The cultural offer of Berlin is at the height of the historical importance of the city: monuments, museums, landmarks, tours ... the capital has much to offer and to save money and time there is the Berlin Welcome Card.
1. What is the Berlin Welcome Card
A city pass or tourist card gives you free or discounted access to the city's points of interest for a certain period of time. The Berlin WelcomeCard has a general version and several extensions, depending on the attractions you want to visit:
2. How the Berlin Welcome Card works
There are different types of Berlin Welcome Card with different prices depending on the number of days you want to use it. Regardless of the mode you choose, during the time it is active you will be able to use all its benefits and access all discounts and free tickets.
When you go to book the card online, you will have the possibility to choose the mode that suits you best, but here are the prices depending on the number of days you want to use it:
- 2 days - 23 euros
- 3 days - 33 euros
- 4 days - 40 euros
- 5 days - 46 euros
- 6 days - 49 euros
Ana's Traveller Tip
In the 48 and 72 hours modalities, the use of the card is counted by hours and in the following modalities by calendar days. To make the most of it, activate it first thing in the morning.
3. How it works
Reservation and pick up
You can buy it online and print it comfortably at home or pick it up at one of the different points of sale around the city of Berlin. When you go to make your purchase you will be asked for how many days you want the card and for which transport zones, but you can always resolve by mail any questions you have about its collection or use.
The operation of the Berlin Welcome card is simple: the tourist card is validated with the first use and from that moment you can enjoy all its benefits for as long as you have hired it. Remember to always carry it with you during your trip and always show it at the ticket offices of museums and monuments before purchasing your ticket.
One of its most outstanding benefits that not everyone knows about is that children up to 14 years old travel free on public transport accompanied by an adult in possession of this card. It also includes a map of the city with recommendations to discover it.
4. Attractions and experiences included in the Berlin Welcome Card
To list the more than 200 places you can enter at a discount with the Berlin Welcome card (including benefits in stores and restaurants) is an arduous task, but I can list the ones that, for me, are the most worthwhile discounts for this tourist card. In the following places you will save 25% presenting the Berlin Welcome card:
German Historical Museum
Through 8000 objects selected from different collections, this museum shows the 2000 years of German history in a space of four floors.
It is one of the most visited spaces in Berlin and is characterized as one of the most interactive in the world. Through an inverse experience you will go through the routine of East Germany, the years of the Berlin Wall or the functioning of the Stasi. If you have never been to a similar museum and you are interested in the history of the city, I recommend it.
Berlin Wall Museum
A multimedia museum that covers the years of the Cold War and tells the story of how the famous wall radically changed the way of life in the city.
Presided over by a grandiose architectural work, this is one of the most breathtaking museums you can visit in the city of Berlin. Besides offering interesting historical data supported by real photographs, it also collects testimonies in different formats of the Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Not to be missed.
Madame Tussauds Museum
One of the highest quality wax muse ums in Europe. Your visit is a different and fun way to learn more about German and world culture past and present.
An essential stop for sports lovers that also has several guided tours.
It is no secret that, in terms of espionage, Germany has had a lot to say throughout history. In this museum there is an interesting review of all this that I assure you is very interesting from a historical point of view.
Climbing the TV tower
Germany's landmark building located on Alexanderplatz is also one of the best views in the German capital.
5. Possible extras or extensions to add to your Welcome Card
Extension of the Berlin Welcome Card to the Museum Island
The Berlin Welcome card extension with the Museum Island pass included is valid for 72 hours and during this time you will enjoy all the advantages of the 3-day Berlin Welcome card and you will also be able to access all the museums located on the famous Museum Island, one of the most important museum sites in Europe.
- The Old National Gallery: houses works of art from classicism, romanticism, impressionism and the beginnings of modernism.
- The Old Museum: a jewel for lovers of antiques. It was the first public museum in Prussia.
- The New Museum: divided between a collection of Egyptian art and another of prehistoric art.
- The Pergamon Museum: it is the most visited museum in Berlin. Inside you will find the Museum of Islamic Art and the Museum of the Near East with antiquities such as the frieze of Pergamon or the market gate of Miletus.
