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Travelling around Berlin

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Berlin, Germany's capital city, is also known to be the country's biggest city, stretching over some 891.8 km². If you intend to settle there, you'll definitely have to go out, whether to work or to visit the city. You can choose among the most popular means of transport available throughout the city: trains, subways (U-bahn), trams, buses, taxis, etc. You can also rent a car if you are in possession of a valid driving license.

Berlin's public transport is managed by the BVG transport company, whose network is divided into three zones: A,B and C. As a visitor you are most likely traveling within zone A including the majority of tourist attractions and popular districts. Zone B is outside of the periphery area and zone C refers to the surrounding Brandenburg region, including Potsdam and Schönefeld airport.
Prices apply per zones and you can choose the following types of tickets:

  • Single tickets – valid for up to two hours including changing lines travelling in the same direction at €2.30 for zones AB; €2.70 for zones BC, and €3.00 for zones ABC.
  • 4-trip ticket – only valid for zones AB at €8.20
  • Ticket for short journeys (Kurzstrecke) – valid for up to three stops on S-Bahn and U-Bahn, and six stops on tram and bus at €1.40

S-Bahn and subway

Thanks to Berlin's railway network, you will not only be able to do your daily errands, but you will also be able to visit the city's various tourist attractions such as its natural and zoological parks, museums, etc. The Berlin subway will allow you to travel through the city more rapidly. It is ideal for traveling to work and back home safely. The subway generally operates from 4am to 1am the next day during week days and non-stop during the weekend. You can even take your bike on board. Additional fares amounting to € 1.50 in zones A and B will apply. Tickets can be purchased at train and subway stations.

 Good to know:

Children between 6-14 years old are eligible for discounted rates and those under the age of 6 do not need a ticket to travel, provided they are accompanied by their parents.

Berlin Welcome Card

If you are on holidays in Berlin, you can purchase the Berlin Welcome Card which will allow you to make an unlimited number of trips through the city. You will also be eligible to up to 50% discounts on several tourist attractions.

Trams

About 20 tramlines run through Berlin, mainly in eastern Berlin, including Hackeschermarkt and Alexanderplatz. The tram network plan is available at BVG kiosks and on its website. Note that trams run regularly, however, less frequently than the subway. Metrotram lines run more often than regular trams.

Travelling by bus

The Berlin bus network operates on a 24/7 basis. Night buses can easily be spotted thanks to the "N" preceding the line number, meaning Nachtbus. Night rates are similar to those applied during the day. Rapid buses, known as Expressbus whose line numbers are preceded by an "X" are also available on weekdays. Metrobuses run more often than regular bus lines.

Note that bus tickets should be purchased in advance at the station counters available, because the ticket has to be presented to the driver when you are boarding the bus.

 Good to know:

Lines 100 and 200 are known to be tourist routes. By choosing these, you will be able to travel through the entire city up to the Alexanderplatz and Zoologischer Garten.

  Attention:

The absence of a ticket on board is liable to a fine of a minimum of €60.

Taxi services in Berlin

Like most German cities, Berlin also has its own taxi network. Berlin's taxis are metered and rates are fixed in advance, but these remain affordable. In general, a 2km trip can cost around €5. To date, night rates do not apply in Berlin.

Rent a car

Before renting a car in Berlin, it is best to learn about traffic regulations and check the problems you may face, such as lack of parking spaces and the presence of trams, etc.. Avoid overtaking a tram at a stop or on the left.

You will have to purchase a green sticker to be allowed to drive through the city. Indeed, Berlin is classified as a green zone since 2008 in order to discourage air pollution.

Various companies also offer car sharing, for example DriveNow, car2go or Flinkster.

Rent a bike

Bikes are considered to be an economical and eco-friendly means of transport in Berlin. These are popular with locals as well as foreigners.

You can use the bike sharing network nextbike at €1 per 30 min or find tourist bike rental companies almost everywhere across the city. Rates generally start from €10 a day.

 Useful links:

Official website of the city of Berlin www.stadtentwicklung.berlin.de
Berlin Public Transport https://www.berlin.de/en/public-transportation/
OAG shop.bvg.de
S-Bahn Berlin www.s-bahn-berlin.de
VBB www.vbb.de\
Nextbike bike sharing http://www.nextbike.de/en/berlin/information/

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.
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