Public Transport in Karlsruhe and its immediate surroundings is organized by the “Karlsruher Verkehrsverbund” (KVV). The area it covers can be found here and here. Students at KIT can print out a piece of paper called “KVV-Bescheinigung” which – in combination with their KIT-Card – allows them to use public transport in this area for free on weekends and public holidays as well as after 6 p.m. on working days. Please note that you need both the paper and your KIT-card to make use of this option.
If you want to use public transport outside these times, you can get a semester ticket for students, currently (2021) at a price of 162,80€. For your first semester in Karlsruhe you get this ticket for free upon your registration at the city.
- Long-Distance trains (IC/EC/ICE) are never included in the student ticket or any other season ticket or day ticket, even if the whole passage is inside the area.
- The airport “Baden Airpark” does lie within the KVV area and is therefore reachable with a KVV ticket.
- Nearby town worth visiting like Heidelberg, Freiburg, Stuttgart or Konstanz are not inside the KVV area. For visiting them, especially if you are a group, it is recommended to check out the Baden-Württemberg-Ticket
Getting a bike
The number one transportation mode to get around the city for students in Germany is the bicycle. This is especially true for Karlsruhe with its manageable size and flat terrain.
- One way to find a bicycle is to search in Facebook groups like Kaufen, Verkaufen, Verschenken and KIT Karlsruhe Flohmarkt.
- Another option is to go to an auction sale offered by the city of Karlsruhe. More information and further dates are available here.
There is a student group at KIT centered around helping students with their bikes. They organize regular possibilities on campus, where they bring tools and help you repairing your own bicycle.
Please note! According to German law your bicycle must be equipped with two brakes, a bell, a white light in front and a red light at the back. If something is missing and you get stopped by police you will most probably get fined.
Another option is to rent a bicycle. As a KIT student, you can use a special deal with nextbike, where – after your registration – the first 30 minutes of using one of their bikes are free (afterwards 50 cents per 30 minutes). The bikes are called Fächerrad and are distributed in renting stations all over the city.