Hamburg may not be the biggest city in the world but it certainly covers a wide area. To compensate for this, the city transport planners put together an excellent network to serve all corners of the city. There is an good network of S Bahns (like a normal underground only different - I never found out what the difference was!), U bahns (underground), busses and trains. The transport is cheap and frequent. Depending on how long you are planning to stay in Hamburg, it is worth checking out the fare structure before you buy a ticket. The city is divided into zones. The prices depend on the zones visited. If you are travelling as part of a group, you should invest in a one day group card. This allows you to travel around the whole city and the card is valid for up to 5 people. There is also a single person's day card which again gives you unlimited travel within a certain period of time at a very reasonable price (last time I went to Hamburg it was about 13DM). At every station there is an automatic vending machine - they do give change but it is better to have change with you. At the main stations you will often see people selling tickets at a reduced rate or asking you for your ticket. This is sometimes a good option. People use their tickets before the validity runs out and sell them on at a reduced rate. Always check first how long they are valid for though - it can be an expensive mistake to make otherwise. The larger stations have a map of the city wih all the routes marked out - it is very easy to follow even if you don't speak German. A final word of warning about travelling without a ticket. Unlike London there are no ticket barriers, so some travellers think that they can get away without buying a ticket. This is a very silly mistake to make, as ticket inspectors regularly get on the trains and there is an on the spot fine of about 60DM for anyone found without a ticket. The inspectors do not wear uniform an
d just hop on in a station. You are unlikely to know they are there until the train starts. The tickets are cheap so buy one!!!