Going from Munich to Berlin & then back to Berlin. Should we buy a rail pass or individual tickets? Does a pass cover local routes?

heading to munich this fall. plan on staying in munich for a few days and then heading to berlin. will have to take train make to munich to catch flight to iceland. do you recommend buying a rail pass or individual tickets? does the rail pass allow travel on local routes? we will be staying in munich.
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) July 23, 2013 14:53
    Hi Kristina,

    If you will just be doing a roundtrip between Munich and Berlin, your most economical option would be to purchase a German Rail Pass instead of regular point-to-point tickets. You can purchase the German Rail Pass here: http://www.raileurope.com/rail-tickets-passes/german-rail-pass/index.html .

    If there will be 2 or more passengers traveling together at all times, then you can purchase this pass at the 'Twin' rate. Once you enter the number of passengers traveling for this pass, you would just click 'Yes' where it says 'Special prices are offered for 2 or more travelers. Is everyone in your party traveling together at all times?', and you would then be quoted the Twin rate.

    In addition to the pass, reservations would be recommended on the trains between Munich and Berlin (high-speed 'InterCity Express' trains). After you add the pass to your 'Itinerary' (shopping cart), you would click 'Add A Trip' to include your reservations. On the next screen, you would just enter the cities under where it says 'Get Train Tickets or Reservations' and indicate that you'll be traveling with a rail pass where it says 'Are you traveling with a rail pass?'. Otherwise, to check reservation costs and schedules beforehand, you would click on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our actual homepage. Generally, trains in Germany can only be reserved within 90 days of an intended date of departure. If your intended travel falls outside of this time frame, you would just enter a date within the next 90 days to get an idea of the reservation cost and view schedules when searching a trip on our website.

    In general, most rail passes do not cover subways or metro systems within cities in Europe. However, any rail pass that includes Germany will cover the S-Bahn trains that operate within major German cities, with the exception of certain S-Bahn lines in Berlin. In Berlin, a pass that includes Germany is only valid to cover travel on the main S-Bahn line that cuts east-west across the city and the S-Bahn line that cuts north-south (these two lines intersect at the Hbf station in the heart of Berlin). The S-Bahn lines throughout Berlin that feed into these two lines are the ones that are not covered by any rail pass. Rail passes that include Germany do not cover the 'U-Bahn' subway trains in German cities.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) August 22, 2013 18:58
      In Berlin, there are only two S-Bahn routes that would be covered with a German Rail Pass.

      The S-Bahn lines in Berlin that are covered are as follows:

      1.) The main S-Bahn lines that cut east-west across the city along the corridor between the Zoologischer Garten station, the Hbf (Hauptbahnhof) station, the Friedrichstrasse station, the Ostbahnhof station, and the Lichtenberg station. This includes S5, S7, and S75, but only between Zoologischer Garten and Lichtenberg.

      2.) The S-Bahn lines that run north-south between the Gesundbrunnen and the Südkreuz station. These lines intersect with the east-west line mentioned above at Friedrichstrasse. These lines include S2, S25, and S1 (though S1 doesn't go all the way to Südkreuz, so it would only be valid up to Friedrichstrasse). On these lines, the pass would not be valid to any stop north of Gesundbrunnen and any stop south of Südkreuz.

      The S-Bahn lines throughout Berlin that feed into the lines mentioned above are the ones that would not be covered with a rail pass. With that said, there are regional trains that run along these same routes, which would be covered by a rail pass.
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