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St. Goar to Frankfort airport for 10 am flight

Is it doable to get to the Frankfurt airport for a 10 am flight to the US from St. Goar that same morning?
It looks like the earliest train is at 6 am. Would we be cutting it too close? Would there be a close Rhine location so we wouldn't have to spend the night at an airport hotel?

Posted by
17724 posts

I'll assume you mean on a workday, not a Sat or Sun, because weekends and holidays have different schedules.

For a workday in April, I see a direct RE leaving St Goar at 6:42 AM and getting to FRA Regionalbahnhof at 8:06. That gives you just under two hours at the airport. That is probably enough time, but cuts it a little close for my comfort. There is another train, an MRB (Regional Bahn) leaving St. Goar at 6:20, changing at Oberwesel a few minutes later, and getting to the Regionalbahnhof at 7:34. That's almost 2½ hours. I've made my flight with plenty of time to spare arriving 2½ hour early.

However, that's flying Lufthansa (or maybe a Star Alliance partner) leaving out of Terminal 1. Leaving from Terminal 2 might take some more time. The Regionalbahnhof is right under the building across the access road from Terminal 2, so you just come up the escalator and you are in the Departure Hall.

Some years ago, I had a flight out on NorthWest (shows how long ago), and it left from Terminal 2. The airline said to get there 3 hours early. I got to the airport "on time", but it took me another 15 - 20 min to get to the check-in desk in Terminal 2. There was a very long line and only two people to check in a 747, and they had to stop checking in economy passengers whenever a 1st class passenger wanted to check in. It took me almost 2 hours to get through that line, and then it was a rush to get to the plane, through outgoing immigration and security, which was lighter at the time. But, after I arrived, almost no one arrived after me, so I could have been there only 1½ hrs early and still made it.

If you do want to stay closer to the airport, I would recommend Hotel Königshof in Mainz. I've stayed there. It's nice enough, reasonable priced, has a great breakfast, and is right across the street from the Mainz Hbf, which is on your way from St. Goar to the airport. The are S-Bahn to the airport every 30 minutes. One leaves Mainz at 7:02 and gets to the airport at 7:29. There are also more connections using regional trains.

Posted by
125 posts

Our flight is on Lufthansa but it is a sat. morning in late Sept.

Thanks for the most valuable information. Is the town you mentioned a nice place to spend the evening?

Posted by
17724 posts

A Saturday does complicate things a little. There is just that connection from St. Goar arriving at the Regionalbahnhof just about 8. I've never cut it that close for a flight leaving FRA, but it's probably possible, if you know exactly where you are going.

Besides the Mainz option, there is also Boppard. It's a larger town than St. Goar, with a few more restaurants. It's down (NW) the Rhein from St. Goar (farther from FRA), but a bigger station (more trains). There is a 5:43 InterCity train that gets to FRA at 7:01. That would give you plenty of time (in fact, you'll probably curse be for not telling you to arrive later).

I've never stayed in Bad Kreuznach, but it's supposed to be nice. There is an RE leaving Bad Kreuznach at 6:31, getting to FRA at 7:20. To get from St. Goar to Bad Kreuznach, go to Bingen Hbf (not Stadt) and connect there.

Nice? Mainz? Not exactly, especially around the train station. Not unsafe, but uninteresting. As I remember, the last time I was there, your choices for dinner were an Italian restaurant around the corner, a Chinese restaurant nearby, and a Döner Kabob kiosk down the street. Of course, it was a Sunday night, and all of the food places in the Hbf were closed. If you are just looking for a place to spend the night without spending an arm and a leg, it's definitely worth it, but don't plan on an exciting evening.

On the other hand, Mainz is only an hour from St. Goar. Check out around noon, go to Mainz and check in to Könighof, then go 50 min to Rüdesheim, see the town, stay there for dinner, come back to Königshof in the evening, and retire early, since you are still getting up fairly early to get to the airport. You can do all of Saturday's travel with a Rheinland-Pfalz-Ticket, 27€ for two people. I'm not sure what time the hotel serves breakfast, but if you can hit the buffet before leaving, it is definitely worth it. In addition to the customary German breakfast buffet, they have an entire table with traditional American breakfast (real bacon, scrambled eggs, etc).

Posted by
17724 posts

Apparently the ambiance around Königshof has improved a little since I was last there. Looking at Google maps, there is now a Spanish restaurant in front of the Hbf plus a number of pubs or nightclubs.

Posted by
125 posts

Good information, Lee. Coloradoans help each other out, right? This info helps me so much. Thank you, thank you!

