Hamburg has the oldest operational airport in the world, one that continues today to be a major transport hub. Germany's main airports are in Frankfurt and Berlin, but Hamburg handles plenty of international flights, although mostly budget and with European destinations. Lufthansa uses the airport as one of its minor hubs, flying to destinations like Madrid and Moscow. The airport is easily accessed by S-Bahn (S1) from the city centre.
Strangely, Hamburg doesn't have a direct train service to it's airport and with taxis costing around 25E I was wondering the best way to get there. As I got off the IC from Hannover I noticed a distinctive black and yellow sign for the Airport Express. So being the resourceful and intrepid traveler that I am, I headed for the Information Desk - yeah, I know how to get about ;-)) The kindly gentleman told me that the Airport Express leaves every 15 minutes from just outside the train station, it goes directly to the airport for only 5E and at 25 minutes is faster than a taxi! A return ticket costs 8E and a ticket for children up to 12 years old is just 2E. It is also possible to buy group tickets and monthly tickets.
As I walked outside I noticed other intrepid travels waiting - I knew they were travelers by their rucksacks and suitcases, funny how one develops this kind of sense when one has traveled for a while isn't it?? I was only waiting a minute or two when the bus turned up, the kindly German driver shouted at everyone to get on first , sit down and ONLY THEN would he take their money. We all did as we were told, because German BusFuehrers are terrifying, and then, as he said, he came round and took the money.
He took 5E from the guy next to me and I sat there... with my coins on display in my outstretched palm, eagerly awaiting another ticket to stick in my travel scrap book at home, and blow me down.... he got distracted by some late arrivals who had the audacity to ask him for a ticket BEFORE they sat down.... and then, when the confusion had been dealt with... he walked straight past me!!!! I shared a slightly guilty exchange of glances with the traveler next to me and held onto my coins just in case the BusFuehrer returned. Which he didn't. He had a schedule to keep and us pesky travelers were holding him up,
It took exactly 25 minutes to get to the airport from the Hauptbahnhof. Just as the guy at Information said it would.
This is a great service. No need for taxis.
If you find that you'll be traveling to Hamburg with a lot of extras (luggage, kids, seniors, and so on), it might be better to take a taxi into the city just for comfort's sake.
However, if you're feeling spry and traveling relatively light, the Jasper Airport shuttle can transport you to the city center for 5 Euro per serson. You're dropped off directly in front of the Central Train Station (Haupbanhof), on Kirchenallee. The fare from Kirchenalle/Central Station to the Airport is 8 Euro.
Jasper Shuttles depart from the Airport into the city every 20 minutes, from 5:45 am - 11:30 pm
The Kirchenalle/Central Station trip to the Airport departs every 20 minutes, from 4:40 am- 9 pm
Travel time for each trip is about 20 minutes.
Before departing for the airport the driver will ask you which terminal your plane departure is from. Call your airline beforehand to find out, so your driver knows where to drop you off and you don't miss your plane back home.
The S1 S-Bahn from the main Hauptbanhof is an inexpensive way to travel to the Hamburg Airport. Just make sure that you are in the FIRST 3 CARS of the train (indicated by special lettering near the front-end of the platform). Otherwise, you will end up not reaching your destination since the carriage splits at Ohlsdorf station.
Also, don't be shy about asking train staff to help you to purchase your tickets from the complicated vending machines. Also, pay special attention at the Hauptbanhof since the S-Bahn train signage is buried by all the other signage in the station.
If you traveling with lot of luggage and want to make a quick transport to the city center, then take the other Airport Shuttle bus (painted in Yellow) and not the HVV. The charges are EUR 5.00 and it has some limited stops until it reaches Central Station (Hauptbhanhof).
From airport you can take the HVV bus (ticket is for the bus, train, boat rides), you can also buy the ticket in the bus. When you come out of the terminal you will find signs for the buses, look for the bus (airport express by HVV) or the buse which goes to the S-bhan staion 'Ohlsdorf'. Both S1 & S11 trains will connect this station to the Central Station (Hauptbhanhof). You can use the same ticket for this train too.
Hamburg has a perfectly good, effecient,modern and well connected airport just outside of the city area.
Stuff that. When it comes to travelling from half a dozen places around Europe to Hamburg, Lubeck airport has one (and one only) supreme advantage - its CHEAP.
Ryanair's marketing wheezes often mean it is possible to fly for a weekend in Hamburg very cheaply (sometimes FREE !)
Buses leave from the central bus staion, which are timed to connect with individual flights. Only the Germans (and the Swiss & Japanese then) could organise such things so effeciently. The journey takes just over the hour. Well worth the inconvenience for the possible savings.
Hamburg's Airport is used primarily for flights within Europe, but I noticed that Continental Airlines offers nonstop service to Newark, and Emirates was touting its recently introduced flights to Dubai.
The airport here is comfortable, newish, and easy to use, even for non-German speakers. It's only about 8 km from the city center, so travel to and from your hotel is relatively easy. There are frequent busses to the Hauptbahnoff which cost only 5 euros, and taxis aren't prohibitively expensive, either. Leaving Hamburg, I had a 6.50 am departure, and decided to take a cab for ease and comfort. It was 20 euros, and took only about 15 minutes - thanks to the lack of traffic so early in the day.
In the port of Hamburg - close to the place where Feuerschiff is docked, you have the possibility to book a flight over the city of Hamburg in a small water-plane - see my picture !
These flights will take about 45 minutes and you will mostly explore the area above Binnen-Alster and Ausssen-Alster.
click here for various flights over Hamburg & Germany
including flight with vintage planes like doubble-deckers , helicopters, Zepellins...
I flew to Hamburg with the airline Germanwings for the bargain price of just 25E return, the flight actually cost 2c, the rest was airport taxes. This was an offer I just couldn't refuse!
The flight took about an hour and 20 mins, food on board is mainly things like pizza, rolls and muffins and has to be paid for. As there is no seat allocation, boarding can be a bit like a rugby scrum, so wait until the end, there's always a seat.
The airport has two terminals with all the usual cafes, shops etc and in the departure lounge there is internet access at 50c for 10 mins.
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