Where did summer time begin?

History of the time change in Germany

Next time change in Germany

The current summer time period in Germany began on March 28, 2021. It ends on October 31, 2021.

When will the time change be abolished in the EU?

100 years of summer time

Although the city of Port Arthur (now Thunder Bay) in the Canadian province of Ontario experimented with an annual time change as early as 1908, Germany and Austria-Hungary were the first countries in the world to introduce annual time changes across the board. A good 100 years ago, in 1916, the clocks were turned here for the first time.

War brings summer time

It is no coincidence that the annual clock changes were introduced in 1916: The First World War (1914-1918) made energy a vital commodity and transformed thrift from a noble thought into a necessity that was decisive for the war.

So summer time was promptly abolished again at the end of the war - only to be reintroduced by the National Socialists in 1940.

Berlin: all clock changes since 1916

Time zone chaos in Germany

After the Second World War, there were no uniform rules for the time change in Germany, as these were determined independently by the four occupying powers. This led to chaotic conditions at times.

Example 1945: In this year the summer time in the Soviet occupation zone including Berlin lasted about two months longer than in the other areas. In addition, the Soviets decreed double summer time (“high summer time”) from May 24 to September 24, 1945, which coincided with the local time in Moscow and was thus two hours apart from normal time in Germany.

Summertime can save lives

Renaissance through the oil crisis

From 1949 to 1980 there was no daylight saving time in Germany. As early as 1977, however, many European countries had reintroduced the time change - an energy policy reaction to the 1973 oil crisis. After the GDR leadership surprisingly announced in 1979 that it would also introduce summer time in the coming year, the Federal Republic followed suit: on April 6th In 1980, the first summer time period since World War II began simultaneously in both German states.

Daylight saving time today

Since 1996, Germany and all other members of the European Economic Area (including Switzerland, excluding Iceland) have had a uniform time change regulation. The clocks are put forward one hour every year on the last Sunday in March at 2:00 a.m. and turned back one hour on the last Sunday in October at 3:00 a.m.

Time changes in Europe

Current time changes in Germany

Did you know...

When it comes to time changes in this country, people often talk about winter time. However, the official name is normal time - summer time is, so to speak, a deviation from the actually applicable time in a time zone.

Summer time for beginners: how does the time change work?

Subjects: Germany, Europe, history, daylight saving time, time change