Berlin Guide / Berlin Metro (U&S -Bahn)

The U-Bahn and S-Bahn transportation system of Berlin is very comprehensive, clean, reliable and affordable. The U-Bahn (underground/subway) system is easy to use if you are used to the subway systems in other major cities such as London or Paris. There are bus and tram lines too. When switching trains sometimes the train you want is just on the next platform and not up a level or down a level, making it even easier to change trains. Both U-Bahn and S-Bahn are one system as far as ticketing is concerned but they are run by different transport authorities. However, you can usually forget about this fact. When you buy tickets, all tickets are valid for all modes of transport within the zone you bought. And if you do a search on the BVG site, the result will include all modes of transport – U-Bahn, S-Bahn, Bus, Tram and Ferry.

U-Bahn (BVG )

U-Bahn Only Map

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Download Map in PDF format

Tickets

One Way Ticket: A single fare ticket is valid for one person and a two hour journey through the city. Note: It is not allowed to travel towards the direction of the starting point. For that purpose a new single-ticket must be purchased.

Fares

Tariff AB: 2.70; reduced: 1.70 Euros
Tariff BC: 3.00; reduced: 2.10 Euro
Tarif ABC: 3.30; reduced: 2.40 Euros

Short Distance Ticket:A short distance ticket costs 1.60 Euro, reduced 1.20 Euro and counts for three stops with S- and U-Bahn. Changing trains is allowed. The ticket is also valid for six stops in buses and trams but without changing vehicles.

Tariff for Children:Small children up to the age of five travel without charge when accompanied. Children from 6 to 14 years can use the reduced tariff for zone AB which costs 1.70 Euro.

U-Bahn network includes 11 lines

Line U1: Uhlandstraße ↔ Warschauer Straße
Line U2: Pankow ↔ Ruhleben
Line U3: Nollendorfplatz ↔ Krumme Lanke
Line U4: Nollendorfplatz ↔ Innsbrucker Platz
Line U5: Alexanderplatz ↔ Hönow
Line U55: Berlin Hauptbahnhof ↔ Brandenburger Tor
Line U6: Alt-Tegel ↔ Alt-Mariendorf
Line U7: Rathaus Spandau ↔ Rudow
Line U8: Wittenau ↔ Hermannstraße
Line U9: Rathaus Steglitz ↔ Osloer Straße
Line U12: S+U Warschauer Str. ↔ Ruhleben

Buying & Validating Tickets

Buying Tickets:Tickets can be purchased at multilingual ticket machines on the platforms of S-and U-Bahn stations. In buses, fares are paid to the bus driver, in trams at machines inside the trains. In larger stations the S-Bahn and BVG provide ticket counters.

Validation of Tickets:Before the journey starts tickets must be validated by stamping them at the yellow or red boxes on the platforms, in buses or trams. In case of inspection, a ticket that is not stamped is invalid.

Fare Evasion in BerlinAnyone caught in public transportion without a valid ticket must pay a higher fare of 40 Euro. Even people who forgot to stamp their ticket must pay the penalty. Note: Ticket inspectors are dressed in civilian clothes and will not make any exceptions for tourists. Those who get caught have to prove their identity otherwise the police will be called.

Weekly, Monthly, Annual & Group Tickets

Day Ticket for one PersonA day ticket allows travelling during the whole day for as many trips as desired. The ticket is valid from its the day of its validation until 3 a.m. the following day and costs 6.90 Euros in tariff zone AB, reduced 4.70 Euro.

Seven-Day-Ticket for one Person. The seven-day-ticket is valid seven consecutive days from the day of its validation. The ticket costs 29.50 Euros. Its validation ends on the seventh day at midnight.

Group Day Ticket for up to five PersonsThe small-group day ticket allowes up to 5 people to use all public transportation services until 3 a.m. the following day. The small-group day ticket costs 16.90 Euros in tariff zone AB.

Bicycles & Dogs

Travelling with Bicycles:In marked cars of the S-Bahn, U-Bahn and tram, bicycles can be carried when sufficient space is available. In some circumstances wheelchair users and prams are treated with priority. An entitlement for taking a bicycle does not exist. Travelling with a bike costs 1.80 Euro in addition to the basic fare in tariff zone AB.

Travelling with Dogs:In all vehicles of Berlin’s public transport dogs have to wear a muzzle and must be leashed. Small dogs up to the size of a house cat are allowed to travel without charge when carried in a pet carrier. Small and large dogs taken on a leash have to pay the reduced fare of 1.70 Euro.

S-Bahn (Deutsche Bahn)

Both S-Bahn & U-Bahn Map

Picture

Download Map in PDF format

Tickets & Timetables

TicketsThe S-Bahn in Berlin is a subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn and is part of the Transport Association Berlin-Brandenburg VBB. Therefore S-Bahn tickets are also valid for buses, the U-Bahn, trams and vice versa. Tickets are available at ticket machines on the platforms or at sales points in the major stations.
More about fares and tickets of public transport in Berlin

Timetables

On weekdays, the S-Bahn starts running around 4.30 a.m. and stops service at 1.30 a.m. Depending on the time of day the trains run in five-, ten- or 20-minute intervals. On weekends, S-Bahn trains run 24 hours, at night in 30 minute intervals.

