“SIE” is not always the more polite form of address!

In Germany or in the German language, using the form of address “Sie” is not always the more polite form!

I just watched a video for native English speakers who are learning German and I have to say that it is a mistake to say that “Sie” is the more polite form of address!

All-clear: From my own experience I can tell you that as a foreigner no one here will hold the wrong use of “DU” or “SIE” against you!

As a native German speaker, however, you have to use the “Du” and “Sie” with a little more care.
In principle, of course, it is better to use “SIE” more often than “DU” if you are not sure.

But there are also many situations in which the “SIE” is taboo.

In leisure time in sports clubs or other associations, “DU” is used almost exclusively.

In special shops such as fishing shops, computer game shops and many others of this kind, you will have a very bad chance as a salesperson if you address your customers as “SIE”!

In this post I have summarised more basic rules on the use of “DU” and “SIE”: The use of “Du” and “Sie” in everyday German life.