Travel in Germany
< GermanyJump to navigation Jump to search
Here are the most popular means of travel between cities in Germany.
- by train: fastest on short- & mid-distance, cheap if bought early
- by bus & car:
- car rental: expensive but most flexible
- rideshares: cheap but reliability varies
- long-distance buses: cheapest but slowest
- by plane: most expensive but fastest for distances over ~400km
- The vast majority of trains are operated by Deutsche Bahn, Germany's national railway company.
- Their biggest private competitor is Flixtrain.
Fast trains (ICE, IC, EC)
- These long-distance trains by Deutsche Bahn connect all larger Germany cities with frequent connections.
- Find a connection with their Connection search.
- Get the best price with their Best price finder.
- Ticket prices start from €17.90, even for very long connections.
- A calendar view of best prices for a connection gives you Bahn.guru (inofficial).
- With a Bahncard, you can get a 25% or 50% discount on nearly any ticket.
- A Bahncard 25 costs €56,90, a Bahncard 50 €234 per year (2nd class).
- There is a 3-month trial version (Probe-Bahncard) for €17.90 / €72,90.
- Flixtrain is a brand of Flixbus, Germany's biggest operator of long-distance buses.
- Their network connects many cities, but trains run only 1 to 4 times a day
- Prices are very cheap, starting from €3.
- Trips can be booked together with Flixbus busses, so you can get one ticket for the whole trip (bus & train).
- The Flixtrain connection search shows both Flixtrain and Flixbus connections.
Regional trains (IRE, RE, RB, S-Bahn)
- Regional/local trains are mostly operated by Deutsche Bahn.
- They connect close cities or cross / go around big cities.
- It is possible (but slow) to travel long distances by using many regional trains in a row.
- There are day passes (Länderticket) valid in all regional transport in one ore even multiple German federal states, often also reaching into neighbouring states.
By Bus & Car
- Germany has a dense network of several long-distance busses (Fernbus).
- Buses are mostly reliable but often slower than trains.
- The main operator in Germany is Flixbus.
- Busradar is a search engine for many bus connections in Germany (and Europe).
- At organized ride shares (Mitfahrgelegenheit), people who travel by their passenger offer their free seats to other travelers.
- Prices are similar to those for long-distance buses.
- BlaBlaCar is the most popular ride-sharing platform.
- Hitchhiking is popular in Germany.
- Hitchwiki gives more tips and lists convenient spots to start a hitchhike.
- Car rental for traveling between cities is rather unpopular in Germany. It is mostly done when moving to a new place, and a van is needed.
- The biggest rental companies are Sixt and Europcar.
- Because of Germany's fast train network, plane travel within Germany only makes sense for very long distances, e.g. Hamburg-Munich.
- Find all flight connections with Google Flights.
- This is an affiliate link. If you click on it and then buy something or sign up for a service, we may earn a commission which covers our expenses. This does not change the price for you.