Posted by
1261 posts

We also stayed at the Königshof. That block is not great but I really liked Mainz. Ask for a room in the back as there is some street noise.

http://mcchelsea.smugmug.com/Germany-2009/Mainz-2009/8285709_jkCdVw

We especially liked the Stephanskirche with the Chagall stained glass windows. The cathedral was unfortunately closed the 2 days that we were there. Augustiner Keller was a decent restaurant. We also liked the Landesmuseum - everything from art deco to Roman art.

Posted by
7689 posts

It doesn't have to be the Königshof in Mainz. This would kind of be my last choice of hotels if I could pick and choose from all of the hotels that are located in this region. There are plenty of lovely hotels in Mainz or Wiesbaden, as well as in Frankfurt.

The airport is only 11 min. away from Frankfurt, with trains running every 15 min. You could have a leisurely breakfast before heading to the airport, and stay a pretty B&B in the residential neighborhood of the Westend in Frankfurt.
http://www.hotelbeethoven.de/about.htm
http://www.dirazi.de/index1.html
http://www.hotel-goelz.de/
http://www.hotelflorentina.de/?L=2

Posted by
5000 posts

Mainz is a good spot to be on a pre-flight Saturday morning. The Königshof and the other hotels near the main station are probably fine, but that part of town is somewhat short on charm. I would consider instead staying closer to the much more attractive old town where you can amble around Mainz' market square and the pleasant pedestrians-only streets near the Dom like Augustinerstrasse:

View from Augustinerstrasse toward the Dom in background
The Dom

Rooms are scarce right in this zone but the Ibis Hotel (budget level) is pretty close (a walk of several blocks along the fairly tame Neutorstrasse, which quickly turns into the pedestrianized Augustinerstrasse.) The Ibis is also just one block from a secondary train station (called Mainz Römisches Theater - it sends off direct trains to FRA - the same S-Bahn trains that leave Mainz' main station for FRA stop here - so you are about 3 minutes closer to FRA from the MRT station.) Trains leave MRT every 30 minutes on Saturday morning at :06 and :36 after the hour.

What you see here is the Roman Theater that has been unearthed right next to the MRT train platforms and the Dom in the background:

Roman Theater at MRT station

Posted by
1413 posts

From Bacharach we took a 6:30 train that got us to the airport in plenty of time for our flight which was about the same time as the one you are taking.

Posted by
125 posts

Whoa, I am a bit confused as to what to do. So many options. I do want to feel secure that we can get to the airport without being stressed.....

Posted by
5000 posts

You'll have less stress if you arrive at FRA by DIRECT train - no sense fretting over a train connection or to be hurrying up or down stairs to another platform. And the shorter the ride, the later you have to be at the station. An airport hotel would be most convenient but you don't want one... so on both of the above grounds, Mainz (as long as your hotel is near Mainz Hbf station or Mainz Römisches Theater station) is your best alternative IMO (Frankfurt would make it easy too but Mainz is a lot closer to St. Goar and the other Rhine villages than Frankfurt is.)

Posted by
1261 posts

We stayed our last two nights in Mainz, bought our group ticket (4 of us) the day before we were going to fly out and went to the airport the morning of our departure. We left from the main Mainz train station but I am sure the Romanische Theater works as well. I agree with Russ that either way works. Frankfurt would be quicker and closer, Jo has said that is a snap and I believe her. You have many good choices, you can not lose. Regards, Gary

Posted by
17724 posts

The first time I had an early morning flight out of FRA, I looked for places to stay in Frankfurt but couldn't find a place with what I would call a reasonable price. Then I check Mainz and discovered several hotels right at the Mainz Hbf. I booked one of them (not Königshof) and it was perfectly satisfactory, particularly just for a convenient place to stay the night before. The next time I had an early flight out, I booked the same place. I checked in in the late afternoon the day before. That evening I went up to Frankfurt Hbf just to look around. I found a few hotels near the Hbf but wasn't particularly impressed with the neighborhood - even compared to the area around the Mainz station.

The next morning while I was walking to the Hbf I passed Königshof and thought it looked nice. I took a few pictures so I would remember the name and could check it out online after I returned home. When I looked it up on the web I decided it was better than where I had stayed before.

If I were spending a week in Mainz, I probably wouldn't stay at Königshof, but when all I want is an fairly nice, inexpensive place with good access to FRA, it's ideal. The room was clean and maintained, and the breakfast was very good. I think it is less than a hundred yards across the plaza to the station. BTW, I had a room in front and no problem with noise, but it was a Sunday night.

Note: a double room is 85€ during the week, 77€ on the weekend, including Wifi and breakfast. A single is less.