The Danish State Rail system, DSB, is used for long-distance rail travel. There are also a number of long-distance bus companies that operate. In Denmark, each area has its own municipal public transit provider.
There are two options for purchasing tickets. For local journeys, you may purchase a zone-based ticket from the regional transportation provider. This ticket is good for one to two hours on any public transit, including DSB trains (depending on the number of zones you travel). Most public transportation providers provide a variety of passes that may save you a significant amount of money on transit.
Rejsekort is a system for electronic ticketing. It may make sense for travelers to acquire the Anonymous prepaid card (The personal version will be expensive and take several weeks to obtain). The card itself costs DKK 80 and is not refundable, and the balance on the card must be at least DKK 70 before you start a journey (DKK 600 for inter-regional travels), making it difficult to finish up with an empty card; however, you may be able to pass the card on to a Dane after you depart. However, the savings are significant, so if you intend on taking more than a few journeys, it is definitely worthwhile. The same card may be used by many travelers (on busses you have to tell the driver that you are more than one using the same card before you).
Long-distance bus service between Jutland and Copenhagen was formerly a question of choice rather than cost, but a number of low-cost bus lines have lately started traversing the nation at considerably cheaper rates, although with a much more restricted timetable.
- Abildskou is a well-known long-distance operator, with up to 9 departures each day to different cities in Jutland. The majority of departures take advantage of a quick ferry crossing of the Kattegat sea. The cost of a normal ticket ranges from DKK300 to DKK150 for a limited quantity of reduced seats.
- Rød Billet Tickets vary from DKK 99 to 180, however there are only 1-4 trips each day. The Great Belt Bridge is crossed.
Danish State Railways, or DSB, is the main railway operator in Denmark. Arriva, a subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn, currently operates several feeder routes for the main railway line in eastern Jutland. Other firms run a few minor train routes. DSB also runs the S-Tog commuter train line in and around Copenhagen. All DSB and Arriva trains accept Eurail passes. Danish trains are very luxurious, contemporary, and costly. Train doors are closed and secured in stages between one minute and 15 seconds before planned departure time to guarantee on-time departure. Tickets may be bought at station ticket offices, vending machines at stations (valid only on the day of purchase and with a time stamp), and online at the DSB website. The majority of trains feature 230V power outlets. Wi-Fi is provided on most trains running between Copenhagen and Aalborg. Internet access is provided with first-class tickets, and 7 hours of access may be purchased with a credit card for DKK29.
If you do not have a rail pass, consider asking for an Orange ticket, which is a limited quantity of substantially reduced tickets available on most departures. They are often sold out well in advance, but it never hurts to inquire – and you must ask in order to get the discount. Senior citizen tickets (65 billet) provide a 25% or 50% discount (depending on the day and hour of travel) on all departures and are officially restricted to Danish citizens aged 65 and above, although it never hurts to ask. Rejseplanen.dk allows you to arrange all rail and bus journeys online.
The ICL (InterCity-Lyntog, or “lightning train”) express trains are the quickest, but also the most popular, therefore seat reservations are strongly recommended. Ordinary InterCity trains are usually less packed, and the time difference for journeys of an hour or less is frequently insignificant.
While the rail network had been neglected for decades, with overall network density and electrification falling short of Denmark’s northern and, particularly, southern neighbors, there has been significant investment in recent years. The link to Germany, for example, is being improved and extended with a new tunnel over the Fehmarn Belt, and work on a Danish high-speed rail line, which is scheduled to begin in 2018.
Bornholm, a Danish island in the Baltic Sea, is best accessed by ferry, but it may also be reached by air. Since the opening of the bridge to Sweden, the quickest way from Copenhagen to Bornholm has been via rail, followed by a boat from Ystad. There are through tickets available between Copenhagen and Rnne (booking is mandatory). This route is also served by a bus, the Grhund Bus 886, which runs from Copenhagen to Ystad and connects with the ferry to Bornholm.
