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Cologne Carnival 2018 - THU 08 Feb -> TUE 13 Feb

Organized by Ulf Kleinings

  • Feb 08, 2018, 9:00 AM — Feb 13, 2018, 12:00 AM (CET)
  • Cologne, Germany
  • This event is over.

PROLOGUE:
 
 
 
 
***** . WE WILL NOT HELP YOU!!! . + + + - HELP YOURSELF!!! . *****
 
 
SO, PLEASE (!), READ THIS!!!

BETTER EVEN: PRINT IT ALL OUT!

ALSO THE OTHER FB & CS EVENT PAGES (scroll down to " H: . . LINKS TO ALL COLOGNE CARNIVAL CS & FB EVENT PAGES" for the complete list!) FOR THE SPECIFIC MEETINGS YOU'D LIKE TO JOIN US FOR!!!
 
 
 
 
I . . - . . WE WILL NOT HELP YOU!!!
 
 
Our CS events will begin on Thursday, 08 Feb 2018 and last till Tuesday, 13 Feb 2018.
ANYONE WHO DARES TO CALL OR TEXT US - before and especially during the event(s) - to bother us with questions that have already been answered here on this or any of the other event pages OR with problems for which a solution is already described here, WILL GET NO MORE HELP FROM US than the advice to check out these pages!

So everyone who was stupid enough NOT to memorize all this (or print it all out...) and who doesn't have mobile internet access will have to find some online access to get this information!!!

HOWEVER: DO NOT HESITATE to contact us about anything that has not been answered on the event pages; google maps or (further) mails (IDEALLY via FaceBook or WhatsApp - BUT DO READ THE PART ABOUT "C: COMMUNICATIONS" BELOW!)!
 
 
 
 
II . . - . . HELP YOURSELF!
 
 
Below you'll find a LOT OF INFORMATION - WAY TOO MUCH, you might think.
HOWEVER: I've organized quite a few CS events including several for festivals like this before (Carnival, Oktoberfest, World Cup...) - and all of the information below is the result of THINGS THAT WENT BADLY WRONG in the past and then resulted in lots of EXTRA WORK FOR ME to help my surfers.
I have no intention whatsoever to spend so many hours on that again and Hanna feels like she doesn't necessarily have to make that experience for herself!!!

In fact we already HAVE helped you by putting together all information that you could possibly need. So we don't wanna hear complaints about that this is too much information - it's based on the experiences I've made in the last 13 years, or in other words: based on the questions others have asked and the errors I or others have already made!
If you feel that READING ALL THAT IS TOO MUCH EFFORT for you then bear in mind that writing (and annually updating) all of it was some effort for us, too...

AT THE VERY LEAST read the
- FB and/or CS EVENT PAGE for the day or event you plan to join us for (so that you know how and where to meet us!)
- AND use the google MAPS that we've put together: https://drive.google.com/open?id=198FRmLD_f1L8BPVxxBRzUa20kw5wWDd8&usp=sharing

  1. Ulf Kleinings

    Köln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

    III . . - . . ALL YOU NEED IS MAPS
     
     
    On the event pages you'll find many links to google maps. For each single one we chose very carefully the zoom-in and/or street view point and direction and/or where we put the marker(s) and/or which way/directions we have already put in. Especially when pointing out to meeting points on square and such, they're almost always exactly spot on!
    AND we put together a google maps with all locations in: https://drive.google.com/open?id=198FRmLD_f1L8BPVxxBRzUa20kw5wWDd8&usp=sharing

    We would STRONGLY RECOMMEND saving that google maps on your phone AND DOWNLOADING the map of Cologne within google maps to have that offline on your phone! If that's not an option for you then we'd suggest you PRINT OUT ALL MAPS in order to be able to find the places in the city when trying to meet us there!
    If you won't have mobile internet access then read this for how to download maps with google maps to have them available when you're offline: https://support.google.com/gmm/answer/6291838?hl=en

    ALSO it might be a good idea to get yourself a "traditional" paper map from one the tourist information office at the corner in front of the Cathedral's front side opposite the McDonalds at that corner there ( http://goo.gl/maps/LddiK ) including a map of all the metro/tram lines.
    Or download one of the pdf's from Cologne's public transport company KVB: https://www.kvb.koeln/fahrtinfo/liniennetzplaene.html
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
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    A: . . GERMAN PRONUNCIATION thru my very own (!) phonetic transcription:
     
     
    I often use my own pronunciation help - put [in square brackets] behind all the words that you might have to use - e.g. for asking the way!!!
    It's basically my own phonetic transcription: Imagine these (actually completely senseless) strings of letters would be real ENGLISH words and then just pronounce them as such!!!

