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» Germany » Getting

Getting to Germany

By plane

Frankfurt is Germany's main hub and one of Europe's four major hubs, and the destination of most intercontinental flights. Munich is a secondary hub. Travellers can easily fly in from most places of the world and then connect with Germany's biggest and most respected airline Lufthansa which is a member of the Star Alliance. Germany's second largest airline is Air Berlin .

Some German airports are connected to the InterCityExpress and other rail lines, as are most international airports ( except Berlin-Tegel Airport). The others all feature some sort of connection to the nearest rail station as well as public transport to the central station of the respective cities. Lufthansa's passengers travelling from Frankfurt Airport have the option to check-in their luggage in Cologne or Stuttgart train stations and connect to the airport by ICE. If doing so, be sure to book the train journey like a Lufthansa connecting flight (i.e. in advance together with the flight), otherwise you are regarded responsible for a missed connection.

Budget Air Travel and minor airlines

There are budget flights to almost every city in Europe from Germany. If you are seeking a budget flight, you should first check with the nearest airport. Examples of budget airline hubs are Berlin Schonefeld and Dortmund for easyJet . Germanwings and Tuifly (formerly Hapag-Lloyd-Express and HapagFly), Air Berlin and WizzAir offer budget flights from many assorted airports across Germany and Europe. Condor , a major charter airline, may also offer budget flights to/from main tourist destinations throughout the world. Germania , Intersky and OLT have a limited number of international destinations. Ryanair flies from London to Berlin Schoenefeld, Altenburg (Leipzig), Lubeck (near to Hamburg), Weeze (near Duesseldorf) and from some other European destinations to Hahn (usually advertised as "Frankfurt-Hahn" despite being about 120km from Frankfurt without a passenger rail connection!). Flying can be the cheapest way to get to Germany, especially if the flights are booked well in advance. A sample airfare on AirBerlin from Munster/Osnabruck to Vienna, Austria is 29 one-way including all taxes, only if booked far in advance.

Before booking a budget flight, compare carefully as their destinations are often a bit off the track and after adding all the fees, taxes, aditional bus tickets to get to their airports, you might end up at even higher prices than you would pay for a discounted Lufthansa ticket.

By train

Regular train services connect Germany with all neighbouring countries. Almost all neighbouring countries and even some non-neighbouring countries are quite well connected with "EuroCity" trains. They are a little bit slower than the European high speed trains but reach nevertheless up to 200 km/h. They are a worthwhile way to travel--not only for budget travellers (although budget airlines might be cheaper) or landscape viewers (especially the Rhine valley lines).

There are also several European high speed trains to cross into or get out of Germany:

Standard rail fares are quite high, but there's a number of special fares and discounts available - see the "Get Around" section for more information. In particular, the Bahncard reduction applies for the whole journey as long as it starts or ends in Germany.

Source: Wikitravel.org