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AIRail-Service for air travellers now from Cologne

Lufthansa, German Railways (DB) and Fraport extend joint program Zug zum Flug

Lufthansa, German Railways (DB) and Fraport extend joint program Zug zum Flug (Train to the Plane) starts on Cologne Frankfurt route on 5 May.



Passengers can now travel with the ICE 3 (Intercity express) on the new high-speed route between Cologne Central Station and Frankfurt Airport. The `train to the plane` runs on this route way up to 16 times a day with a Lufthansa flight number and Intercity train number. As an alternative to the existing flight service – it offers an optimal and fast connection to the airport at hourly intervals. The journey time is just 57 minutes. At Cologne Central Station, passengers can already check in their baggage and only pick it up again after the flight at their final destination. Lufthansa has already been offering this service in cooperation with its AIRail partners Deutsche Bahn and Fraport since March 2001 on the Stuttgart Central Station to Frankfurt Airport route.



`The cooperation between Lufthansa, German Railways and Fraport in this form is unique worldwide. It sets standards for the networking of rail and air traffic, of transport systems and an efficiently operating hub which supplement themselves with their different strengths`, said Ralf Teckentrup, Executive Vice President Network Management and Marketing at Lufthansa German Airlines. `Now we can also offer our customers fast and optimal connections from Cologne to our hub in Frankfurt by rail. It is a logical extension of our joint project which we initiated on the Stuttgart-Frankfurt route. We want to cooperate with our partners in order to advance our ambitious aim of further integrating the transport systems in a network and in the long term shifting short-range traffic to the rails.`



For the passengers the `train to the plane` represents a real time-saving. It starts right in Cologne`s city center, there is no more need for a transfer to the airport. For every international flight there is a perfectly-timed feeder service by rail and thus more train connections than flights on this route. On the Cologne/Bonn – Frankfurt route, Lufthansa offers six flights daily in both directions. The first train already leaves Cologne Central Station at 5.54 hrs., the last AIRail leaves Cologne at 19.54 hours.



>From Frankfurt Airport, passengers can travel to Cologne from 7.09 hrs. until 22.09 hrs. at the latest. With a journey time of only 57 minutes from Cologne to Frankfurt and the low transfer time at the airport, passengers using the rail-air connection to travel from Cologne to Dallas, Singapore or Johannesburg, for example, get there faster than those travelling only by plane. The transfer at Frankfurt airport is fast and convenient for the passengers thanks to the good links of the Airport station with Terminal 1.The minimum transfer time at Frankfurt Airport for the train-flight connection is just 45 minutes.



`The joint AIRail project shows that through the cooperation of different means of transport the customer can be offered a wider range of services. The newly-constructed route from Cologne to Rhine/Main is thus not only the centerpiece of inner-German rail traffic, but at the same time a key element in an improved linking of train and flight in the German domestic railroad traffic`, simultaneous Martin Brandenbusch, head product development and services in the corporate division passenger transport of Deutsche Bahn AG, made clear at the presentation of the new AIRail connection.



`Fraport does justice to its pioneering role at the interface Frankfurt airport in the traffic networking at the example of the new AIRail service. The consistent further development of the strategy for intermodal transport policies is our aim`, Volker Zintel, divisional director traffic and terminal management of Fraport AG, declared.



The new Lufthansa check in area at the northern side of the Cologne central station can be found signposted and easy. The passengers receive their boarding cards there for all connection flights from Frankfurt and check in their suitcases till 20 minutes before the departure for the complete journey way. During the short train stop at the Frankfurt airport railway station the baggage is unloaded and taken to the Fraport baggage conveyer from there for the passengers. The new AIRail service from Cologne works also in an opposite journey direction. The baggage assigned at the airport of departure is received at the Cologne central station on the return journey of Frankfurt to Cologne where the customs check also takes place.



For the train journey Lufthansa has reserved seats for its AIRail guests: First and business class passengers travel in the first and second class. During the train journey the passengers are mobile attainable and can use their notebook computer for the access to the Internet. The service on board of the ICE3 is differentiated to classes. A snack meal and a drink become offered in the car of the first class.

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