Planning a Trip to Germany: An Easy 13-Step Checklist

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Last Updated on: 22nd September 2021, 08:11 pm

For many travelers, a trip to Germany is a trip of a lifetime.

Whether you’re looking for gorgeous castles, hip cities, or to connect with your family’s roots, there are so many great reasons to visit Deutschland.

But there are a few things you need to know before you arrive.

Here’s my full-proof travel checklist for planning a trip to Germany so you can fully enjoy your trip once you arrive!

My Favorite Travel Booking Sites for 2024

These are my favorite companies that I use on my own travels.

Protect Your Trip via Safety Wing

Find the best city tours, day tours, bus tours, & skip-the-line tickets on GetYourGuide and Viator.

Find the best deals on hotels & vacation rentals on

For English-speaking private airport transfers, book through Welcome Pickups.

For road trips and independent travel, rent a car through Discover Cars.

Find information and cruise reviews on Cruise Critic.

For packing and travel essentials order via Amazon.

Book an affordable family or romantic photography session on your trip through Flytographer (Use the code HISTORYFANGIRL for 10% off your first photoshoot).

For travel guidebooks to have with you during your trip, I always pick one or two from Rick Steves and Lonely Planet.

Planning a Trip to Germany Checklist

Follow these thirteen steps and you’ll find a trip to Germany is easier to plan than you think!

1. Commit to a Trip Budget

Germany is a funny country to budget. On the one hand, it’s less expensive to travel here than in the UK, Ireland, or France. Thus, for many travelers whose first forays into international travel have been in Western Europe, Germany will seem like a great bargain.

On the other hand, though, it’s much more expensive than places like Spain, Portugal, or Eastern Europe. A bargain compared to Austria and Switzerland, but a price shock for anyone used to neighboring Czech Republic or Poland, Germany is both in the middle of the continent and in the middle of European prices.

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To further complicate the matter, Eastern Germany tends to be less expensive to travel than Western Europe, so thirty years after the fall of the Iron Curtain, it still matters which side you end up on. 

Thus, depending on who you speak with, Germany will either be a great bargain or a trip to save up for. It really helps to get as many actual figures as possible, since any information based on someone’s opinion can be skewed wildly by their own experiences.

Thus the best thing to do is to determine what trip budget you’re comfortable with and can afford, and then plan your itinerary accordingly.

How Much Should You Budget for Germany?

Budget travelers can get by on $50 USD per day plus transportation. This would mean staying in a hostel dorm, doing mostly free activities, and eating a mix of street food and groceries which you prepare at your hostel. For this to work, you really need to keep alcohol to a minimum, because even a few beers can blow a hole in your budget.

You should also stick to one or two destinations since buses and train tickets between cities can eat away at your budget very quickly. For transportation, utilize Germany’s great public transportation and avoid taxis which will quickly eat up any spare room in your budget.

Mid-Range travelers can get by on $70-90 USD per day plus transportation. This would be doing what I did getting a private room in a hostel, doing a few guided tours and activities, and eating a mix of street food, nice meals out, and cooking for yourself. Alternatively, you could share a private hotel room with a friend or partner.

Germany has one of the biggest discrepancies I’ve seen between restaurant costs and grocery costs, so keep in mind that even eating a few meals from grocery stores will make a big difference. Even mid-range travelers will still need to use public transportation in Germany since taxis are quite expensive. 

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Luxury travelers can have a wonderful time on $125-175 USD per day plus transportation. This would mean lots of guided tours and activities, eating all your meals out, and enjoying a private room at a hotel. The big difference in your budget here is whether you’re enjoying a private hotel room or splitting the costs. If you want a true luxury hotel room all to yourself, this range could go up significantly.

You might still want to stick to public transportation since German taxis are notoriously expensive. 

2. Choose Your Travel Dates

Once you determine your trip budget, you need to decide how long you want to be in Germany and what time of year to go.

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