Berlin Public Transport
Berlin has a very extensive public transport system consisting of U-Bahn (underground) and S-Bahn (aboveground) urban rail systems, regional railway services, trams, buses, and ferries. Although operated by different companies, all fall under the common public transport tariff set out by the Transport Association Berlin-Brandenburg, or VBB. Cycling is also very popular and Berlin''''s extensive cycle lane network is a great way to see the city - check out our article about Cycling in Berlin for more information.
During the week, most rail services in Berlin run until around midnight, with night bus services operating throughout the night. On the weekend and the night before a public holiday, most U and S-Bahn lines remain in service all night.
Tickets can be purchased at kiosks located in larger stations as well as from ticket machines located on all U and S-Bahn platforms, from Bus drivers, and from ticket machines on all trams. The ticket machines can be used in a number of different languages including English.
Berlin is divided into three zones; A, B, and C. The most common ticket for the Metropolitan region is the AB ticket. Zone C is the outer locality of Berlin (Shaded grey on the transport network map) and includes the city of Potsdam. A reduced fare ticket is required for children aged 6 to 14. If travelling with a bicycle, which is allowed provided there is enough room on the carriage, a Bicycle ticket must be purchased.
For more comprehensive ticket prices as well as a route planner and network map, please visit the offical site of the city owned, Berlin Transport Authority, BVG.
Overview of the more common ticket types:
Short Trip: valid for a maximum of 3 stops on U-Bahn and S-Bahn services or 6 bus or tram stops.
AB Adult €1.50 Child €1.20
Single Ticket: Valid for 2 hours, you may change trains or buses as often as you need. Children under 6 years of age as well as well as Prams/Buggys and luggage travel free of charge. A reduced fare ticket is required for each dog accompanied by the ticket holder.
Please Note: Return and round trip journeys are not permitted. Return and round trips are defined as journeys in the direction of the starting point either on the same line or on a different route to the outward trip.
| Zone || Adult Fare || Child Fare |
| AB || €2.60 || €1.60 |
| BC || €2.90 || €2.00 |
| ABC || €3.20 || €2.30 |
With a daily you may travel as often as you want on the day of purchase (or validation in the case of pre-purchased tickets) until 3am on the following day. Children under 6 years, prams and luggage, along with one dog may travel with the ticket holder free of charge.
| Zone || Adult Fare || Child Fare |
| AB || €6.70 || €4.70 |
| BC || €7.00 || €5.10 |
| ABC || €7.20 || €5.30 |
The Berlin Welcome card allows for unlimited travel on all public transport for the duration of its validity. They can be purchased for 2, 3 or 5 days and in addition to transport also offer discounts at over 200 tourist highlights. Click here
for more information on the Berlin WelcomeCard as well as other discount cards in Berlin.
Overview of the different types of transport in Berlin
The U-Bahn, short for Untergrundbahn (Underground Railway), is an urban rail system that covers the majority of the Berlin Metropolitan area and is operated operated by the Berliner Verkehrsbetriebe (BVG). The network currently comprises nine different lines with 173 stations. During peak times trains run every two to five minutes, every five minutes the rest of the day and every ten minutes during the evening and on Sunday.
Short for Straßenbahn, (Street Railway), the S-Bahn is a combined urban and commuter rail network run by Deutsche Bahn, the national rail operator. Most of the network operates at ground level, with some elevated sections and tunnels. Currently comprising 15 routes with 166 stations, the S-Bahn network links to the U-Bahn network in many places.
Berlin has a tram network of 22 lines servicing 377 tram stops. Of these 22 lines, nine of them form part of the "MetroNetz", a high frequency network designed to service areas with lower train coverage. They are designated with an M before their number and are the only trams which operate 24 hrs a day. Ex: M1, M50.
Berlin''s bus network comprises 149 daytime routes servicing 2634 bus stops and like the tram network, has 17 routes included in the "MetroNezt". The majority of MetroNetz busses run 24 hours a day.
During the night, Berlin is served by a night time network of 63 bus route. One night bus, runs parallel to each U-Bahn line during week nights after the U-Bahn stops; these are designated by an "N" followed by the usual number of the U-Bahn line i.e. the N2 Bus replaces the U2 U-Bahn.
Berlin''s extensive waterways also form part of the public transport network. The BVG operates 6 ferries that make use of these waterways that can be travelled on under the regular VBB tariff outlined above. In addition to these city run services there are also a number of private ferries and boats that are outside the VBB network. Tickets for these services must be purchased separately.