    - a capital letter within such a ''word'' (= string of letters) indicates that a new syllable starts here.

    - ''CH'' (capital C and capital H) is pronounced like the guttural ''ch'' in Scottish ''loch'' (e.g. ''Loch Ness'') or as in ''Ach'' (disapproving exclamation).

    - the German "ü" (capital umlaut U) is pronounced like uyuh as in Muriel (as in "Muriel's Wedding")
     
     
     
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    B: . . EVENTS: WHERE * * *AND WHY!* * * TO SIGN UP…
     
     
    We've got quite a few inquiries about that - so here are my answers to all of them:
     
     
    We only set up (identical) event pages on CouchSurfing and Facebook. Feel free to copy&post from or link to them on any other site that you like better...

    We'd recommend to sign up for or "join" this main event to have it on your list of events and thus find it quicker AND so you can post to and take part in discussions or start your own ones.
    By signing up for (or "joining") the event pages for the single "sub-events" you plan to attend you let all other attending members known that you intend to come, too (and - again - make it easier for yourself to find and to post to them).

    ALSO: When we update/change any of the information on the event pages then you'll be notified immediately (unless you've switched that off...).

    LAST BUT NOT LEAST: If you are pretty certain to attend an event and don't mind posting your own mobile number to the corresponding event page, then please do so to increase chances for others to reach anyone of us on our phones if-need-be!
    Using (number) words rather than actual numbers - at least for some of them - is one way to prevent at least net crawlers from detecting your number. For example:
    instead of posting my cell number "the normal way" (+49-179-1091238) I could write: Plus Four Nine 179 One 0912 Three Eight
    Another option is to write the number backwards (e.g.: 8321901-971-94+).
     
     
     
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    C: . . COMMUNICATIONS:
     
     
    Obeying to popular demand here's our WhatsApp group: https://chat.whatsapp.com/9ys69hI7lwjHFEXyUN2bYU
     
     
    A cell phone will certainly be of use (though there are also still some phone booths in the city - especially at main station and public places like that). To check for last-minute updates on the event pages (and obviously for have google maps on you at all times) a smart phone would obviously be your best option... ALDI (discounter) sells very cheap SIM cards - but you have to sign up for them (I THINK that's according to German law...) and will need a local address for that (any hotel's address should be fine, tough!).
    You can call Ulf AT ANY TIME on his mobile at +49-179-1091238 !
    24/7 - really! The cell's ring tone will be switched off whenever it could be a nuisance - so no need for you to bother to think about that. BUT DO NOT CALL ABOUT ANYTHING THAT'S ALREADY ANSWERED ON ANY OF THE ACTIVITY PAGES (see above!)!!!

    When it is switched on then Ulf will often have his headset earphones in so that he can hear the ringing;-) AND YET it might be very often very hard if not impossible to hear that AND to actually TALK on the phone:
    At public events like Carnival not getting a signal for your cell phone is a common problem and then you just can't make phone calls or go online or even just send text messages. Speaking on the phone is most probably out of the question anyways - it's usually way too loud for that! You can certainly try to call - since Ulf always has his cell's voice mail switched off you can let it ring for quite some time. Do that to make sure he has a chance to realize somebody is trying to call him - probably by feeling the phone's vibrating alert rather than actually hearing the ring!!! If need be do it more than once - till you get an answer! And then - when it's indeed too noisy to speak - simply hang up and switch to texting (SMS/FB messenger/WhatsApp) to continue to communicate this way! If you prefer to try texting right away, then STILL GIVE ANOTHER CALL 1 or 2 minutes AFTER YOU SENT that text (you can hang up immediately right AFTER you hear the ringing tone!) to make sure Ulf has a signal at all (and thus can actually receive your text) or check for the indicators on Messenger or WhatsApp to see if he got your message and read it!

