The contract covers the operation of around four million train-km per year on the following non-electrified regional routes:

  • R41 Eisenach - Eisfeld - Sonneberg (hourly as far Eisfeld, two-hourly Eisfeld - Sonneberg)
  • R42 Sonneberg - Neuhaus-am-Rennweg (two-hourly)
  • R44 Erfurt - Meiningen (two-hourly)
  • R46 Erfurt - Plaue - Ilmenau (hourly)
  • R48 Fröttstadt - Friedrichroda
  • E45 Erfurt - Plaue - Ilmenau, and
  • E50 Erfurt - Zella Mehis - Wernshausen (two-hourly).

With the exception of E50, which is a new service, all of these routes are already operated by STB. 

The ministry says that under the proposed redistribution of federal regionalisation funds for rail transport, the federal contribution to the operation of regional services in the state could be cut by up to €500m over the next 15 years, and this has limited the scope for enhancements in the new contract.

Nonetheless, around 40 DMU vehicles will be upgraded to improve accessibility for passengers with reduced mobility and accommodate more bicycles. Capacity will also be adapted to more closely reflect demand and there will be a visible staff presence on all regional express services and half of regional services.