Talk:Germany

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Concerning the "cheapness" of budget airlines[edit]

Maybe this should (also) be mentioned in the article on no frills airlines, but in Germany the VCD (similar to the ADAC but less focused on cars) has shown quite consistently over the years that trains are cheaper than a flight most of the time. See this: http://www.taz.de/!129209/ and this link: http://www.welt.de/wirtschaft/article122803298/Bahnfahrt-schlaegt-Flugreise-selbst-ohne-Rabatte.html best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:59, 4 January 2015 (UTC)

I'd like to see the dataset, not a press blurb, and run my own Excels - and I guess I could show the exact opposite or anything else you may want me to show. Every kind of "comparison" like that is geared towards making a certain conclusion for press to pick up on. Research that would say "it depends" (which is true in most cases - give me the right dataset and I will move the Earth) will not be newsworthy to most media as it does not make you click on the news piece. My experience is that... "it depends". For example, it is cheaper to fly to FRA than STR from my city, but after I add even the cheapest ICE, flying to STR is a cheaper option. Of course buying the ticket for next week, especially depart Mon/return Tue, won't make any of the options cheap at all, though perhaps the train much cheaper,
Another example - my friend hates flying, so she chose to go by train from Dresden to her home town of Copenhagen, even though flying from Dresden, Berlin and Hamburg would have all been cheaper than the train. And she ended up being severely delayed and having to change trains in the middle of the night, but that's another story :)
I always check ALL of the available options, which is why I like to list as many as reasonable for Getting In to every destination, but we needn't argue which is cheaper based on some media articles. My experience is that this is not always the case. Try rome2rio.com to see how many different results you can get. For the sake of brevity, I would remove the fragment you inserted.
PS. We need to, however, work on this section to make it clearer how to use rail&fly and AIRail, as well as how to search for total journey costs.
As for the study: http://www.vcd.org/fileadmin/user_upload/redakteure_2010/projekte/vcdbahntest/VCD_Bahntest_2013_Preisvergleich_Fernverkehr.pdf the VCD was founded as a reaction towards the ADAC being (in their opinion) too auto-centric, so maybe their methodology is flawed. They only compared fares on some routes and none of them had a train that takes more than five hours, so of course on short routes trains have a "natural" advantage as costs of flying are less proportional to the length of the trip (the cost of start/landing booking, taxes etc. are more or less the same for a 30km and a 300km trip). Living in Dresden myself I can tell you that the train connections are abysmal for a city of that size. In 1937 a scheduled steam train took you to Berlin faster than the fastest option in 2014. The connections to Prague and Wroclaw aren't much better and they are still not done upgrading the line to/from Leipzig. And don't even get me started on the travesty that is the Dresden-Nuremberg line. And yes I agree with you that including a little more detail on rail-air cooperation into this article is a very good idea. Best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:53, 4 January 2015 (UTC)
This is so true in so many cases. Railway lines get overcrowded, they are often not maintained properly and managed very poorly. Most countries' railway development plans focus on grandiose high-speed rail plans and projects that look good on TV, make people at railway companies feel good about themselves and are easy to add kickbacks to. Very little heed is being paid to the actual throughput/capacity of the lines, especially those not falling into the highly-publicized category. E.g. in my country, much fuss was made about launching high-speed Pendolino trains, while only the latter pages in papers mentioned how many local trains got unfavourably rescheduled (increasing journey times significantly and departing at less convenient hours, missing connections etc.) to accommodate the new trains because of non-existent planning in terms of scheduling, signalling and track availability.
I remember the issue from the times I worked for a freight rail operator, when the dispatching and routing constantly battled with track sections being put out of use for heavy freight due to poor condition (lack of proper maintenance), and they were forced to use the passenger mainlines, which in turn clashed with the passenger train scheduling and ended up in a total mess and endless wrangling. Since the largest freight operator and passenger operator were both state-owned, and belonged to the same group as the network operator, the latter had to accommodate the needs of both and basically had the tracks overcrowded. Maintaining the side lines was never on anybody's priority list, as the general public did not really care or understand the impact, and the gradual decline in service level could be forced onto the public for lack of competition (if there was competition, it was mostly in the freight area, so the state-owned freight operator usually got the upper hand to fend off competition, as it was the one earning money in this triumvirate).PrinceGloria (talk) 22:43, 4 January 2015 (UTC)
Well it's not like they aren't doing anything, and especially regional trains have improved a lot over the last couple of years (even though the Bombardier Talent II took forever to actually be put on the tracks because of...) But especially the east of Germany still suffers from the Soviets taking second tracks with them that still haven't been restored as well as the "genius" decision of the GDR administration to not electrify because Diesel was "cheap" for them back then. (totally disregarding that the ex-GDR is one of the territories in the world where we know best how much oil there is: nearly none). But of course if you have a former secretary of transportation as the head of the car producers' lobby and a generally very car-friendly policy by the government (as well as useless "regional" airports such as Kassel-Calden that was opened in 2013 and had its last regular flight in 2013) you have to be glad for what you do get. That being said the German train system is way better than its reputation and beaten only by a handful in the world - if any. Oh and btw: If you dislike tilting trains, Germany is the place to go. We don't have that much of them. The Diesel ICE that was meant to be a tilting train (and used to connect Nuremberg and Dresden) has to drive around with tilting disabled... I think we should write something concerning budget airlines, that they may change their "hubs" on very short notice. Ryanair is notorious for this, for example they went from "Hamburg"-Lübeck (one hour by train) to Hamburg in a matter of months, because the highly indebted Lübeck city government wasn't going to subsidize them any longer.Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:22, 5 January 2015 (UTC)
Heh, I actually believe German railways enjoy a first-rate reputation and if you ask a random person for the country with the best rail system they will undoubtedly say it's Germany. And to me DB doesn't quite live up to this vision I have in my head, my experience with NS, for example, have been absolutely superior. That said, the situation is surely improving, but the problems are, as we both seem to indicate, systematic by nature. Having said which, how do we go about the article section in qyestion?
(re indent) Fascinating discussion, but I just have to ask for what purpose?
In the 'old days' (say 20 years ago or more) then it was easy to say that rail was almost always cheaper than flying anywhere in the world. These days for a journey far enough that it may be taken by plane and train, I would say the cost differentials are similar with airlines sometimes being cheaper and trains sometimes being cheaper.
I rarely flew in Germany, but 10 years ago flying and taking the train between Munich and Berlin cost similar amounts and the total journey time (address in Munich to address in Berlin) was comparable. It was just a quick judgement call on the journey in question. Andrewssi2 (talk) 23:56, 5 January 2015 (UTC)
Heh. I think we both got carried away with a discussion that is neither here nor there. Btw. the reputation of Deutsche Bahn I was referring to is its domestic one which is that of a universal punchline for bad jokes... As in the study I alluded to and mentioned, trains seem to be cheaper as of 2013 (and in Germany the advent of long distance buses seems to strengthen this trend even further) than flying on most distances where either is practicable. I think we should put in a general advice that very often flying is more expensive than a train-ticket. (of course this somewhat disappears if you compare a train ticket bought the day of travel to a plane-ticket bought weeks in advance) and with the (relatively) new "Europa-Spezial" you can (in theory) go from Germany to neighboring countries for 39€ and to London for 69€, which beats even Ryanair if you figure in luggage and other surcharges 95% of travellers won't be able to avoid. To put it in a nutshell: Put some advice in that flying short distances isn't really worth it in terms of time and often also in terms of priceHobbitschuster (talk) 14:34, 6 January 2015 (UTC)
I'm definitely up for putting this into a nutshell, however I just can't agree with the statement that 'very often flying is more expensive than a train-ticket'. I believe that I agree with PrinceGloria when it really comes down to 'it depends'. Also whenever flying is more expensive it is generally not excessively more expensive and as with any journey it will depend on your circumstances.
To be clear, I am someone who will almost always prefer to travel by train even in the case that it does cost more! But I'll usually look at both options since the investigation is quick. Andrewssi2 (talk) 23:34, 6 January 2015 (UTC)

