Just look at that calendar.
Oh, man. You’re definitely a busy person.
How can you possibly find enough time to study German?
German TV shows and movies, as fun as they might be, require your undivided attention. Who has time for that?
These German podcasts are about to become you new best friends.
Featuring animated, knowledgeable and enthusiastic hosts, podcasts are surprisingly powerful learning tools and sources of entertainment.
Let’s applaud this return to the good-old fashioned days of radio. Equipped with nothing but their voices, the hosts of German language podcasts have found loads of fantastic ways to teach us language and present us with real-life situations, drama, mystery and cultural insights.
We’ll show you our favorite German podcasts below, including several no-cost options to learn German free.
Why You Have to Try German Podcasts
They’re perfectly suited to a busy lifestyle.
Podcasts are a wonderful on-the-go solution to language learning. You don’t have to sacrifice precious time to sit down in front of the television or stare down a textbook. You don’t have to cough up lots of cash. Just download your favorites, sync up your music player, hit the road and start learning German for free!
By taking the time to discover the best German language podcasts out there, you can give yourself freedom to study German without interrupting your daily routine. Play your Deutsch podcast at the gym, in the car, when you take the dog for a walk or while you’re feverishly typing away at work.
They teach you to listen well.
Without any accompanying visual cues or subtitles, you’ll be forced to pay attention to vocabulary and pronunciation more closely than ever—especially if the bulk of the podcast is in German. This allows you to get some incredible training for your ears.
Many podcasts do have transcripts that you can view online or download, so if you ever get stuck there’s a way out.
They stay fresh and current.
New German language podcast installments are frequently updated, meaning you’ll always have something new to learn!
Many podcast hosts have taken to incorporating topical themes in their lessons on German vocabulary and conversation skills. Listening to modern, casual conversations is a great opportunity for you to reinforce all those common phrases and slang words you’ve been learning!
Don’t forget, you can get all of these same benefits—plus lots of built-in learning tools—with FluentU.
FluentU takes authentic videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons.
With interactive captions that give instant definitions, pronunciations and additional usage examples, plus fun quizzes and multimedia flashcards, FluentU is a complete learning package—and you can check it out, at your convenience, with the free trial. (Hey, we know you’re busy.)
9 Awesome German Podcasts to Accelerate Your Language Learning
The title of this scintillating podcast series may be Slow German, but it’s truly anything but slow. Rather, it’s a fabulous way to accelerate learning for beginners and intermediate learners.
The episodes are hosted by Annik, a journalist who lives in the city of Munich in southern Germany. For the absolute beginner, there are podcasts that are conducted in English but provide a gentle introduction to key German words. They’re usually directed to help you navigate specific situations, such as ordering in a restaurant.
For the intermediate learner, Annik narrates totally in German but at a relatively slowed-down pace. You’ll get the full effect without struggling to keep up! This gives you the opportunity to hear every syllable clearly and follow what’s being said. A transcript in German of each podcast is provided.
If you’re sitting in a German cafe tucking into a black forest cake and coffee, you can always eavesdrop on what other people are saying. But if you’re at home and the nearest German-speaking person to you is hundreds of miles away, what can you do?
Hopefully you see where I’m going with this: give German LingQ a try!
Listen to Anke and Vera talk in German about all manner of common topics, such as spending a day at the zoo, shopping and eating out. There are podcasts specifically geared to both beginners and intermediates. A full transcript of each one is available once you’ve signed up for a free account.
Survival Phrases German
So, you’ve booked a vacation or business trip to Germany and are eagerly counting down the days until you jet off on your exciting new adventure. But you’re a little apprehensive, too—you don’t know a single word of German (apart from strudel).
As long as you’ve got strudel and Survival German Phrases with you, there’s no need to worry and no need to pick up a textbook. Survival Phrases German is a very handy podcast series packed with all the essential travel phrases that you’ll need on your trip. Each short podcast features words that are used in common settings, and they’re broken down into their component syllables so you can learn to speak those words like a native.
Learn German by Podcast
This is a great German podcast for beginners who need a good grounding in the German language to build from. You’ll find a lot of useful material in Learn German by Podcast.
The lessons focus on an acted-out scene, which is usually repeated and then followed by a thorough dissection of the dialogue. All this includes a translation and examples of how some key words can be used in other contexts.
Each podcast is accompanied by a suite of learning materials including a full transcript, a vocabulary list and exercises to try.
There’s nothing like a good detective story to make you prick up your ears, and in this Radio D series, Paula and Philipp are reporters traveling across Germany to investigate several mysterious cases.
Fun, imaginative and instructive are just a few of the words that describe the Radio D German podcast series for beginners. There are sound effects, humor, interactive elements and acted-out scenes. An English-speaking host is your guide through each episode and she’s joined by conversational partners who help to break down the German conversations.
Lots of interesting situations are featured such as an investigation of crop circles and UFOs. Transcripts in German of each podcast are available for download.
My Daily Phrase German
With little steps you can make giant leaps.
My Daily Phrase German is a handy podcast series in which teacher Catriona covers the fundamentals of the German language—everyday phrases, a few colloquialisms and vocabulary essentials. The pace is gentle and the teaching is thorough.
By the time you’ve reached the end of the series, you should have a good working knowledge of the basics.
Learn German for Free
Here’s a wonderful German podcast for beginners, with a vast catalog of episodes covering everything from basic greetings and numbers to ordering in restaurants and traveling on public transport.
Host Stefan is a likable presence and his warm voice lulls you into your comfort zone. Each lesson builds on the last, so you can easily map your progress. The podcasts are short and precise without any fluff or fillers, and transcripts are readily available for download.
Coffee Break German
Get ready for a stimulating immersion into the German language with Coffee Break German, a podcast series designed for the beginner and those looking to refresh their knowledge of the language.
The format features native speaker Thomas teaching learner Mark. Mark has a knack for asking the questions to which all students really want to know the answers. Thomas always delivers with clear and informative explanations. If only every German teacher could be so effective!
The average lesson runs nearly 30 minutes and features dialogues, plenty of vocabulary, explanations and occasionally acted-out scenes. The podcasts cover a breadth of everyday situations such as checking into a hotel, learning to get around a German town and talking about likes and dislikes.
Learning German doesn’t have to be a tedious pain in the you-know-where. It can also be fun, exciting and something you actually look forward to, especially if you tune your ears into GermanPod101.
There are lessons designed for every level of ability, from the absolute beginner to the advanced speaker. With attention-grabbing podcast titles such as “How Far Will Klingon Get You in Germany?” and “Have You Ever Seen a Blind Fish in Germany?” any German language learner is guaranteed to be hooked from the start.
The lessons feature acted-out scenes, with the dialogues translated by the two hosts, Chuck and Judith. The hosts then delve into verb conjugations and other aspects of grammar. There’s a good rapport between them and they occasionally provide some interesting cultural insights. You can also follow these lessons by reading the transcript.
Time to get listening to these incredible German podcasts and start improving your Deutsch from anywhere!