    HANNA you can ONLY contact on FB Messenger or WhatsApp @ +4550231865 !.
    Do not call her since she's not gonna pick up! Since she has a prepaid phone she might not reply - depending on what phone you text from (foreign or German) AND how worthy she considers replying to you:-P She generally likes to help others - as long as she's convinced that they made an effort themselves first, instead of just requesting her to make such an effort for them!!!
     
     
    BEAR IN MIND THAT AT FESTIVALS LIKE THIS GETTING ONLINE ACCESS OR CALLING SOMEBODY ON HIS CELL MIGHT BE IMPOSSIBLE FOR HOURS AND THE DELIVERY OF AN SMS CAN TAKE UP TO AN HOUR OR SO!
    SO DO NOT RELY ON THAT YOU CAN HELP YOURSELF BY USING YOUR PHONE!!!
    OFTEN sending a Facebook message ( www.facebook.com/MrUlf & www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007578615088 ) can be much faster and more reliable - but obviously only as long as we have online access...

    If you don't have a phone, then you can look for one of those phone booths which offer sending text messages, too. Also you can certainly ask people if they let you use theirs for a quick call or sending an SMS (perhaps offering them 20-50 cents might help;-D). HOWEVER: when texting is the only possible way of communication this might not be a clever idea when you need a reply. In this case text us your CS/FaceBook-name or WhatsApp number and then get online!
     
     
    ALSO do check on the CS or FB event page for your event if some of the other attending CS'ers posted their mobile number there - in order to have more than just our numbers to try and call, in case you cannot find us!!!
     
     
     
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    D: . . MEETING US RIGHT AFTER YOUR ARRIVAL IN COLOGNE:
     
     
    If you arrive in Cologne at any time when we're out partying already (CHECK OUT THE CORRESPONDING OTHER ACTIVITY PAGES below!) and cannot or do not want to drop off your stuff with your host first before joining us for partying Carnival in Cologne already then you can store your bags at main station (see "G: HYPER MODERN LOCKERS SYSTEM AT COLOGNE MAIN STATION (KÖLN HAUPTBAHNHOF/HBF)" below!).
    Or even at some metro stops (e.g. FRIESENPLATZ, RUDOLFPLATZ) - THOUGH LOCKERS THERE ARE LIMITED!

    After your stuff is safely stored and BEFORE you go and try to meet us you better try to contact anyone of us (see "C: COMMUNICATIONS" above!) to find out if we are indeed where it says on the event page we should be at that time - and use google maps (see "III - ALL YOU NEED IS MAPS" high above!) to actually find us!
    And make sure you put on your costume before you come to meet us. I'm not exaggerating: Everybody wears some kind of costume. You'll look stupid if you don't. Doesn't have to be a big thing - read: "E: COSTUMES" below!
     
     
     
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    E: . . COSTUMES:
     
     
    Nothing in Carnival is ever done without a costume!
    But this is not Venice (no super expensive costume with white mask necessary) nor Rio (80% nudity is not obligatory - nor healthy at those temperatures;-D) but Cologne: "Jeder Jeck ess anders" ("Every jerk is different").
    So in short: if it looks jeck (silly) enough, then it's fine. Some only wear some colorful clothes and perhaps a wig and then perhaps paint a heart or sun or so or just color on their face.

    Some ideas for "real" costumes include:
    Clown, Cowboy, Indian with feathers (Native American),
    all kind of professions (surgeon, judge {in robes}, cop, American football player, nurse, prostitute, monk),
    all kind of historical stuff (stone age man, Roman senator, medieval knight, ...),
    all kind of fantasy figures (wizard, Greek God, witch, prince, Michael Jackson)
    celebrities (Elvis Presley, Mickey Mouse, Pope, Osama Bin Laden, Amy Winehouse [the longer the party night, the more look-alike will it get:-D])
    or of foreign countries (Asian, Scot, Russian, Mexican, African tribe member {blackfacing is NOT considered racism in Germany!}, Indian with dots {citizen of India}, Bavarian)
    or even things (parking meter, "Kölsch" glass, condom) or body parts (penis, vagina, thumbs-up-hand) - unlimited fantasy here!

