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Take a trip to Germany

The high-quality rail network and transportation infrastructure have made trains one of the most popular ways to travel in Germany. Train travel is so popular in Germany that many cities and major towns have multiple train stations. Deutsche Bahn offers train routes between most cities in Germany. From popular destinations and train routes to information about train companies and how to buy cheap train tickets, this page provides an overview of everything you need to know about train travel in Germany.

Trains in Germany

One of the fastest and most convenient ways to visit Germany is by train. The high-quality rail network has made trains in Germany one of the most popular ways to travel, as they are an efficient and reliable method of transportation. There are a number of types of trains and services that visitors may choose from when planning their trip to Germany. There's the InterCity Express (ICE) train that stops at the major cities in Germany as well as the bordering countries (Netherlands, France, and Austria). There's also the slightly slower yet cheaper, version of the InterCity Express, simply called InterCity. There is the Regional Express train which has a long-distance route throughout Germany. Lastly, there's the Regionalbahn, which also has routes within Germany but stops at a greater number of stations (a good choice for commuters and travellers that wish to see smaller rural towns). A couple of the most popular routes chosen by travellers are Frankfurt to Munich (duration of 3 hours and 40 minutes) with the Deutsche Bahn, and the Frankfurt to Berlin route (duration 4 hours and 43 minutes) with the FlixTrain. Using Omio, travellers will be able to find all the optional routes for their trip all in one website, allowing them to make the best choice in the simplest manner.

Booking with Omio

Booking with Omio

When booking train tickets in Germany with Omio, you will be able to plan your trips efficiently and smoothly thanks to its journey app planner. To book a trip, first select where you want to travel to (in Europe, the U.S. or Canada) as well as the dates for your trip. Once you have decided on these details, you'll see clear and up-to-date information on which options are available to you including train types. At this point, travellers will have the choice to pay in different currencies, add on any personal discount cards, as well as having the chance to decide how to travel (i.e. slower for lower price or by picking the fastest travel time). Once booked, you will have access to all the tickets needed for your journey directly on a mobile device—no printer needed!

Train Companies and Train Types in Germany

Information about German Rail Providers

The largest and most important train company in Germany is Deutsche Bahn, which is literally translated as “German Railway” and sometimes abbreviated to Die Bahn or DB.Deutsche Bahn is the largest rail company in Europe, transporting approximately 2 billion passengers annually. In 1994, West Germany’s Deutsche Bundesbahn and East Germany’s Deutsche Reichsbahn merged to create Deutsche Bahn railway company. Deutsche Bahn is Germany’s national rail provider with the Federal Republic of Germany functioning as DB’s single shareholder.

InterCity Express

InterCity Express (ICE) trains are the most comfortable and efficient way to travel by train in Germany. ICE trains are the fastest high-speed trains on the DB network, capable of traveling at speeds up to 200 mph. ICE trains travel to nearly 180 train stations in Germany. All InterCity Express trains have a restaurant and WiFi on board for your comfort and convenience. Popular routes that utilize ICE trains include: Berlin to Munich, Hamburg to Frankfurt and Munich to Cologne

InterCity

Like ICE trains, InterCity (IC) trains also travel long distances throughout Germany. While IC trains tend to travel at lower speeds than ICE services, they stop more frequently and reach more train stations in Germany. EuroCity (EC) trains are similar to InterCity services; however, they tend to operate on international routes between major European cities like Berlin to Prague. These train types are often referred to as Intercity Nights (ICN), EuroNight (EN) and CityNightLink (CNL) trains when offered overnight.

Regional Express

Shorter distance train routes in Germany usually use Regional Express (RE) and Regional Bahn (RB) trains, while smaller destinations outside of major cities are often connected by Stadt Express (SE) or S-Bahn (suburban train) services.

Domestic Train Routes

Most German cities are linked by rail. The most popular train routes in Germany are between major cities like Berlin, Munich, Hamburg, Cologne, Frankfurt, Düsseldorf, and Dresden. All large cities are linked by InterCity Express (ICE) trains, as well as standard InterCity (IC) services. Regional trains are also quite popular, especially the particularly scenic routes which pass through the Black Forest and Rhine Valley.

International Train Routes

Trains in Germany run international routes to various destinations in France, Italy, Switzerland, BeNeLux, Poland, Austria and the Czech Republic. German high-speed trains often share travel international routes with train companies from other countries like Thalys and SNCF. ÖBB Railjet trains connect Munich with cities in Central Europe like Vienna, Salzburg, Prague and Budapest.


Popular Train Routes to Germany

Most Popular Trains to Berlin


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Most Popular Trains to Munich



Most Popular Trains to Frankfurt



Man train stations in Germany

MUNICH CENTRAL STATION

Address: Bayerstraße 10A, 80335
Munich, Germany
Services:Currency Exchange
Luggage Store
Automatic Ticket Dealer and Lockers
Waiting Room
Lounge Area
Assistance Service for Disabled Travelers
Restaurants and Bars
Car Rental
ATM
Bank
Restrooms
Transportation: Metropolitan Lines (S-Bahn): S1 and S8
Transportation Service to Munich Airport (MUC) in the "Lufthansa Express Bus".
Regional buses to Ingolstadt, Norimberga, Freising, Erlangen and Prague, departing from Terminals 1 and 2.

FRANKFURT AM MAIN CENTRAL STATION

Address: Am Hauptbahnhof, 60329
Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
Services: Photo booth
Ticket dispensers
Luggage storage
Waiting room
Attention service for disabled travelers
Lounge Area
Restaurants and Bars
Car Rental
ATMs
Lost and Found
Transportation: Metropolitan Lines (S-Bahn): S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6, S8 and S9
Metro Line (U-Bahn): U4 and U5
Navetta railway airport "Lufthansa Rail Express"
Buses to the Airport: 58 , 61, 62, 72, 73, 77, 751, 752, DLH, n7, n72, n81, OF64, OF67.
Regional Train Lines to the Airport: 21, 55 and 75.

BERLIN CENTRAL STATION

Address: Europaplatz 1, 10557
Berlin, Germany
Services: Left Luggage Office
Ticket Dispensers
Free Wi-Fi
Waiting Rooms
Assistance Service for Travelers with Disabilities
Restaurants and Bars
Shopping
Transportion S-Bahn lines: S5, S7 and regional trains
Numerous trams and buses at the exit of the station to different points of the city

FAQs about Train Travel in Germany

Routes & Train times in Germany

The main train stations in Germany are Berlin Hbf, (Munich) München Hbf, (Cologne) Köln Hbf, and Frankfurt Hbf. These train stations connect to most cities in Germany as well as other international destinations. Most train stations in Germany feature luggage lockers, currency exchange services, tourist information bureaus, ATMs and Restaurants.

Seat Reservations in German Trains

Deutsche Bahn’s Regional (RB, RE, IR), InterCity (IC) and EuroCity (EC) trains do not require reservations. Reservations for InterCity Express (ICE) trains are optional; however, during busy times reservations are recommended in order to guarantee seat availability. All night trains require reservations, which can be made online via the DB website.

Rail Fares and German Train Ticket Types

Using the ticket machines at the train station are still the most common way to purchase train tickets in Germany; however, online ticket purchases are becoming more popular. After purchasing a train ticket online, you can either print your train ticket or download it to your phone and show it to the train crew during the train journey. Passengers may be required to identify themselves by presenting identification or the credit card that was used to make the train ticket purchase.