Best Means of Travel to Landstuhl, Germany

Will appreciate any suggestions about the best (and most economical) means of reaching Landstuhl, Germany. My husband will be getting leave soon, and we are trying to make plans to meet in Landstuhl for a few days. I will be flying from South Carolina...recommendations about the closest airport and transportation from there to Landstuhl will be appreciated. I've not traveled overseas before.
Thanks!

Posted by Rick
Chicago, IL, USA
468 posts

Your best bet would be to fly into Frankfurt, Germany and take the train from Frankfurt to Landstuhl. As to getting from SC to Frankfurt, use one of the major search engines, such as Expedia, Orbitz, or Travelocity. For your starting point, use the closest large city. If you have several decently sized cities near you, try using each of them to see if there are any differences in price and/or schedule. You may have to fly to a major hub first, such as Atlanta, Newark, or New York.

You mention that you've never travelled overseas before. Do you have a passport? If not, you may need to pay extra for expedited service. Go here for passport info: http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html.

As to getting from the airport in Frankfurt to Landstuhl, I'll add another post tonight, when I've got a little more time to get you the exact details.

Posted by Bob
Gettysburg, PA
1364 posts

Try Icelandair. They fly into Luxenbourg and have a free shuttle bus over to Frankfurt.

Posted by Rick
Chicago, IL, USA
468 posts

To get from the airport to the main train station (Hauptbahnhof, commonly abbreviated as "Hbf", not to be confused with Hauptwache), see http://www.rmv.de/coremedia/generator/RMV/AutoCo/Flugzeug/FlughafenFrankfurt/inhalt_3Den.html. Scroll down to the section titled "From the airport to Frankfurt city". As the article says, you'll want to purchase an "Einzelfahrt Frankfurt" ticket and take either the S8 or S9 commuter train in to the Hauptbahnhof. At the Hauptbahnhof, you'll want to exit the train, then go upstairs to the train station. There, you can catch a train from Frankfurt to Landstuhl.

To research tickets from Frankfurt to Landstuhl, go to http://www.bahn.de/international/view/en/index.shtml.
Specify Frankfurt Am Main in the "from:" box, Landstuhl Bahnhof in the "to:" box. For every route, there is at least one change of trains. Click on the Station/Stop column to see where you would have to change trains. Continued.

Posted by Rick
Chicago, IL, USA
468 posts

Given that flights can be delayed, and that the trains from Frankfurt to Landstuhl are all ones upon which you can't get a resevation for anyways, I would suggest just waiting until you get to the Frankfurt Hauptbahnhof to purchase a ticket. But you can print out some of the itineraries ahead of time, so you'll have an idea of some of your options. (A ticket allows you on the train, whereas a reservation reserves you a specific seat on a specific run of that train. Some high-speed trains, such as the TGV in France, require a reservation,s o the ticket and reservation are rolled into one price. The trains that you'll be riding do not do this.)

FYI, on European trains, you have to carry your own luggage, unlike airlines. So that's a good incentive to pack light. I would also recommend getting Rick's Germany book. It has some great pointers on how to get around using public transportation. You also might want to go to Baden-Baden, not far from Landstuhl. It's in Rick's book.

Posted by George
Baltimore, MD, USA
6 posts

Landstuhl is part of the Kaiserslautern Military Community, the largest US community in Europe. Reading between the lines I assume your husband is on active duty and you have a dependent's ID card. There is a shuttle bus that runs from the Frankfurt Airport to the Kaiserslautern area and costs around 50 dollars - no changing, no wondering where you are. This would provide the best connection.

Posted by Rick
Chicago, IL, USA
468 posts

I agree with George. If you can get a direct bus, that would be MUCH easier than my route.

Posted by Tom
Hüttenfeld, Hessen, Germany
9132 posts

For activities once you arrive, check the USO offices. There's one in the hospital and at the air terminal across the valley the Ramstein base. They run all kinds of great, cheap tours locally and some more distant.

Posted by martha
San Antonio, Tx, USA
1 posts

I too will be traveling to Landstuhl and would appreciate information on best and easiest (and most economical) means of reaching Landstuhl, Germany. I heard about a shuttle bus departing from Frankfurt Airport to Kaiserslautern. How do I obtain this information.

Posted by Tim
Minneapolis, MN, USA
8646 posts

Rick,

According to the timetables at www.bahn.de, a person doesn't need to go into Frankfurt. One can take a train from the airport to Mannheim and change there to a train to Landstuhl. Depending upon the time of day, there might be an additional connection at Kaiserslautern between Mannheim and Landstuhl.