    The online shops that I always go to are:
    https://www.karneval-megastore.de/
    AND (AVAILABLE ALSO IN ENGLISH & FRENCH): http://www.maskworld.com/english
    (A bit more expensive but probably the better shop - more and better stuff, very well-assorted and I find things easier to find there the way they have those "special shop" or categories done - e.g. their " Morphsuits & Zentai": http://www.maskworld.com/english/products/costumes/--/morphsuits-zentai--290?s=banner ! LAST BUT NOT LEAST they have a 24-HOUR IN-HOUSE hotline!!!)

    AND THEN there is also http://www.party-discount.com/ !
    ALSO available in English, AND they are the only site that allows to show ALL search results at once (on one page) AND - perhaps the most important difference - they also have a shop in Cologne's city center:
    Creativ & Party-Discount Köln ( http://www.party-discount.de/tpl_inhalt.htm?websale8=party-discount&tpl=tpl_inhalt.htm&include_tpl=../ws-customer-party_web_de/infoseiten/inc_filialen.htm#1 )‎, Hohenstaufenring 66 - 70, 50674 Cologne (a bit south of RUDOLFPLATZ) - DO MIND THEIR SPECIAL OPENING TIMES DURING CARNIVAL!!!

    Apart from that there are 2 other main costume supermarkets in Cologne I'd recommend.
    1 in the city center:

    Deiters ( https://www.deiters.de/koeln/ ), Gürzenichstraße 25, Cologne - located right next to Heumarkt.
    It's a bit expensive and be prepared to queue for up to 45 min. in the check-out line (yes, forty-five minutes!) - but "if-need-be" you can buy stuff there.

    And a really big one which is a bit further out (30-45 min. by public transport, metro & bus!) in Cologne's South but a bit cheaper:
    "Der Karnevalswierts" (http://www.karnevalswierts.de/FiliaalKoeln.aspx?lang=en ), Otto-Hahn-Straße 17, Cologne

    FOR OUR COUCHSURFERS or others who are in Köln-Nippes (just north of the city center) there is the KAUFHOF department store near our place ( https://goo.gl/maps/NT5MGjuzAzM2 ) with a costume department during Carnival (just like it's bigger brother in the city center: https://goo.gl/maps/WwHXS6XH2LS2 )!
     
     
     
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    F: . . LOCATIONS & MEETINGS
     
     
    Agreeing on meeting points for when we're partying in the city or going to see a parade can never be 100% certain! We still give you locations on the event pages but there's never a guarantee! We can always end up changing our plans spontaneously for a million different reasons (and be it simply that the group just wants to move on to some other place...).

    HOWEVER: In general almost EVERY PLACE IS JUST AS GOOD AS THE NEXT ONE! Almost all of them will play Cologne Carnival music for most of the time, too! Somebody (living in Cologne or who's been here for Carnival before) might have told you about that one super great place to go to and so you might totally wanna go there. But trust me: This only shows that this somebody has probably not been to too many places in Cologne during Carnival;-) The only interesting facts one actually needs to know is how high the percentage of Cologne Carnival music of all the music played is (though it won't help us too much, since some want as much as possible "original Cologne Carnival music", while others might prefer some more different music at times, too...) and what generation goes to what place (so that you don't end up in a place where everybody else could be your kid - or parent), but then again in most of the places you'll find all of them anyways - from youngsters to grannies :-D

    WE (Hanna and Ulf) ONLY HOST CS'ers who'll join "OUR" events (see below).
    But, OBVOIUSLY, we don't expect anybody else to stick with us for those events all the time - so there'll also opportunities to roam the city on your own at any time.
    (WE JUST DON'T WANNA HOST ANYONE WHO HAS HIS OWN SCHEDULE FOR THE TIME HE'S STAYING WITH US (or is perhaps meeting up with others all the time) AND THEN JUST "COMES HOME" TO SLEEP AT OURS!!!)

