Mobility

Transportation in Kassel

Warning: Pay attention to special signs at tram stations that warn you of bus/trams crossings!

After your arrival in Kassel, one of the most important things is to be familiar with the city’s public transportation system. Kassel’s public transportation network consists of a tram and bus system. City trams (which are blue) and buses run through the city centre and extend to the suburbs of Kassel. Nine city tram lines and 28 bus lines operated by the public transport association Nordhessischer Vehrkehrsverbund (NVV), together with the new regional trams (which are white), provide convenient links in and out of the city and the Kassel region. Ticket information and a timetable of trams and buses is available at tram/bus stops or on the Kasseler Vehrkehrs-Gesselschaft KVG homepage, which operates the transportation in and around Kassel, or on the NVV homepage.

Tickets can be purchased at ticket machines in the tram itself, at some tram stops or from bus-drivers. There are different kinds of tickets, so the following information may be useful:

  • Einzelfahrkarten Erwachsene – One-way ticket for adults (is only valid until you reach your destination, but you are allowed bus/tram changes).
  • Wochenkarte – One-week ticket (is valid until the end of the current week with no limitations).
  • Monatskarte – similar to the one-week ticket, but valid for one month from the day of purchase.
  • TagesTicket – 24-hour ticket for one person.
  • MultiTicket – 24-hour ticket that can be shared by up to 5 people.

For further information and prices, please visit the Kasseler Vehrkehrs-Gesselschaft KVG homepage.

Please be aware that public transportation runs less frequently after 9 p.m. and on public holidays.

Note: Trams and buses have space for wheelchairs and prams at the central doors.


Job-Ticket

The University of Kassel offers guest researchers staying at least three months the opportunity to purchase a "Job-Ticket", which enables the holder to travel cheaply within the Public Transport KVG area.

A Job-Ticket can be ordered at the university, but please note that you need the Multifunktionskarte first. If you have any questions, please contact Mrs. Schnitzerling, Room 2230 (+49 561 804-2183) or Mrs. Hilgenberg, Room 1170 (+49 561 804-2177).

 


Map of the city of Kassel


Bicycle

Due to the lack of available free parking in Kassel, it is not particularly practical to own a car. The easiest and most convenient means of transportation when living in the city is a bicycle. In addition to the practical aspect, there are also a lot of nice places to take weekend trips in the surrounding area. Buying a second-hand bike that can be re-sold upon departure from Germany is a good option.  There are several good shops in Kassel that offer new and used bicycles (see below).  You can also look at flea-markets or advertisements on community notice boards (like the one in the main library, for example).

Bicycles can be bought/sold at:

Konrad Bike Rental System

In spring 2012, the city of Kassel will introduce a bike rental system called KONRAD. Through Konrad, 500 bicycles will be available for rental at 50 different locations in Kassel. You can borrow a bicycle from one location and return it to any of the other locations.

Costs

  • Opening a Konrad customer account at www.konrad-kassel.de or from one of the Konrad stations is free of charge.
  • The general rental fee is 50 cents per 30 minutes, but NVV customers and University of Kassel students receive special offers.
  • If you have an annual NVV ticket, you can use a Konrad bicycle for 10 hours every month at no cost. With an annual NVV “Trio Mobil” ticket, you can use a Konrad bicycle for 20 hours every month at no cost. It is not possible with either type of annual ticket to transfer remaining hours to the next month, and there is no possibility of a refund for unused Konrad hours.
  • After registration, University of Kassel students with a semester- ticket can use a Konrad bicycle as often as they want for the first 45 minutes of each rental. The regular Konrad price (50 cents per 30 minutes) will be charged for any additional minutes after the first 45.


Taxi

It is possible to take taxis in the city, but these may be rather expensive.  “Minicars” are similar to taxis, but usually cost much less and may provide an alternative option when public transportation does not operate as frequently as usual (weekends, public holidays or late at night).  Telephone numbers and further information for taxi and minicar providers can be found below, in the Gelbeseiten (yellow pages), or at taxi call-centres.

Taxis in Kassel are mostly available at designated places such as railway stations and hotels. They can also be booked by phone from various service providers.

Minicar-City car GmbH

+49 561 811081

Minicar 24 Yellowcar 24 freecall Center

+49 561 9536801

Minicar

+49 800 66 60066

Taxibüro Mitte

+49 561 779898

Taxi Christine Schneider

+49 561 21957

Taxi Call Center Kassel GmbH

+49 561 5601445

Taxi-Call-Center-Kassel

+49 561 770066


Parking

A sign with a big “P” indicates that parking on the street is permitted, but please check signs carefully because restrictions may apply. A sign that reads “nur mit Parkschein” means that you cannot park without a temporary parking permit, which can usually be purchased from automated parking machines in the area.


Travelling within Germany

The two principal methods of transportation within Germany are the car and the rail system, both of which offer cheap alternatives (i.e. car-pooling or a railcard). Bus travel is relatively unusual in Germany, unless a travel agent has booked a bus for a special trip. It is often a good idea to enquire at a local travel agency for special flight prices when travelling further away, especially for students, because discounted flight prices can sometimes be cheaper than a rail connection.

Please visit the following links for further information:


Driving a car

If you would like to drive in Germany, you will need a driving permit. Driving licenses from EU-Countries or EEA countries (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway) are unconditionally valid in Germany. You can also drive in Germany with an international driver's license. Driver's licenses from non-European countries (accompanied by an official German translation) become invalid six months after your arrival in Germany. Thereafter, you will have to apply for a German driving license. Depending upon your native country, you may have to retake the driving exam (theoretical and/or practical sections). You should apply to transfer your driver's license as soon as possible (three months before the date of expiry at the latest).

If you plan to drive in Germany, please consult the relevant authorities in your home country for specific questions regarding transferring your current driver’s license.

For information in German about obtaining a driver’s license in Germany or transferring a foreign license, please visit the following link:

Bringing your car to Germany

If you:

  • have lived abroad for at least one year
  • have used your car abroad for at least six months
  • only plan to use your car for personal reasons
  • will return in future with your car to your home country

bringing your car to Germany is duty-free.  If you plan to stay Germany for less than one year, you will only need an international or foreign Motor Vehicle Admissions Certificate (Kraftfahrzeug-Zulassungsschein) accompanied by an official German translation.

If you plan to remain in Germany for longer than one year, you will need to register your car. Registration requires a visit to the city of Kassel Vehicle Registration Office (Kraftfahrzeugzulassungsstelle). They will provide you with necessary documents. You should also plan to bring the following documents with you when you register:

  • Your passport
  • Your driving license
  • Your Confirmation of Registration Form (Meldebestätigung)
  • The vehicle registration papers from your native country and the old license plates from your car
  • Proof of insurance in the form of an "insurance coverage card" (Deckungskarte der Versicherung) or a "green insurance card" (proof of insurance from your native country)
  • Certificate from the Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt stating that your car has never been registered in Germany (Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt, 24932 Flensburg, Tel.: 0461/316-0)

In addition, you will be required to:

    • complete a TÜV-examination (a technical examination to prove that your car is roadworthy) and
    • an Abgassonderuntersuchung (AU or emissions test)

    The necessary addresses for testing locations are available at the city of Kassel Vehicle Registration Office (Kraftfahrzeugzulassungsstelle).

    For information about parking and parking garages in Kassel, please visit this link:

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