Travelling on an InterCity Express train

At a glance

  • High speed train
  • Regional train
  • Belgium
  • Germany
  • France
  • Switzerland
  • Austria
  • Netherlands

The InterCity Express (ICE) is a top-of-the range family of high-speed trains run principally by Deutsche Bahn (although virtually identical trains are found in Russia). Sleek, swift and very comfortable, the ICE is a reliable choice for business and leisure travel. Most of these trains spend much of their time on regular routes rather than merely sticking to new high-speed lines.

ICE trains run on principal business rail routes within Germany with hubs in Berlin, Cologne, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hannover, Munich and Stuttgart. A limited number of ICE trains are used on busy cross-border routes to Amsterdam, Brussels, Copenhagen, Interlaken, Paris, Vienna and Zurich.

All ICE services offer First and Standard Class seating and over 90% of these trains have an on-board restaurant. Air conditioning comes as standard, seats in both classes recline and there is plenty of space for luggage. ICEs have power sockets in both classes around seats with tables and in recent models between each pair of seats. There is free wifi on board ICE trains in both First and Standard Class.

Featured journeys with this train

Seating and sleeping on InterCity Express (ICE)

Standard Class

Standard Class seating on ICE trains is consistently a notch above European norms for this class of travel. The majority of carriages have an open-plan layout, but on some ICE variants you will find a small number of compartments, some of which may be reserved for travellers with small children. One carriage is designated as a quiet zone.

Food and drink on InterCity Express (ICE)

Trolley Service

On many ICE routes, a simple trolley service may be offered to passengers in second-class seating. (In first-class, passengers will in any case always be offered at-seat service). Where a trolley service is available, it is limited to hot and cold drinks and a range of confectionery.

Child and youth passengers

The definition of "Child" and "Youth" varies by country and operator. This is why we ask for the age of young passengers.

Sometimes children below a certain age can travel without a seat for free. If you want to guarantee a seat for child passengers, enter '6' as the age of the child.

Read more about child and youth passenger ages. See also youth discounts and railcards.