    To meet up again after splitting off the group (also when people get separated from the group - e.g. after getting romantically involved with a complete stranger or lost in some other way as a few always do...) use your phone (see "C: COMMUNICATIONS" above!) - OR meet us at the next event (later that day or the next day) again!
     
     
     
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    G: . . HYPER MODERN LOCKERS SYSTEM AT COLOGNE MAIN STATION (KÖLN HAUPTBAHNHOF/HBF)
     
     
    Sick and tired of searching for a free locker among dozens of taken ones?
    Welcome to Cologne Main Station!!!
    They've got this underground automatic storage system that works like this:
    In main station there are a few luggage storing machines located in that passage way connecting the main frontal foyer (with the "Body Shop") to the other frontal foyer (with the Starbucks). You can always go to ANY ONE of these machines.
    On their front you'll see some buttons and a touch screen above some metal blinds. These open after pushing the right button or touching the right button on the screen (not sure - you'll figure that all out!).
    You'll then see that behind these blinds there's an empty metal box, which is surprisingly spacious! Put all your stuff in there - even loose parts. For when the metal blinds are closed again (after you pushed some more buttons and perhaps paid and everything) this box behind the blinds will be closed, too, and an elevator system transports that box with your bags and everything inside to the underground store vaults! Nothing can fall out, nothing will get lost!
    Then you get something like a paper ticket from the machine. With that you can later pick up your stuff again 24/7 by simply inserting it into ANY ONE of these machines at the station and your luggage will be transported and elevated to that very machine! So no looking for free lockers, usually no standing in lines, lots of space and with (I think) just 4-5 Euros for up to 2 hours and 7 or so Euros per 24hours for a comparatively reasonable price, too!!!
    JUST NEVER EVER LOSE THAT PAPER TICKET!!!

    HOWEVER: On special days with something big going on in Cologne (ESPECIALLY Carnival's "Women's Carnival" on Thursday or for the main parade on "Rose Monday"!!!) the lines in front of those machines can be very long or the storage vault might even full! In this case there's still an old-fashioned luggage storage where you can give your stuff to a real living being behind a counter! It's a bit hidden though:
    Go to the station's main foyer (the one with the "Body Shop" and the main information desk underneath the big timetable), look up to that big timetable with the foyer's glass doors in your back and then to your right you'll see a "Douglas" perfumery. Go there and stop a few meters before the store's entrance: to your right you'll see the staircase & escalator going down to the underground stop and to your left (behind some phone booths and/or letter boxes and/or ticket machines, I think...) you'll see the luggage counter! No idea if that's more expensive or cheaper than the machines – you'll find out;-)
    NOTE that - UNLIKE THE MACHINES(!) - this counter is CLOSED from 10pm till 6am though!!!
     
     
     
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    H: . . LINKS TO ALL COLOGNE CARNIVAL CS & FB EVENT PAGES:
     
     
     
    Cologne Carnival 2018 - THU 08 Feb -> TUE 13 Feb
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/cologne-carnival-2018-thu-08-feb-tue-13-feb
    https://www.facebook.com/events/394247167687242/
     
     
     
    Cologne Carnival 2018 - THU 08 Feb 2018, DAY - Weiberfastnacht
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-thu-08-02-day-weiberfastnacht
    https://www.facebook.com/events/351265118673166/

    Cologne Carnival 2018 - THU 08 Feb 2018, EVE - STADTGARTEN
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-thu-08-02-eve-stadtgarten
    https://www.facebook.com/events/682525042114936/
     
     
     
    Cologne Carnival 2018 - FRI 09 Feb 2018 - Zülpicher Strasse
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-fri-09-02-zulpicher-strasse
    https://www.facebook.com/events/2017002908516589/
     
     
     
    Cologne Carnival 2018 - SAT 10 Feb 2018 - Friesenstrasse
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-sat-10-02-friesenstrasse
    https://www.facebook.com/events/663797867342563/
     
     
     
