Guten Tag, die Fahrkarten bitte. It's the controllers. Passengers awkwardly dig their tickets out of their wallet, and the ticket checkers set in motion. You pat your back pocket... no wallet. You glance at the door, but it's too late. You're surrounded. When the controller reaches your seat, you mutter out "ich habe meine Brieftasche vergessen", but life's hard and he doesn't care. At the next stop, you are escorted out of the train, fined and wished einen schönen Tag.

You now owe the BVG 60 euros. What do you do?

Can I avoid the fine?

If you forgot your ticket at home, and that ticket is not transferable (no one else can use it), you can have your fine reduced from €60 to €7.

You must fill this online form within one week of receiving the fine and prove that you had a valid transport ticket in your name at the time. This can also be done online, or at any BVG or Deutsche Bahn Kundenzentrum.

If your ticket is transferable (anyone can use it), you must pay the full fine. Yearly, monthly, daily and single tickets are usually transferable.

Can I ignore the fine?

No! Ignoring a BVG fine means trouble. The fine get more expensive, and you can even be imprisoned for not paying!

Even if you didn't give them your correct address, you will get in trouble. Before I moved to Berlin, I was caught with an unstamped ticket. I ignored the fine, thinking "there's no way they'll ever find me". A few months later, right after my first Anmeldung, I received the fine by mail. It was now €128. Some people received collection letters from the BVG in their home country.

Be a good person, pay your BVG fine, and whatever you do, don't try to kill the controller.

How do I pay the fine?

Find your EBE number

You need to know your EBE number to pay the fine. This EBE number is written is on the fine. Make sure you get the reference number right. It's a 13 digit number labelled EBE-Nr.

IMG_0721.jpeg#asset:280:contentFullwidth

Pay on the spot

Some scammers impersonate BVG controllers to defraud people riding without tickets. There are even real controllers who pocket the money from those who pay their fines in cash.

If you pay on the spot, don't use cash and ask for a receipt.

Pay online

If you have a European bank account, you can pay the BVG fine online. You can also ask for a fine reduction online.

Pay at a BVG Kundenzentrum

Bring your fine at one of the BVG and Deutsche Bahn customer service centres, wait in line and pay the fine. Make sure you keep the receipt.

Pay by bank transfer

You can pay the fine with a SEPA transfer. Just follow the the instructions on this page. You will not get a receipt from the BVG if you pay by bank transfer, so keep the transfer confirmation from your bank.

What if I live in another country?

If you live in Europe, you can still make a SEPA transfer. If you don't live in Europe, you can use Wise to transfer money to the BVG.

What if I lost the fine?

If you lost the fine and you don't know how to pay it, you can write to the BVG at info@bvg.de, or visit a BVG Kundenzentrum1.

In your email, include this information:

  • The date when you got caught
  • Train line or train number
  • First name and last name
  • Address
  • Date of birth

If you need a lawyer to help you, look at our list of English-speaking lawyers in Berlin.