The queue in front of the Munich Transport Company (MVG) customer center at Marienplatz is also very long on Thursday afternoon. Around 70 people are queuing for the new Germany ticket for 49 euros. Anyone who queues up at the end has to wait an hour to an hour and a half before it is his or her turn. It would be relatively easy to get the ticket, both as a new customer and as a subscriber. It takes just a few minutes to download it online onto your cell phone or download it as a PDF file and print it out as a paper ticket. MVG will not be sending chip cards until the summer.
But the people in the queue each have an individual interest in getting help from the MVG employees despite the waiting times. Some don’t have a smartphone, others have an old one, and others simply don’t want a mobile phone ticket. “What if the battery runs out?” says a woman in line.
MVG customers only have until Tuesday, April 25, to get the 49-euro ticket for the following month, which is only available as a subscription. By Thursday, MVG had sold 115,000 subscriptions. And she continues to advertise on the radio to buy the ticket from her.
However, Deutsche Bahn (DB) does not say how many tickets it has already sold. Here, customers can buy the ticket as a mobile phone ticket up to the last day of the month and select the first day of the following month as the start of validity. If you prefer to have a chip card, you have to reckon with a lead time of almost two weeks. Since the start of sales, the S-Bahn customer centers at the main station and Ostbahnhof have been noticeably busier than usual, says a DB spokesman.
Because many people still have many questions about the ticket, the hotlines of the MVG and the railway are very busy. Customers report waiting times that are often a quarter of an hour or more.
By the way, there is no student ticket yet. The Bavarian state government has decided to offer a discounted ticket for trainees, students and volunteers from September for 29 euros.
The employees of the city of Munich, on the other hand, will be able to travel completely free of charge in the future: around 43,000 city employees can receive the new Germany ticket free of charge. The administrative and personnel committee of the city council decided unanimously on a request made by the SPD/Volt parliamentary group together with the Greens/Pink List. The city expects costs of up to 25 million euros per year.
But no one is forced: the employees can decide for themselves whether they want to keep their previous job ticket instead of the Deutschlandticket, for example because children can travel with it free of charge. Last year, 17,000 municipal employees received tax-free travel allowances for the job ticket in the amount of the costs of an Isarcard job for tariff zone M, currently 45.57 euros per month. The city spent a total of around 10.5 million euros on this in 2022.
Personnel officer Andreas Mickisch (SPD) emphasized that commuters who regularly travel long distances by public transport would benefit most from the free Deutschlandticket job. With the ticket, the city is making “an important contribution to climate protection”. He announced that the amount of the travel allowance will be dynamically adjusted to the ticket price increase.
Employers who conclude a framework agreement like the city receive a five percent discount on the sales price of 49 euros, provided they are willing to pay a minimum subsidy of 25 percent (12.25 euros) to the employees themselves. In this case, employees would only have to pay 34.30 euros for the Germany ticket. Some companies have already refused to pay even the minimum subsidy to their employees, while the city fully finances the ticket for its employees.