How to make a train journey from Berlin to Hamburg by train

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Berlin to Hamburg by train

There isn't high speed railway between Berlin and Hamburg as the line has always been engineered for higher than average speeds, but over the years €billions have been spent on improving it, so that trains can spend the majority of the journey travelling at 200 km/h.

Slower than the maximum speed of the ICE trains; which is why the IC and EC trains can come close to matching their journey times.
It's the number of station calls made which has the greater impact on the journey times.
The fastest trains are non-stop between Berlin-Spandau and Hamburg hbf, while other trains make up to three additional calls.

The timetable is arranged so that there is at least once ICE train departure in every hour, with most hours also having an additional ICE or an EC train, or an IC train

Though which type of train you travel by tends to make no difference to the ticket prices; the most popular departure times will be more expensive, irrespective of what train is used.

If you want to travel with a non-folding bicycle you will need to take the IC or EC trains, or now the ICE 4 trains, but need to avoid the ICE 1, ICE 2 or ICE 3 trains.

Routes you can take to go from Berlin to Hamburg

When travelling between most cities by train there is only one logical option, though on other journeys there is a choice between different trains or alternative routes. If different options are available you can use the info to decide which is best for you.

Choose one of the following options:

Route Information

Option 1: taking the ICE trains
Travel Time (approx)

1hr 42 min approx



Travel Info

1 or 2 x trains per hour
The number of ICE trains has recently increased on this route.

Route Information

Option 2: taking the IC or EC trains
Travel Time (approx)

2hr 5min (IC/EC trains)



Travel Info

7 x trains per day

Route Information

Option 3: taking the Flix trains
Travel Time (approx)

2hr 5min - 2hr 50min (approx)


Not Every Day

Travel Info
  • Friday = 3 x trains
  • Saturday = 1 x train
  • Sunday = 3 x trains

The timetable

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