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.
2hr 5min - 2hr 8min (approx)
1 - 2 x trains per hour
ShowMeTheJourney earns a small commission on Trainline ticket sales. It can be a particularly good option for: Comparing different train services; Booking international journeys with connections; Travelling between the UK to destinations beyond Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris - and for international travellers who don't reside in western Europe.
DB is the national railway operator in Germany, so its website can be used for booking journeys by German express trains; the ICE and IC trains and it doesn't charge booking fees.
It also sells tickets for journeys by direct trains on all international routes from Germany regardless of whether DB is operating the train service.
It also sells an extensive range of end-to-end journeys which involve making connections both within Germany and in neighboring countries, but journeys between Germany and Britain cannot be booked on DB.
On journeys within Germany and on most international journeys from and to Germany on trains operated by DB:
When booking both types of the discounted 'Sparpreis' tickets seat reservations are an optional extra, so need to be added when booking if you want an assigned seat(s).
Omio is an online ticket agency which offers tickets for rail journeys in France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy and Spain.
The three key advantages of using Omio are
The disadvantage of booking with Omio is that it often adds a booking fee to the final price; therefore when it does so without offering a price advantage, SMTJ doesn't tend to offer Omio as a booking option.
Happy Rail is a Netherlands rail ticket agency which sells tickets for both national and international journeys within a range of countries including Belgium France, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland.
HappyRail doesn't charge booking fees in the conventional sense, but if you're not Dutch you can expect to pay additional transaction fees, which will be added to the total cost.
That's because the most common form of online payment used in The Netherlands is 'iDEAL' and HappyRail doesn't charge a transaction fee for 'iDEAL' payments, but only Dutch residents can sign up to 'iDEAL'.
Other forms of payment include Visa debit cards will incur a fee.
Munchen (ICE 3 or ICE 4 trains)
Wien (ICE-T trains)
All trains also call at: Wurzburg
There are also IC trains between Frankfurt and Nurnberg, but DB doesn't seemingly sell tickets for these trains online.
After Aschaffenburg comes the slowest, but most scenic part of the trip when the railway winds through the valleys.
The train will cross the River Main and then after a tunnel it will be on a high speed line for less than 15 minutes, but there are some nice views as the train crosses some long viaducts between yet more long tunnels.
On departure from Wurzburg the train will be back on a conventional railway until it arrives in Nurnberg.
Book early and save:** Yes
Online bookings usually open: up to 6 months ahead of the travel date - but this period of time is shorter when looking up journeys in August to October.
A choice of tickets
Four types of tickets are available:
Two types of discounted tickets, which will be cheaper the further ahead you book - Sparpreis and Super Sparpreis
Two types of non-discounted ticket - Flexpreis Aktion and Flexpreis
A key difference between these types of tickets is refunds:
...the other key difference is that both types of Flexpreis tickets live up to their name, as they can be used on any departure on your travel date - in contrast, both types of Sparpreis tickets are only valid on the specific departures selected when booking,
Note that none of the tickets can be exchanged to a different departure.
There's no need for this to be available for both types of Flexpreis tickets, as they aren't train departure specific.
If you book a Sparpreis ticket and want to travel by a different departure you can refund it and then use the travel voucher towards the cost of the new booking.
Super Sparpreis tickets can't be exchanged or refunded.
When travelling to and from the major cities, the Sparpreis, Flexpreis Aktion and Flexpreis tickets also include 'City tickets', which can be used on public transport between locations in the city centres of Frankfurt /Nurnberg and the stations where the trains depart and arrive.
Seat reservations are optional on ICE trains for journeys within Germany - take note if you will be using a rail pass.
They cost €4.90 when travelling in 2nd Class and €5.90 when travelling in 1st class.
Specific seats can be selected from seating plans - you don't have to accept the seat(s) that you will be automatically offered.
They are included within the cost of booking 1st class Flexpreis tickets and both 1st and 2nd class Flexpreis Plus tickets.
Though despite seats being automatically assigned when booking these three types of ticket - and these tickets being valid on any departure, you will need to pay to re-book the reservations, if you subsequently decide to travel on an alternative train.
So because you won't save by booking these types of tickets in advance, it can be a good idea to wait until you are sure when you will want to travel.
When booking Super Sparpreis, Sparpreis and 2nd class Flexpreis tickets, you have the option of purchasing seat reservations later.
It can be worth re-looking up a journey a week or two ahead of travel, because the DB website will indicate how busy a departure will be.
1st Class tickets
No matter what type of ticket booked, if you choose to travel 1st class, you will have access to the same seating areas on the train, ICE trains do not have Business or Executive lounges.
Though only those who have booked 1st class Flexpreis or Flexpreis Plus tickets can access the DB Lounges at the major stations.
Booking on the DB website
You can find these trains more easily by making a proactive selection of 'Direct Trains Only'.
Or to see all the combinations of trains and journey options, some of which may be cheaper, take off the 'fastest connections' default.
Trains departing at different times can be cheaper than others leaving on the same day, so if you can be flexible with your departure time use the 'best prices' tool - at the top right on the list of journey options.
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This is one of more than 100 train travel guides available on ShowMeTheJourney, which will make it easier to take the train journeys you want or need to make. As always, all images were captured on trips taken by ShowMeTheJourney.