Here you can find all the information about Germany’s Cheap ICE train tickets and ICE travel prices and benefits.
Intercity-Express or in its shortcut name ICE is a system of high-speed trains owned by the Deutsche Bahn, Germany’s national train provider. The ICE trains are known for luxury, speed, and comfort as they connect every city in Germany.
With speeds as high as 300km per hour, traveling by an ICE train is the fastest way to travel between distant cities like Cologne and Hamburg.
ICE Travel Routes aren’t limited to Germany. The train runs on international routes to Austria, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Denmark, and the Netherlands.
|Go to Save A Train Homepage or use this widget to search for trains tickets for Ice Trains
Number 1: Book your ICE tickets in advance as much as you can
If you’d like to get cheap ICE tickets, the earlier you buy them, the greater your chances of getting them cheaply. There are 3 types of Cheap ICE fares and all three ticket types are available at the initial sell time, but the saver fares, Sparpreis, and Super sparpreis may not be available as the departure day draws nearer. You can book saver fare tickets as early as 6 months before departure.
Number 2: Order your ICE train tickets when you are certain of your itinerary
Being sure of your trip and departure date would save you money in refund fees. The rate of refund and the option for returning unused ICE tickets is dependent on the type of ticket you buy. Also, the refund fee is lower for saver fare tickets than for standard fare tickets. Note that DB would not refund you in cash when you return your ticket. DB refunds are done via DB vouchers, which you can use to pay for any service they offer. You can also sell your ICE train tickets online on internet forums if you wish to get the money back.
Number 3: Travel by ICE train during off-peak periods
ICE tickets are cheaper in off-peak periods (Tuesday, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays). During peak days, the cheap tickets sell out very fast, leaving only the Flexpreis tickets. To travel on Peak days, book in advance to get the saver fare tickets. If you cannot get the saver fare tickets, be sure to travel between late morning and early afternoon (because of business travelers) as Flexpreis tickets would be cheaper then. Lastly, avoid traveling on public and school holidays as ICE ticket prices would also increase.
Number 4: Buy your ICE tickets on Save A Train
You will find the best offering of ICE train tickets in Europe on our website, Save A Train. We have the largest offerings of train tickets in Europe and the world. With our connection to countless of railway operators and the right algorithms, we offer you the cheapest ICE tickets you can ever find. Also, we find cheap alternatives for trains other than ICE.
The price of an ICE ticket depends on the type of ticket and the class of seats you want. Generally, Deutsche Bahn is famous for its low ICE ticket prices. There are three ticket types for the ICE train – the standard or Flexpreis ticket, the Supersaver fare tickets or Supersparpreis, and the saver fare or Sparpreis ICE tickets. The saver fare tickets are cheaper than the standard tickets, but available tickets reduce as departure day draws nearer. ICE ticket prices depend on the class you choose and here is a summary table of the average prices per class:
|One-way ticket||Round trip|
|Standard||17 € – 50 €||30 € – 120 €|
|Premium||21 € – 70 €||58 € – 152 €|
|Business||40 € – 87 €||80 € – 180 €|
1) Avoid Pre-Boarding Procedures. If you have a flight by 9 am, you’re better off being at the airport at least by 7 consequently by the time you must have gone through the Pre-Boarding Procedures and security checks, it’ll almost be time for you to board the plane.
With ICE trains, you can arrive anytime before departure as long as you make it into the train before moving. This is possible because there are no Pre-Boarding procedures or long-winded security checks. Just show up to the station, locate your train on the indicator, and board!
In total travel time, ICE wins over airplanes in Germany just like it does at price as well. Asides from time wasted in Pre-Boarding procedures, airplanes lose more overall travel time in commuting (from the airport to the precise location).
2) Baggage Fees. You can be sure that you’ll pay extra for suitcases if you travel on an airplane. However, If you travel by ICE Trains paying baggage fees is an extra expense you won’t make if you buy cheap ICE train tickets. To clarify, with cheap ICE prices, you won’t have to pay for any suitcase you travel with. That makes ICE a cheaper and better travel option.
