Public transport revolution: Germany slashes train fares by 90% to cut motorists’ fuel use

Germany—like many parts in Europe—is known for being pro-commuter. Many foreign tourists find themselves amazed when taking the country’s public transportation, wishing that in their own beloved countries, the same was the case.

Travel to Germany and try to take public transport. You’ll see that it’s not just hype what the (The German Way & More) was raving about. It’s practical to live in any large German city or metropolitan area without owning a car. Even medium-sized cities have good public transportation networks that use buses, trams, and urban/suburban rail lines to move people around, wrote the site.

But wait, there’s more. As if accessibility for the commuting public wasn’t enough, transportation fares have been slashed by 90%.

Since May 2022, various media outlets have reported the significant cut in Germany’s public transport fares.

Yale Environment 360 website E360 Digest ( published a report on May 31 that Germany’s parliament has set summer train fares at 9 euros per month in a bid to slash pollution and curb imports of Russian oil by spurring drivers to take public transit.

The initiative took effect on June 1, with 9 euros covering the cost of all buses, trams, subways, and regional trains, effectively cutting fares by more than 90% in some cities. Berlin commuters will save 98 euros on their monthly travel pass, while commuters in Hamburg will save more than 105 euros. This was reported by Bloomberg. Deutsche Bahn is adding 50 additional trains to absorb the expected increase in users.

The reduced fares come with an estimated price tag of 2.5 billion euros, the cost to the German government of reimbursing transit companies for lost revenue.

Critics have said the plan is too expensive and warned that a surge in travelers could overwhelm mass transit and rail lines. Some, however, have suggested that the initiative should go further.

“Inexpensive and climate-friendly mobility must not and will not remain a flash in the pan,” Katharina Dröge, parliamentary head of Germany’s Green party, said in a statement. “Buses and trains must become even more attractive in town and country.”

The German federal government announced in March that it would be offering discounted monthly tickets on public transport, wrote the on May 11.

The temporary reduction in the cost of trains, buses and trams was introduced to help people cope with the cost of living crisis.

Called the “9 for 90” scheme, it offers public transport tickets for €9 per month for 90 days – or €27 for the whole three months. The scheme will run from June until September.

Do you think the Philippine government can do a similar initiative? Why or why not? Leave us your thoughts and suggestions in the comments section.

(Image/photo credit: 

Give A Shift About Nature/Nitish Shukla)