Time left until the next 6 and 8 Day Group tour


(This is a work in progress, so check back for changes and updates)
First, you’ll have to decide the logistics
1. Public transportation
2. Renting a car
3. Money
4. Take an organized tour

is it safe in germany

Don’t take our word for it, do your own research and take what you read on discussion forums and the internet with a grain of salt. The fact is, in the last few years due to the EU and arrival of over a million refugees, it’s not as safe as it once was. Traveling alone, not speaking the language, looking like a tourist and using public transportation can be hazardous. One of our guests decided to go it alone. He took a taxi from in front of a well-known destination. Due to him not speaking the language, looking foreign and having little experience or knowledge, he was victimized. His iPhone, passport and money were taken. Many people will look to the internet for “how to do it alone” and find things out the hard way. Getting your info from a total stranger, who won’t even publicly post his real name, makes no sense. In addition, the ‘plant’s who are paid to write reports and promote specific places on the internet can be a minefield. After the above event, we were able to get more details on what took place. What you should know is that departing a place in the evening or late at night means there are fewer people on the street and at public transportation centers (You’ll be alone with no one to help you).  The most dangerous areas are the city centers, such as the one depicted in the image above. The “Hauptbahnhofs”, or Main Train Stations, are usually located in the worst areas of town. This is where tourists often come in contact with pick pockets who have moved from poor countries to find easy targets. Some may argue that he should have used a registered taxi, but he did!  This does nothing to protect you, as even registered drivers know all too well how easy it is to commit these crimes. There will be no record. Now more than ever before, criminals from other countries are being hired as taxi drivers. We went to the local Police station to help file a report and found out just how common these events have become. They called the taxi company and there was no record of such pick up. In fact, this was not the first time this sort of crime has been committed. You could be walking from a club alone and be targeted, so take care.

Travel advice for its citizens heading to Germany. It notes the increased numbers of refugees entering the country and cautions against travel in areas that could be prone to violent demonstrations.Germany: Migrant Crime Wave, Police Capitulate Traveling with a group makes more sense now than ever before. You’ll learn from experts, not people you don’t know from unknown sources. You’ll travel protected, have an experienced guide and rest assured because you’re safe, and so are your belongings.

Not for the novice, it helps to know some German when taking public transport. Your trip will revolve around your transportation options, since trains, the subway and buses do not run 24 hours. Clubs, on the other hand, are open until 5 am, long after your last bus or train. So, keep this in mind when planning your visit. Should you miss a train or bus, you may be looking at a short to long delay until the next one. If you intend to buy your train tickets online, note the requirements (printed copies), credit cards and identification needed for online tickets. Does your hotel have a printer? Consider the location of your hotel when using public transportation. Hotels in the center of towns are often closer to main train and bus stations. Also, consider main train stations and city centers have higher crime rates, so take care when walking at night and where you decide to walk. Long and short-distance Trains: German Train system

Location, location, location.  Depending on your selected transportation method, where you book a hotel is important. City centers are best when using public transportation since they are often close to main train and bus stations. However, if you’ll be renting a car, parking is often sparse (including parking fines) and costly in city centers. While shopping the internet, make sure your hotel has its own bath and shower. While less common now, lower priced older hotels had community toilets and showers. Does the price of your hotel include breakfast?  While not relevant to everyone, included breakfast will sometimes affect the cost. Ask about taxes, as sometimes up to 20% can be added to your bill once you arrive.