3) Trains are more environment-friendly. The ICE train is also more environment-friendly than airplanes, which contributes to air pollution. Traveling by train is 20× less carbon emission polluting than traveling by air.
Unlike other trains with tickets for different compartments (standard, business, executive, etc.) as in Trenitalia, Germany’s ICE is a bit different. There are two classes in every ICE train – the first class and the second class. The main differences between both categories are the price, flexibility, and services offered.
As it concerns tickets and the class compartments in the ICE train, any ticket type can be in the first-class. This means that even the cheap ICE train tickets, the Sparpreis, and Super sparpreis can afford first-class seats. However, the price varies for both classes, as seen above.
First Class ICE Tickets:
ICE’s first-class sets the standard for luxury, comfort, and superb service in the German railway system. Designed to rival airplanes, ICE trains provide comfort for long-distance journeys. Additionally, the first-class compartments make-up about one-third of the train and could be as many as three compartments depending on the ICE train taken.
The first-class compartment seats are bigger and arranged differently in a 2-1 arrangement rather than a 2-2 in the second class. And this frees up more aisle space for passengers. Moreover, the seats in the first class of ICE are also covered in faux leather and are bigger than those in the second class. As business people normally use the first class, there are firm tables available for passengers who want to do some work while on route.
The extra services that distinguish the first class from the second class on ICE trains include free, daily newspapers, free unlimited WI-FI, and special amplifiers to prevent interruptions in cellphone reception. First Class passengers can also order their meals from their seats if they don’t want to go to the restaurant onboard the train.
Another perk limited to ICE first-class travelers is seat reservation. All tickets for first-class, including the cheap ICE tickets, enjoy this benefit. You don’t have to worry about randomly getting a window seat; you can choose what seat you want while booking and have it reserved.
Second Class ICE Tickets:
The second Class compartments aren’t so far off from the First Class in comfort. In addition, the seats in the second-class compartment are better than average airline seats. Plus, they are ergonomic, come with a headrest, and are covered in patterned fabric. This makes for a comfortable long-distance trip.
There are more second-class compartments per ICE train than First Class ones. particularly, the seating arrangement in the second class is a bit tighter than that of the first-class compartment. There are four seats per row (2-2 seat arrangement), with every two seats sharing the middle handrest.
Further, passengers in the second class have access to some of the services in the first class but with limits. Take the WI-FI for instance. In the second class, Wi-Fi is not unlimited like it is for First class passengers. Second-class passengers also don’t have access to daily newspapers free of charge so if you’d like to get a newspaper in the second class, you’ll have to buy one.
Second-class passengers have to go to the restaurant if they want to order food. They can’t order from their seats as it is in the ICE first-class compartment. Also, ICE second-class tickets in both Flexpreis and saver fares don’t automatically cover seat reservations. If you’d like to reserve a seat in the Second class, you’ll have to pay an extra sum of €6. Similarly both First Class and Second Class Passengers have an electric outlet at every seat.
ICE offers rail passes at cheap ICE Train prices for unlimited travel throughout Germany or Europe. There are three types of rail passes:
German Rail Pass
The German rail pass is for unlimited travel within Germany. Also, it is for travelers who don’t live in Europe, Turkey, and Russia. A few benefits of the German Rail Pass include:
- Holders of the rail pass can visit certain bonus locations outside Germany (Salzburg, Venice, and Brussels)
- Discounted ICE train tickets for everyone under 28 years
- Unlimited Travel throughout Germany
- Two people can save more money by using the Twin Pas when traveling together
- Flexibility allows holders of the German rail pass to travel anywhere at any time
Holders of the German pass can choose from 3 to 15 consecutive travel days within a month when buying a pass.
