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Basic information

  • Area: 405.15 km² (156.43 sq mi)
  • Calling Code: +49
  • Currency: Euro (€) (EUR)
  • Population (EST): 998,105
  • Official language: German
  • Time Zone: CET (UTC+1)

Cologne – Getting Around

Airport Transfers

The Cologne/ Bonn Airport, Konrad Adenauer Airport, is located 15 km south of the city centre, approximately half way between the cities of Cologne and Bonn. If you are arranging your own transport away from the airport the S-Bahn is the most convenient way to travel. With services leaving from the airport directly into Köln Hauptbahnhof up to three times every hour at a cost of only €2.30 for a one way ticket, the 15 minute journey is the most direct. If you want to travel by bus route the journey is a bit more complex. Route 161 will take you as far as Porzmarkt on the outskirts of the city centre and from there you will have to take route 7 on the S-Bahn to get into the heart of the city. Car hire is available from the airport or a taxi ride will set you back between €25 and €30 and takes approximately 20 minutes depending on traffic.


Cologne is very cycle friendly and hiring a bike couldn’t be easier than with the city’s Call a Bike service. After registering online or by phone pick up a bike at one of the many bike racks and get cycling! Hire is charged either by the minute, day or week and is far cheaper than renting a car.


A comprehensive bus service runs throughout the city centre and into the suburbs of Cologne. The company KVB run the public transport services in Cologne and all tickets are integrated (see below).


The S-Bahn service is an over-ground train network connecting Cologne to national and international destinations. The main station of Köln Hauptbahnhof in the city centre has high speed links to Frankfurt and there is the likelihood of a high speed link connecting Cologne to London.


There are over 1000 taxis in Cologne so hailing one down on the street is usually fairly easy, if not there are a number of designated taxi ranks throughout the city. All taxis charge a standard pick up fee of €2, the cost per mile during the day is reasonable but prices do increase if travelling at night so check before you get in the cab.


Because the public transport system is integrated a ticket bought on the bus is valid for the S- and U-Bahn services and vice versa. Cologne is split into regions for ticketing purposes with the city centre being zone 1b. Depending on how many trips you plan to make there are various tickets available; short hop trips (4 stops) are best for very infrequent use but if staying longer tickets valid from 1 day to 1 month can be purchased from ticket machines or ticket vendors in stations.


The most well used form of public transport; the U-Bahn is a subway system that converts to a tram network when the trains come above ground. Clean and efficient the U-Bahn system connects most of the city, and those areas out of the network can usually then be reached by bus.