When renting a car in Germany, consider the total cost, plus the fact that driving in Germany differs from the US. Fuel can cost as much as $8.00US per gallon, which adds up quickly and sometimes surpasses the cost of the actual rental. If you opt out of the insurance at the counter, make sure you inspect your vehicle before you drive away. Note that small dings, waves and even stone chips are considered damage. If you accept the car with any such damage without insurance, you’ll be billed a minimum fee of 600 Euros. Inspect the car in detail and have staff note the damage on your rental agreement. We’ve never checked for a spare tire when we picked up rental cars in the US, but on one occasion in Germany the spare was missing. Upon returning the vehicle, we were told the tire was missing and billed 1800 Euros. Once you find yourself a victim of such insane penalty fees, you’ll understand why we’re telling you this. If you don’t own your own GPS with German maps, it’s wise to book a GPS from the rental agency, usually about 10 Euros extra per day. Make sure you have the proper address info when you arrive, which you’ll be required to enter into the GPS. Ask the staff to walk you through changing all settings from German to English. Think using your credit card covers the insurance? Not always the case, see the links below. Find a low car rental rate? Make sure you include the mandatory insurance some rental companies demand.

Rental Car Damage Size sheet used for Renting in Germany (not used in the US)
Liability insurance and car rental
Overseas car insurance, a minefield for travel
Caution renting from Dollar Rent a Car Frankfurt

Driving in Germany differs from the USA. Always keep to the right when on the autobahns (it’s the law). The left lane is for passing. Cars will, and legally can, pass you in the left lane going over 200kmph. Don’t flash your headlights, honk your horn or give someone the finger. German law sees this as road rage and made it against the law. There is no need for a citation or trial; anyone can take down your license number and file a report, which will appear as a huge fine on your rental car agreement. When in doubt, EXIT. Sometimes exits are far apart (more than 20km) and if you miss your exit you might have problems getting off. Obey all speed signs. While German autobahns have sections of unlimited speed, these are often interrupted with speed restricted zones. Photo radar is common on German autobahns as well as in small villages, towns and cities. You might only see a flash of light, which means it’s too late. Only later, you will discover that your credit card has been billed for a fine by the rental car agency, including added administration fees. Even if you don’t see parking restriction signs, many German cities now require a paid parking permit, no matter where you park (no warning signs required). However, you will get the satisfaction of a paper ticket which will be placed on your windshield. We’ve also encountered parking violations where you’re not issued a ticket but where a photo is taken of your vehicle to show location and violation, after which a fine is billed to you. If you drink even one beer, think again about driving in Germany. Most clubs offer beer (as much as you can drink) and should you even have one beer and be stopped by local police, you’ll suffer major consequences. It’s not uncommon for police to set up random check points at any hour of the day or night. Often, these are set up near clubs along common roadways leading to the clubs. Police know people drink at the clubs and often target them with such check points. Pay attention to where you park, how fast you drive and where you’re going.

Fuel can and may be more than what you pay for your rental car each day because Germany has some of the most expensive fuel costs. One big error many newbies make is overestimating fuel cost, Germany is not a bunch of straight highways, much of the driving you’ll do will be stop and go traffic. We’ve paid over $100 per fill up for a normal-sized vehicle. People need to consider fuel when estimating the cost of a tour. Use this page to see approximate current fuel per gallon, note to change to US dollars and Gallons as of this writing $5.00 – $7.00 per gallon. GPS Driving in the US is easier than in Europe since roadways are based on the quad system (square blocks) unlike Europe where streets circle around the center. Most German cities have many one-way streets and streets that rarely follow a straight line. This can be confusing and dangerous for unfamiliar drivers. Even GPS may give you instructions to head down the wrong way, so pay close attention to ‘one way’ signs. Entering an address in your GPS should be done with great care; most cities have streets with the same names as other cities. Should you enter a club address with the wrong address, you might find yourself on a wild goose chase or worse, having wasted hours of time and expensive fuel.

100 USA
Your dollar compared to the Euro is a big factor when comparing costs


If you visit these destinations as much as we do, we know the wrong time to visit and the best time. Some will have you think, just get there and you’ll be fine. Yet, it can mean between very providers to a full staff and when the best providers work. We get to know our guests, so we’re better able to recommend whose best for you. The internet has lots of misinformation about the best providers, which may not be good for you.

