Being in Copenhagen, you may have to use public transport, therefore, let us find out some relevant details about it and the ways to reduce your travelling expenses. Below you will find the links to correspondent sections devoted to transport in Copenhagen.
Here you will find links to the following transport sections:
1. Provinces and tickets 8. Buses
2. Types of tickets 9. S-tog - metropolitan commuter train
3. What to do with a ticket machine 10. Regional - commuter trains
4. Travel card 11. InterCity - long-distance express trains
5. Rejsekort 12. Canal transport
6. Bikes 13. Tips: how to save money on transport
Airport, trains and underground. Copenhagen itself and its suburbs create the whole conglomeration, the so-called "Big Copenhagen", divided into 95 regions. The city centre in turn consists of 4 areas: the 1st and 2nd are the heart of the city, the 3rd is the area of the man-made beach Amager Strand and Vest Amager district with the largest Copenhagen shopping mall Fields, the 4th area is the airport. Other areas, from the 5th to the 8th refer to the suburb of Copenhagen.
1. Regions and tickets. At each bus stop or railway station you will certainly find a map of the region with a note devoted to "You are here". The fare depends on the number of areas you should cross by transport. Remember that maps are different in different regions: the red one means the area you are currently in, the next one is blue and then yellow, etc. Thus, you can at once see how many areas you need to cover.
It is very easy to find out the number of areas you need. Suppose you are now in Lufthavnen (at the airport) – this is the 4th area and you are going towards the city centre, say, to Nørreport (city centre), which is in the 1st area. Let us calculate 4 - 1 = 3. This is the number of areas you have to pay for per person. In case you are going from the 2nd area to the first and backwards you will need a ticket for two areas since there are no tickets for 1 area only.
Attention: be careful when buying ticket. You should know the right number of areas you need. When in doubt, ask an officer in the underground, bus or on a train. Public transport is often inspected and if you have bought a wrong ticket, you will be fined for 600 DKK (90 euros), and on the train for 750 DKK (100 euros)
2. Kinds of tickets. You can purchase a single ticket, starting from 2 areas at the price of 24 DKK (3.5 euros). When you buy a single ticket, it includes the time and starting area. Just get on the transport with it.
Single tickets may be bought:
1. from the bus driver
2. in ticket offices at large stations
3. in machines at train and underground stations
4. In shops 7/11, kiosks or Arabic stalls
If you have already bought a single ticket and your time has not finished, but you need to go to the area not included into those paid for, you will need to buy a ticket for an one extra area. This extra ticket is called 5. In your smartphone /iРhone, if you have installed application Mobilbilletter
The ticket is valid for all means of public transport over the following periods of time:
2-3 areas - 1 hour
4-6 areas – 1.5 hours
7-8 areas - 2 hours
If you have already bought a single ticket and your time has not finished, but you need to go to the area not included into those paid for, you will need to buy a ticket for an one extra area. This extra ticket is called Tilkøbsbillet.
Attention: an extra ticket itself (one-area ticket) is not valid by itself – it can only be used along with a ticket for at least 2 areas.
For the owners of sim cards with Danish phone numbers, there is a more convenient service: a clip card (mobilbilleter) for clips 10 clips at the price of 150DKK. This clip card may be purchased by installing application (App mobilbilleter) on your smartphone/iРhone (take a look on picture below). Then it is necessary to buy a clip card (take a look on picture 2 below). When you buy a clip card, you will be able to make a "clip" for the number of areas you need (take a look on picture 3 below). You should also select the number of people (voksen - adult, børn - child, cykel - bike), then tick to confirm your decision and køb billet – buy a ticket (take a look on picture 4 below). After that you will see that you are going, e.g., for 2 areas and time down-count starts with 1 hour 15 minutes. Remember that the clip must be punched before you get on transport.
By the way, this application may be also used to purchase a single ticket! It will just take your time to enter your credit card details. To do it for a single ticket is not interesting, so I am writing here about the clip card, which you buy once and use as long as you have credit on it. The clip card is valid for 6 months
3. What to do with a ticket machine. Select your language – English. After that select the area of your destination and push the button of the respective colour. You will see the fare price on the screen. The machine is ready to “eat” your money – throw coins or insert a credit card into the slot (the card does not plunge like in an ATM).
