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Traveling in Germany


Germany has a good infrastructure and is located very central in Europe. There are many ways to travel for all budgets.

Traveling in Germany by car

One of the most flexible ways to travel is to travel by car and in Germany this is also one of the most fun ways to travel. Some people only come to Germany to drive on the Autobahn! There is no speed limit on the German autobahn. You can easily drive 300 km/h on some parts but be careful and keep in mind that you aren’t the only person driving around!!!

At most airports you will find rental companies. In Germany most people talk English so you shouldn’t have problems with the communication.

You can easily rent a car at one location and return it somewhere else. Perfect for a road trip. You will find these companies at most airports and cities:

You can also easily drive through different countries and you don’t have to worry about any costs at the border.

Instead of renting a car you can also share a car with strangers:

Traveling in Germany by

A cheap way to travel in Germany is by bus. There are some companies which connect some big cities. To get to smaller cities you have to travel to a nearby big city and then take the train or another bus.


The reason why there aren’t many bus lines in Germany is due to a law from the 1930ies. The law, which hasn’t been changed much since then, says that only if no other transportation service is covering the route (i.e. existing railway) new bus routes will be approved. And as the German railway company Deutsche Bahn connects all major cities it is difficult to enter the market with bus lines.

UPDATE: in 2013 they a new law is introduced that allows train travels in Germany. Now it’s easier to travel cheaper in Germany.

Traveling in Germany by Train

The railway network in Germany is one of the best of Europe. Every major regional city is connected by train but mostly connected by the Deutsche Bahn which has kind of a monopoly in Germany. There are some regional private companies that connect some cities.

You can find special last minute prices for long distance train connections starting at 25 €. You can only book them between 7 and 1 day before the actual journey.

To check the timetables of trains you can use the website of Deutsche Bahn.

Note: There will be a new company offering train connections between Cologne, Hamburg and Berlin soon which probably will be much cheaper than the prices of Deutsche Bahn.

Traveling in Germany by plane

If you want to visit the big cities and wouldn’t like to spend hours in a train, bus or car you can alternatively fly. Many airlines cover big parts of Germany and prizes are reasonable starting at 30 € one-way. You can of course also find some very cheap deals but you have to check very early.

Here are some airlines you should check for flying in Germany:


Air Berlin




You can find some special deals on their websites and also at some coupon shopping pages like Groupon.

Tip: You can find super last minute flights 3 days before departure at ltur!

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28 comments on “Traveling in Germany

  1. Stephanie - The Travel Chica on

    I have actually been on the Autobahn! Unfortunately our rental car was very small and not very powerful, but we did drive as fast as it would go!

  2. Emily @ Maiden Voyage on

    I definitely found Germany very easy to get around when I went to Hamburg. I took a cheap and fast Air Berlin flight from Manchester, UK to Hamburg. I got around on their extensive subway system. And then when I left, I took an overnight train to Paris. So nice!

  3. Jarmo on

    The trains here in Germany are actually pretty good, a lot better than the ones in UK for sure. Thye are on time, they are organized and very clean.

    I took the train to Amsterdam last week from Essen where I am right now, 200km, return ticket cost me less than 50e 🙂

    • sebastian on

      That is pretty cheap! I also used the trains regularly between the Netherlands to Germany especially to Hannover and Berlin. Got some sweet deals with the Bahn Card!

  4. Liz on

    This was a really informative article, thanks for it. I’m always looking for ways to travel around Germany because whenever I look up train tickets they’re so expensive. Thanks for the tip on last-minute bookings. My roommate studied in Germany and said there’s a program for people to ride share, where you can catch a ride with people going to the same place as you. Have you tried this?

  5. Steve @ Back-Packer on

    Nearly all Couchsurfers i hosted told me about their positive experiences with mitfahrgelegenheit -and the best: you can also find shared rides outside of germany with this service.
    Possibly the cheapest way to get around here.

    Very useful post and good structured!

    • sebastian on

      thanks Steve!! Mitfahrgelegenheit is great! I always used it to take people with me and split the costs. It’s a great service and helps you to safe a lot!

  6. BabyAbroad on

    Great tip on the last minute train tickets.

    I currently live in Germany – and I have a couple of warnings about the autobahns. There are often parts with speed limits that can quickly creep up on you – and many have speed cameras attached so watch out for the signs and slow for them. Also, slower cars will pull out on you so if your travelling at high speeds – keep your wits about you.

  7. Andy on

    From 2013 on the law concerning the restriction for long distance bus lines is repealed. It is expected that a huge number of new bus lines will get into the market at reasonable prices. A good alternative for the crowded highways where driving up to 200 km/h gets more and more impossible.

  8. Ann-Katrin on

    Nice post but a bit out of date, the free speed on Autobahn is debated, and in a lot of areas there are restrictions nowadays.
    The rules for the busses: As far as I know this was changed some 2 years ago. There are busses in more areas and on more stretches.
    In regards to trains: unfortunately trains, which I normally love, are suffering more and more from rather serious delays, they are nowhere near as reliable as they used to be.
    That said trains are still a really good alternative – traffic at least in the west is a nightmare, much of the time.

  9. TheBackPackerWeb on

    Yes, dont forget Carpooling. In Germany is a very good option and allows u to meet locals that are willing to share costs and experiencies. Train is very expensive there and for 1/4 of the price u can go from east to west saving time as well.

  10. Ann-Katrin on

    Not to be forgotten; If you don’t live in Germany but plan to travel around there are great deals to be found – why not use Interrail? You can get a “Germany only” train pass that is valid for 30 days and allows you to travel a specific number of days or every day the full month.
    If you live outside of Europe the railpasses are even less expensive. If often pays off, I have done it myself, when I wasn’t living in Germany – and I will do it again. It very convenient and you don’t HAVE to have a seat reservation – unlike France where you do, in almost all the cases.

  11. Stefan on

    Hi Sebastian, das ist eine gute Übersicht. Ich finde aber, beim Kapitel “Bus” fehlen aus heutiger Sicht die wesentlichen Informationen. Ich denke an Verweise auf Meta-Suchmaschinen (busliniensuche, fahrtenfuchs etc.) und der Hinweis auf verschiedene neue Busgesellschaften (MeinFernbus, Flixbus, ADAC etc.). Viele Grüße, Stefan

  12. Wandering East on

    Great round up for probably the easiest country to get around in Europe that isn’t named Switzerland. As far as train tickets, far in advance is also an option as I recently went Hannover to Berlin for only 10 Euros, it didn’t include a seat reservation but I got there. Can’t wait to go back!