To get to Berlin city centre from Berlin-Brandenburg airport (BER):
=> the cheapest way is via train from the airport; from arrivals/baggage reclaim, follow the signs to the underground train station
=> Alternatively, you can take the Taxi, but because BER is a bit outside of Berlin, and the city of Berlin is very large, a cab will cost you roughly 50-70 Euros, depending on where your accommodation is in Berlin. Might be worth sharing a cab with several people if you arrive at the same time.
The nearest train station for our conference venue is called „Ostkreuz“ (Eastern Crossroads), which is the Eastern crossing point for several train lines in Berlin – and one of the stops for most trains coming in from BER airport.
=> buy your train ticket at one of the ticket vending machines before going down to the train platforms OR: download the BVG ticket app onto your smartphone
=> IMPORTANT: the airport is in zone C (Brandenburg), to the South-East of Berlin. It is in a different federal state, Brandenburg. The city of Berlin is in zones A and B, so make sure to buy a ticket that covers zones ABC! A ticket for Berlin (AB) does not cover the airport.
A single trip ticket will cost about 3,80 Euros.
=> if you are staying for a few days, you have a few options:
1) a 24-hour ticket => (which really is 24 hours, not just for the day you’ve bought it). You can buy several ones depending on how many days you are staying
2) a 7-day ticket
3) Berin CityTourCard valid for 48 hours
4) There is also a nice Berlin WelcomeCard you can buy on the ticket app which includes free entry to all Museum island museums; it is valid for 72 hours.
You can buy all of these tickets either at the ticket vending machines or via the smartphone app, in which you have your digital ticket on your smartphone.
All tickets are valid for the underground, tram (streetcars), busses, and the S-Bahn (overground suburban trains).
If you have time and wish to explore, you can take the S-Bahn out to Potsdam (zone C again, so make sure you have the right ticket), which is a beautiful city and a former royal residence, with Sanssouci palace of the Prussian king Frederick the Great.
!!!! IMPORTANT !!!!
Berlin public transportation operates on a trust system. There are no turnstiles to access the underground, but plain-clothed ticket inspectors are regularly checking tickets on the train. You will not recognize them when they step on board, as they don’t wear uniforms. If you are caught without a valid ticket, they will fine you 60 Euros. They make no exception for tourists or people who don’t speak German or don’t understand the ticketing system. So always make sure you have a valid ticket with you.
Again, the easiest way to get your ticket is via the BVG app on your smartphone.
If you buy a paper ticket from the machine, make sure you stamp it in one of the yellow ticket validation machines right next to the ticket vending machine. The ticket must be validated and have that little stamp on it.