    Cologne Carnival 2018 - SUN 11 Feb 2018, DAY - Rodenkirchen et a
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-sun-11-02-day-rodenkirchen-et-al
    https://www.facebook.com/events/1159042384198732/

    Cologne Carnival 2018 - SUN 11 Feb 2018, EVE - KitKatClub@Bootshaus
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-sun-11-02-eve-kitkatclub-bootshau
    https://www.facebook.com/events/144673706233401/
     
     
     
    Cologne Carnival 2018 - MON 12 Feb 2018, DAY - ROSEMonday Parade
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-mon-12-02-day-rosemonday-parade
    https://www.facebook.com/events/1960399220953341/

    Cologne Carnival 2018 - MON 12 Feb 2018, EVE - post parade SAUNA
    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/koln-carnival-18-mon-12-02-eve-post-parade-sauna
    https://www.facebook.com/events/183454205722957/
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
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    GET AROUND IN COLOGNE:
    ( http://wikitravel.org/en/Cologne#Get_around )
     
     
     
     
    FIRST AND FOREMOST: KVB (Kölner Verkehrs Betriebe = Colognean Transport Company) - http://www.kvb-koeln.de/ STILL ONLY IN GERMAN (sorry!!!) - except for "The Timetable Information" (on the left - or here: https://auskunft.kvb-koeln.de/kvb/cgi/page/eingabeRoute?lang=UK ) where you can choose your language from the flags. BUT you can find some more information about Cologne Public Transport here: https://www.cologne.de/transportation.html

    The KVB (Cologne's own public transport company) runs all the trams and undergrounds as well as all the buses in Cologne. You'll mostly run on their trains and buses - especially when moving within the city center.

    There is no strict distinction between a tram (only) and underground (only) system in Cologne. Almost all the lines will go underground when getting to the city center but mostly run above the ground in the outer districts and only the (orange & red) east-west lines # 1, 7 & 9 cross the city "overground" - stopping at Rudolfplatz or Zülpicher Platz respectively and Neumarkt (see below!). Also all the trains look pretty much the same...

    Unlike in London Underground or Paris Metro etc. in Cologne at most stops all the different lines of the KVB trams/underground trains that stop there share the same platforms! So you gotta be careful to get onto the right train!
    At some stops however (e.g.: Rudolfplatz, Neumarkt, Bf Deutz/Messe & Bf Deutz/LANXESSarena) you'll have more than one platform, with some underground and some above. And at some you have more than 1 stop a few meters apart from each other (e.g. at Barbarossaplatz one for lines #12 & #15 opposite the McDonalds and one around the corner where the Merzenich bakery is for lines #16 & #18. At Zülpicher Platz (just 1 stop north of Barbarossaplatz) you have a similar situation - with the platforms for line #9 being not only a few meters away (and around the corner) from those for lines #12 & #15 BUT the 2 platforms for the 2 different directions of line #9 are also a bit apart with the big intersection (and the crossing with the tracks for the other 2 lines) between them...

    ALSO unlike (for example) in London Underground they won't tell you to which point of the compass they go (e.g.: "eastbound", ...) BUT like in Paris and many more idiotic places like this, they expect you to basically now all the outer districts and/or all the stops of all the lines!!! So in order to know which direction you'll have to go you'll have to find your line on the map, then follow it from where you are to where you wanna go AND beyond to the last stop in that direction to know which directions is the right one for you.
    HOWEVER to make it yet a bit more complicated not all trains always go to the last stop - but only, let's say, to a stop that's only 2/3 of the way to the final stop of that line... In these cases they give you that stop's name for "direction" - so you have to look up ALL the stops on your line into the direction you wanna go to have an idea which one is the right one!!!
    HAVE FUN;-)
    (In fairness: on most tram STOPS there are signs with some of the "nearer" main stops in the direction all the trains would go from there - so, for example, the platforms at "Dom/HBF" are marked with either "NEUMARKT", which is 2 stops south of "Dom/HBF" while the opposite platform is marked with "EBERTPLATZ" which is 2 stops north...)
     
     
    Underground stops are marked by a white U on a blue square.

