You can travel all over Germany with DB. However, some journeys tend to be a bit expensive. What most Expats in Germany do not realize is that you can book Deutsche Bahn tickets on Bahn.de and other portals as well. This can lead to discounts of up to 78%!
This article gives you 6 useful tips and tricks to always get the cheapest ticket for your train journey. Deutsche Bahn sells a considerable part of its ticket quota on the various sites on the internet. Through these other portals you can save when travelling around Germany. Find out below on how you can save!
- 1. Find last minute Deutsche Bahn tickets on L’TUR
- 2. Look for special Deutsche Bahn offers & tricks on Bahn.de.
- 3. Booking Deutsche Bahn tickets through the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB)
- 4. Booking through the French railways Voyages-SNCF.com
- 5. Booking through Flixtrain
- 6. Booking through Westbahn
- What is the difference between Saver price and super saver price?
- Tips for cheap reservations and cheap train tickets
1. Find last minute Deutsche Bahn tickets on L’TUR
L’TUR is one of the useful hubs for cheap last minute DB tickets in Germany and Europe. Connections within Germany are permanent. Here you book 1 to 7 days before departure from € 19.90, plus a service fee of € 3 per booking.
They are also constantly changing international ticket offers, often to neighboring European countries such as Holland or France. Tickets cost from 37 € (plus booking fee 2 €). You can book 3 to 14 days in advance. With these train tickets you have to pay with a credit card.
2. Look for special Deutsche Bahn offers & tricks on Bahn.de.
Deutsche Bahn itself has special promotions and the regular saver prices on offer, where you can get discounted tickets.
There are also some tricks when using the booking mask that can give you a cheap ticket.
Trick 1: Book well in advance to get low prices
You can get tickets as cheap as € 19 when you book 1-91 days in advance on Bahn.de. Depending on the distance and occupancy of the desired route, the price per ticket increases up to € 119. If you have a Bahncard 25, you get a 25% discount. Additionally, for those travelling with children under the age of 14, the children get to travel for free.
Trick 2: Book a ticket to a destination in neighboring countries
Often different quotas are placed for destinations in neighboring countries than for domestic connections. However, the trains stop “in transit” at the actual desired destination. So it is sometimes worthwhile to book destination stations in nearby countries and then simply get off beforehand. Classic examples of this would be Salzburg instead of Munich, Strasbourg instead of Mannheim or Karlsruhe or Linz instead of Passau.
Trick 3: Don’t select “fast connections”
When booking online, it is worth not ticking the box “prefer fast connections” in order to be able to book somewhat slower, cheaper connections.
Trick 4: Split your travel routes
A cool trick to get discount prices even on routes that are not so heavily frequented by long-distance traffic is to book only a short part of the route with a long-distance train (IC / EC / ICE) and cover the remaining part with local trains. This means that even for long stretches of local transport, you get the often cheaper savings prices. And this is how you “split” your route:
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3. Booking Deutsche Bahn tickets through the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB)
For trips to Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg in particular, it is worth taking a look at the ÖBB booking page. Similar to the “Destination in the neighboring country” principle, you book a destination in Austria that includes your actual destination as a stopover. That works particularly well if you want to go to Munich. The ÖBB has its own contingents for connections through and to Germany, the sections of which, however, are logically carried out by the DB.
4. Booking through the French railways Voyages-SNCF.com
The portal sells cheap train tickets in cooperation with various railway companies throughout Europe. Sometimes there are worthwhile discount campaigns where you can save up to 20% compared to the train. You can also use your Bahncard for bookings here.
5. Booking through Flixtrain
Flixtrain is now competing with Deutsche Bahn on its own tracks – however, the experience of many users who can be found on the Internet does not yet suggest a trip
6. Booking through Westbahn
The Westbahn is the only private railway line between Vienna and Salzburg and offers an inexpensive alternative to the ÖBB. Here you will find current Deutsche Bahn ticket prices for all routes including discounts, western savings days and annual tickets.
What is the difference between Saver price and super saver price?
Before you book a (super) saver fare, you should know the following:
- With the cheaper super saver price , cancellation is not possible.
- The normal saver price, on the other hand, can be canceled, which costs 10 euros . In addition, you will only receive a travel voucher for the remaining amount , which may not be resold. From the day of travel itself, you can no longer cancel the saver fare.
- (Super) saver prices only apply to the person for whom the ticket was booked.
- In long-distance transport, (super) saver prices only apply to the trains booked and entered in the ticket – the so-called train connection . There are no train connections for local transport.
- If a train is canceled or if you expect a delay of more than 20 minutes, the train connection for long-distance traffic is automatically canceled. This means that you can use any other (long-distance) train to reach your destination. It is not necessary to have the train attendant or the travel center confirm the delay beforehand. You can just get on the next suitable train.
Saver price vs. super saver price comparison
|Super saver price||Saver price|
|Prices||from 17.50 euros||from 21.10 euros (always at least 3.60 euros more than the super saver price)|
|City ticket||No||yes (from 100 km)|
|Cancellation||not possible||Only before the first day of travel, costs: 10 euros, the remaining amount only as a voucher|
Tips for cheap reservations and cheap train tickets
Tips for cheap reservations
- BahnComfort seats: If you do not have a reservation, you can also take the seats for so-called BahnComfort customers on the ICE. You can find it right behind the dining car. You only have to release the seats if a customer with a BahnComfort card explicitly claims the seat – but this only happens very rarely.
- Expired reservations: Those who are patient can often find a seat: Seat reservations expire 15 minutes after the train has left the station. Then the reservation display above the seat also goes out.
- Unnecessary reservations: When booking online, Deutsche Bahn now shows whether a train is likely to be busy. If the train is empty, you may be able to save a reservation.
Tips for cheap train tickets
- EC / IC instead of ICE: If you book online, you can deactivate the “Prefer fast connections” option. Often times, a cheaper trip doesn’t take much longer. In particular, EC and IC are as fast as the ICE on many routes, but cheaper.
- Saver fare trap: If you use a saver fare ticket (does not apply to super saver fare), you should book the outward and return journey separately. In terms of price, it doesn’t make any difference, but it has a decisive advantage: if you have already made the outward journey but have to postpone the return journey (e.g. due to illness), you can no longer cancel your ticket! Because you have already started the outward journey, the money for the return journey is lost. If, on the other hand, you have two separate tickets, you can cancel the return journey for a fee (see above) before the day of travel.
- Smart border traffic: If you are still traveling to Germany from Austria, you should check whether it is cheaper to book with Deutsche Bahn, ÖBB or Westbahn.
- Smart border traffic 2: Anyone who drives long distances within Germany but no longer gets cheap prices should take a look at the (super) saver price Europe. Perhaps there is the possibility of getting a cheap ticket to a city in the neighboring country (e.g. Salzburg), but getting off earlier (e.g. in Munich).
- Good night! Those who travel with the NightJet, which also serves certain routes within Germany, can save an overnight stay at their destination.