The 1.9% growth in long distance passengers was shared across DB Long Distance, Flixtrain (Flix Mobility), Thalys and ÖBB Nightjet. DB Long Distance is by far the largest rail operator so will have benefitted most from the growth.

There were 11.4 billion local/regional public transport journeys in 2019 with passenger use growing across all rail-based modes. This is a 0.4% increase on 2018 and 15% compared with 2004. Of the 11.4 billion journeys, 5.3 billion were by bus, a decline of 0.4% compared with 2018 while 4.1 billion passengers used tram and metro (U-Bahn) services (+0.4% versus 2018) and 2.8 billion used regional rail including S-Bahn services (+2% versus 2018).

Total passenger-km for all public transport modes increased by 0.8% to 158.35 billion. Long distance rail accounted for most of this increase with 44.704 billion passenger-km (+4.2%).

Destatis’ analysis shows that passenger numbers for regional rail/S-Bahn services have grown by 41.8% since 2004, while light rail and metro use has increased by 22.8%. This impressive growth is partly due to the expansion of regional services in some states and the extension of S-Bahn networks around major cities. Local bus travel in Germany has remained almost static over the 15-year period with 0.2% growth overall.