Layover at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

Things to Do and Useful Tips for your Layover at Berlin Airport

Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER)GuideLayover at the Airport

Get the Most Out of your Layover at Berlin Airport

Who said that a layover at Berlin airport should be a “necessary evil”? And what’s stopping you from making your airport layover an unforgettable part of your journey? Unquestionably, the spare time between flights can be wearying and harrowing, especially after a long and tiring flight. However, Berlin airport offers fine services and provides passengers with premium amenities. Hence, all you have to do to enjoy your free time at BER airport is to fully exploit the opportunities and options offered by the new Brandenburg airport. 

How long is your layover at Berlin airport? If your spare time is short, you should explore the airport area and why not, travel between the airport’s terminals. BER Terminal 1 offers a broader variety of facilities and services, so if your arriving terminal is Terminal 5, you should definitely opt for a quick transfer to the new airport terminal building. On the other hand, if you have a long waiting time ahead of you, you should leave the airport, get to the city and get to know some of the most popular attractions of the German capital.

Things to Do at Brandenburg Berlin Airport

Do you wonder about what to do during your short layover at the new Berlin airport? BER airport offers adequate amenities to pass the time and have an overall pleasant stay. Whether you are travelling for business or pleasure, with children, company or alone, Berlin airport gives you all the pieces for an enjoyable stop-off. So, here are some ideas about how to match them together!

Shopping Therapy at Berlin Airport

Both Terminals 1 and 5 (Terminal 2 is not operational yet) offer a “shopping heaven”, large shopping areas where you can find whatever you may look for. Last-minute presents, famous brands, local stores, BER airport has all the answers depending on your desires! Are you travelling on a budget and want to avoid unnecessary expenses? Take a walk and go for window shopping. Still a pleasing and relaxing experience!

Drink & Dine at Berlin Airport

Taste the local cuisine or international dishes, or even indulge yourself in a coffee treat or a decadent drink. The food court is located on the second floor of Terminal 1. At Terminal 5, restaurants and bars are scattered inside and outside the terminal’s area.

Free Wi-Fi at Berlin Airport

Use the airport’s free Wi-Fi to surf the net. Do everything you have always wanted to do online and never seemed to find the time. Search thoroughly whatever you may be interested in, check your social media, contact people you’ve lost touch with, sort through your emails, even finish your job project. If you are too tired and not so much into discovering the airport Terminals, find a comfortable seat and just browse online.

Delve into Terminal’s 1 Cultural Attractions

If you are a culture lover, you’ll be pleased to know that Terminal 1 offers multiple cultural attractions to its passengers. To start with, five famous artists created five works of art to decorate the new airport of the German capital. The STOEBO’s Sternentalerhimmel (Starry Sky), at the Terminal’s entrance, is a coin-adorned floor, resembling a starry sky, whilst the Pae White’s red carpet is an actual medal red-carpet which dominates on the ceiling of the checking-in area. What’s more, playing with the blue and white shades, the Open Sky Box is a huge lightbox to be found in the area after the security control. Take a short walk to the train station – just underneath the terminal – and observe the picture collection bedecking the stairwells that lead to the railway area. That’s the Subject Pavilion! The train station also houses the Room of Aviation, an impressive pop-up exhibit. Last but not least, outside the Terminal, you will find the Gadget, an enormous pearl-like work of art, enlightened depending on the availability of the boarding bridge.

Terminal’s 1 Observation Deck

The Observation Deck is to be found on the terrace of Terminal 1 Building and offers a breathtaking vista to the airport’s apron. The perfect spot for photo-taking, you shouldn’t miss the chance to pay a visit to the terminal’s rooftop. For the time being, no ticket is necessary.

Unwind at Berlin Airport

The Room of Silence is what its naming suggests exactly: a place to loosen up, to meditate, to pray no matter which religion you may follow. The airport retreat is located on the second floor of Terminal 1 and is accessible to all passengers.

Lounge at Berlin Airport

If you are a VIP passenger or if you are willing to pay for your entrance, why not spend your layover pampered at one of the airport’s lounges? For the time being, two lounges are operational, Tempelhof Lounge (named after the former Tempelhof Airport) and Lufthansa Lounge (the national, German air-carrier goes without saying to have its own lounge at the new Berlin airport). In the future, a lounge dedicated to the Tegel airport, Tegel Lounge, will open its doors, along with other lounge areas which are expected to operate depending on the airport’s traffic. So, don’t overthink it! Choose the lounge you prefer and enjoy a luxurious layover!

Travel between Berlin Airport Terminals

If you want to leave your arrival Terminal and visit the other airport Terminal during your layover, you’ll have plenty of options for your transfer. Catching an airport taxi will get you from one terminal to the other in 10 minutes paying about 20€, whilst the journey with the S-Bahn trains lasts 8 minutes and costs 1.90€. Finally, the buses X7, X71 and BER2 need 9 minutes for the particular route and cost 3.30€. You should keep in mind that the Terminal 1 train station and the bus stop are located on the underground terminal’s levels, yet the train station at Terminal 5 is at a 10-minute walking distance from the terminal building.

Leave Berlin Airport and Set Off to Berlin!

If your spare time at Berlin airport is sufficient, can you think of anything better than paying a quick visit to Berlin? Select your desired destinations – Berlin has so many sightseeing spots – and plan a tour to get a taste of the German capital. However, you should be 100% certain that your layover time is enough. Keep in mind that Berlin city center is 27km away from Brandenburg airport and you’ll need 45 minutes to reach the city by taxi, 30 minutes by train and 50 minutes by bus. Berlin airport taxis are always available at the airport, and the train and bus routes are regular enough still, you should add an approximate 15-minute waiting time to be certain about the total duration of your transfer. Additionally, you should be back for your onward flight, at least 1-2 hours before your check-in. Last but not least, if you are up for a Berlin tour, check if you need a visa to exit the airport, depending on your country of origin!

