Actually, the train is a great means of transport for a trip with children.Children do not have to sit still in one place like in the car or on the airplane, but can get up and play. In addition, they do not cost anything, as in the plane, under 6 years and for urgent needs such as toilet or food you do not have to interrupt the ride.
Basically, the train ride with children in Germany is also a cheap alternative. On sparpreisfinder.de you can search for cheap offers.If you travel more often by train, it is also worth a discount ticket for the adult (Bahncard), which pays off already from the first or second long term ride per year.
Offers by Deutsche Bahn for children:
In ICEs, there is a toddler section and a family section in a part of an adjoining large-capacity car. This means that there is a compartment in the restaurant car of the Bordrestaurant, which is specially designed for families with small children and can be reserved in advance. There is space for a baby stroller, a changing table and you have peace and possibility for breastfeeding and changing diapers, and toddlers can crawl around.
As a rule, there was only one single toddler/childrens` compartment per train. In the meantime, the railway itself has noticed that this is not sufficient and since 2015 additional family areas have been set up.
Depending on the type of train, an area with further 8-24 seats are available only for families.
Where can you change diapers?
In the toddler compartment and the wheelchair WC are changing tables.
Space for a baby carriage:
There is space for a baby carriage in the toddler compartment. In the first class there is a parking space for a wheelchair user. There you can park a stroller, as long as no wheelchair user comes.
Also in the Bordrestaurant next to the toddler compartment is often a second baby carriage parked.
As beautiful as a journey by train with children can be, it can quickly degenerate into stress, since not everything is as simple as it looks. This is why it is important to inform yourself in advance.
Therefore, we have set up a list of 10 Tips that should be considered when traveling with children by train:
- Take enough food with you- a train ride can take a long time. The Bord restaurant is not necessarily for children's specialties. Therefore, you should bring healthy food yourself.
- Elevators are our new friends - whether we like it or not
- The corridor inside an ICE is too tight for a normal stroller. Therefore: Inform yourself about the exact car, where you must go and pay attention - you cannot go through the train!
- The employees of the Deutsche Bahn say: Previously, mothers were not traveling with infants and small children!
- Nothing breaks the ice as fast as a trip with a Baby or Toddler- enjoy it!
- Take enough games and entertainment material for children - children look only 1-2 hours on the train enthusiastically out of the window and find it quite boring afterwards. Bored children can take a train journey infinitely long!
- Anyone who does not manage to book in advance a place in the toddler's compartment or in the family area, must inevitably sit in a normal compartment or waggon. Not everyone is happy about crying or happy children!You should plan your trip exactly where and when you enter, how to get on the track (access routes, elevators, escalators), how long does it take, in which car I must go exactly (With pram you cannot go through the train) and definitely be there on time.
- I also advise you to drive just a little longer with babies or smaller children either early in the morning or late in the evening - so the children sleep a few hours during the trip.From Munich to Berlin, for example, you can easily start at 5 o'clock in the morning, or at 6 o'clock in the evening, so that the majority of the trip is at a time when the children are usually sleeping.
- Have children let off steam before departure. Train riding is also a matter of sitting still, even if the children can get up and walk around for a short time. However, we do not want to be racing and romping children as a mummy on the train, either, and that's why it's best if the children have already done so.
- Go to the Bordrestaurant at least once: there are almost always free toys from the train for the children - as well as small toy ICEs, a coloring book with colored pencils and a children's train magazine.
By Sonja Uhl