Driving between cities in Denmark is simple, with well-maintained highways everywhere. Danes usually follow the regulations, although they may not be particularly helpful to other drivers in yielding right of way, etc., and they are extremely strict in defending their rights. Except for the two major bridges, there are no toll roads: Storebltsbroen between Zealand and Funen (DKK215 one way) and Resundsbron between Copenhagen and Malmö (DKK235 one way).
Touring Denmark by automobile is a fantastic experience that is highly recommended. Margueritruten (The Marguerite Route) is a 3500 km long network of tiny scenic roads that passes through 100 major Danish sites. It is identified by brown signs with the white Marguerite Daisy bloom, and it is also shown on most road maps.
Unless otherwise stated, speed limits on highways are 130 km/h (80 mph), 80 km/h (50 mph) outside built-up regions, and 50 km/h (30 mph) inside built-up areas. Vehicles towing caravans or trailers, as well as trucks, are restricted to 80 km/h on highways, 70 km/h on roads outside built-up regions, and 50 km/h inside built-up areas, despite the fact that different speed restrictions may be posted. Speeding is common, particularly on highways, although in recent years, a concerted effort by Danish police to reduce speeding has made more people aware of speed restrictions. Trucks in Denmark often go at 90-ish km/h on highways, and trucks overtaking one other on lengthy lengths of highway (dubbed “elephant races”) is common. In Denmark, fines vary from DKK500 (€70) to DKK10,000 (€1,370), as well as a driving restriction.
Seat belts are required to be worn in automobiles and vans (if equipped), and children under 135 cm and/or under 3 years of age must wear certified safety seating devices suited to their height and weight.
Headlights must be turned on at all times while driving (and dipped during daylight hours), regardless of weather or time of day, therefore turn them on.
Motorcycle and moped drivers and passengers must all wear full-face helmets.
Though required by law, indicators on roundabouts are seldom used, therefore if the vehicle is not signaling that it is leaving the roundabout, give way since it will always drive round. When changing lanes on a highway, turn signals must be used both before and during the lane change.
On wide highways, particularly ones with a bike lane, expect vehicles turning right to come to a near-complete stop to ensure they are not cutting in front of a cyclist, even if even an Olympic cyclist might emerge out of nowhere on an otherwise cycling-free horizon.
A right turn on a red light is not allowed.
Denmark allows drivers to have 0.05 percent alcohol in their system while driving (equal to one drink or fewer for most individuals), and Danish police are highly alert of potential intoxicated drivers. The fine is determined as (percentage of alcohol in the blood) 10 (your monthly salary before tax).
In cities, keep an eye out for bicycles, particularly while turning across bicycle lanes; bicycles always have the right of way. Roundabouts should be approached with caution! Cyclists in general seem suicidal to drivers from other nations since they do not look or slow down while going into the road in front of you. After nightfall, lights on bikes seem to be optional – particularly in larger cities – despite the fact that they are required.
In the automobile, you must always have your driver’s license, vehicle registration document, and proof of motor insurance. It is mandatory to carry a warning triangle in your vehicle and to use it if you have a breakdown on a highway or on a normal road and are unable to move your car out of the way.
Road signs in Europe vary significantly from those in the Americas, for example. The warning signs are triangular in shape, but they include symbols that should be comprehensible. These are some European signs that may need to be explained to foreign tourists.
The ease of driving inside cities, on the other hand, is a different story. Congestion in and around large cities, particularly during rush hours, may be a challenge for some. If you have your own vehicle, it is best to park it in a handy central location and walk, use public transportation, ride a bike, or take a cab to travel about the major cities. Most parking lots require the use of parking discs/parking clock faces (parkeringsskiver in Danish, or “P-skiver” in short), which must be put in the right side of the front window, with the clock facing out the window and the hour hand set to the time you park (there is no minute hand). The hour hand should be adjusted to the next “full” quarter hour, according to the regulations. If you arrive to a parking spot with 30 minutes parking at 13:16, set the parking disc to 13:30, and you will be due back at your vehicle at 14:00.
