Living in Düsseldorf and working in Dortmund

Recommendations, experiences, etc

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am working now in Dortmund for the past 5 months. Moved in thr from Stuttgart and felt the immediate void of a cosmopolitan crowd. Dortmund gets a little too monotonous for me during weekends and dearth of English speakers here can be heavily felt. Had a chance to visit Dusseldorf and it immediately made me feel better...part of the reason might be that am a big city guy.. So when i was pondering over the idea of living in Dusseldorf and working in Dortmund i used to get mixed reactions from my collegues. A few infact went to the extent of calling it a crazy experiment. I would love to know what others feel about it? Not that i dont know how long it takes to commute between the two cities.. the only thing that bothers me is if it would really worth it..coz at the end of the day i dont want to regret either moving into Dü or staying in Dortmund! Thanks

I live in Dortmund and work in Düsseldorf. Another american I know does the same, we work at the same place

To be honest, you can do it. The trains will drive you insane though because of their constant lateness and or standard crap. I really love to live in Dortmund and thats why I live here, living in Düsseldorf would irritate me I believe.

A piece of advice...if you do this, live in Düsseldorf, and work in Dortmund, then upgrade your train ticket to First Class. I'm serious. Its like 40 euros extra to pay for first class every month, but its really worth it. You cannot hack riding in the S1 2nd class 5 days a week...after three months you will be ready to bash the person's head beside you into the window (I'm a female and i say this.)

You may be lucky and be able to ride the regionals back and forth everyday, which is not really an option for takes me just as long with a regional and an ubahn as it does to just take the sbahn to my stop.

You can do just depends on how bad you want to live in Düsseldorf... could you not maybe settle for Essen? Essen is also a pretty big city with a nice innenstadt but half the distance from dortmund as düsseldorf. I would move closer to work if I did not love Dortmund so much.

Just some advice for you to think about.

We can meet up in Dortmund sometime if you like. Just like to hang out or whatever if you want to talk to an english speaker...sometimes I also miss it.
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Google said the drive time from my home on the northern side of Ddorf to just east of Dortmund was a hour, and it proved true today just after noon in very light traffic.

But what's the typical commute in the morning and evening rush (be there by 9 a.m. leave at 5 p.m.)? Does anyone commute in this area daily?

If 2 hours a day wouldn't be bad enough. But it can easily turn to 3-4 hours a day commuting. 2 hours will be the exception. My brother did it. A friend experienced Köln-Dortmund and Ratingen-Dortmund. It really makes little sense, maybe for a limited ammount of time.
Thanks for the info!
I know someone who commutes Düsseldorf to Dortmund every day but they use the S-Bahn, so while it takes a while, it's time they can use for reading, sleeping or whatever. And they live and work close enough to the train stations so that that part of the journey doesn't add much time.
I'm interested in a similar commute, though not for quite a few months yet. What is commuting like if you start early and finish late? ie. Leave Duesseldorf at 0600, depart work in Dortmund or Bochum at 1900. Would the roads be relatively free of traffic? Also, when I was last in NRW, I remember it seeming like most of the Autobahns had 120 speed limits throughout the area.

Cheers in advance
6:00... you should be good. I have a colleague that commutes from Essen to Duss and he leaves a little before 6 to avoid traffic. heading out should be better than heading in. As for the 120 speed limit.. well, most metro areas will have 120 speed limits. when you get far enough away, it will be the normal autobahn free for all. As for coming home.. no idea. Duss has awful traffic. Depends on where you are living. If your were out a bit (like 10 minutes out), like Erkrath... might be much quicker.

EDIT: In thinking about it some more.. the commute by train is 55 minutes. Honestly, the extra commute time "in town" is worth it. Rush hour driving can be very stressful and unpredictable. I am not sure how much time you would save by driving.
thanks JSD. i like driving in general - what makes NRW so stressful to drive in? I guess Ive just gotta get a job with a nice car included. i really want to live in duesseldorf but i dont mind othrr options close by.
what makes NRW so stressful to drive in?
Traffic jams during the rush hours, and, in some cities, the difficulty of finding (free-of-charge) parking space. But six in the morning is probably early enough to avoid the traffic jams.

To get a realistic idea what traffic in NRW is like, have a look at this website published by the Ministry of Building and Transportation. It has an English-language option and also a feature called "long-term prognosis" where you can choose a day and time of travel and see what traffic is usually like:
Rush hour is pretty awful much of the time. But if you are doing early commute, especially going in the opposite direction, I think you should be OK. Not sure if petrol is included in your car scheme, but if it isn't, do take that into account as well. It's definitely doable, though. And Duss is a lovely place to live!
Nennette - thanks, that link is really useful.

JSD - I've heard it is great - how much for a house / terrace / semidetached for a family of 3 - small garden, 2 bathrooms, car parking space, sunny, warm, close to parks, a few minutes walk from the stadtbahn?

EDIT: in Duesseldorf, that is. I'd consider elsewhere, but am interested in Duesseldorf for a start.
Take the train! The A 40 is the most congested motorway in all of Germany and the A 43 is also no picnic. After one month you will break down and buy a BahnCard 100 and take the ICE every day.. Or you can think about living in Bochum or Dortmund, contrary to what many people thing, there are some nice and very affordable places to live there. Only reason to do the commute is if you need to be close to one of the international schools.

Good luck

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Hi all-
My husband's job will have him working in Dortmund for the next year. We have failed to find an English speaking school in Essen or Bochum that will accept all 3 of our children (aged 15, 9 and 6), so have resigned ourselves to a long commute for DH.

As we will only be in Germany for a year, which city would you recommend, and which area of the city would be best for a family of our nature(we need a 3 bedroom flat/house, which doesn't seem easy to find)? Our family will have a car assigned to us, but we prefer public transit for most things. The company is helping to cover housing costs, so expense is somewhat more flexible than if we were paying for housing all on our own. We really enjoy nature (hiking/running/biking) but would also enjoy easy access to city life (museums/cultural events/festivals). So we're very flexible, but I think we would most enjoy being close to other English speaking expats, in a family friendly area with plenty of green space but VERY close to public transit.

Any advice is much appreciated.
Thank you!
It's only a year, but from personal experience, it takes 3 hours a day to commute from Düsseldorf to Dortmund, depending on your exact location within those cities and choice car/public transit. But better don't count on ideal circumstances (2 x 45 minutes).

Depending on where you're from and what you expect you will not find any untouched nature in the NRW region. But the outskirts of Düsseldorf, maybe Ratingen would come to my mind. Or maybe Erkrath, Hochdahl. Some nature there (the Neanderthal, too), but also the Autobahn A3 and A46 (to Dortmund) (You may check htos places on google maps to get an idea)
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