About 5,400 railway stations in Germany that are owned and operated by the Deutsche Bahn subsidiary DB Station&Service are assigned into six categories, denoting the service level available at the station.
Their assignment into the categories also influences the amount of money railway companies need to pay to DB Station&Service for using the facilities at the stations.
Category 1 Edit
The 20 stations of Category 1 are considered traffic hubs. They are considered equal to international airports in terms of service, are permanently staffed and carry all sorts of railway-related facilities as well as usually featuring a shopping mall in the station. Most of these stations are the main stations (Hauptbahnhof or Hbf) of large cities with 500,000 inhabitants and above, though some in smaller cities, like Mainz Hauptbahnhof or Karlsruhe Hauptbahnhof, are regarded as important because they are at the intersection of important railway lines. Berlin and Frankfurt have more than one Category 1 station.
Included in the category are the following stations:
- Berlin Hauptbahnhof
- Berlin Ostbahnhof
- Berlin Südkreuz
- Bremen Hauptbahnhof
- Dortmund Hauptbahnhof
- Dresden Hauptbahnhof
- Düsseldorf Hauptbahnhof
- Essen Hauptbahnhof
- Frankfurt (Main) Flughafen Fernbahnhof
- Frankfurt (Main) Hauptbahnhof
- Hamburg Hauptbahnhof
- Hannover Hauptbahnhof
- Karlsruhe Hauptbahnhof
- Köln Hauptbahnhof
- Köln Messe/Deutz
- Leipzig Hauptbahnhof
- Mainz Hauptbahnhof
- Mannheim Hauptbahnhof
- München Hauptbahnhof
- Nürnberg Hauptbahnhof
- Stuttgart Hauptbahnhof
Category 2 Edit
The 63 stations of Category 2 are either important junctions of long-distance traffic or offer connections to large airports. InterCity and EuroCity trains generally call at these stations. All railway-related services, like a ticket hall and a service desk, are present at the station and the station is staffed during the usual times of traffic. The service is similar to Category 1 stations. The Category 2 stations, by state, are:
- Baden-Württemberg (4): Freiburg (Brsg) Hbf, Heidelberg Hbf, Offenburg, Ulm Hbf
- Bavaria (8): Aschaffenburg Hbf, Augsburg Hbf, Ingolstadt Hbf, München Ost, München-Pasing, Regensburg Hbf, Rosenheim, Würzburg Hbf
- Berlin (7): Berlin Alexanderplatz, Berlin Friedrichstraße, Berlin Gesundbrunnen, Berlin-Lichtenberg, Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Spandau, Berlin Zoologischer Garten
- Brandenburg (1): Potsdam Hbf
- Hamburg (3): Hamburg-Altona, Hamburg Dammtor, Hamburg-Harburg
- Hesse (8): Darmstadt Hbf, Frankfurt (Main) Flughafen Regionalbf, Frankfurt (Main) Süd, Fulda, Giessen, Hanau Hbf, Kassel-Wilhelmshöhe, Wiesbaden Hbf
- Lower Saxony (7): Braunschweig Hbf, Göttingen, Hildesheim Hbf, Lüneburg, Oldenburg (Oldb) Hbf, Osnabrück Hbf, Wolfsburg Hbf
- Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (1): Rostock Hbf
- North Rhine-Westphalia (15): Aachen Hauptbahnhof, Bielefeld Hbf, Bochum Hbf, Bonn Hbf, Duisburg Hbf, Düsseldorf Flughafen, Hagen Hbf, Hamm (Westf), Köln/Bonn Flughafenbf, Köln Messe/Deutz, Münster (Westf) Hbf, Oberhausen Hbf, Siegburg/Bonn, Solingen Hbf, Wuppertal Hbf
- Rhineland-Palatinate (1): Koblenz Hbf
- Saarland (1): Saarbrücken Hbf
- Saxony (1): Dresden-Neustadt
- Saxony-Anhalt (2): Halle (Saale) Hbf, Magdeburg Hbf
- Schleswig-Holstein (1): Kiel Hbf
- Thuringia (3): Eisenach, Erfurt Hbf, Weimar
Category 3 Edit
250 stations belong to Category 3, which is described as a regional hub with possibility of intercity services.
These stations will usually feature a station hall where travellers can buy tickets and groceries, but these stations are usually not permanently staffed.
Category 4 Edit
Category 4 includes 600 stations. They are profiled as highly-frequented local traffic stops and hubs. Inter-city rail will usually not call at these stations, but they have frequent connections with RegionalExpress and RegionalBahn trains. Their service level is comparable to a bus station and they offer services to commuters. This category includes stations situated in major cities that see high usage of S-Bahn or RE/RB services.
Category 5 Edit
1,300 stations make up Category 5. These stations either belong to smaller, rural towns or to outlying suburban areas of major cities. Their inventory normally is "vandal-proofed" due to the lower number of passengers. They normally have RegionalExpress trains calling at the station at least every hour.Examples are Köln-Holweide or Bremerhaven-Lehe.
Category 6 Edit
Category 6 is the lowest category of the classification system, with 3,200 stations. These stations have the lowest passenger numbers and only the most basic equipment needed is present at the station. They are akin to bus stops.