Now that you are sure that time is enough and that you can exit the airport without any hassle, check out some of the top Berlin sightseeing options!

Visit the Berlin City Center

Alexanderplatz – Unter den Linden – Brandenburg Gate – Reichstag

Though Berlin is one of the largest European cities, its city center gathers some of its most important attractions. Hence, you can discover a significant part of the city in only 2 hours. Leave the airport and head to Alexanderplatz, the square where the shopping heart of the city beats. From there, you can walk to the famous Unter den Linden street and observe the TV tower, the Berliner Dom, the Humbolt University and other historical buildings. If you have time, take a shortcut and head to Bebelplatz, the location of the Booking Burning Memorial. In any case, Unter den Linden will lead you to Brandenburg Gate, which is the most popular Berlin sightseeing. Near the Brandenburg Gate, you’ll find Reichstag, the impressive Parliament. Tours are being provided, yet are time-consuming. However, the building is worth your time even for its exterior aspects.

How to get there

A Berlin airport taxi will take you to your destination in approximately 45 minutes, costing you 45-50€. Alternatively, if you prefer the efficient Berlin public transportation, you can take the airport express train RB14 from Terminal 1 and reach the city center in 30 minutes. Another option is the S-Bahn train S9 which passes from both Terminal stations and takes approximately 40 minutes to reach Alexanderplatz (40 minutes from Terminal 1, 30 minutes from Terminal 5). The ticket price is 3.60€ per passenger.

Check out the Museum Island

Museum Island (Museumsinsel)

If you are a culture lover, you’ll want to “shipwreck” on that island! Six amazing museums are located in the same area, creating a unique art district! It’s only natural that you won’t have the time to visit them all. Check your choices, and depending on your preferences, get to choose your cultural route in Berlin. 

The Pergamon Museum is in reality 3 museums in 1: it displays one collection from the Classical Antiquities, one related to the Ancient Near East and it also has an Islamic Art’s area. On the other hand, the Bode Museum hosts sculptures and coins, whilst the Altes Nationalgalerie houses 19th-century works of art. What’s more, the Neues Museum is dedicated to Antiquity, and the Deutsches Historisches Museum is the national history museum. Finally, your last option is the DDR Museum presenting East Germany’s history. These are your options. Now the decision is yours!

How to get there

The Museum Island is also located in Berlin city center, in half the distance from Alexanderplatz to the Brandenburg Gate. Therefore, you can either get there in 45 minutes by taxi, paying 45-50€, or take the express airport train RB14 to Alexanderplatz and walk a 1-km distance to your destination. Alternatively, you can disembark from the train RB14 at S. Ostkreuz Hbf and hop on the S-Bahn train S7 to Hackescher Markt. From that stop, Museum Island is only 605m away. The ticket fare, for both rides, is 3.60€.

Stop Off at the East Side Gallery

The East Side Gallery – The Berlin Wall Remains

Pay a visit to one of the most well-known historical places of Berlin: the Berlin Wall. The Berlin Wall is undoubtedly one of the most representative landmarks of 20th-century history, and a part of this landmark is still standing in Berlin and totally worth your time and hassle. Painted by 118 artists, it is decorated with 101 graffiti, referring to the eventful period of time when the Wall divided the city in two. However, take into account that the East Side Gallery is outdoors, hence if the weather is bad, you should perhaps rethink it, before adding it to your itinerary.

How to get there

The East Side Gallery is located 24 km away from Berlin airport. Taking an airport taxi will get you there in approximately 40 minutes with a 50€ average tariff. On the other hand, you can take the train RB14 from BER Terminal 1 to S. Ostbahnhof (the ride lasts about 20 minutes) and walk half a kilometer to your journey’s end. Alternatively, the S-Bahn train S9 leaves from both Airport Terminals and heads to S. Ostbahnhof. From there, you can continue on foot. The ticket price is 3.60€ for each adult passenger.

Get to know the city by Bus!

The Hop-on, Hop-off Bus

What sounds better than getting on a double-decker bus and traveling around the city, especially after a long flight? You can see a significant part of Berlin totally hassle-free. The red buses depart every 12 minutes and make 20 stops at the most popular Berlin attractions. Hop-off the bus wherever you feel like it and take the next one for your onward destination.

How to get there

You can hop on a bus at any stop, yet one of the most convenient is at Alexanderplatz, in the city center. Therefore, you can get there by taxi in 45 minutes, paying 45-50€, or by the train RB14 from Berlin Terminal 1. The ride with the airport express train lasts 30 minutes. As an alternative, the S-Bahn train S9 serves both Airport Terminals and reaches Alexanderplatz in 40 minutes from Terminal 1 and 30 minutes from Terminal 5. The cost of both train rides is 3.60€.

Sleep, Eat and Rest

If you have a long layover at Berlin airport and you want to be fresh and rejuvenated for your next flight, why not book a room at one of the two airport hotels? The Steigenberger Hotel is located at Terminal 1, whilst the IntercityHotel is the Terminal 5 accommodation option. Both hotels offer top-rated services, excellent dining and drinking options, as well as spa and fitness amenities. Thus, if you are not up for a Berlin tour but you prefer a high-class Berlin accommodation experience, Berlin Airport Hotels are the answer!