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Old May 19, 12, 10:16 am   #1
 
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Buying Ticket for train starting in Prague

Folks, I need some help.
I am traveling with 3 others from Prague to Berlin on June 22nd and returning on June 27th. I was in Europe 2 years ago and I was able to buy online and print at home. Now, it seems like this is not an option anymore? The DB website only allows tickets by mail. I am worried that if we booked today that this would not allow enough time for tickets to be mailed to us (we leave the US in 4 weeks). Am I going to have to wait to get over to PRG to purchase these tickets? If not, can I purchase here in the states and get a confirmation number to take to the Prague rail station to have the tickets re-printed?
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Old May 20, 12, 4:23 am   #2
 
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Originally Posted by USFreak View Post
I was in Europe 2 years ago and I was able to buy online and print at home. Now, it seems like this is not an option anymore? The DB website only allows tickets by mail.
Broadly speaking, for travel between Germany and Czech, bahn.de will only self self-print online ticket for journeys starting in Germany. (Actually, it's more complicated than that, but 'starting in Germany' is generally the key factor).

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Originally Posted by USFreak View Post
Am I going to have to wait to get over to PRG to purchase these tickets? If not, can I purchase here in the states and get a confirmation number to take to the Prague rail station to have the tickets re-printed?
No, if you have brought a ticket from bahn.de, you have to obtain the ticket in the manner specified at time of booking (ie: self-print, or delivered by post). You can order a ticket from DB by phone to be picked up from a ticket machine - but this only works at DB ticket machines in Germany. You couldn't collect such a ticket in Prague.

However, you should be able to buy online, self-print tickets for your journey at www.cd.cz (Note that these tickets are only valid for journeys starting in Czech, and for the return sector, you need to be able to show that your outbound ticket was stamped by a Czech conductor).

See this thread and others for further details. However, the basic rule of thumb is: buy tickets from a website in the country of departure, not destination.
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Old May 21, 12, 4:40 pm   #3
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FWIW,

I was able to buy PRG-BUD train ticket for about same price as advance purchase at Hlavni Nadrazi (main train station) day before my trip.

Should be able to do same for Germany, if you are there a day or two before your trip.

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Old May 22, 12, 6:49 am   #4
 
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Deutsche Bahn runs an express bus from Nürnberg to Prague (and back again). Seven times daily, IIRC. The ride is nice. If you get your ticket far enough in advance it is crazy cheap (same day travel is around 50€ one-way). Then you can hop an ICE from Nürnberg Hbf to Berlin.
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Old May 22, 12, 9:45 am   #5
 
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
FWIW,

I was able to buy PRG-BUD train ticket for about same price as advance purchase at Hlavni Nadrazi (main train station) day before my trip.

Should be able to do same for Germany, if you are there a day or two before your trip.

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For 19 euros? That's strange
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Old May 22, 12, 9:47 am   #6
 
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Originally Posted by USFreak View Post
Folks, I need some help.
I am traveling with 3 others from Prague to Berlin on June 22nd and returning on June 27th. I was in Europe 2 years ago and I was able to buy online and print at home. Now, it seems like this is not an option anymore? The DB website only allows tickets by mail. I am worried that if we booked today that this would not allow enough time for tickets to be mailed to us (we leave the US in 4 weeks). Am I going to have to wait to get over to PRG to purchase these tickets? If not, can I purchase here in the states and get a confirmation number to take to the Prague rail station to have the tickets re-printed?
https://www.cd.cz/eshop/default.aspx

You should be able to select your outbound and inbound trains for 749 Kc each (29 euros each way).
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Old May 22, 12, 10:08 am   #7
 
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Originally Posted by sparkchaser View Post
Deutsche Bahn runs an express bus from Nürnberg to Prague (and back again). Seven times daily, IIRC. The ride is nice. If you get your ticket far enough in advance it is crazy cheap (same day travel is around 50€ one-way). Then you can hop an ICE from Nürnberg Hbf to Berlin.
The DB Bus might be a useful way for reaching Bavaria from Prague (although personally, I'd still prefer to take the ALX/CD train option). However, I simply can't see the DB Bus as being a sensible way to get from Prague to Berlin.

For Prague-Berlin:
- There is a direct EC train service (that goes through Dresden, with a scenic run along the Elbe) every 2 hours, journey time 4h45. www.cd.cz will sell an advance purchase SporoTicket for this journey for 749kc (~€30) one-way. I'm not sure what the walk-up fare is, but it should still be reasonable.

- Taking the bus to Nürnberg and then ICE to Berlin takes at least 8h40. Somewhat surprisingly, bahn.de will actually ticket this as a single journey, starting price for a Europa-Spezial from €39 (which would be cheaper than ticketing it in two parts) - but the walk-up fare is €132!
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Old May 23, 12, 12:32 am   #8
 
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Good point. I appear to be Bayern-centric.
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Old May 29, 12, 2:38 pm   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by USFreak View Post
I am worried that if we booked today that this would not allow enough time for tickets to be mailed to us (we leave the US in 4 weeks).
FWIW, I just bought Prague to Germany tickets online thru bahn.de and received them in the mail here in the US in about a week.
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Old May 29, 12, 4:20 pm   #10
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Originally Posted by mangoMan View Post
FWIW, I just bought Prague to Germany tickets online thru bahn.de and received them in the mail here in the US in about a week.
That's very good to know. Thanks for the update

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Old May 30, 12, 6:49 am   #11
 
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Email, I just wanted to make sure I understood right that you picked up a ticket to Budapest 1 or 2 days out from travel for ~19 euros?

If it was 3 days, that makes sense (that's what the pre-paid deadline is). Right now (5.30 -- Wednesday) I can buy the cheap tickets to budapest, etc. for Saturday (6.2).

I ask not only for my own education, but in case someone reads this and gets the wrong idea....

Thanks
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Old May 30, 12, 2:47 pm   #12
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Originally Posted by adventureadam View Post
I ask not only for my own education, but in case someone reads this and gets the wrong idea....
This was a year ago, so memory is a little fuzzy at this point

But for sure I bought a cheap ticket same day BUD-BTS, and IIRC a cheap BTS-PRG a day or two before departure. Last one was PRG-BUD, again IIRC not too long before the trip.

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