It is Sunday morning, and you have just realised that you need tomatoes for tonight’s dinner party or that your daughter needs a birthday present for a party later in the day. Sunday shopping in Berlin seems improbable, given the laws in Germany. Luckily, buying what you need or desire on Sunday is tricky but not impossible. Below you will find Archer Relocation’s suggestions for shopping in Berlin on normal and Advent Sundays.
Why is it so hard to do your Sunday shopping in Berlin?
By German Law, retailers in Berlin are only allowed to open their businesses on ten Sundays per year during what is called ‘Verkaufsoffene Sonntage’. The Senate determines eight of these dates, and the district decides on the two other Sundays. The hours that stores are allowed to open on these Sundays are 13:00 to 20:00, but you will find that opening times vary according to retail outlet.
The selected Sunday shopping days in Berlin are only chosen every half-year, depending on what other holidays or special events, like Green Week or Berlinale, are on in the city. Year to year the designated Open Sundays will likely not be the same. The published dates for 2019 should be out in January 2019, and your best source for these dates is berlin.de.
Remaining 2018 Open Sundays Berlin
While we all promise ourselves year after year that we will complete our Christmas shopping well before the 25th, last-minute chaos always tends to ensue. Berlin Open Sundays give us procrastinators two Sundays for shopping when the stores would typically be closed. The Christmas Open Sundays for 2018 are December 9th and December 23rd. Since these are Senate-designated Open Sundays, there is a great likelihood that you will find all major malls, stores and Christmas markets open on these dates. As an example, here are the opening times for the Berlin Open Sundays at four large retail sites.
Mall of Berlin (1:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.)
Alexa (1:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m.)
KaDeWe (1:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.)
Karstadt (1:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.)
What to do on other Sundays if you are in need of something?
The bottom line is that you will have no trouble completing your Sunday shopping in Berlin. It might not be at your shop around the corner and could be filled with others that forgot to purchase something on Saturday, but it is totally possible!