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German Christmas Commercials

gmarquardt has an M.A. in history and German from SWTSU and has over 30 years teaching experience at public high schools.

Dresden Striezelmarkt

Dresden Striezelmarkt

Christmas is a special time in Germany. Traditions such as world-famous Christmas markets with their candied nuts, warm Glühwein, and snowy fairytale-like backdrops bring the spirit of the season alive. Families come together, snow covered villages create idyllic scenes that can only be recreated elsewhere in miniature. Christmas in Germany is a visual gift and an especially joyful treat. Advertisers have tried to muscle in on those emotions and the latest German Christmas commercials have gone viral for a variety of reasons. Either the commercials are heart felt, funny, or just plain ... well, Christmasy. The following commercials aim to get us in the mood for a pleasant and loving Christmas.

01. Edeka: #Heimkommen

Edeka is the largest supermarket chain in Germany whose #heimkommen hashtag went viral during Christmas of 2015. Although Germany is the land of Christmas, they did not have a tradition of long, heart-felt emotional advertising. This is a newer invention.

Although many of the links will provide translations, I've added the original and my own translations below.

Anrufbeantworter: „Hallo Opa, ich bin’s. [Hallo Opa!] Ich wollte nur kurz anrufen und dir bescheid geben, wir werden es Weihnachten dieses Jahr wieder nicht schaffen. Wir versuchen es nächstes Jahr und dann klappt es ganz bestimmt. Fröhliche Weihnachten, Papa. Bis bald. [Fröhliche Weihnachten, Opa!]“

Opa: „Wie hätte ich euch denn sonst alle zusammenbringen sollen, hm?“

Answering Maching: “Hi, Opa, it’s me. [Hi Granpa!] I just wanted to call you up and let you know that we won’t be able to make it this year for Christmas. We’ll try again next year, and I’m sure it will work, out. Merry Christmas, Dad. See you soon. [Merry Christmas Grandpa!]“

Grandfather: "How else was I going to bring you all together? Hmm?"

02. Otto: Weihnachten ist in dir

Otto is Germany’s largest e-commerce company. Akin to Amazon, they sell in 30 countries and focus on fashion and home lifestyle products.

The simple saying at the end, Weihnachten ist in dir, means Christmas is in you..

Lieber Opa, Weißt du noch, ich hatte mir noch zu Weihnachten ein Fahrrad gewünscht. Wollte dich nur daran errinern. Ich hoffe, es geht dir gut in Himmel. Dein Tommy

Für Tommy, Entschuldige, daß es so lange gedauert hat. Opa.

Dear Grandpa, Do you remember, I had wished for a bicycle for Christmas. I just wanted to remind you. I hope you are doing well in heaven. Your Tommy.

For Tommy, sorry that it took so long. Grandpa.

03. Ikea: Opa

Although Ikea is a Swedish owned furniture store, as in the US it is quite popular in Germany. Ikea sells items unassembled, requiring the customer to put together their furniture. This commercial uses a comical language mix up to get its idea of family across. Mella seems to be a Russian immigrant who mixes up a word or two.

Du Mella, wo ist denn Opa?
Opa ist nur in einen besseren Ort
Ne ne ne, eh besseren Platz

Hey, Mella, wo is grandpa?
Grandpa is in a better place.
No, no, no, a better spot!

Toward the end, the narrator says, Auf Party, Auf Pause, Auf alles eingerichtet. For a party, for a break, ready for anything.

04. Rewe: Die wichtigste Zutat

Rewe is the second largest supermarket chain in Germany. Using fantastic cinematography to illustrate a family member coming home, the split screen shows the trip combined with cooking, eliciting an emotional response in the viewer. Their simple message at the end explains it all.

Die wichtigste Zutat zu Weihnachten bist du.

The most important ingredient for Christmas is you.

05. Rewe: Weihnachten von Herzen

A more simplistic take on Christmas, Rewe concludes this warm commercial with a simple line.

Wir wünschen allen ein Weihnachten, das von Herzen kommt.

We wish you all a Christmas that comes from the heart.

06. Edeka: Zeitschenken

A Christmas many can relate to; endless errands, long lines, stress and simply being too busy for our children.

Muss noch dies, muss noch das
Muss noch jenes und irgendwas
Muss noch hier, muss noch da
Und muss noch viel viel mehr.
Bla bla bla
Ich muss mich nach ‘nem Tannenbaum umschau’n
Ich muss noch Einkaufen und alles hübsch verstauen
Ich muss die Dinge wie sie müssen überschauen
Und muss auf jeden Fall noch die Winterreifen draufhauen
Ich muss die aller aller coolsten Plätzchen backen
Ich muss noch auf dem Weihnachtsmarkt versacken.
Ich hab so viele Termine im Nacken
Und muss noch Deko auf’s Hausdach packen

Muss nicht dies, muss nicht das
Muss nicht jenes und nicht irgendwas
Ich muss nur eines, wie ich find
Für dich da sein, mein Kind

I have to do this, I have to do that,
Have to do things and something,
Have to go here, have to go there,
and I have to do so much more,
blah blah blah
I have to go look for a Christmas tree,
I have to go shopping and make everything look cute,
I have to check on the things that have to be checked,
and no matter what, I have to get my winter tires on,
I have to bake the best cookies ever,
I have to go to the Christmas market,
I have so many appointments
I have to get the decorations on top of the house,

I don’t have to do this, I don’t have to do that,
I don’t have to do things and not somethings,
I only have to do one thing,
to be there for you, my child.

07. Edeka: Corona

This one is from 2020 and deals with an grumpy man who lives among immigrants.

Toward the end, the boy says, Frohe Weihnachten. Merry Christmas. The saying at the end is, Lasst uns froh und bunter sein, Let us be happier and more colorful.

There are, of course, many more. A simple YouTube search reveals a few more, but space and time are limited. Try yourself! Simply search for German Christmas commercials, or if you're bolder, Weihnachten Werbung. You won't be disappointed.

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