Map(s) GPS (must include German map version) Clubs, addresses, hours of operation Cell Phone, SIM card Hotel Rental Cars Taking the trip having a cell phone (called a handy or Mobile) in Germany adds costs but saves time, money and aides in your travel. Calling ahead to ensure a destination is open, or if you have difficulty in finding a destination, are all reasons to invest in a cheap pay-as-you-go phone. Often, you can find these phones on the internet before you travel. You can also buy one at the airport or local town when you arrive. Look for cellular carrier services.  Note that someone might answer your call and not speak a word of English.

Learn some basic words in German, such as  Thank you “danke” Yes “Ja” No “Nein” Please “Bitte” No Thank You “Nein Danke” Water “Wasser” Coffee “Kaffee” Cola “Cola”



Driving in America VS Driving in Germany

German Autobahn vs US Interstate Highways

Driving in Germany

If you’re going to travel on your own and rent a car, make sure you look into German rules of the road, which differ from driving in the USA. On some sections of the autobahns (freeways) there is no speed limit. This can often change, so take note of the signage. Note on the autobahns, the fast lane (left-most lane) is for passing only, not cruising at what you feel is a comfortable speed. Doing so could cause an accident, as high-end cars often take advantage of the unlimited speed zones and travel upwards of 200kmph and faster. Slower traveling vehicles are required to stay in the far-right lanes. It’s against the law to pass on the right.

While you won’t see many police cars waiting for speeders, Germany is known for its speed traps (blitzers), high-speed radar cameras that can be found along autobahns and within cities. Many are located as you enter smaller towns and cities. Even if you don’t live in Germany, you’re responsible for paying any photo radar fines you may encounter. It’s in your rental car contract and the rental company will pass on a 50 euro admin fee for notifying you of the fine, after which they’ll pass on your address and driving info to the city where the speed camera was located. The cost of the fine depends on the speed. It will then be up to you to wire the funds.  If late, a penalty will be assessed and added to the fine. It can get costly with admin fees and bank wiring charges.

While some people think renting a car is inexpensive, remember fuel comes at a premium and sometimes three times the cost of US fuel. $6 – $9 a gallon is common, so figure that in when calculating the cost of travel. Parking lot dings and windscreen chips are all considered damage and may be billed to your credit card upon return, so take care where you park and drive. If you intend to drink then don’t drive because it’s common for police to set up checkpoints not far from a club knowing that club guests drink.  If you are stopped, police will demand that you blow into a portable breathalyzer and should you test positive, you’ll end up in a German jail and be looking at huge fines.

One way streets are common, so take care within city limits and familiarize yourself with European traffic signs. Make sure to know the parking regulations within city limits because many cities now have citywide parking rules that are only posted as you enter that city. There won’t be signage within the city because residents are supposed to know the parking rules.  Again, if you find a parking ticket on your car, or it’s mailed to you, you’re required to pay it, or you will be assessed a penalty.


Feet on Furniture
Think twice about putting your feet up on coffee tables or furniture. The rule is if people put plates or drinks on such furniture, then it’s bad manners to rest your feet on them.

Fruit and Baked goods
If you touch it, you should take it. This means not pawing several pieces of fruit for the right one. Bread should always be handled with tongs, which are generally available.

Dishes and Dining
In Europe self – serve restaurants, it’s common for you to bus your own table. Look around the room for a tray cart or a table where you leave your dirty dishes. Almost every club has a place for dirty dishes. Just because someone leaves their dirty dishes and walks away does not mean that’s OK. Staff look down at such guests as not possessing manners. Always drop off your empty glass at the bar as well.

Dealing with staff
Learn some basic German. It’s a myth that everyone speaks English and even with those that do it’s not their native tongue, so speak slowly and clearly. We can’t tell you how many times we see people order something and then find out it’s not what they wanted. Learn to say please, thank you, yes and no in German for starters. Just because someone looks like they understand you, don’t assume that they truly understand.

12 travel mistakes American tourists don’t even realize they’re making
Tips on Germany Warnings or Dangers


Comments are closed.