Frankfurt in Germany is one of Europe’s major financial hubs and is located approximately 350km south-east from Amsterdam.
Let’s look at the options for travel between Amsterdam and Frankfurt by air, train or bus. Note that there have been some significant changes to service frequencies due to the ‘coronavirus’ measures.
1. Amsterdam-Frankfurt by Train
Without doubt, the best way to travel between the centres of Amsterdam and Frankfurt is by rail.
Modern ICE International trains run up to 6x daily from Amsterdam central station to Frankfurt airport and Frankfurt Hauptbahnhof (main station). The journey takes just 3 hours 55 minutes.
The train is jointly operated by DB (German Railways) and NS (Dutch Railways).
The train makes stops in Utrecht, Arnhem, Düsseldorf and Köln (Cologne). The ICE runs at speeds of up to 300km/h on the Cologne-Frankfurt section.
The lowest one-way fare in 2nd class for the trip is €38, though availability is somewhat limited and fares of €49 to €69 are more common, with the highest fare being €133. 1st class fares are priced from €69 one-way.
2nd class fares do not include a reserved seat on the ICE. You can reserve a seat for €4 per person for each one-way trip. It is not obligatory to make a seat reservation, however it can be worthwhile if the train is busy. Seats are in a 2-2 configuration.
1st class fares include seat reservation as standard, with seating in a 1-2 configuration.
With reasonable prices, a quick journey time, comfort and convenience we highly recommend the ICE train for travel between Amsterdam and Frankfurt.
How to book online: Amsterdam-Frankfurt train tickets can easily be booked at the NS International site. By booking online you avoid any booking fees charged at the international service desks at stations.
For more info see international trains from Amsterdam.
2. Amsterdam-Frankfurt by Air
The 2 respective national carriers operate services between Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) and Frankfurt Main International airport (FRA). Although the flight time is scheduled for around 65 minutes, the train trip is a more comfortable, stress-free and ‘greener’ option.
KLM (Skyteam) flies a 1-3x daily Cityhopper service between Amsterdam and Frankfurt using Embraer 175/190 jets. Prices start from around €130 return not including checked luggage.
Lufthansa (Star Alliance) also operates 1-3x daily on the Amsterdam-Frankfurt flight route using Airbus A319/320 series aircraft. Return fares are similar to those offered by KLM.
KLM and Lufthansa are the only viable options on this short flight route – you could also fly Air France (via Paris), British Airways (via London) or Czech Airlines (via Prague) – but these would be significantly more inconvenient as well as expensive.
3. Amsterdam-Frankfurt by Coach
German coach company Flixbus operates up to 6x direct coach service daily from Amsterdam Sloterdijk to Frankfurt Main Hauptbahnhof. The coaches take anything between 6-10 hours and singles start from around €26.
This article was originally published in 2011 and has been continuously updated since then. Last update 22 September 2020.