UPDATE: The €9 ticket has been a huge success. More than 38 million have been sold since May and 85 percent of Germans think it was a good idea. But in a few weeks time, the €9 ticket will expire. To find out more about what cheap public transport options we may have in the future, read our article here.
It’s finally here: the €9 monthly travel ticket has arrived. From June 1, lasting 3 months (90 days), public transport in Germany will cost just €9 per month. Long distance trains like the ICE aren’t covered, but the BVG and VBB are. So how exactly does it all work? We answer the big questions.
What is the €9 ticket?
The €9 ticket is a heavily discounted public transport ticket that costs €9 per calendar month. The ticket is part of the so-called ‘Energy Cost Relief Package’, with which the federal government wants to cushion the sharp rise in energy and fuel prices due to inflation and the war in Ukraine.
When does it start and how long is the €9 ticket valid for?
The campaign starts on June 1 and runs for three months. In June, July and August, you can buy a monthly ticket valid throughout Germany for €9. This means you pay €27 for the entire three months. The ticket is always valid from the 1st to the end of the month – regardless of when you bought it.
Where can I get the €9 ticket?
The plan is that the ticket will be available at service counters and ticket machines. Digital purchase via the apps of Deutsche Bahn, BVG or other regional providers will probably also be possible. A separate online platform through which the ticket can be purchased is being considered by the Ministry of Transport.
Can anyone buy the €9 ticket?
Yes. You don’t need to be a German citizen or resident here to purchase the discount ticket. They’ll be available to buy from tickets machines and ticket offices as normal.
What if I already have a season ticket, a semester ticket, a senior citizen’s ticket, etc.?
Then you don’t have to do anything. Subscriptions are automatically switched to the cheaper €9 tickets and the difference is offset against the following months. Any subscription benefits are retained, so you don’t have to cancel your VBB-Umweltkarte, for example.
Where is the €9 ticket valid?
Throughout Germany on local and regional transport. All underground trains, suburban trains, scheduled buses, trams and the 2nd class of regional and regional express trains are included. The €9 ticket also covers BVG ferries. So it doesn’t matter whether you bought your ticket in Meck-Pom, Bavaria or Saarland, you can use it to travel all over Germany. But watch out: the €9 ticket is not valid for ICE, IC, EC or long-distance buses.
Can I take a bike with me?
No. A bicycle is not included in the €9 and costs extra. Unless it’s part of your existing subscription.
Is the €9 ticket valid nationwide?
Short answer: yes. But make sure that you only choose regional train connections and don’t accidentally get on an ICE.
Is there a group option for the €9 ticket?
No. The €9 is for individual use only. So there is no possibility to take other people with you, unless it is included in your subscription benefits.
Where is the €9 ticket not valid?
Because it’s really important, we’ll repeat it again here. The €9 ticket is only valid for local and regional transport. All ICEs, ICs, ECs, Flixtrains and long-distance buses are excluded. The ticket is also only valid for 2nd class. So if you sit in 1st class, you have to pay extra.
Where can I go with the €9 ticket?
Sure, you can use the €9 ticket to commute to work for peanuts. But why not take the chance to travel around Germany on a budget? To answer the question of where to go, we’ve picked out a few nice holiday destinations that you can explore this summer with the €9 ticket. We’ve also put together a list of different routes from Berlin to the Baltic Sea.
Berlin → Greifswald: You won’t get closer to the Baltic Sea: it takes just under three hours by Regio from Berlin Hauptbahnhof to the Hanseatic city of Greifswald.
Berlin → Stralsund: It takes a little longer to get to Stralsund than to Greifswald. From Berlin, it’s a relaxed three hours to the oldest city in Pomerania.
Berlin → Usedom: The beautiful sunny island off the coast of Pomerania can be reached from the main railway station in four hours.
Berlin → Hamburg: You need at least four hours to get to Hamburg. Depending on the connection, one to three changes will be needed.
Berlin → Sylt: This summer, you can reach the holiday destination favoured by northern Germans at a snip. However, you’ll have to change trains at least three times to get there in eight and a half hours.
Berlin → Cologne: For €9 from Berlin to Cologne is almost outrageous, but the journey also takes a long time and you have to change trains several times. The regional connections all take between eight and a half and nine and a half hours.
Berlin → Phantasialand in Brühl: If you’re already in Cologne, why not continue on to Phantasialand? It’s only a stone’s throw to Brühl, and once you arrive at the station, a shuttle bus will take you to the amusement park.
Berlin → Munich: OK, maybe we’re getting carried away now, but you could get off at Munich’s main station in ten hours. You can hardly get more rail distance for your money.
Original article by Helge Scholz for tipBerlin