There will be a sentence in incomprehensible danish language, but it is not a mistake, it is just the time to take out the credit card. Now enter your pin code, yes, when your card has already been taken out. That’s an interesting system. Further, the machine will offer you to print out the receipt. When you have coped with all this – take your ticket.
4. Transport cards. There are transport passes, providing you with an opportunity not to think how much and where to pay for the public transport. A 24-hour ticket gives an opportunity to travel by bus, train and underground around the capital regardless of the number of crossed areas. Using their day ticket, any adult may take two children under 12 free of charge.
FlexCard for 7 days provides an opportunity to travel by bus, trains and underground over 7 days. This card is not personal and enables to use it across the marked areas unlimited number of times. Using their FlexCard, any adult may take two children under 12 free of charge. Two children aged 12 - 15 (including) are entitled to travel together using one FlexCard.
Tourist Copenhagen card gives an opportunity to travel by bus, train or underground around the capital. In addition, this card provides free entrance to over 60 museums and "Tivoli" park, or it entitles to a discount on entrance fee to various museums. Read more details Copenhagen card here.
5. Rejsekort. From 1 January 2011 a new system has been in place in Copenhagen, Rejsekort. It was designed to facilitate life of those using public transport. The idea is that tourists should not think too much of the area they are in, which area they are going to and how much they should pay for that. It is necessary to get registered when getting on and off the transport at the terminals with blue lights. The minimum card balance amount must be 50 DKK (8 euros). Registering the card when getting off the public transport, the corresponding amount will be debited from the card and the balance will appear on the screen.
Rejsekort is a plastic card, similar to the credit one by size. It can be of 3 kinds, personal, flexible (rejsekort flex) and anonymous. The personal card provides an opportunity to travel for its holder only and it costs 50 DKK (8 euros). The flexible one (Flex), costs 50 DKK (8 euros), is registered in the name of a person and provides an opportunity for other people, mentioned by the owner when purchasing, to use it. The anonymous card Rejsekort does not have a registered owner, costs 80 DKK (10 euros) and gives the right to any person to use it.
In case you have wrongly or accidentally registered the card when getting on the transport (check in), you should immediately register it in the neighboring machine called (check out). In this case the money will not be withdrawn from the card. If you have forgotten to register it when getting off (check out), then upon 4 hours the card will be blocked.
How to buy?
Rejsekort may be bought in machines at stations and/ or ticket offices available at large stations. Enter the ticket sales department at the central station and ask the teller to sell you Rejsekort Flex. The card will be registered in your name, indicate everybody you are travelling with, estimate the amount you will credit to the card based on 50 DKK per day + 50 DKK the price of the card itself. That’s it!
6. Bicycle. If you are staying in a hotel, then with probability of 95 % you will be able to rent an iron horse there. Even hostels, mentioned on this website, offer this service. The rental rate will be about 100 - 150 DKK (15 - 20 euro) per day per bicycle. This will give you an opportunity to move freely around Copenhagen and feel as if you were a local dweller. If your hotel does not provide the above service, a bicycle may be rented e.g. here, 800 meters from the central station towards Dybbelsbro, area Syhavn. Here you will be offered to rent a bicycle at the rate of 110 DKK (15 euro) per day, and if you want to extend it for a day, then the price will be just 50 DKK (8 euro). There are lots of such places in Copenhagen and you can search for them yourselves, depending on the area you will be staying in.
7. Underground. Several years in a row Copenhagen underground was voted as the best Underground in Europe. This was due to different reasons. First, it is absolutely safe, clean, shallow, accessible for the disabled and families with children, there are lifts at every station.
There is no place to get lost in the underground, but the metro system is connected with the system of local trains S-banen. Not to get confused – underground branches are yellow and green and are called М1 and М2. Underground carriages are brand new, unmanned, control is fully automated. In the Danish underground one can "steer". Since there is no driver, there is no cabin for him either and it means that passengers may easily take seats in front of the wind shield. You are watched by the surveillance cameras installed in each carriage, so you will have to comply with the route.
