be too expansive. Walk up the “Pontstraße” between “Templergraben” and “Ponttor”. There you will find stores from four major phone companies:

·         BASE - Pontstraße 104

·         Vodafone – Pontstraße 111

·         O2 – Pontstraße 176

·         Mobilcom-Debitel – Pontstraße 184

You can avoid a lot of trouble if you go for a prepaid SIM card – you cannot go wrong with that. If you do wish to sign a phone contract, make sure that you have fully understood how much you will have to pay on a monthly basis, which additional costs might arise, how long the minimum contract period is and when you have to quit the contract (often one month before leaving Germany). Always send your termination in written form. Do not sign a contract in German language which you have not fully read and understood – better take you buddy or someone else with you, when in doubt.

Some companies offer prepaid contracts, which allow you to book an additional internet or SMS flat rate. If there is no more credit on you SIM card, they will simply not book the flat rate for the next month. It is impossible to be in the red.

Recently, many supermarket chains such as Aldi, Kaufland, Rewe and Lidl have come up with their own prepaid and contract SIM-cards. Often, these offers beat the prices of the established mobile phone companies and have very flexible cancel policies as well!