Each Friday, we feature a reader-submitted tip as our Travel Tip of the Day. This week’s tip comes from a reader with a lesson for all traveling through Germany:
“My nieces have just called from Germany to say they’d been put off a train and each received a 60 euro fine for not having their tickets stamped. They are both gutted as they are young and this is their first time away without parents, and they were so excited that they were going alone and now they are disappointed and deflated still with three hours travel ahead of them and quite a large proportion of their small budget gone!!!”
It’s true: When you buy a ticket to ride a train in Germany, including the U-Bahn (like the subway) and S-Bahn (Stadtschnellbahn, which is German for “city rapid rail”), you often won’t see a turnstile or have your ticket checked when you board. After you buy a ticket, you have to get the ticket stamped by an entwerter machine (see photo below). If you’re asked for your ticket during a random ticket check, you’ll be fined if your ticket hasn’t been stamped by the machine. Here’s a good guide to navigating public transport in Germany.
A different reader offered a similar reminder a few years back. You should remember that many countries in Europe use the validation system on their trains and/or buses. Sometimes you’ll even see validating machines inside the train, as on the Amsterdam Metro. If you ever see a machine that looks like the one below (in Italy), make sure to stick your ticket in to avoid a fine.
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Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.