According to the company, the start of the nine-euro ticket went largely smoothly in local transport by Deutsche Bahn. “A look at the operating situation shows that it was a quiet start,” said a railway spokesman on Wednesday morning in Berlin. “The trains were not overly busy, but today is a normal working day.”

It remains to be seen how demand will develop over the coming holidays. “At Pentecost, the trains are already well filled when the weather is nice,” emphasized the spokesman. “That will certainly be a challenge for the transport companies in Germany.”

E-mobility, transport policy and future mobility: the briefing on transport and smart mobility. For decision makers

Meanwhile, the federal government’s railway commissioner, Michael Theurer, expressed the expectation that the nine-euro ticket would be successful. “I think it will be a real hit,” said the FDP politician to journalists at the start of the campaign. The ticket arrives directly at the users.

Theurer emphasized that the nine-euro ticket could provide important information for the future of local transport. “If we want to achieve the goal in the coalition of doubling the number of passengers, then we will urgently need the knowledge from the nine-euro ticket.”

If it is possible to bring passengers back with an unrivaled low price offer or even to get above the pre-corona level, then it shows in which direction things can go, according to the Parliamentary State Secretary in the Ministry of Transport.

The nationwide introduction of a 365-euro ticket per year has been debated in Germany for a long time. Theurer said that Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) had set up a working group on a mobility pact with the federal states.

The question arises as to whether more transport and an expansion of the offer are the right instruments – or whether it would not make sense to increase the number of passengers in the existing system, said Theurer. “In ecological terms, it would be right to see that existing trains are better utilized and that existing trains might be lengthened, for example, without increasing personnel costs.”

Dirk Flege, Managing Director of the lobby association Allianz pro Schiene, reacted with the words: “The question of ‘extending the offer or increasing the occupancy’ does not arise. We need both. Without a massive expansion of the range of services, there will be no doubling of passenger transport on the rails. ‚ÄĚPoliticians are asked to expand the infrastructure and launch a financial offensive for local transport, said Flege of the German Press Agency.