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Germany with two pre-schoolers - car seats?

(9 Posts)
FunnyBird Sun 25-Nov-12 19:59:03

DH and I will be travelling to Germany by plane next summer. Kids will be 3 and nearly 1. We're going with a group to the south, then staying on to se friends and relatives. My question is, how can we travel around in rural Germany (beyond reach of the Bahn)? Our friends live in a small village. I'm quite happy to pile on the train from Stuttgart to Munster or thereabouts, but how will we get to our friends house? I'm specifically thinking of legal requirements for car seats if they pick us up. Don't know how this works in Germany.
Thanks in advance.

noramum Mon 26-Nov-12 08:09:27

The legal requirements are the same as in the UK. The public transport network depends a lot on your area, some are great, some are awful. Your friends may be able to advise how frequent a bus to the nearest town is and also how many bus chances you have to do in order to reach them.

We even take our seat with us when visiting the grandparents in Hamburg where you have a big reliable network.

I would hire a car and take the seats with you. We use the Trunki Boostapak since DD is 4, makes it easier than the big seats prior.

noramum Mon 26-Nov-12 08:11:51

Sorry, didn't read your DCs age properly, you will have to take the normal seats.

We once tried to hire a seat, disaster and over one hour discussions why the seat wasn't suitable. never again,

FunnyBird Mon 26-Nov-12 10:45:59

Thanks for this. In my sleep deprived state, I hadn't even thought of hiring a car (Doh!). We will look into how difficult hiring one with appropriate car seats is. And get the German based friends and relatives on the case if necessary. Taking the seats on the plane with us will be difficult, as the seats have already been booked by the group we are travelling with, and we had to let them know our baggage requirement in advance. Hmm. I'm sure we'll work something out. How hard can it be?!

noramum Mon 26-Nov-12 14:42:11

You normally take the seats in addition to the normal luggage allowance (but better check).

We hired a seat at the airport at a respected worldwide operating hire company and got confirmation in writing and on the phone that a seat would be waiting for us. We even confirmed the brand they keep at that location.

We are Germans and I don't know what would have happened if there would be language problems on top of the general chaos. Since then I have lost my trust in them.

Maybe your friends can inquire locally if there is a possibility to hire at any other place than the airport and can pick you up.

FunnyBird Mon 26-Nov-12 14:49:09

Thanks. Yes, we had a bit of trouble with a car seat when hiring a car in Ireland a couple of years ago. Doesn't seem to be something they're keen on getting right, for some reason. We'll get to local contacts on to it.

forevergreek Mon 26-Nov-12 14:52:34

You can check in seats for free at airport as well as buggies. Or try just hiring at airport the other end. There will be lots of car hire companies so just pre book them beforehand. I would probably just hire a car for the duration tbh, as train fares ( children need one too),seat hire, taxis, etc all add up. So for the convienence, I would try hiring a car with seats.
Also rural travel isn't very regular

We hired a car in Germany 2 years ago and was only 120 euros for 4 days which I don't think is too bad, also the euro to the pound is bad ATM, so 120 euros is less than £100. I think if you look around for deals you can prob pay £200 for the week including child seats

Beanbagz Mon 03-Dec-12 11:21:35

I hired a car from Stuttgart recently and notice a pile of brand new car seat behind the desk (Thrifty) so you shouldn't have too much of a problem if you want to hire with a car though they are normally quite expensive per day (in my experience). You might be better taking your own.

My own DC are a little older but we use a BubbleBum for the 7 year old

wearymum200 Fri 14-Dec-12 21:19:55

Suspect it's least hassle to take yr own seats with you if you are hiring a car. Less expensive and you know you have something suitable and safe. Almost all airlines will take car seats free. We bought (on a MN recommendation) a fab car seat bag from kiddicare which fitted both seats (tho my 2 were both in high back boosters by then: 3.9 and 6). Robust enough for airline handling and could be carried like a huge rucksack so manageable in airport.

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