The Quer-durchs-Land Ticket is a day ticket allowing for unlimited travel on any regional train of Deutsche Bahn in Germany. Small groups save the most.
The cheap Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket (Day Ticket for Germany) is one of Deutsche Bahn’s greatest savings deals. The ticket is valid for solo travelers or small groups of up to five traveling together using only local and regional trains in Germany. It may be used on weekdays from 9 am until 3 am the following day, or all day weekends. It is a great deal for saving on railway fares in Germany, especially when traveling only short distances or visiting sights in towns without high-speed trains. The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket has a base fare of €42 for the first traveler with each additional traveler up to five adding €7. It is best bought online from German Railways or at station vending machines. If traveling in a single German state, a Länder Ticket is usually better value.
Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket works great in German but is harder to translate into English. Literally, it means “across through the country”. It tries to convey the message that is valid throughout Germany and that it is not necessary to take the shortest, fastest, or most direct route while traveling. In English, it is now referred to as the less poetic but easier to understand Day Ticket for Germany.
Save with the Cheap Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket
The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket is remarkably cheap and thus not surprisingly comes with special travel restrictions. The most important include:
- The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket may only be used on weekdays after 9 am (weekends and national holidays from midnight) and is valid up to 3 am the following morning.
- The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket may only be used on local regional trains with the letters IRE, RE, RB, or S in the train name. It is also valid on most private railways which operate on regular routes, i.e. not special holiday or excursion routes. (It is NOT valid on U-Bahn trains, trams, or city buses!)
- The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket is only available for travel in second class.
- The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket is available for solo travelers or for a group of up to five passengers traveling together. The group composition may not be altered and names have to be entered on the ticket prior to commencement of the journey. (Group members may join at later stations / get off earlier but all the correct names must be entered before the first journey starts.)
- Up to three children aged 6 to 14 may be added for free to any Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket. A fourth child will count and pay as an additional passenger. Children under 6 travel for free. The old family rule of own children is no longer relevant.
Cheap Quer-Durchs-Land vs Cheaper Länder-Tickets
- Länder-Tickets are cheaper but have geographical restrictions while the Quer-durchs-Land-Tickets are valid throughout Germany.
- The Quer-durchs-Land Tickets are usually not valid on city buses, trams, and U-Bahn trains while the Länder-Tickets are generally accepted on all public transportation in cities and larger towns.
- Länder-Tickets are also available in first-class versions while the Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket are limited to second class.
- A few states have even cheaper Länder-Tickets Nacht for night travel.
- Most metropolitan areas, and some rural regions, have even cheaper tickets covering the specific geographical area.
The previous Schönes-Wochenende-Ticket (Happy Weekend Ticket) was canceled in June 2019. The Quer-Durchs-Land Ticket offers the same benefits (but is, of course, a few euro more expensive)!
Buying the Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket
The Quer-durchs-Land-Ticket, when bought online or from ticket machines, is €42 for the first passenger and then add €7 for each additional traveler up to a maximum of five (€70). Additional passengers cannot be added after purchase and names must be entered in ink before the first journey commences.
At station ticket counters, German train tickets are usually €2 more expensive. Train tickets cannot be bought on German trains — failure to buy a ticket prior to boarding will result in heavy fines per person.
In many areas, bicycles are transported for free on trains. In others, each bicycle requires a €5 Fahrradticket (Bicycle Ticket), which allows unlimited transportation on all local trains for the day.
Small dogs travel for free if inside a transportation container, otherwise, a dog counts as a person. Dogs do not qualify for free travel under the “children” rule and must be counted as an adult passenger, enter Hund (dog) rather than the name of the animal on the ticket.
The Quer-durchs-Land Tickets offer great savings over regular train fares provided only local trains are used. The Länder-Tickets are even better saving deals for travel in smaller areas. Deutsche Bahn has numerous further discount fares available on high-speed, long-distance trains as well while non-resident can also get great value out of the German Rail Pass.