Deutsche Bahn: Tickets, Timetables and Facilities

Thu, Jul 25
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About Deutsche Bahn Trains

Deutsche Bahn (DB) is the largest train company in Germany with their high-quality rail network making them one of the most popular ways to travel with locals and visitors. The state-owned rail network was formed in 1994 following German reunification, bringing together two previous state-owned companies, Deutsche Bundesbahn (in Western Germany) and Deutsche Reichsbahn. Today, it is one of the largest rail networks in central Europe, running over 40,000 daily trains on 33,000 km of track. Its high-speed Intercity Express trains (ICE) connect major cities with affordable, fast and modern carriages, running at speeds of 320 km/h. Deutsche Bahn also runs the slower but cheaper Intercity trains (IC), regional trains (RB or RE), several night train on select routes across Germany, Switzerland and Austria, and long-distance European-wide connections. Read on to discover more about Deutsche Bahn’s ICE trains, how to buy cheap DB train tickets, facilities onboard and major Deutsche Bahn train stations in Germany.

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Book and Select Your Deutsche Bahn Seats on Omio!

Introducing a new and improved feature on Omio. You're now able to book and select your seats when travelling with Deutsche Bahn! Find peace of mind in having your handpicked seat settled in advance.

Boost your booking experience now on Omio by selecting the best seat for relaxed, high-speed train travel!

Deutsche Bahn train stations

Deutsche Bahn trains pull into 5,700 stations with its high-speed ICE trains, the slower but cheaper IC trains, and Regional and European trains. Most train stations in Germany will be served by DB trains. Here we list some of the most popular major stations in Germany and what you can find at each one:

  • Berlin Hauptbanhof: the city’s main train station, Berlin Hauptbahnhof, also known as Berlin Hbf, is a busy connecting hub for travelers across Germany. The station is in the district of Moabit, just northwest of central Berlin and is easy to access via public transport and taxi. The station has coffee shops, restaurants, restrooms, ATMs, help desks and cafes.
  • Frankfurt (Main) Hauptbanhof: the central station in Frankfurt is a short distance from the city center, taking approximately 25 minutes by foot or a 10-minute taxi ride. There are direct connections to Frankfurt airport. This is a busy station with plenty of food and drink options. Wheel-chair access, toilets, car rentals, Wi-Fi and luggage lockers are available.
  • Hamburg Hbf (Central Station): located a 12 minutes walk from the city center, Hamburg Hbf is well connected to local transport lines (buses, S-Bahn and U-Bahn) as well as direct trains to the airport. The station is large, with 14 platforms, and trains arrive from Denmark, Switzerland, Cologne and the rest of Germany. The station offers an array of stalls for shopping, eating and drinking, car rentals, lockers, wheelchair access, and Wi-Fi.
  • Munich Hbf (Central Station): located 1.6 miles from the city center and a short distance from the historic 12th Century square, Marienplatz. The station is well-connected to buses, trains and taxis. The station has step-free and wheelchair access, toilets, ATMs, lockers, food and drink stalls, Wi-Fi and storage lockers.
  • Düsseldorf Hbf (Central Station): located 1.7 miles from the city center and close to the chic boutiques of Königsallee. There is access to buses, trams and UBahn lines (subway lines) nearby. The station has all amenities including lockers, toilets, ATMS, step-free access, food and drink, Wi-Fi and an information point.

Deutsche Bahn destinations

Not sure where to begin your Deutsche Bahn adventure? Check out these popular Deutsche Bahn destinations for travel details and nearby attractions:

Deutsche Bahn Ticket Types

Deutsche Bahn has a range of ticket types and offers cheap tickets, including Super Saver, Saver, and Flexible fares. They also have discount cards like the Bahncard 25, 50 and 100, which can be used across Germany as well as international journeys, such as the train from Berlin to Brussels. DB operates different types of trains such as the ICE (Intercity Express), IC (Intercity), EC (Eurocity), IRE (Interregio-Express), RE (Regional Express) and RB (Regionalbahn) trains on its routes in Germany and abroad. Read on to find out about the different DB train tickets available today:

  • Super Saver (Super Sparpreis): the cheapest ticket available on DB trains. This DB ticket can only be used at the time and date of the selected journey, it cannot be refunded or exchanged. Children up to the age of 14 travel free, as long as they are accompanied by a passenger over the age of 15.

  • Saver (Sparpreis): offers cheap DB tickets but with a bit more flexibility. Tickets are only valid on selected train services and can be canceled or refunded for a €10 fee. The cancellation will be refunded as a voucher that is valid for three years. Children up to the age of 14 travel free, as long as they are accompanied by a passenger over the age of 15.

  • Flexible (Flexpreis): the most flexible ticket available. You can choose to travel at any time, on any train, on the selected date of travel. Refunds and cancellations are available free of charge as long as requests are made before the date of travel. Children up to the age of 14 travel free, as long as they are accompanied by a passenger over the age of 15.

Discounts and Special Offers on Deutsche Bahn Tickets

Deutsche Bahn offers deals regularly to help passengers save money and get cheap DB train tickets no matter where they’re traveling in Germany. Discover picturesque destinations such as Lake Constance and Freiburg, or jump on the train to bustling metropolises such as Hamburg, Munich and Dresden. With DB, it’s easy to hop on and hop off and enjoy all the scenic beauty the country has to offer. Listed below are some of the ways you can save money and get cheap DB train tickets today.

BahnCard25: a railcard that gives you 25% off train tickets throughout Germany for a year. For second-class train tickets, the cost is €59.90 and €125 for first-class.