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    German Rail (DB = Deutsche Bahn) - http://www.bahn.com/i/view/index.shtml :
    In Cologne's main station you go upstairs to get to the platforms above the ''Colonaden'' (the shopping and food mall underneath the platforms) for the long-distance trains as well as regional trains and to platforms 9 & 10 at the main station's rear end (where the "McDonald's Restaurant" is) for the S-Bahn (S-train - look for a big white ''S'' in a green circle). The S-trains are the public local (and inter-regional) trains run by Germany Rail - but as part of the VRS (Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Sieg = linked transport system for the Rhine-Sieg region) tickets bought for (or on) the KVB trains or buses are also valid for DB's S-trains and regional trains (so any train without a "C" in its name - so no "ICE", "IC", "EC"...) - as long as you stay in the zone the ticket is good for, of course...
     
     
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    WHAT TICKET TO BUY:

    There are ticket machines on almost all platforms and on almost all of the trains and busses- but SOME (mostly on the trains and busses) STILL accept coins only! Tickets bought from any of the machines will be stamped already by the machines - except for "4erTickets" AND the "KölnCard"!
    Some kiosks near the stops might still sell tickets, too, BUT THOSE YOU'D HAVE TO STAMP once you're the train!

    For within Cologne you need a Zone 1b ticket for "Erwachsene" (= adults) only if a part of your trip is on any train run by Deutsche Bahn (DB) - so on an S-train or RE (RegionalExpress) or RB (RegionalBahn) - regardless how many stops! - AND/OR if you go for more than 4 stops. So that's even for the way from the airport to main station or even further within the Cologne area (via main station)!
    If your trip does not include a part on any of DB's trains, does not take longer than 20 min. AND is no more than 4 stops long, then you need a Zone K (Kurzstrecke) ticket (for "Erwachsene")

    - A single zone 1b ticket ("Einzelticket") is 2,90 Euros
    - A single zone K ticket ("Einzelticket Kurzstrecke") is 1,90 Euros
    - If you buy 4 at once (a "4erTicket Erwachsene") that's 11,30 Euros for zone 1b.
    - A day ticket ("TagesTicket 1 Person") for 8,60 Euros (for zone 1b) is good till 3am (the next "morning"). So if you do 4 or more rides on one day then the day ticket is the cheapest option - for ONE person.
    - It's even cheaper if you're more than one: a group day ticket ("TagesTicket 5 Personen") for UP TO 5 people is 13,10 Euros!!! Of course you'll have to stick together then. But even with just 2 people it already pays off when you use it for 3 rides (or more)! If you're actually 5 people than it's the cheapest option from the first ride on!!!
     
     
    KVB trains #16 & 18 go all the way down to Bonn and for that you'd need a Zone 4 "RegioTicket" (e.g. 7,90 Euros for a single ticket)
     
     
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    CGN -> HBF (airport Köln-Bonn {Cologne-Bonn} to Cologne Main Station)
     
     
    At the airport there is a DB station/platform. DB stands for Deutsche Bahn (German Rail), and in fact the trains that you can take from there to Köln DOM/HBF (Hauptbahnhof) are run by DB: the so called S-Bahn (a big white "S" in a green circle) as well as the RE (RegionalExpress) and RB (RegionalBahn) trains. So DB would of course like you to buy a DB ticket, but then you'd have to buy another one once you're actually in the city - this time one from the KVB (our local public transport company) to use the underground/tram trains and busses within Cologne. So make sure you buy a KVB / VRS (single/day/group) ticket that's good for the KVB, too! You can get KVB or VRS tickets from the DB ticket machines on the "in between floor" just above the actual platforms (just make sure you choose the regional tickets first from the machines' home screen!)...
    Again: a regular KVB/VRS Zone 1B ticket (Einzelticket, 4erTicket, or already TagesTicket {1 or 5 Person} - see above!) is good to take the S-Bahn OR the RE or RB trains from the airport to Köln HBF AND further from there on the KVB trams, undergrounds and busses!
     
