How to Get from Frankfurt Airport to the City Center Cheaply?

Frankfurt is a financial hub of Germany where come millions of travelers every year. Whether you’re a backpacker on a shoestring budget or a savvy traveler looking to save a few euros, getting from Frankfurt Airport (FRA) to the city center without breaking the bank is entirely possible. 

Here’s an ultimate guide to ensure you get to the heart of Frankfurt affordably and efficiently.

1. The S-Bahn: Your Cheapest Option

Why Choose the S-Bahn?

The S-Bahn (suburban train) is the most economical and straightforward way to travel from Frankfurt Airport to the city center. It’s not only budget-friendly but also frequent, ensuring you’re not left waiting for long periods.

How to Catch the S-Bahn

1. Find the Train Station: Upon arrival at Frankfurt Airport, follow the signs to the Regionalbahnhof (regional train station). It’s well-signposted and located in the basement of Terminal 1.

2. Purchase a Ticket: Head to the ticket machines available at the station. A one-way ticket to the city center costs a few Euros. The machines have English options and accept cash or card.

3. Board the Train: Look for the S8 or S9 lines, which run every 15 minutes. These trains take you directly to Frankfurt Hauptbahnhof (main train station) in approximately 15 minutes.

Travel Tip

Validate your ticket before boarding to avoid fines. Look for the blue validation machines near the ticket kiosks.

2. Bus Services: The Alternative Budget Route

Why Take the Bus?

Buses offer another budget-friendly option, though they may take longer than the S-Bahn. They’re a good choice if you’re traveling light or prefer a scenic route into the city.

How to Use the Bus

1. Locate the Bus Stops: Bus stops are located outside Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. Look for the signs directing you to the bus terminals.

2. Buy a Ticket: Tickets can be purchased directly from the bus driver or at ticket machines near the bus stops. A one-way ticket is similarly priced to the S-Bahn at around €5.

3. Choose the Right Bus: The most convenient routes are bus 61 and bus 62, both of which will take you to Frankfurt Südbahnhof (South Station). From there, you can connect to the U-Bahn or a tram to reach other parts of the city center.

Travel Tip

Buses can be slower during peak hours due to traffic, so plan your trip accordingly if you’re on a tight schedule.

3. Group Travel: The Hessen Ticket

Why Opt for the Hessen Ticket?

If you’re traveling in a group, the Hessen Ticket offers fantastic value. It provides unlimited daily travel across all local trains, buses, and trams in Hesse, including Frankfurt.

How to Utilize the Hessen Ticket

1. Buy the Ticket: Purchase the Hessen Ticket from ticket machines or service desks at the airport. The price is approximately €36 for up to five people.

2. Unlimited Travel: This ticket allows unlimited travel for a day, making it perfect for groups who plan to explore beyond just the city center.

Travel Tip

Ensure all group members are present when validating the ticket, as it’s valid for the entire group.

4. Ridesharing and Carpooling: An Eco-Friendly Option

Why Consider Ridesharing?

Ridesharing or carpooling can be a cost-effective and eco-friendly way to travel, especially if you want to meet new people or reduce your carbon footprint.

How to Arrange Ridesharing

1. Use Airport Transfer Service: Services like Frankfurt Airport Transfer allow you to find rideshares from the airport to various destinations, including the city center.

2. Agree on the Price: Typically, the cost is way cheaper than a taxi and you can travel comfortably.

Travel Tip

Always check the ratings and reviews to ensure a safe and pleasant journey.


Traveling from Frankfurt Airport to the city center on a budget is straightforward and offers several options to suit different preferences and needs. 

Whether you choose the swift and reliable S-Bahn, the scenic bus route, the economical Hessen Ticket for group travel, or the eco-friendly ridesharing, you can reach the heart of Frankfurt without spending a fortune. Happy travels!

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