BahnCard50: if you’re a frequent traveler in Germany or travel long distances by train, this railcard is well worth it. The railcard gives a 50% discount off DB train tickets and costs €244 a year for second-class train tickets and €492 for first-class tickets.

Group Saver Tickets: traveling in a group of six or more? Starting from €8.90 per person, DB Group Saver tickets allow you to travel on ICE, IC and EC trains throughout Germany as long as it’s on the specified booking time. Group Saver Euro Tickets are also available for DB train tickets to the rest of Europe.

City Ticket option: this is a public transport extension for those traveling more than 80 miles (100 km) with a Flexpreis or Sparpreis tickets. This ticket add-on helps you save on your overall travel as you don't have to pay full price for city rail transport. Available in 126 German cities.

Regional Offers: DB has plenty of regional offers throughout the year including a group day ticket for up to five travelers. The cost is €44 for up to five people and is ideal for day trips with friends or family. As an official DB partner, Omio will list the latest deals for whichever journey you’re taking.

Buying children's tickets: children under 5 can travel on all Deutsche Bahn trains within Germany, as well as trains to Austria and Switzerland, free of charge. They do not need a ticket to travel but to guarantee a seat, a separate reservation must be made. Children between 6 to 14 can also travel for free on all Deutsche Bahn trains within Germany, as well as Austria and Switzerland, but they must be accompanied by either a parent or grandparent. The name of the child must be added to the main ticket at the time of purchase. Children aged 15 and over must pay the full price fare.

Travel first class on Deutsche Bahn trains

It’s worth considering upgrading to first-class to enjoy a little bit of luxury while traveling on Deutsche Bahn. First-class carriages offer several perks to ensure that passengers arrive at their destination truly relaxed. For a small extra fee, first-class ticket holders get unlimited Wi-Fi, extra-wide, comfortable chairs, plug sockets, seat service for food and drinks, a free newspaper, seat reservation, plus access to the DB lounge at major train stations. Note: WiFi, food and beverage services are only available on ICE trains.

Deutsche Bahn: Train Types

Deutsche Bahn has three major train types:

InterCity Express (ICE)

  • Germany’s high-speed train, which reduces travel time by 34 percent to 42 percent on major routes.
  • Recognised by its white color and continuous red stripe on the side.
  • ICE trains are ideal for travelers short on time or traveling long distances. Great option for business travelers as outlets and Wi-Fi are available onboard.
  • ICE train tickets are normally more expensive but are worth it if you want to travel longer distances.
  • Omio customers usually book ICE trains 30 days in advance.
InterCity (IC)

  • Operates between large and medium-sized cities. They also travel to small cities that are located in important destinations.
  • EuroCity (or EC trains) are cross-border trains running between major cities that operate at comparable speeds to DB's IC trains.
  • Intercity trains are sometimes as fast as ICEs, but much cheaper.
Regional Express (RE) and Regional (RB)

  • Trains that usually operate between locations inside of one of Germany's federal states.
  • Many are double-decker trains, so passengers have more seats to choose from.
  • Travelers often choose this train when traveling to smaller German towns.

More Information About Traveling by Train In Europe

Deutsche Bahn: FAQs

How far in advance do Deutsche Bahn tickets go on sale?

Usually, six months in advance. Timetables may change, so book accordingly.

Can I pay for Deutsche Bahn tickets in Dollars?

Although prices are in Euros, on Omio you can pay with dollars via all popular payment methods including Paypal and Mastercard.

Is it worth reserving a seat on Deutsche Bahn?

Seat reservations are recommended when traveling during peak times. Seat reservations are included in all Deutsche Bahn 1st class tickets. Seats can be reserved on Deutsche Bahn trains across Germany using the Omio App.

Will there be a problem if more than one person is on our booking but just one name is on the ticket?

Only one passenger's name is needed when making a booking for Deutsche Bahn. If you have multiple people on a ticket only the person who booked the ticket needs to travel.

What are the cancellation and exchange policies for DB tickets?

It depends on the ticket type purchased. Visit our ticket section for more details. If you need to amend your ticket, visit our help center

What is DB's luggage policy?

On Deutsche Bahn, you can travel with your luggage free of charge, no reservation required. Passengers can store larger items of luggage in the racks provided at each end of the carriages. Passengers are responsible for the safety of their luggage during the journey.

Can you bring bikes on board?

On long-distance train trips, a reservation is required for bicycles, which costs an additional €9, on DB trains. More information can be found on

What amenities are there on DB trains?

Food: Deutsche Bahn offers food on either its Bordbistro or Bordrestaurant found on board. The menu varies from chilli con carne to roast pork with dumplings, to a variety of salads. These options are mostly found on the long-distance train journey. Regional trains do not offer food on board.
WiFi: ICE Trains: Deutsche Bahn's ICE trains have free WiFi in both first and second class.

How long are DB transfers? If I miss my connections will my ticket carry over to the next train?

Transfers between DB trains vary, but there should normally be enough time to change platforms if you need to. If your first train is delayed by 20 minutes or more, and you miss your connection then you can travel on the next available train or at a later that day on the same or a different route. You may need to pay a surplus fee if you travel on a DB train that doesn't offer reservations but you can claim this back.

Can I bring my dog onboard a Deutsche Bahn train?

Dogs under the size of a domestic cat are allowed onboard free of charge but must be kept in a carrier. Larger dogs will need to have a special dog ticket bought for them—however, this ticket is not yet available on Omio. Once on the train, dogs must be muzzled and on a leash at all times. Guide or assistant dogs are allowed on board without a ticket and do not need to be muzzled.

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