Lufthansa - the National Airline of Germany - offers a comprehensive route network linking Berlin with almost any major city around the world. For attendees wishing to travel on Lufthansa services, special airfares are available. For specific details, please contact the Lufthansa reservations or sales office nearest you and refer to code: GGAIRLHKONG.150
In Germany please call: 0 18 03 80 38 03. In North America please call our conference agent Lyon Travel toll free at: 1-800-639 3849. To take advantage of this special offer, you must have the official confirmation of your conference registration or other proof of attendance available.
Passports and Visa
EU nationals do not require a visa to enter Germany. In general, all other foreign nationals require a visa for their stay in Germany. However, for citizens of some countries a visa is not required for visits of up to three months' duration. Please consult the website of the Foreign Office.
If a visa is required to enter Germany, your application should be submitted sufficiently in advance of your departure to Germany. The National Organising Committee will send an official letter of invitation on request. The letter of invitation is not a commitment on the part of the conference organisers to provide any financial support.
Entry requirements and Visa regulations for Germany
Table of countries whose citizens require/do not require visas to enter Germany
Application for a Visa (Visa application form)
The German Missions abroad (complete address list for download)
Arriving by plane (Berlin International Airports)
Berlin-Tegel (TXL) is located north of Berlin, about 8 km from the Western city centre and connected by a network of express-ways and two public bus lines (line X9, 109). A taxi to the city costs approximately EUR 20 (25 minute journey).
Berlin-Tempelhof (THF) is situated just south of the city centre, 10-20 minutes away from the city centre as the U-Bahn (Underground) station is near the terminal.
Berlin-Schönefeld (SXF) is located southeast of Berlin, about 25 km from the Western city centre and 18 km from Berlin-Mitte. It is connected by S-Bahn (S 9) and bus line 171. A taxi to the city costs approximately EUR 40 (40 minute journey).
Arriving by train
Berlin is part of the Intercity-Network and can be reached from all directions by using the fast Intercity Express (ICE), Intercity (IC), Euro City (EC) and InterRegio trains. General information can be obtained at Deutsche Bahn AG (DB), phone: +49-180-5996633 or via the web address www.bahn.de. The two major train stations, Zoologischer Garten and Ostbahnhof, are connected to the local public transport system (BVG).
Arriving by bus
Delegates can also travel to and from Berlin by bus (BerlinLinienBus). Excellent connections exist to all major cities in Germany and Europe. The central bus station (ZOB = Zentraler Omnibusbahnhof) is located directly opposite to the ICC Berlin. Infoline: +49-30-301 80 28
Berlin - The City
Local Public Transportation
The accessible and well-integrated public transport system is run by the Berlin Transport Authority (BVG). You can travel around the city of Berlin by public transport 24 hours a day. The free combi-ticket for all conference delegates distributed at the registration desk is valid for Greater Berlin and allows you throughout the conference to hop from bus to underground (U-Bahn) to surface rail (S-Bahn) and tram or ferry with just one ticket. On the day of arrival, the letter of confirmation serves as free ticket for the public transport system.
The official currency in Germany is the Euro. It is recommended that foreign currencies be converted into Euros at German chartered banks, which are usually open from Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 18.00 hrs. Most post offices, train stations and airports offer exchange service. ATMs (cash point machines) which accept EC cards and all major credit cards can be found all over the city, as well as in the entrance lobby of ICC Berlin.
Unlike some shops, most hotels and restaurants in Berlin accept major credit cards. It ist thererfore recommended to also have some cash, an EC card or traveller cheques with you.
The standard electric current in Germany is 230 Volts, 50 Hz AC. German outlets accept only round-prong plugs. Appliances designated to operate on 110/120 Volts need a transformer and a plug adapter. Most hotels provide 110 Volt outlets for electrical razors. Certain hotels have connection facilities for laptops.
Pharmacies are open from Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 18.00 hrs and Saturday from 9.00 to 16.00 hrs. Emergency pharmacies are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, you will find the details on the nearest one to you outside every pharmacy. The pharmacy next to the ICC is only a 5 minute-walk away at the Neue Kantstrasse.
Post offices are open from Monday to Friday from 8.00 to 18.00 hrs and Saturday from 8.00 to 13.00 hrs. The nearest post office to the ICC Berlin is located at Soorstrasse 61-62, at 10 minutes walking distance.
Shopping in Berlin
Department stores are normally open from Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 20.00 hrs and Saturday from 9.00 to 16.00 hrs.
In pubs, restaurants, taxis, etc., a tip of 5 to 10% is usually given, but please be advised that a 15% service charge is already included in restaurant bills.
VAT (Value added tax) Refund Conditions
VAT is a special tax applied to goods and services in Europe. In Germany, the VAT ranges from 7% to 16%. Foreign visitors/companies (except banks and insurance companies) may claim a refund of VAT charged on invoices relating to business-expenses such as lodging and travel expenses, excluding fuel but not to private expenses. An application must be made to the "Bundesamt für Finanzen", using their official form supplied on demand.
Bundesamt für Finanzen
Friedhofstrasse 1, 53221 Bonn
Tel.: +49-228-406-0, http://www.bff-online.de
During the month of August, the climate in Berlin is usually warm and sunny with daytime temperatures rising to 20-25º C (71-79º F) with occasionally hot or rainy days.