Frankfurt - Cologne trip questions

Jan 15th, 2007, 02:05 PM
  #1  
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Frankfurt - Cologne trip questions

On our way to Greece we have a 10-hour layover in Frankfurt that we were thinking of spending in Mainz.

On our way back, we arrive at the Frankfurt airport at 1:15 pm on Monday 10/1 and leave the Frankfurt airport at 11:20 on Tuesday 10/2. Since we would have already been in Mainz and since Frankfurt doesn't look to be the most interesting place in Germany, we were thinking of going to Cologne for the night.

When we arrive in Frankfurt on 10/1 we will need to collect our bags and put them in the airport baggage storage. We would only take our carry-on bags with us to Cologne.

There is a train at 2:45 pm on Monday from the Frankfurt airport to Cologne that takes about an hour, arriving at 4:05 pm (there is also a 3:10 pm train, arriving 4:24 pm). Likewise there is a 7:35 am on Tuesday train from Cologne to the Frankfurt airport, arriving at 8:48 am.

Here are my questions:
1. Since it is too early to buy tickets, the website is not showing me the airport-Cologne train fare for the ICE. Does anyone know the cost?

2. Is there any reason to buy these tickets in advance? In other words, if we don't buy the tickets in advance, is there a likelihood that we wouldn't be able to take the train?

3. I suspect that the train we would need to take on 10/2 is right in the middle of rush hour. Is there any reason this may cause us problems in getting back the airport on time?

4. On paper the schedule I've outlined above seems realistic. But then again, I've never been to this area of the world. Is there any reason to believe my proposed schedule will be problematic?

5. We will be relaxed and rested when we arrive in Frankfurt. Even so, are we being too ambitious in planning a trip to Cologne for what essentially will be one evening? Would experienced travellers to this area advise that we simply spend the afternoon and evening in Frankfurt instead of jaunting off to Cologne?
Eleni is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 07:23 AM
  #2  
 
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Eleni,

<< 1. Since it is too early to buy tickets, the website is not showing me the airport-Cologne train fare for the ICE. Does anyone know the cost? >>

The Frankfurt airport to Cologne ICE fare is slightly less than 100 euros round-trip.

<< 2. Is there any reason to buy these tickets in advance? In other words, if we don't buy the tickets in advance, is there a likelihood that we wouldn't be able to take the train? >>

You don't have to buy the tickets in advance as you won't get any early-booking discount on this route.

<< 3. I suspect that the train we would need to take on 10/2 is right in the middle of rush hour. Is there any reason this may cause us problems in getting back the airport on time? >>

Yes, it will be rush hour. But, I don't think there will be problems. If you want, you can pay 3.50 euros and reserve a seat on this particular train. Otherwise, you may or may not get a seat.

<< 4. On paper the schedule I've outlined above seems realistic. But then again, I've never been to this area of the world. Is there any reason to believe my proposed schedule will be problematic? >>

Your proposed schedule is a bit rushed, but not problematic per se.

<< 5. We will be relaxed and rested when we arrive in Frankfurt. Even so, are we being too ambitious in planning a trip to Cologne for what essentially will be one evening? Would experienced travellers to this area advise that we simply spend the afternoon and evening in Frankfurt instead of jaunting off to Cologne? >>

To me, spending 100 euros to have less than 24 hours in Cologne is not worth it. There is a cheaper train, but it takes 2 hours, I believe. I find Cologne more interesting than Frankfurt as well, but with such limited amount of time, maybe it is better to stay in Frankfurt and do a two-hour city tour and have a nice dinner.
ngodeia is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 08:59 AM
  #3  
 
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Have you ever been to Bamberg?

Personally, I wouldn't spend the time or money to rush through Cologne. Why not explore some place closer and less complicated? Bamberg is a beautiful little town. The beer ain't bad either!
mkdiebold is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 09:12 AM
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Bamberg is undoubtedly nice, but NOT close enough for a 10 hours layover!!!
altamiro is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 10:16 AM
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Personally, I would spend the time in Frankfurt. There is more money spent on the arts in Frankfurt than anyplace in Germany.

I enjoyed my visit to the Historic Museum (might be closed on Monday) as well as a stroll along the Main river and eating in one of the apple wine taverns.
Bird is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 04:59 PM
  #6  
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ngodeia, thank you VERY much for your response, it was extremely helpful. And, yes, the cost of going to Cologne is a deal-breaker for me, so looks like we will be staying in Frankfurt!

Altamiro, our first layover is 10 hours, our second layover is overnight. That is when we had intended to go to Cologne.

Before I even start thinking about Bamberg, I'm curious to know the fare between there and the Frankfurt airport! Does anyone know??

Thanks for the suggestions, Bird.
Eleni is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 10:29 PM
  #7  
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Never mind about the fare from Frankfurt to Bamberg. The trip takes too long to make it worthwhile. Guess we'll be overnighting in Frankfurt.
Now to find a nice hotel and a fabulous place to eat dinner!
Eleni is offline  
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