The system of opening and closing doors may seem unusual. Similar stations are widespread throughout Europe, where a person can get from the platform to the carriage only through a sliding door, which opens when a train stops only, similarly to the mechanism used in lifts. Platform fencing is transparent, so you may enjoy the view of the coming train.
To the great joy of the travelers not willing to waste a minute of their time, the metro operates round the clock!
Tran traffic interval is as follows:
During the "rush" hour 7 am till 10 am and 15 pm till 6 pm, the interval is 2 minutes in the centre and up to 4 minutes at the side branches; From midnight till 5:00 am people have to wait 20 - 30 minutes, on Saturday and Sunday night – 15 minutes; The rest of the time – early in the morning, at day time and in the evening after the rush hour trains run every 3 minutes (or 6 minutes at the side branches).
Fare Collection System depends on the journey distance.
The whole Copenhagen is divided into different rate areas, the more areas you are going to cross, the higher the fare.
1 area: is limited by branches with stations - Nørreport, Kongens Nytorv, Christianhavn, Islands Brygge, DR - Byen, Amagerbro, Legravsparken, Forum и Frederiksberg.
2 area: stations - Frederiksberg, Fasanvej, Lindevang, Flintholm and Vanløse
3 area: includes stations - Sunby, Bella Center, Ørestad, Vestamager, Øresund, Amager Strand и Femøren.
4 area: these are stations Kastrup and Lufthavnen (Airport).
Buses run throughout the city. At each bus station or railway station one can find the map of the region with a note on "You are here". The buses can be large, double-deckers, standard or small, running around the city centre. When getting on the bus, it is required either to buy a ticket from the bus driver o show the bought ticket, in case you are making a correspondence between different means of transport. Buses are equipped with free WIFI.
9. S – tog means local trains in the capital. These are very comfortable trains: seats are soft, it is clean, there is a "quiet area" where you cannot speak aloud and where you can read in silence. S - trains create the whole network with the Copenhagen underground, but they run outside the city area. The windshield is marked with a Latin letter in a colourful frame – this is the line the train follows. Pay attention to the fact that carriage doors do not open automatically. If a passenger wants to get off the train, it is necessary to push the button on the door marked <|> - and the door will open! Similar situation may be observed with setting on the train from the platform: do not wait for the "secret place" to open by itself. The same principle is used in the operation of the inter-carriage doors. On the picture below Latin letters at the end of this or that red line stand for various directions of S trains. Trains are equiped with free WIFI.
10. Regional are also local trains running within the region. Electric trains include up to 6 carriages. There you can also encounter double-decker carriages. Inside seats are placed opposite each other or in the same direction – depending on the carriage model. The doors should be opened as well by pressing the button when needed.
11. InterCity are fast long-distance trains, which make stops only at major stations. Long distance trains leave from the central station.
On all the platforms monitors or displays show the way (in Danish spor) the train will arrive at and its destination, indicating the train type out of those listed above. It is strictly forbidden to smoke in carriages as well as speak on mobile phones. They take the comfort of all passengers seriously.
You can select one of the compartment types: standard, for travelling with children or have a seat in the quiet area, where making noise is forbidden. It may happen that you will be asked to change your seat at a certain station. Do not worry and do not get furious, but just take another free seat. It just means that this person has booked that seat for him/herself. In order not to get into the same situation, look at the display above the seat: it shows the station from which the seat will be occupied.
12. River transport
There is a river transport in Copenhagen. If you wish, you can take a boat trip and enjoy the views of Copenhagen from water, there is an opportunity to get on the deck and all this is at the price of one clip of a 2-area card. The boat journey from one end, the Dutch quarter, Sydhavn to the other, Langlinje quai, with the symbol of Copenhagen – the Little Mermaid, takes around 50 minutes. The only disadvantage of this means of transport is in the fact that it runs rather rarely, once an hour. Therefore, if you miss a boat, you will have to wait for a long time.
13. Tips: how you can save on transport
1. Walk more.
2. Rent a bicycle or use bicycles for tourists.
3. Buy Rejsekort, which will save you lots of money when travelling by public transport.