Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the best way to contact the Language School team?

If you can’t find an answer to your question here, the best way to reach us is by email.

For public courses and one-to-one inquiries, get in touch at languages@expath.com.
For B2B/company courses, drop us a line at courses@expath.com.

If you’d prefer a phone call, please provide your number, let us know when’s a good time to talk and we’ll call you.

Will classes take place over the holidays?

There are no classes on Berlin public holidays. We make sure to factor this into the course schedule, so you won't miss a thing.

There will also be a short winter break with no classes between December 26th, 2022, and January 1st, 2023.

How do I know which course level to book?

If you're an absolute beginner, you should opt for level A1.1. This half-level is aimed at students with little to no prior experience with German.

If you already have some German under your belt, we recommend taking our free online placement test. Here, by answering a few multiple-choice questions, we can generate a recommendation for you. Please note: This test is not a requirement to join any given course, but rather a tool to help you make the right choice of course for your level.

Please remember that the recommended level generated from your test results is the course level you should book, rather than what level you already have. So, if the test says A2.2, you should book an A2.2 course

If it helps you to decide, you can read an outline of what each level really means by visiting our online Knowledge Base and typing the level in question (e.g. A1.2) into the search bar.

What course structures are available to me?

As you may already have seen on our website, we offer public courses online (using Zoom) and in-person (at our schools in Mitte & Neukölln in Berlin).

These courses take place on three regular schedules:

  1. Morning-Intensive (4 days per week) — Monday-Thursday, 10:00-11:30 am
  2. Early-Evening (twice per week) — Monday/Wednesday OR Tuesday/Thursday, 5:0 -6:30 pm
  3. Evening (twice per week) — Monday/Wednesday OR Tuesday/Thursday, 6:30-8:00/8:45 pm

We also offer special courses from time to time, e.g. on weekends. Subscribe to our newsletter or follow us on social media to be the first to know when these are happening!

Why is the A1.1 course a different price from the other courses?

Our prices are calculated based on the number of teaching units in a given course. Because the A1.1 course contains fewer units than levels A1.2 and above, it has a lower price.

Does Expath provide certification or testing?

Our school does not offer official certificates or the tests required to obtain official level accreditation.

Our courses are geared more toward actually living in German than simply passing an exam. However — as our courses follow the curriculum set out by the CEFR — hardworking students should find themselves sufficiently prepared to then take the test at another school or center afterward. There are several schools and centers that offer testing as a separate product, so you could certainly learn with us and then test with them.

Please note that we are also very happy to provide a Teilnahmebestätigung (Proof of Attendance) upon request.

Can I receive proof of participation or a letter of attendance?

We are very happy to provide a Teilnahmebestätigung (Proof of Attendance) upon request to students who attend at least 75% of sessions in a language course.

In our experience, this is usually sufficient for most employers or individuals who wish to see proof of investment in German. Please note that such a document is not generally acceptable for visa purposes.

Are Expath courses compatible with Bildungsurlaub (Educational Holiday) requirements?

Unfortunately, our courses don't meet the strict criteria for an official Bildungsurlaub as only courses with 20+ hours of class per week qualify for this.

If it's helpful, however, we would be more than happy to provide both a Letter of Intent and a Letter of Attendance for your employer (the latter, as long as you attend at least 75% of classes in a course).

Are Expath courses compatible with the requirements for the Language Visa?

Unfortunately, our language courses alone do not fulfill most visa requirements.

If you definitely need a course for visa purposes, we recommend taking a look at these resources:

You could also do a quick online search for “german language visa berlin school” for a good selection of schools offering exactly what you need.​

If you are looking for private coaching to help you with the visa process, please reach out to our Global Mobility Department at customersuccess@expath.com.

Does Expath offer courses for children and teenagers?

We don't currently offer German courses suitable for children.

Can Expath help me find accommodation while I’m studying?

We don't provide accommodation ourselves, but for temporary accommodation in Berlin, we recommend UniPlaces.com. They have quite a lot of apartments and even offer extra search and rental support via WhatsApp. Remember to use the code EXPATH20 to receive 20% off your booking with them.

Is it possible to arrange a trial session?

We do not offer trial sessions at our school. We do, however, offer a 48-hour cancellation policy.

If you find that — for any reason — the course is not the right fit for you, just let us know within 48 hours of the first session of the course, and we can either issue a 100% refund of the course fee, or (space permitting) transfer your booking to a different course of your choice.

If it's helpful, you can get more of an idea of the content of the course by taking a look at the course book we use (Book title and link) — or reading about what the course level means in our Knowledge base. Simply click here and enter the course level (e.g. A2.1) into the search field.

You can also see what other students think of us by reading our Google reviews right here.

What is your cancellation policy?

Public Courses

We understand that sometimes things don’t work out. That’s why we offer a no-questions-asked refund or re-booking option in the following circumstances:

  • Had a change of heart or schedule since booking?
    You can cancel or transfer your registration free of charge right up until 24 hours before a course begins.
  • Started the course and find it’s not the right fit?
    Let us know within 48* hours of your first session and we’ll give you a complete 100% refund. Space permitting, we can also re-book you to a different course.
  • Switching from a higher-value to a lower-value course?
    We’ll refund any price difference if you decide to move from an in-person to an online course - or from a higher level to a lower level.