Important S-Bahn Lines

East-West

TrafficA central axis of Berlin’s transport system is the east-west line of the S-Bahn which connects the stations Westkreuz and Ostkreuz. In peak periods and under ideal conditions the trains S5, S7 and S75 run in three minute intervals. The section between the stations Zoo and Alexanderplatz is especially worth seeing. There, the S-Bahn passes landmarks like the Victory Column, Central Station, Museum Island and Hackescher Markt.

North-South

TrafficImportant north-south-lines of the S-Bahn are the line S1 between Oranienburg and Wannsee, the S2 which runs between Bernau and Blankenfelde, and the S25 that runs between Teltow and Hennigsdorf.

S-Bahn Ring / Ringbahn

The so-called Ringbahn runs around Berlin’s city centre on a route of about 37 kilometres. It stops at 27 stations and needs approximately 60 minutes to circle around the city.

Many stations of the Ringbahn have links to S-and U-Bahn lines running to the city centre or outskirts of Berlin. Important junctions of the Ringbahn are the stations Westkreuz, Gesundbrunnen Ostkreuz and Südkreuz.

The Ringbahn consists of the S-Bahn lines S41 and S42: S41 moves clockwise, the S42 anticlockwise. The trains run throughout the day, during the rush hour in five-minute intervals, in the evening in ten-minute intervals.

The light intensity of the screen display on the new machines has been doubled compared with the machines used so far, and the touch screen sensitivity has been enhanced. Furthermore, higher-performance printers speed up ticket issuance considerably. The latest-generation machines offer the possibility to select one of the following operating languages: German, English, French, Turkish or Spanish.

Our ticket vending machines offer all kinds of tickets (except voucher books, annual passes and subscriptions) for the Berlin-Brandenburg transport association (VBB), selected Deutsche Bahn AG tickets (except the Ostseeticket) and event tickets.

Should you have any questions concerning our ticket vending machines, please call our service hotline on +49 (0) 30 297-43696. In the event of a machine failure, please state the machine number.

No liability accepted for the accuracy of the information given.

TOP TIP

Although there are no ticket barriers, there are frequent checks by undercover transport officers on the transport networks.
So make sure you have validated your ticket or travel card before you travel.

Useful Information

Trains cover most of the city. The only part that is not covered well is the Tiergarten area. The Hansaplatz station will let you off near the Star and Victory Column and then you can walk through the park. The S-Bahn (above ground train) system is also good. There are points where you can change from the Ubahn to the Sbahn to help you get to your destination. At the Yorkstrasse station you must exit the U-Bahn and then just go up the street a very short distance to the S-Bahn station.

There are no ticket takers at the U-Bahn stations. There are machines that will allow you to purchase tickets for the day, a few days or 7 days. The prices vary depending on the number of days or the distance you need to travel.

The city is divided into A B and C zones as you can see from the above map. The 7 day ticket for all three zones was 32 euro. The machines will accept coins and bills of 5 or 10 euro only. The machine also allows you to change language. The honour system rules on the trains. There are no ticket takers and no turnstiles. You must validate your single ride ticket in the machine next to the machine that sold the ticket and be able to produce your ticket when asked for it by undercover, transit staff. If you do not have your ticket, the fine is quite heavy. Tickets for more than a day must be validated only once to show when it ticket became active.

As there are no ticket takers in the stations, if you have a problem, then you must then rely on the kindness of strangers. Many people speak English and also the use of hand gestures and pointing to the station you are trying to get to will help the native Berliner show you which train to take. The most difficult station was Potsdamerplatz. There is a U-Bahn and S-Bahn station there but again there are no personnel there. It is not unusual to find groups of tourists here, apparently lost, looking for help and no one to help them find the train they need. The signage here could definitely be improved.

There is a sign in the ubahn station platforms to tell you which train route is using the platform, the direction the train is going (the final stop on the line) and how long it will be before the next train arrives.

Rush hours are not crowded on the U-Bahn. There are many bicycle lanes beisde beside the sidewalks and many people also live fairly close to where they work, so the trains are not overloaded. Even if it is not possible to get a seat there is plenty of standing room.

Disabled Passengers

All bus and tram services offer wheelchair access for disabled passengers. Most S- and U-Bahn routes also have wheelchair access. To check that a certain stop offers this access, interactive information stands can be found on most platforms and provide advice on the nearest stations catering for wheelchair access.

On working days U- and S-Bahn close at around 1am but there are buses that take over to cover the night hours until the next morning’s reopening.
On weekends all U-Bahns (except U4) run every 15mins all through the night plus the night buses as above.
On weekends all S-Bahns run at different intervals all through the night.

BVG Call Center

Telephone number: 030 19 44 9
Telefax: 030 256 49 256
E-Mail: info@bvg.de

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