The Eurail pass allows non-Europeans that live outside Russia, Europe, and Turkey to travel unlimited around Europe. Some perks include:
- Vouchers and discounts for tourist attractions.
- Different categories to choose from – Adult, Senior, and Youth.
- Unlimited travel through 31 European countries, including Turkey.
The InterRail pass grants people who live in Russia, Turkey, or Europe unlimited travel throughout Europe. Perks of this pass include:
- Discounts on ICE train tickets for both younger and older people.
- Unlimited travel to 33 countries in Europe
- Free train rides for Pass holders who travel with up to two kids under 11 years.
- Travel period for 3 days to 3 months per individual.
Each pass is available and should be activated within 11 months of purchasing.
To ensure you arrive on time to board, settle down, and even browse the shops, you’re advised to arrive at least 30 minutes before your departure time.
The train schedules aren’t fixed, which makes it difficult to answer. However, you can access ICE train schedules in real-time on the Save A Train homepage. Input your origin and destination and gain immediate access to all ICE train schedules. The earliest ICE train leaves by 6 am, with trains leaving every 30 minutes to major destinations.
ICE international routes depart from several international stations, among them are Brussels Midi Zuid (Brussels Midi South Station in English), Arnhem Centraal, and Amsterdam Centraal, and many more.
For arrival, ICE trains arrive at 11 German stations and one Switzerland station. Also, major arrival stations include Oberhausen, Duisburg, Dusseldorf, Keulen, Frankfurt Flughafen (Frankfurt Main Airport), Manheim, Siegburg, and others.
Further, Dusseldorf is a beautiful city located along the Rhine with a rich cultural history and feel. There are many notable cultural and historic attractions to be seen and scenic routes for walks and a great shopping area. It is a perfect location for a weekend getaway with friends or family.
From the Amsterdam Centraal (Centraal is in Dutch and it means Central Station), you can arrive in Frankfurt, the city known as Europe’s financial capital. What’s more, there are beautiful beaches, museums, and restaurants to visit.
Cologne is the center of art, architecture, and rich history. With an ICE train from Amsterdam Centraal, you can arrive at Cologne to immerse yourself in the beauty that is this city.
Indeed, there are incredibly beautiful botanic gardens, restaurants with wide ranges of culinary masterpieces, zoos, museums, and pubs to enjoy. Also, if you aren’t sure what station to choose, our algorithm will help you choose.
What should I bring with me to the ICE?
Apart from yourself? Bring along your travel document, a valid passport, and travel insurance is not mandatory but this document is good for your health.
What company owns ICE?
The Intercity-Express (ICE) is owned by Germany’s national train provider, the Deutsche Bahn, and DB is owned by the German Federal Government.
Where can I go with ICE?
ICE primarily runs through all cities in Germany. There are some international ICE travel routes to some countries bordering Germany.
What are the boarding procedures for ICE trains?
There aren’t any fancy boarding procedures. When you arrive at the station, check the indicator boards to find your train. Additionally, you can then board the train anytime before it is scheduled to leave.
What services there are on the ICE train?
ICE Train offers in transit dining where the menu contains meals, light snacks, and beverages of all types. Furthermore, there are charging ports next to every seat, free WiFi (unlimited in First Class), and amplifiers for uninterrupted cellphone reception (only for First Class).
Most Requested ICE FAQ – Do I have to book a seat in advance on ICE?
You don’t have to book a seat in advance, but you can make a seat reservation if you want to. If you purchase a first-class ticket, you are automatically qualified for a free reserved seat.
Is there WiFi internet inside the ICE?
Yes, there is. In the Second class compartment, WI-FI internet is free but not unlimited as it is in First Class.
Finally, If you reached this far, you know everything you need to know about ICE trains and are ready to purchase your ICE train ticket on SaveATrain.com.
We have Train Tickets for these railway operators:
NS International Netherlands
SNCF TGV Lyria
NSB Vy Norway
Deutsche Bahn ICE Germany
Deutsche Bahn Germany
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