Buy the Berlin Welcome Card or City Tour discount passes for big savings and cheap deals on transportation fares, sightseeing, culture, entertainment, and restaurants.
Visitors to Berlin may save on public transportation tickets, admission fees to popular sights, restaurants, culture, and entertainment by using the Berlin Welcome Card or the Berlin City Tour Card. These two discount passes allow for unlimited travel on Berlin’s comprehensive public transportation system (including buses, trams, trains, and ferries) and discounts of at least 25% on city tours, boat cruises, museum and top sightseeing sites admission fees, discounts on restaurant meals, and entertainment. Buy Berlin Welcome Cards online.
Save with the Berlin Welcome Card and the Berlin City Tour Card
For a city with over 30 different kinds of public transportation tickets, having a single discount card for tourists was always going to be too simple. Berlin thus has two major official tourist discount passes: the Berlin Welcome Card and the Berlin City Tour Card. These two tourist discount passes are very similar and similarly priced but the slightly more expensive Berlin Welcome Card generally gives the best value.
Both standard Berlin discount cards include unlimited use of public transportation and give discounts to various sights, restaurants, tours, and entertainment. Both cards are available with validities of 48 hours, 72 hours, or four to six days. (Note that the four to six days cards expire at midnight on the final day, irrespective of what hour it was originally validated.)
The Berlin City Tour Cards and the Berlin Welcome Card may be bought with transportation for either zone AB or ABC. The ABC card is sometimes referred to as Berlin-Potsdam as it includes transportation to and discounts on sights in Potsdam and Oranienburg, as well as transportation to Berlin-Brandenburg Airport (BER). The Berlin Welcome Card is also available as a basic option without transportation included.
Families Save with the Discount Cards in Berlin
In contrast to previous policy, families may now save with both the AB and ABC zone cards. Up to three children aged 6 to 14 may travel for free with an adult using a Berlin Welcome Card. Discounts are also applied for these children at many sights.
Children under six (as well as one dog per cardholder) travel for free with any adult tickets on Berlin public transportation.
Differences between the Berlin Welcome and City Tour Cards
The main differences between the Berlin City Tour Card and the Berlin Welcome Card are that the Welcome Card gives discounts to over 180 partners and the City Tour Card at just over 70. The Welcome Card comes with a 150-page guidebook while the City Tour Card comes with a fold-out brochure and map. Anyone may download the Welcome Card booklet for free and it is worth doing even if not buying the card itself.
The standard Welcome Card is marginally more expensive than the City Tour Card but is valid at many more attractions and often gives bigger discounts. Most visitors will probably find the best deal by using the Berlin Welcome Card.
The special and very popular Berlin Welcome Card Museum Insel is valid for 72 h and adds admission to the five museums on Museum Island. (Free time-slot reservations are still required for visiting the Neues Museum and Pergamonmuseum.)
Buying the Berlin City Tour Card & Berlin Welcome Card
The Berlin City Tour Card with a foldout brochure and map is available from BVG (Berlin bus) and S-Bahn ticket offices as well as around 300 hotels in Berlin. If the ticket is bought from vending machines or from bus drivers, the brochure can be collected later from a BVG or S-Bahn ticket office. It is also sold online but must usually be exchanged in Berlin for a paper ticket, or request an email a print-at-home option.
The Berlin Welcome Card is generally available from the same venues as well as from the Berlin Tourist Information Offices and DB German Railways ticket windows. The five-day Berlin Welcome Card cannot be bought on buses or from vending machines. The cards are also sold online but a paper printout is usually required and not just a mobile phone screenshot.
The Welcome Card can conveniently also be bought on arrival in Berlin at:
- Berlin Hauptbahnhof (Main Train Station) from the Berlin Info Store (Ground Level, Europa Platz exit);
- Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER): Welcome Center tourist information office in Terminal 1, Level E0;
- Berlin Tourist Info Centers in the Humboldt Forum or at the Brandenburg Gate
Discounts Offered by the Berlin Welcome & City Tour Cards
The largest portions of the price of these tourist passes are for public transportation. However, further savings can be significant too. Discounts of at least 25% are given on admission ticket prices at many museums including the DDR, German History, German Technology, Wall, and Berlin Jewish Museum.
Discount pass holders generally also save at least 25% on city sightseeing bus tours of Berlin and cruises on the Spree River and other Berlin waterways. Similar discounts are granted to most walking and cycling tours including the very popular English Berlin Walks and Berlin on Bike tours. The biggest single discounts are for theatre shows but it may be difficult to actually cash in on these discounts as the tickets may usually only be bought on the same day or a few days in advance.
The Berlin Welcome Card and City Tour Card are generally good value for money. The difference between two standard Berlin public transportation day tickets and the 48h tourist discount cards can easily be made up by the savings offered on a single admission to Madame Tussauds Berlin, or a visit to two or three other museums. See also Tips on Public Transportation Tickets in Berlin for more ideas on how to use the buses and trains in Berlin as well as suggested bus routes that pass by Berlin’s top sights.