Private Courses

  • Receiving 1-to-1 / private tutoring and need to cancel an individual session?
  • Simply let your teacher know by 2pm on the day before your scheduled class that you can't make it and you won't be charged for that session.

Refunds are not possible in the following circumstances:

  • “partial refunds” for missed sessions, e.g. joining a course that’s already started
  • after the 48-hour notice period has elapsed. (24 hours in the case of our weekend courses)

Our cancellation policy applies both to refunds and to re-booking/course transfers. It’s designed to help us keep the lights on and pay our teachers fair salaries.

Which payment methods does Expath accept?

As of June 1st, 2022 we can only accept payments made by credit or debit card.

As a cashless business, we are unable to accept payments in cash and we don't accept payments by bank transfer either.

I’ve registered online. Is the course confirmed?

We keep our course sizes small to make sure they're as interactive as possible. On the flip side though, we also need a minimum number of registrations per course to cover our own costs.

Unfortunately, we can't 100% guarantee a course will run as scheduled until we have reached the minimum requirement.

It is unusual for a course not to go ahead and typically our courses start to fill up the week before their start date. In the event that we don't reach our required minimum number of students, a course may be postponed by one or two weeks to give us more time to get there. All students who have signed up will be informed by email of any changes to the schedule the week before the course start date at the latest.

In the event that the new dates don’t work for you, we can transfer your booking at no cost until 48 hours after the course start date. Alternatively, you're entitled to a full refund of the course fee — no questions asked — until 48 hours after the course start date.

Who will be my teacher?

We don't assign the teacher until we have enough students signed up for the course, so the teachers are usually confirmed closer to the start date.

The course I’m interested in is full. Can you squeeze me in?

We highly recommend booking your desired course as soon as possible, ideally right when you book (or start) the previous one. Once we have reached the maximum number of participants for a course, we cannot allow any further registrations (however nicely you ask!).

The upper limit on our course numbers is to ensure our classes are as interactive as possible. To keep the learning environment optimal for the whole class group, we don't make exceptions.

If the course you’re interested in is full, you can join the waitlist. If a space frees up, you will be automatically notified right away, with a spot being held open for you for 24 hours. After this 24-hour window, the space will be offered to the next person on the waitlist.

Where do I find the Zoom link to access my class?

We typically send the Zoom access information the day before or on the afternoon of the course beginning. This way, we can ensure that any students who sign up at the last minute don't get overlooked.

If you'd like to prepare a bit in the meantime, we recommend downloading the Zoom desktop app. You don't need to create a Zoom account for the course - when we send you the access information you'll be able to join just by clicking the link and entering the password. But we find that the free-to-download Zoom desktop app gives a better connection quality and an altogether smoother experience than the browser version.

If you can't find the link on the day, please check your Junk / Spam folder, as sometimes our emails get lost along the way. If you find it there, be sure to Whitelist us as a sender or mark us as Not Spam, so you don't miss any important information about your course.

What do I do if I’m having trouble connecting to my online course?

If you have any trouble accessing the Zoom room on the day, please contact your teacher directly at their personal email address (shared in the email with the Zoom access information). Emails sent to our office team are only monitored during regular office hours.

My employer has offered to reimburse the cost of my course. Can Expath provide me with a tax invoice for this purpose?

We're certainly very happy to prepare an invoice for you to forward to your employer!

Please note that - unless we have a standing B2B arrangement with a company - we can't issue an invoice in advance of payment.

In a nutshell, the process is 1. Sign-up > 2. Request > 3. Invoice

  1. Sign-up: Book and pay for your class upfront via our online booking portal. Please ensure you enter your company’s address (rather than your personal one) in the Bill To field.

  2. Request: Let the Language School team know you’d like a tax invoice for your employer. In the case that you have entered your own address at the time of booking, please provide the details you'd like to appear on the invoice (e.g. Company name and address).

  3. Invoice: We’ll prepare your invoice and send it to you directly (usually within 7 working days of the request). You can then share the invoice with your employer so that they can reimburse you for your course.

I entered the wrong billing address when registering for my course. Can this be updated?

Absolutely. Just let us know by email (languages@expath.com) which details you’d like to change this to and we’ll update this for you right away.

I’m going to miss one or more sessions in my course. Are sessions recorded? Can I schedule a make-up session?

We generally always suggest that students sign up only for courses they know they can attend in their entirety - as much for your own progress as anything else! But of course, we understand that life happens and you might have to miss the odd class here and there.

If you can’t make it to a session, we’d encourage you to catch up on what you missed on your own. If you are already in touch with your classmates, you can also ask them to share their notes with you.

For organizational reasons, it is not possible to combine in-person and online courses, and, for privacy reasons, we do not record our sessions. We also do not grant “partial refunds” for missed sessions.

I’d like to socialize with other German learners. Does Expath organize any social events?

We certainly do! Our Stammtisch takes place on the 2nd Friday of the month and is a great opportunity to get to know your coursemates, meet new people, and practice your German in a relaxed setting. Keep an eye on your inbox for details about upcoming events.

I am a refugee / displaced person. Is it possible to study with Expath for free?

We are very happy to help people in difficult situations learn German for free. Please email languages@expath.com for full details on how you can study with us at no cost.

Depending on your circumstances, you might be required to take a course organized by the government. This, unfortunately, is not something we can provide. Please check carefully whether this would apply to you.