Some locations require a parking ticket from a nearby vending machine to be put in the vehicle, in the bottom right corner of the dash-board, visible from the outside. Some more contemporary parking ticket systems allow for the purchase of parking tickets through text messages from mobile phones, but this may be a costly affair from international numbers. The vast majority of parking ticket vending machines accept foreign credit and debit cards, although there are still a significant number that only take Danish national credit cards or cash. It should be noted that certain locations, particularly in the Copenhagen region, have numerous vending machines with varying parking coverage. In this instance, the coverage is shown via a map on the machine’s left or right side. Check that the machine really covers the area where you’ve parked.
Renting a car
Renting a vehicle is a handy, efficient, and relatively inexpensive method to see Denmark, particularly if you want to visit more rural regions where rail and bus services may be less regular. Prices at the major vehicle rental companies start at DKK 400/day, although with restricted mileage, usually 100 km each lease and an extra 25 km/day. It is fairly unusual for vehicle rental companies to demand drivers to be at least 21 years old and to pay using an international credit card.
If you are not a Danish resident, you may hire a tax-free vehicle from major businesses for about DKK 230 per day with unlimited mileage. If you purchase online, be sure you are not booking as a Danish resident.
Be warned that Denmark is not immune to the common practice of adding hidden costs to your vehicle rental bill and failing to include services such as auto assistance. Furthermore, unlike other products and services, advertised vehicle rental prices may not include the 25% V.A.T. or sales tax for private transactions. Before you accept your vehicle, carefully read the rental agreement.
If you need roadside help, you should typically contact your insurance provider, since they would have made arrangements with a local business. If they haven’t, try one of the businesses below, but expect to spend €100-300 for a basic service like towing to the closest store.
Biking in Denmark is generally safe and simple. Drivers are used to seeing bikes everywhere, and all large cities have dedicated, curbed bike lanes along key thoroughfares. Denmark is rather flat, yet riding a bike in it may be windy, chilly, or rainy. Bicycles are usually permitted on trains (separate ticket sometimes needed).
It should be noted that riding on expressways (Da: motorvej) is forbidden, and this includes the Great Belt Bridge and the resund Bridge. Trains may be utilized to traverse the bridges between Nyborg and Korsr, as well as between Copenhagen and Malmö.
In Denmark, hitchhiking is quite simple. Hitchhikers are frequently picked up by someone who know English. It is suggested to use destination boards. It is prohibited to hitchhike on expressways for safety concerns, therefore it is preferable to utilize the on ramps and service stations. If you’re taking the boat, attempt to get into a vehicle that has already paid for the ticket.
If you hitchhike from the south of Denmark (route from Hamburg or Kiel, Germany) to Copenhagen, be sure the driver does not stop at Kolding. If he does, request that he pull over at the final gas station before Kolding. There is no space to hitchhike on the Kolding highway crossing, making it one of the worst locations in Europe for hitchhikers.
Both Scandinavian Airlines and Norwegian offer domestic flights from and to Copenhagen Airport. There are no domestic flights connecting regional airports. Because most of the country’s airports were constructed as military airfields during WWII, they are often inconveniently situated far from town centers, making rail travel almost as quick from town center to town center for locations less than 3 hours by train from Copenhagen. Trains may frequently transport you to your destination much more cheaply for places farther away. However, competition is fierce, and it is occasionally feasible to get airline tickets cheaper than rail tickets if you book far in advance or go during off-peak hours. This is particularly true for the most congested route, Copenhagen-Aalborg v.v.
Domestic airports include Copenhagen, Billund, Aarhus, Aalborg, Karup, Snderborg, and Bornholm.
Some of Denmark’s most isolated islands, if such a thing exists in such a tiny nation as Denmark, also have frequent taxi flights from Roskilde airport to their little airfields on small propeller planes. The busiest routes are between Roskilde and the islands of Ls and Anholt, where daily flights may be booked online or by phone. However, these flights are quite costly, with a one-way ticket costing about DKK1,000.