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Old 5th January 2017, 12:29   #1
EM2
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Default To Frankfurt in November

I've managed to get a ticket for a gig in Frankfurt in November, and now need to work out the best (for which, read cheapest) way to get there.

The only budget airline that goes near is Ryanair to Hahn, ninety minutes away, and only one departure a day at 07:40 from Stansted, and 06:30 return.
BA, Lufthansa and KLM all fly to Frankfurt, so I'm considering flying with them, but then started thinking about trains.

I'm quite content to rough it a bit, even if it means a number of trains taking longer. I reckon I need to get into Frankfurt by 6pm, and wouldn't mind leaving straight after the gig, about midnight-1am.

With all that in mind, when is the best time to book, and who with?

Failing that, anyone tried it by coach?
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Old 5th January 2017, 12:51   #2
Gerald Fiennes
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Prob best to book direct with DB on www.bahn.de. You can print the ticket at home and you might find something like EUR89 per single journey if you're not fussy on times. But Ryanair will always be cheaper!
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Old 5th January 2017, 13:33   #3
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bahn.de now doing tickets 6 month in advance, including the London specials, so get your calendar out.
I guess from Northfleet, you'd be using Ebbsfleet - DB don't offer the special tickets from Ebbsfleet, but you can (and I have done) use a London-Germany ticket boarding at Ebbsfleet.
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Old 5th January 2017, 14:23   #4
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I've looked on bahn.de for dates less than six months from now, just to get an idea of fares, and I'm told that either fares are not available online, or that fares are not available...
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Old 5th January 2017, 14:35   #5
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You might have to add Brussels as an intermediate stop, or else it sends you via Paris. I just did that and got an offer of €79.90 for Mon 8th May, on the 0613 from London (0630 Ebbsfleet).

Edit - for later in the day, you might also need to add some stopover time in Brussels to avoid being put on a Thalys, on which the DB special fares aren't offered.

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Old 5th January 2017, 15:19   #6
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Ah, thanks!
I'll try that.
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Old 5th January 2017, 19:45   #7
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You can book UK to Frankfurt and back on the Eurostar website for as low as £45 each way
I believe it's 120 days in advance.

This gives you the option of any ICE train from Brussels on the same day, but there are only two you can take anyway: 1025-1324 and 1425-1741

The second option would mean that you don't have to get to Ebbsfleet at 0630, seeing as you want to stay up past midnight, however it would let you take some trains around Mainz before the gig.

Taking KLM or Ryanair is silly. Both BA and LH flyfrom LCY direct to FRA. LCY is the least stressful airport in a big city that you can experience and fares should still be low for a November flight.

I dislike FRA airport however if you're leaving at midnight and don't want a hotel, there are not too many options apart from sleeping at the airport for a morning flight.

If you can brave the cold for a while, there appears to be a train at 0321 to Cologne which would let you connect to another train there that is bookable on the Eurostar website, otherwise your earliest option for a through journey booked via Eurostar starts at around 6am. This is in April and I haven't searched on the DB site.
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Old 5th January 2017, 20:05   #8
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Hi
My wife and I went to Hamburg by train in summer 2015. Booked direct through the man in seat 61 website. Allows you to put in an overnight stop if required. We stayed 2 night in Brussels in the Ibis next to Brussels Midi and changed in Koln both ways. Left Edinburgh at 12.00 on Sunday in Brusells by 11.00pm. Even got premier plus on Eurostar outward. Approx £100 for two of us each way from St Pancras to Hamburg
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Old 5th January 2017, 20:14   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerald Fiennes View Post
Prob best to book direct with DB on www.bahn.de. You can print the ticket at home
Even better, select mobile phone ticket when buying on www.bahn.de and use the DB Navigator app (available with English interface) - see https://www.bahn.com/en/view/booking...ator-app.shtml - to hold your ticketing and timetable details on your Apple or Android device!
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Old 5th January 2017, 23:51   #10
bspahh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EM2 View Post
I've managed to get a ticket for a gig in Frankfurt in November, and now need to work out the best (for which, read cheapest) way to get there.

The only budget airline that goes near is Ryanair to Hahn, ninety minutes away, and only one departure a day at 07:40 from Stansted, and 06:30 return.
BA, Lufthansa and KLM all fly to Frankfurt, so I'm considering flying with them, but then started thinking about trains.

I'm quite content to rough it a bit, even if it means a number of trains taking longer. I reckon I need to get into Frankfurt by 6pm, and wouldn't mind leaving straight after the gig, about midnight-1am.

With all that in mind, when is the best time to book, and who with?

Failing that, anyone tried it by coach?
I would look into flights from Stansted to Cologne Bonn as they can be pretty cheap. Its an easy train journey from there to Frankfurt (although not that cheap).

I like travelling by train. Going via Paris is another option. However, but its often going to be cheaper to fly. I don't like coaches, so I've not tried them, but they will be competitive on price.

www.rome2rio.com is pretty good for ideas of different routes and forms of transport.

I once flew to Frankfurt Hahn and hired a Ford Focus, which was upgraded to a convertible Mercedes 500SL when I got there.
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Old 6th January 2017, 01:01   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EM2 View Post
The only budget airline that goes near is Ryanair to Hahn, ninety minutes away,
Oh yes the dreaded Hahn. Calling Hahn 'Frankfurt' is tantermount to a practical joke, and one of the worst examples of dubious airline marketing there is.

As you have rightly surmised it is 90 minutes (by bus across upland territory so not even the fastest road journey in the world).

Easyjet flies from Gatwick to Stuttgart.

Stuttgart is also 90 minutes from Frankfurt, but on a comfortable DB train



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Old 6th January 2017, 08:18   #12
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Try Trainline as it combines booking engines from different railways and the newly liberated bus market in Germany.

Agree that you should store your tickets on the DB App as that enables you to travel paper free and check service updates. It even now shows ICE train set configs
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Old 6th January 2017, 08:36   #13
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Coach almost certainly cheapest, but I can't see it being anything other than utterly grim.
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Old 6th January 2017, 09:39   #14
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I'd rather avoid Stansted if I can, thanks to to travel time and the cost of parking or train travel.
At the moment, flights from LCY still seem on the high side to me, but admittedly comparable with the lowest train fares I've seen (although I'm looking too far ahead for the best train fares).
But thanks for the mobile ticketing advice too!
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Old 6th January 2017, 10:56   #15
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I fly out to Frankfurt quite a lot, and have tried a variety of methods.

Often on the outbound, I'll fly out to Hahn with Ryanair. With £10 single tickets (from Stansted or Newquay), it can make a real bargain. The coach into Frankfurt was priced at 14 euros each way, and I've found them to be pretty reliable and modern. Generally I take the chance to get some extra sleep after the early departure.

I flew with Lufthansa last November, and it was around £62 each way from Heathrow. Didn't think it was too bad, and having a look on Skyscanner, these prices seem to be available now, but they were also available a month in advance.

Eurostar is an option I've done, at £45 each way it isn't bad. Although it does take a lot longer.
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