So much has happened since uni let out for summer and yet nothing at all. To sum it up, after about a week of emails, meetings and appointments, I confirmed that my visa will only allow me to work 120 days per calendar year, no exceptions. When I had been issued my visa, I was told that adding more work days would be no problem because I work at the university I attend (apparently the government trusts that the university won’t make me work in conflict with my classes).
This information was false. The only way for me to get more working days in the EU this year would be if I got an internship. Apparently those are considered part of my education and not work. In fact, my original plan actually was to get an internship over the summer so that there would be no way I could have any visa problems but that clearly didn’t work out. Oh well, the end of this story is that I now have a lot of vacation to take because I “overworked” in the first half of this year.
To put it how my boss did, it’s kinda a good thing I’m “not allowed” to work this summer because it forces me to take a vacation. Unfortunately, the fact that I can’t work as much as I wanted to means that I’m also more broke than I was expecting to be. Luckily, I noticed a killer deal when browsing the Deutsche Bahn’s website the other day that I thought I would share with you in case you’re looking for something to do this summer in Germany.
EDIT: Now that I am back from my trip, I am happy to say that the Summer Ticket ended up saving me €186.30! Wow!
The DB Summer Ticket
First off, I’ll link you over to the actual Deutsche Bahn website (in English) for you to check out the details for yourself. To sum up what the website says though, you can basically take any long distance train within Germany for €24 a total of 4 times bringing the total Summer Ticket to €96!
I think that this is a fantastic deal for two reasons. The first is that the cheapest train ticket you will ever find in Germany is €19.90 but these are often for shorter distance trips at odd hours of the day. Second, the Summer Ticket allows you to just hop on any train for one low price even if it’s a spur of the moment, last minute adventure which usually cost an arm and a leg. These two things combined lead me to believe that the Summer Ticket is a fantastic deal.
That said, I have a few things already in the back of my mind to try and maximize the value of the ticket. While the ticket only allows for passage on longer journeys, obviously the longer the journey, the larger the retail price of the ticket and the bigger the savings. Since Frankfurt (where I’m living) is pretty centrally located, I think that means I will be focusing on the perimeters of Germany so as to get the best value out of the tickets. Also, it just makes sense to do it that way because things closer to Frankfurt are either free to get to with my Student ID or just a short and cheep bus ride away.
Speaking of busses, that brings me to the other strategy I have in mind. Taking super cheep buses between some destinations should allow me to stretch out the usefulness of the Summer Ticket. A possible example of this tactic would be from Dortmund to Cologne which is only €5 and 2-3 hours with Flix Bus. Considering that the regional train ticket between the two seems to run about €24 and my Summer Ticket wouldn’t apply since they are so close to each other, the bus seems like the best way to go.
Although I would love to be running around Spain or island hopping in Greece over the summer, it’s also nice to really see the country I have been living in for almost a year now. The last thing that I want to happen a few years from now is someone really excited that I studied in Germany only to find out that I pretty much had only ever seen Frankfurt and Berlin. So, that is my mission this summer. Discover as much of Germany as I can for the least amount of money. Wish me luck!
Disclaimer: I am not affiliated in any way with any company mentioned in this post nor do I receive any compensation from any links provided. Prices and figures provided are, to the best of my knowledge, accurate as of posting and will not be updated in the future.