Ordering train tickets for Germany

Old Mar 14th, 2015, 02:15 PM
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Ordering train tickets for Germany

Hello!

In June there will be a total of three of us traveling. I know that bahn.de is where we should pre-order train tickets to get a good price before we leave. A couple of questions though...

I was for sure going to order are long train trips off of there Paris to Fussen and then Munich to Berlin.
I'm wondering if I should also order are smaller train trips from there also. Fussen to Munich, and Berlin to Wittenberg.
I thought for our Munich to Dachau trip that we should get an all day small group pass.

Also, I haven't registered for the site yet, is it possible to order tickets for everywhere I need to go and pay for it at one time, or do I have to pay for them individually/each transaction?

Thanks for the help!
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 05:35 PM
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I am also interested in the answers to some of your questions.
I have been told that you can buy your tickets 91 days in advance, and in my own research, I have found that it can make a huge difference in the cost of your tickets - so buy as close as you can to that 91 days - and also the time of day that you travel, again makes a huge difference in cost of tickets.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 05:49 PM
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I suspect you would not need to buy tickets between Fuessen and Munich in advance but you could certainly do so if you really feel that need.

As I remember you can order several tickets and then pay for them all although I have usually only ordered one trip at a time because I always try to order on the first day the tickets are available and unless you are making two different trips on the same day then you will be ordering the different segments on different days. You could wait until all of the segments are available but that's up to you.

The trip out to Dachau from Munich can be done on the local S-Bahn network. Just go to one of the machines and pay for the tickets unless you are going to use the network for several trips on that same day; or you can get the ticket which is good for several days while IN Munich.

Register on the Bahn.de system NOW, establish your username and password and input your payment details. When you are ready to buy you simply sign in and do so.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 05:55 PM
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Whether you order ahead of time has to do with the type of trains and not strictly the distance. If you play with www.bahn.com, you quickly find out that ICE trains offer major advance booking discounts while RE trains don't. For example Berlin HBF -Wittenberg can be done by ICE or RE. The ICE offers advance discount while RE does not. However, for this short route, the difference is not much.
For route with significant ICE/TGV content such as Paris-Fussen, the difference gets more significant, about 49EU discount vs. 99EU last minutes.
If your travel involve significant long distance ICE travels, a German rail pass might make difference. While not as cheap as grabbing the advance fares, it gives you more flexibility involving ICE trains. When I visited Wittenberg from Berlin, I ended up visiting everything I planned to visit in the morning. So rather than heading back to Berlin, I just grabbed an ICE going to Leipzig and spend the rest of the afternoon in Leipzig. Since I was using a German rail pass for that trip, it cost me nothing more to just turn south from Wittenberg.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 05:57 PM
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Fussen to Munich can be done on a bayern ticket daypass - €28 for two adults, €4 per additional up to 5, no advance purchase needed, buy from ticket machine. Details:
http://www.munich-touristinfo.de/Bavaria-Ticket.htm

Lutherstadt Wittenberg is €23.50 each (regular ticket) or €29 for two with a Brandenburg-Berlin ticket (daypass) and 1.25 hours on the direct RE trains. Buy from a ticket machine on the spot.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 06:02 PM
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Keep in mind there are different types of trains in Germany. Some of them are reserved trains that are steeply discounted ahead of time with "saver" fares, but those are non-refundable tickets. If you can commit to a specific train now and the savings are great, maybe best to book early.

Some trains do not have any discounts for booking early. (If no saver fare is listed when you look up the train on bahn.de, there is no discount.) My personal preference is not to book those until near departure, if only not to risk buying a ticket I may not use in case my plans happen to change. You can buy tickets in Germany - online if you have a device (then need to print them out most likely) or at a trains station. You can buy from a human agent at the station ticket window but that costs a little more than buying from one of the ticket machines at the train station, I think. Those ticket machines may not accept "magnetic strip" credit cards. I did use the machines in Germany a few times, but I have a chip-and-PIN credit card.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 06:05 PM
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Regarding the German Rail Pass: note that you can't buy one at every German train station. Only the larger stations sell them. (I tried to buy one in Freiburg im Breisgau - not a tiny train station - and was told I could not buy one there; the nearest station to sell them was in Basel!). You can also buy a rail pass ahead of time and have it sent to you via regular mail I believe.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 06:29 PM
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"Some of them are reserved trains that are steeply discounted ahead of time with "saver" fares, but those are non-refundable tickets."

Saver fares can always be refunded up until the date of travel for a fee - it was around €15 last I checked. But then you will need to buy another ticket, probably at a higher price - or travel with the regional trains only (maybe on a daypass of some sort.)

Brandenburg-Berlin ticket details:
http://www.bahn.com/i/view/overseas/...g-ticket.shtml
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 08:08 PM
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Paris to Fussen starts at 39 euros, the standardpreis you'd pay on the day is actually around 160 euros. Ouch!

Fussen-Munich by regional train is a fixed price 26 euros, no advance booking necessary. Though a Bayern Ticket for 23 euros (+ 5 euros for each extra person travelling together) is the better deal.
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 11:35 PM
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Remember that if you buy your IC tickets in advance (we did, substantial savings), and you print out your ticket as instructed (I think A4 size) you will also need to produce the credit card used to purchase the tickets to the conductor (fraud prevention).
I did the same as Dukey, purchased each train trip as it became available 3 months prior. Otherwise used the Bayern Ticket. I did put in dummy dates while planning my itinerary, to work out best options, the DB website is very user friendly.
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Old Mar 17th, 2015, 02:54 PM
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Thanks so much for all the help!

Slightly off topic, is there a way for me to edit my original post? I realized I had a lot of grammatical errors in it!
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