     
     ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ ✖ 
     
     
    Some more useful links:
     
     
    About Carnival in Cologne and the Rhineland:
    http://www.cologne-tourism.com/whats-on/carnival/dates.html
    http://www.cologne.de/events/cologne-carnival
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnival#.22Rheinische.22_Carnival_.28Fasching.29
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cologne_carnival
     
     
    You'll find a lot of helpful information about Cologne on:
    http://www.cologne.de/
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂ ✖ ❂
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    LET'S HAVE A GREAT CARNIVAL 2018 TOGETHER!!!
     
     
     
     
    Maat et joot! / Take care!
     
     
    Hanna & Ulf

  2. FRIEND_OF_ERNIE

    Bruxelles, Bruxelles, Belgium

    More info please, above is insufficient.

  3. ░▒▓۞ Frank Verhart

    Maastricht, Limburg, Netherlands

    Maastricht (NL) celebrates Carnival as well, and a big CS event is a tradition:
    CS Carnival in Maastricht-Aachen 2018! 8-14 February 2018!

    It's pretty easy to combine both celebrations. The main Carnival parade is on Saturday (11 Feb) and we only finish two days later (13 Feb: Carnival, 14 Feb: detox in the pool!). Welkom!

    One way to get from Koln <--> Maastricht is by Flixbus!

    https://www.couchsurfing.com/events/cs-carnival-in-maastricht-aachen-2018

  4. Ulf Kleinings

    Köln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

    FRIEND_OF_ERNIE

    We know. That's what all the links in the text are for:. further reading!

  5. rasmus_jonathan

    Köln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

    thanks for organizing this! Just a heads up for those planning to blackface: it IS considered racism in germany, especially by the black population (mostly because it is, in fact, a pretty racist thing to do). Dressing up as a native american, orthodox jew or mexican might be considered equally tasteless. Just do yourself and the others a favor and delve into the remaining hundredthousand alternatives for dressing up.

  6. Ulf Kleinings

    Köln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

    Another update:

    Blackfacing is actually NOT considered racism by the black community in Germany! I've checked with them - they're cool (some of them might even do that themselves!!!).

    IT IS HOWEVER considered racism by the followers of "The Church of Neatness", the PC disciples. But I wouldn't recommend to listen to them - for while all the only wanted (of course) was to make everyone a gooder person (as gooder as they'd consider themselves to be) all they've ever really achieved is giving the world shit like Trump, all those rotten European right wing populists and the likes.

    MOST IMPORTANTLY: NOT blackfacing (or going as Mexican or Indian - dot of feather - etc.) because it might be considered inappropriate by some would be a complete disregard of the most fundamental concept of (at least Cologne) Carnival: to NOT take ANYBODY serious (not even "minorities")! We don't say: "Every human is different!" - we say: "Every JERK is different!". And we include ourselves. So since you are considered to be a jerk anyways you can just as well offend some of these Holy rules of Political Correctness ;-)

  7. Giulia Riccio

    Münster, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

    Hey all :)
    I am writing on behalf of a group of active couchsurfers based in Münster :) We are a huge, wonderful group of people from around the world, we live in Münster, where we regularly organise a lot of Couchsurfing events and have really become close to being a family for each other.
    We live quite a low-budget life, most of us have part-time or freelance jobs, some are students. Now: some of us would love to come to Cologne for Carnival, most of us have never been there. But we always organise things quite spontaneously and now (two weeks ahead) it is already too late to find accommodation at a reasonable price.
    So it is quite a long shot, but in case any of you felt like hosting one or two of us, between one to three nights from the 9th to the 12th (you choose when), so we can enjoy the Carnival, it would be absolutely amazing. Of course we can return the favour any time when you would like to come to Münster. Others have profiles as well and I can send them to whoever can offer to host :)
    With huge gratitude for any help, I wish you a nice day :)

  8. Nigel McCarron

    Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

    Hi all I’m coming in from Australia 🇦🇺 to see the festival so look forward to it..I’ll arrive Friday arvo

  9. Umer Miro Rajput

    Munich, Bavaria, Germany

    Hi all :) i am solo traveler in köln Karneval can someone add me in whatsapp group 015731218100 would love to meet interesting people 😊🙋🏻‍♂️

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