I’m ready to start planning an autumn getaway and will be asking for your sage advice, but before I do a long overdue trip report is due. I visited Germany (and a little of Austria and others) in Aug/Sep 2019 for three weeks. A few general points to establish first.
To get around, I used the 21 day global Interrail pass, which I bought using the youth discount. Before buying, I added up the cost of my intercity journeys using bahn.de to see if it was worth it; they came to about the same. I saved more money using the pass by also accounting for the cost of local trains, and from not having to pay for last minute itinerary changes. I reserved seats on any journeys which took longer than 2.5 hours, at €5 a trip. The pass was easy to use, just write in the destination when you get on the train and the conductor (if there is one) will stamp it. Only once was I asked for ID.
I am a coeliac (gluten free by necessity) and also not a foodie. I was also looking to cut costs by not eating out too often. The result is that I mostly ate supermarket food, as well as fries and sundaes from McDs. So I might not be the best person to ask about restaurant reccs, but I’ll provide where I can remember if asked.
I booked accommodation using HRS, a German website. For the most part I stayed in Motel One’s, a growing German chain of budget hotels. I booked a little late and so I won’t quote prices, but nowadays the base price is about €80 pppn. Very standardised rooms which are usually in central locations. Clean and quiet, no complaints.
The pace I went at is a little faster than people here generally recommend. I agree with them in general, but this was about the right tempo for me.
Another way I tried to cut costs was by not paying into that many things. If I don’t describe the inside of something, it’s because I didn’t go in. That doesn’t mean I think you also shouldn’t. In general, my views are that of someone strolling around the city rather than someone trying to see the best a place has to offer, a mostly surface level and not at all thorough survey. In retrospect, I don’t regret travelling as I did but will probably pay in more in future.