I'm studying Nazi Germany in school and am learning about the Kraft durch Freude organisation. I've learned that, to improve worker's leisure time, the Nazis would sponsor cruises and holidays to places like the Canary Islands and Italy. I was wondering if workers ever used these schemes to escape from Nazi Germany into any of the countries visited. Were they closely watched on their trips? Would they be found if they did run away?

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    I'm not sure that I understand. KdF was only in existince for 6 years, during which emmigration was permitted (see emmigration). The issue seems not to have been "escape", but where to go? Most of the destination countries had strict immigration limits. "The overwhelming majority of the Jews had no idea whatever of leaving. Germany. " jstor Difficult to adequately treat complexity in a comment, don't understand enough for answer.
    – MCW
    Commented Mar 15, 2022 at 17:53

1 Answer 1


I think you are thinking about this from the wrong angle. Answering a question of the 'did anyone ever' format would require finding one example, and could you tell a dissident from a drunk who missed departure?

  • The problem for many German Jews (and also for some political dissidents) was to find a place that would let them in. The MS St. Louis is well-known example.
  • Germany allowed some emigration of Jews, as long as they left most of their money in Germany. Somebody who wanted to flee covertly would be unable to sell his or her assets before, with the same result. The policy of expulsion became a policy of extermination later on.
  • Many KdF activities were a 'reward' for regime loyalists. A simple worker might hope for a few days at the Baltic coast, maybe.

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