Salzburg to München / Munich by train

How to take the rail journey from Salzburg to Munchen/Munich

Salzburg is one of the closest major cities to Munich, hence a comparatively frequent service of two trains per hour being available on this route.

One of these trains is a faster express service, on which seat reservations and advance discounted tickets will be available; though multiple different types of trains are used for these faster services.
The other hourly service is a slightly slower regional train, on which tickets won't cost any more when booking last minute at the station.
This regional service is operated by Meridian.

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Routes

Option 1: taking the express trains

Travel Information

Final Destination:
Munchen Hbf (Railjets)
Frankfurt or other (EC trains)

During the day the timetable is typically arranged so that departures in the even hours are the EC trains and those in the odd hours are the Railjet trains.

Connect in Munchen Hbf for destinations not served by direct trains from Salzburg including Berlin, Hamburg, Leipzig and Nurnberg.

1 x train per hour

Tickets

Book early and save: Yes

Online bookings usually open: 6 months ahead of the travel date

The Railjet trains are the fastest and they can be cheapest if the most heavily discounted, 'Sparscheine' tickets are still available when you look up a journey
The EC trains tend to be around 14 mins slower than the Railjets, but can be cheapest if the most heavily discounted tickets for the Railjets have sold out)

If the discounted tickets for the Railjets and EC trains have sold out, those alternative regional trains become the cheapest option.
So they will be usually be the cheapest option if you will be buying tickets last minute at the station.
They also depart hourly.

Booking discounted tickets in advance:

It can also be particularly worthwhile comparing prices on the national ticket agents for this journey, when the cheapest tickets have sold out on the DB (German railways website), they can still be available on the OBB (Austrian railways website) and vice versa.

Seat reservations:

Reservations are highly recommended for this journey, these trains will already have travellled across Austria before they arrive in Salzburg.
If you book a First Class ticket on DB your seat(s) will be assigned, but OBB will charge a reservation fee for First class tickets; as they are otherwise optional

You will have to pay to add a reservation when booking second class tickets, no matter which ticket agent you use.
Paying an optional €4 reservation fee for a Second Class seat may seem extravagant for such a comparatively short journey, but the Railjet and EC trains can be busy by the time they reach Salzburg,

So if you want to be absolutely certain of a seat, particularly on Mon-Saturday morning departures and on Friday and Sunday evenings, reserving can be worthwhile

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
DB Bahn from €19

DB Bahn Guide

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.

A key feature of DB website worth keeping mind is that it offers 1st class ticket purchasers complimentary seat reservations on journeys both within and to/from Germany.

Seat reservations for daytime in both 1st and 2nd class can also be booked separately from tickets.

OBB from €19

OBB Guide

OBB is the national rail operator and its booking service offers journeys by express trains within Austria, as well as international journeys which don't involve making a connection outside of Austria.

It pays off to book online, as the discounted 'Sparscheine' tickets are only ever made available on the website, and when making international journeys to and from Austria, these Sparscheine tickets tend to be cheaper.
OBB can offer particularly good value for money when travelling with children on international rail journeys, but something to watch out for when travelling between Austria and Germany on daytime trains, is that reservations are an optional extra; but if you book 1st class tickets with the Germany railways website DB, the reservations are complimentary.

OBB often takes a unique approach to its booking path, but a key thing to keep in mind is that the first price you will see for any journey is that of a Second Class seat.
The costs of upgrading to first class, a reservation, or a sleeping cabin etc, is then added to this price.

Trainline from €19

Trainline Guide

Omio from €19

Omio Guide

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

  • it offers prices in multiple currencies
  • it usually offers price comparison with other modes of travel including flights and buses
  • when visiting Europe, you can book journeys in multiple countries in one transaction.

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.

On this journey

Good to Know

Munchen Ost for the city centre and Munchen Flughafen/Airport:

The EC trains) also call at Munchen-Ost, but the Railjets do not.

If the end point of your journey is in central Munchen/Munich, around Marienplatz then the quickest option is to leave a train at Munchen Ost station and connect there into an S-Bahn (local train) to the city centre.
In Munchen/Munich the S-Bahn trains are similar to Metro trains as they cross the city centre in a tunnel.

Isator station, which is within a 10 min walk of the Deutsches Museum is one station hop from Munchen Ost by S-Bahn trains

Trains on Line S8, travelling in the opposite direction, also connect at Munchen Ost to the airport; look for the trains terminating at 'Flughafen/Munchen'.
This connection at Munchen Ost can save around 30 mins when travelling to Munich airport from Innsbruck by train, compared to making the connection at Munchen Hbf.

Option 2: taking the regional trains

Travel Information

Final Destination: Munchen Hbf

All of these trains also call at: Munchen-Ost.

Connect at Munchen Ost into S-Bahn (local) trains to central Munich and the airport.

1 x train per hour

Tickets

Book early and save: No (not on these trains)

For train journeys between Salzburg and Munchen/Munich you can choose between these regional trains, which are operated by Meridian, or the marginally faster express train services.

Depart from Salzburg in the even hours and you can opt to take these Meridian trains or a Railjet train; and in the odd hours you can opt to take these trains or an EC train; which will only be 4 mins faster

When the discounted tickets for the Railjets and EC trains have sold out, these Meridian become the cheapest option.
So they will be usually be the cheapest option if you will be buying tickets last minute at the station.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
DB Bahn *

DB Bahn Guide

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.

A key feature of DB website worth keeping mind is that it offers 1st class ticket purchasers complimentary seat reservations on journeys both within and to/from Germany.

Seat reservations for daytime in both 1st and 2nd class can also be booked separately from tickets.

Trainline from €19

Trainline Guide

On this journey

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