- The Museum of Byzantine Art: also known as the Bode-Museum. It highlights its collection of coins, sculptures and treasures.
The Berlin Welcome Card extension for Berlin Zone C
With the generic card you will have free access to the subway, buses and the Berlin streetcar network covering zones A and B of the city (the center of Berlin). If you are staying further away or you are interested in visiting more distant areas, you can pay a surcharge of between 3 and 5 euros so that your transport card also includes zone C and the town of Potsdam. You can select this option from the general Berlin Welcome card, choosing the days and areas you want.
The all-inclusive Berlin Welcome Card extension
In addition to the free transport and discounts of up to 50% that includes the generic mode, with this VIP option you will also have free entry to several highlights and access to the Berlin sightseeing bus with free stops.
In the case of the all-inclusive option, the 25% discounts you'll get at places like the DDR museum, the Stasi museum, Madame Tussauds or the Olympic Stadium, among others, turn directly into free admission. From my point of view, if you are staying in the center of Berlin and your main motivation to get the Berlin Welcome card are the discounts and not the transportation, you should consider this option, even if you are going to select a shorter duration.
6. When is it worth buying the Berlin Welcome Card and what type of card to choose?
Tourist cards can be a fantastic investment when visiting a city, but whether or not it pays off will always depend on your travel plans and how much you are willing to spend your time. There are a number of factors to consider that can help you make your decision on whether or not to purchase the Berlin Welcome card:
- How long you are going to be in Berlin. It is fundamental. If you are going to be in the German capital for 15 days you do not need to concentrate all the visits to the museums in several days even if it means a saving. On the other hand, keep in mind that if you are only going to be in Berlin for two days you may not want to spend them only seeing museums and prefer to enjoy other aspects of the city.
- The location of your accommodation. The main advantage of the Berlin Welcome card is the free transportation in zones A and B of the city (zone C if you choose this option). The center of Berlin is very large and you may live in a central neighborhood but separated from the main sights. However, if you are staying close to the main sights and also like to walk to the sites, you will not take advantage of the free transportation as much.
- The number of museums you want to visit. It seems obvious, but perhaps you have been fascinated by the immense cultural offer of Berlin and have not taken into account the actual number of museums you are going to see. I recommend that you plan which museums or monuments you want to visit and then calculate how much you would save on them with the city pass discounts.
- Your pace of travel. To get the most out of any tourist card, you need an intense pace of travel. The more museums you visit, the more profitable the investment in your card will be, and that means seeing several museums per day. If you think this is going to tire you out and you prefer to alternate sightseeing with walking around the city, select an option of fewer days so that you can enjoy what you see and not make the visits "by obligation".
- The rest of the activities you will do during your visit: Do you plan to rent a bike, is a visit to a restaurant as important to you as a visit to a museum, do you want to climb the TV Tower, do you not plan to leave Berlin without visiting several of its stores? If so, take a look at the other benefits that this card includes in addition to the discounts at tourist sites.
Ana's Traveller Tip
Check out the restaurants in Berlin where you will get a discount with your tourist card; you may be surprised.
7. Other tourist passes to visit Berlin
If you are interested in the idea of buying a tourist card to visit the German capital and want to compare other options, I recommend this article about the Berlin Pass. This is another way to enjoy Berlin's monuments and museums while saving a considerable amount of money.
Unlike the Berlin Welcome card, the Berlin Pass is more focused on sightseeing than on transport: in its standard form it includes free entry to different attractions (instead of discounts) and you can waive the transport ticket to save on cost, so it is a good option if you are staying in the center and you are going to walk. The Berlin Pass is available for two or three days and you have in this article everything you need to know to get it: Berlin Pass.
8. If you are interested in the Berlin Welcome card, you will also be interested in
One of the visits not to be missed in Berlin is the Charlottenburg Palace. Located within walking distance from the center and easily accessible by public transport, this palace and its impressive gardens are well worth a visit, especially if you want to escape for a morning from the stress of the center of Berlin. I leave you a link to my guide on Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin so you can organize your visit.
With the Berlin Welcome card you will get a 25% discount on the interior visit, but also this 18th century palace offers many other experiences to the traveler that you should not miss.