Comparing and Contrasting System in London and Berlin


Comparingand Contrasting System in London and Berlin

Berlinand London transport system are vital component of the economicvalidity and quality of life of the communities living in these twocities. This is evident in London’s and Berlin’s regulation ofland use and the massive investment in the expansion and maintenanceof its infrastructure, both that play a crucial role in the evolutionof development patterns (Begg 2014). This paper will compare andcontrast, quality, safety and funding mechanisms in transport systemin these two cities.

Qualityof Transport Systems

Theintegrated public transport in Berlin is described as one of thefastest and most efficient in Europe (Berlin City Guide 2015). Theinterconnected network of transport systems enables the Berliners toride at any place within the city with a single ticket only. It iseasy to hop from bus to subway to the S-Bahn (city rail) and tram(Berlin Transit Authority 2010). There are ferries that can be usedto cross the lakes in the city. Just like in London there are noticket barriers in the city’s subway system. The autobahn in madefor speed with very wide lanes, banked curves and smooth surface(Berlin Transit Authority 2010). Indeed, more than half of the13000km autobahn in the country has no speed limit. There is a verymodern and sophisticated speed radar system called Blitzer. Driverscan install their application in their smart hones so that they canmonitor their speed (Berlin City Guide 2015).

Londonalso boosts of modern and quality road and rail transport, itsunderground transit is still one of the best in the globe. In therecent past the travelling around the capital has been made easierand more pleasant to people of all ages (Begg 2014). New trains,buses and stations have been constructed which translates to acleaner and less crowded journey for travelers. In addition the cityadministrators have been crafting and redesigning public spaces topersuade more people in the city to cycle and walk, and hence reducethe level of carbon emission and environmental pollution (TFL 2015).The Low Emission Zone has played a crucial role in deterring highpolluting automobiles and is improving air quality in the city.London has got a proposal for reducing emission in central London by2020 through the Ultra Low Emission Zone (Begg 2014). These effortshave made the quality of transport system in London outshine Berlin.

Safetyof Transport systems

InBerlin an average of 130,000 traffic accident occur every year, whichis reduction of 38,400 since the 1990s (SenateDepartment of Urban Development 2012).It is estimated that an individual is injured one in every tenaccidents. Even though the number of fatalities has reduced by about25 percent in the past two decades, the risk of injury and the degreeof severity of injured individuals are comparatively higher in Berlin(SenateDepartment of Urban Development 2012). In 2010 Berlin Sicher Mobilwas created to formulate safety measure and evaluate the success ofsafety programs. This program has played a big role in, lowering thenumber of accidents. Since 2004 traffic injuries and deaths havereduced by 30 percent (Senate Department of Urban Development 2010,p. 1).

Begg(2014) reported that the crime within the bus system and undergroundnetwork has gone down by 57 percent and 48 percent respectively since2006. Safety teams continuously monitor the bus and train network inthe city to stamp out crime and illegal taxi touts (Transportfor London, 2014).There are speed limits in various sections of the road network andrail system has reduced the number of road accidents and fatalitieswithin London.The number of individuals injured and killed in accidents has alsogone down by 56 percent since 2003 (Begg2014).London has also made tremendous improvement to secure and ensuresafety of passengers. Over the years considerable upgrading in thequality and capacity of transport systems across London have madetransport in the cityoneof the best in Europe (Begg2014).It is evident that safety in London transport system is better thanthat of Berlin. The fewer crime rate and number of accidents andpassengers fatalities serve as a proof of London superior transportsystem (Begg2014).

Funding:Tickets and Fares

Thereare numerous tickets and tariff zones meant to facilitate payment toaccess the city’s U-Bahn, S-Bahn, trams, buses and ferries. Youngchildren below the age of five travels anywhere within the citywithout charges, and those aged 6-14 pay a reduced tariff for zone AB(BerlinCity Guide 2015).Berlin and the surrounding areas have been organized into threedistinct tariff zones A, B and C (BerlinCity Guide 2015).People can purchase tickets for a single zone or all the three zones.Zone A covers the inner city encompassing the urban rail (S-Bahn)ring. Zone B covers areas outside the urban rail ring to the boundaryof the city while Zone C covers larger Berlin region, an area ofabout 15 kilometers around Berlin (BerlinCity Guide 2015).

Thetransportation system in London is managed by Transport for London,which a government body responsible for transport network. Before theLondon 2012 Olympics the city was accessible through two systems(GreatBritain 2006, p. 32).Oyster card that is specifically designed for London network could beused. The Oyster card has many advantages over the Berlin ticketingsystem described above (TripAdvisor2015, p.1).They are not only comparatively cheaper but are also they ensure thatqueues are shorter making the public system swifter. Passengers areonly required to pass their Oyster card to a card reader and therequisite amount is automatically deducted. Travelers do not need tobuy tickets from bus drivers. In addition the Oyster card can betopped up in varying amount a online, stations (Begg 2014). Arevolutionary ticketing system, the contactless payment cards, wasintroduced in 2012 for bus transport. This made London the first cityin the globe to accept contactless payment. Changes made in 2014 tomake CPC acceptable in the rail service as pay- as –you- go (Begg2014).


Itis evident that both Berlin and London have quality andwell-organized transport systems. Even so, there exist some smalldisparities in the way that these systems execute payment of fare andensure safety of passengers. The high tech, smart interconnectednetwork on rail and road, with modern trains and buses make giveBerlin an edge over London on quality. In respect to safety Londonoutshines Berlin since the number of accidents and fatalities issignificantly lower. The cashless ticketing system has reinforcedLondon stature as a global leader in innovation and efficienttransport system.


Begg,David 2014. TfL Annual Report 2013-2014: WorldClass? London Transport: Progress and Future Challenges.

BerlinCity Guide 2015. Transportation.Retrieved from:

BerlinTransit Authority2010. Mobilecapital. Berlin Location Center. Retrievedfrom:

GreatBritain 2006. Goingfor gold: Transport for London`s 2012 Olympic Games : third report ofSession 2005-06.London: Stationery Office

SenateDepartment for Urban Development and the Environment of the State ofBerlin 2012. RoadSafety.Retrieved from:

SenateDepartment of Urban Development 2010. Berlin2010 Traffic Safety Programme: Making Berlin Safely Mobile(Update 2007). Retrieved from:

Transportfor London (TFL) 2015. London TransportSystem Booklet

Transportfor London. (2014). AnnualReport and Statement of Accounts.

TripAdvisor(2015). Berlin:Public Transportation.Available at