German engineering works

Discussion in 'International Transport' started by miami84, 22 May 2015.

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  1. miami84

    miami84 Member

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    Hi, I booked a London Spezial ticket to Hamburg for 27/6. It was fairly cheap but the route was a bit "round the houses" through Aachen, Duisburg and Dortmund. Having just searched for the exact same journey, it appears that there is now a replacement bus from Aachen to Duren and the route has now changed to via Cologne. Has anybody got any experience of using German replacement buses? It doesn't fill me with confidence on a 10 hour journey. :|
     
  2. 30907

    30907 Established Member

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    Does your ticket give you an 0858 departure and changes at those places?

    If so I can replicate the routing by specifying "regional trains only" between Aachen and Duisburg, which avoids the RRB. Your ticket will certainly be accepted by the printed route.

    However, if I didn't have heavy baggage, I might prefer the RRB to the Regional train which is IIRC a pretty Spartan class 425 emu calling at all stations.

    Not sure why the DB site is now sending you via Köln, but it may default to give the maximum of IC/ICE travel. Or the RRB may not have been in the database when you booked.
     
  3. miami84

    miami84 Member

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    Thanks for the helpful information. Yes, we are allocated on the 0858 Eurostar to Brussels. Is there much freedom on the DB network to use other permitted ICE routes not shown on my ticket? I'm a bit of a novice on European railways. Cheers.
     
    Last edited: 24 May 2015
  4. Quakkerillo

    Quakkerillo Member

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    I think you can use alternative ICE trains as well. If I look at the journey planner, the "BUS SEV" Aachen to Düren mentions "bus stop not near station".
    Alternatively, change in Aachen (arrival 14:13) to the 14:37 Regional train to Duisburg (arrival 16:24), there take the 16:46 ICE to Dortmund (arrival 17:21), and finallly ICE to Hamburg (departs 17:25, only 4 minute change, but normally DB trains should wait) which will see you arrive at 20:13.
    Another possibility is to stay on the your ICE from Brussels until Köln/Cologne (arrival 16:20), and then take the 17:10 Eurocity to Hamburg-Altona (arrives 21:13). That's only one change then.

    If you're unsure if you can use these connections (I'm almost 100% certain you can), you can contact Deutsche Bahn via their facebook. https://www.facebook.com/dbbahn?fref=ts
     
  5. 30907

    30907 Established Member

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    You must use any IC/ICE listed on your ticket (the actual ticket part should refer to them, the itinerary will give detaIls).

    If your journey includes sections with regional (RE or S) trains, you are free to use later or earlier services, and to use any route within the limits shown by the station codes (these are often very generous). In your case, I imagine you would be free to travel via Köln, but you would then have to take an RE to Duisburg not an IC/E.

    In practice, though, if you show your ticket to the train crew at Köln before you board, they are very likely to allow you to join your booked ICE direct to Hamburg. But to travel an hour later you would need to show that you had been delayed - just as with an Advance here.

    Just seen Quakkerillo's reply, which I suspect lists exactly the trains on your original itinerary. I would only stay on board the ICE to Köln, which he suggests as an option, if advised/endorsed by the crew - but in that case you should have no problems using the EC (Swiss stock with restaurant car BTW), and you'd avoid the class 425! Depends if you want to be an hour late into Hamburg.
     
    Last edited: 24 May 2015
  6. miami84

    miami84 Member

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    Thanks very much for the replies. This is what it says on my ticket...

    <0069,1080>(27.06.2015)...*Brux-Mi 13:00 ICE17/AC-Hbf*NV*DU-Hbf 16:46
    ICE518/DO-Hbf 17:25 ICE1026


    I emailed DB a couple of days ago and they said the engineering works were between Aachen and Dortmund. I suspect they are incorrect and it's actually Cologne hence my confusion.

    I'll keep an eye on it and have a word with the guard on the ICE 17 train. Cheers.
     
  7. 306024

    306024 Established Member

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    Only yesterday had a rail replacement bus from Schwandorf across the German/Czech border to Plzen. An odd mix of vehicles, one German Arriva bus, a Czech mini bus and a Czech coach. Very busy but no great drama apart from the German stag party on their way to Prague. Even then they were much better behaved than you would imagine.

    A lot of rail enthusiasts seem to have a downer on rail replacement buses, simply because they aren't a train, but in my experience they are no greater risk than the train service itself.
     
  8. miami84

    miami84 Member

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    Admittedly, my poor RRB experience is limited to UK services. I really like the prospect of a Swiss restaurant car I must say. :)
     
  9. Gerald Fiennes

    Gerald Fiennes Member

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    Hi, the DB computer has routed you around the engineering work which is taking place this summer in the Duren area and which is adding c. 30-45 mins to the ICE journey times between Aachen and Koeln. As others have said, with a Europa Spezial ticket you have to travel on the trains/times indicated for IC/EC/ICE journeys, ie 1646 from Duisburg Hbf. You could go on local trains ('NV' on the ticket) via Cologne provided that you ended up by 1646 at Duisburg, which is not possible. So you need to take the local train from Aachen and avoid Duren. The trains are fine, although the route is not that spectacular. I went on it last month and saw a new Class 700 unit at the exchange sidings for the Siemens plant at Wildenrath so not all was lost!:p
     
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