Last week I put up a blog post about making hand made cards while my husband is deployed. I knew about home based businesses here but didn't look into it much since I wasn't selling anything yet. I had planned on opening an Etsy shop to sell my cards. If you know anything about Etsy you know that sales can be made to people all over the world. Well the rules with registering a HBB don't allow that. If you have a HBB here in Germany you can only sell to other military stationed here or to Germans. Since Etsy is a world wide thing most of my sales would probably be to customers in the US. Not only can I NOT sell to people in the US, I also can't use my APO address for anything business related. I would need to order materials from the states as well as send out orders to the states and if you get caught using your APO address for anything business related you can have your APO privileges revoked. I could use the Deutsch Post but the cost would be more for shipping things out of the country back to the US.
Now don't think you can't have any HBB here. I know a lot of photographers, bakers, and Pampered Chef consultants but it's much easier for them to only sell to military. They don't have to order or ship products to and from the states. So as for me, it looks like my card making will be put on hold as it doesn't seem feasible for our location. I'll have to find something else to keep me busy during the deployment.
Another main reason I posted this was because I saw a very insightful post from Life Lessons of a Military Wife. Here is the link to her post about HBB. It has a story of a wife who got caught having a HBB that was not approved. She also has links in her post with information about how to get your business approved.