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Train from Munich airport to Berlin

We will travel in September from SFO and land in Munich, we need to get on the train to Berlin after landing. Do I need to purchase train ticket in advance ? it is hard to tell if the flight will be on time. Will be a problem if we buy train ticket after landing ? I know if I buy in advance, the price will be cheaper, but I don't want to miss the train either because the delay of flight. Thanks a lot !

Posted by
32 posts

Just checked for a train on random date in September the regular price from the airport to Berlin, with change at Munic main station is 145€ if you book now it can be as cheap as 55€ to 75€. If you miss your train of course its 75€ non refundable for the cheap one plus 145€.

Right now with all the chaos regarding flights i would not risk it even with one connection that leaves 5 or more hours after the planned landing.

Posted by
3898 posts

I’m flying to Frankfurt & taking the ICE train to Berlin in early October. I bought a 1st class ticket in mid June for €39 that departs 4 hours, 20 minutes after my arrival from JFK. I usually leave a minimum 4 hour cushion.

Posted by
1951 posts

You don't give the arrival time in Munich, but no matter, that's a long train ride ahead of you.

For my money, I would roll the dice and book something now for no more than 2 hours out from landing IF there's a substantial savings in ticket cost. IF the cheaper fare isn't there, then I would wait and purchase on arrival. Unfortunately, this is art, and has nothing to do with science.

Posted by
14030 posts

I've done what you are planning, ie, take the train on arrival day to Berlin, did it from Frankfurt,.... no matter since Munich to Berlin is under four hrs. as is Frankfurt. O f course, it is very doable. I landed shortly before 10 AM at FRA after the 11 hour non-stop flight from SFO, went to Hbf. dilly-dallied for 4 hours or so, had a hot lunch, relaxed, then boarded the ICE direct to Berlin around 2 pm or shortly after. I waited for a departure with no transfer of trains. You want to avoid that with luggage in tow.

Likewise, you can do this departing from Munich. If you are landing in the morning, I would suggest taking a departure 4.5 hours after landing, if you get the discount ticket, which locks you in to time and train, say landing at MUC 10 AM, board the ICE at 15:00...still OK if your flight is delayed 2 hours.

When I did this Frankfurt Hbf to Berlin, I used a rail pass, especially convenient for ICE rides,

It's a matter of weighing the chances of a late arrival at MUC and still catching your train on that train specific discount ticket. Yes, you can buy the ticket after arrival but at a more expensive price and get the seat reservation too.

Posted by
187 posts

Is there any way you can rebook?

Lufthansa has $978 SFO-BER September 11-18 for example

Posted by
18864 posts

In case you haven't already booked your flight, or for future reference and for information to others out there who might be planning a similar rail connection, Lufthansa and a few other airlines offer what are call Rail&Fly ticket, which are tickets that include a flight leg into or out of German airports served by that airline plus rail tickets between those airports and any of over 5000 stations served by German Rail. The rail tickets are valid for any German train on the flight day or the adjacent day. Any trains can be used, even high speed ICE/IC/EC, and the ticket is not tied to any specific train that day. Cost per leg is 30€ 2nd class, 60€ 1st class. Rail&Fly is usually less expensive than Saver Fares and avoids the risk of delayed arrivals.

Posted by
3049 posts

to add on to Lee's comment, I have been able to call and get my Rail & Fly tickets even after booking my Lufthansa plane ticket - you might want to try that provided you're flying with them. If you're going to be making any other significant ICE (high speed rail) trips in Germany, as mentioned above a Germain Rail Pass will give you flexibility and quite likely savings on those tickets as well.

Posted by
18864 posts

I wish the Rail & Fly program were available on Delta.

Don't wish, tell Delta.