Obstler[edit]

The first sentence in the "Spirits" subsection read thus:

A generic word for spirits made from fruit or/and herbs is Obstler, and each area has its specialities.

"or/and herbs" was deleted.

Does the word "Obstler" generically refer only to spirits made from fruit? My personal experience in Duesseldorf was that their local Obstler was made from herbs and sugar and, we were told by the waiter, tasted like Jaegermeister. The waiter we ordered it from called it "our Obstler," and we were speaking with him in German. Ikan Kekek (talk) 00:57, 25 February 2015 (UTC)

I would personally think Obstler should be (at least originally) made from Obst, hence the name, but I am not an expert. It may very well be a regional thing, though. e.g. the word may be used for Kräuterlikör in one part but not another. afaik in Franconia Obstler is made from some kind of fruit, usually those that grow regionally. Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:48, 25 February 2015 (UTC)
I see. Ikan Kekek (talk) 15:38, 25 February 2015 (UTC)

Status?[edit]

Hey, what's wrong with this guide? Which criteria are not fulfilled (asking genuinely, I am not familiar with them)? User:Ikan Kekek? PrinceGloria (talk) 14:42, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

the Other destinations need to be at least usable status. --Traveler100 (talk) 15:19, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
So if we just not list them the article gets worse but its status gets better? That appears to be rather counter-intuitive... Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:26, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
You should make your argument at Wikivoyage talk:Region guide status. I think that it's a little odd that the bar for Usable status is so high in regional, country and continent articles, and maybe this should be changed. Ikan Kekek (talk) 15:47, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
It's not true that the status would get better if you removed certain other destinations. If they are important enough to keep this article at a lower status rating, then their absence from the article would make the article unsuited to a higher rating. Powers (talk) 01:50, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
Well in the case of Nicaragua which is currently (maybe undeservedly) "usable" there is even one redlink other destination. In the (also "usable") sublevel article about Rio San Juan Region there is one outline and one redirect "other destination". And all that while the quality of the content of the Germany-article is fast approaching guide or even star status if one doesn't look at the problems of say East Frisian islands. One argument against the creation of a certain kind of airport article was that we could never get them to star status. Tell me how can we get a country or even a continent to star status if all their sublevel articles have to be usable and for them to be usable all their sublevel articles have to be usable, ad infinitum. Or am I getting this wrong? also: See Wikivoyage talk:Region guide status. Best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:24, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
Sorry but you are getting it wrong. Only major cities and other destinations have to be at usable. Not all sub-regions and thus all cities in a country. That would be a lot of work. All major cities are at least usable. I think between us we can get the regions listed under other destinations to usable with a couple of weeks work.--Traveler100 (talk) 16:47, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
Started on Black Forest towns (two made usable), but could do with some assistance getting more from outline to usable--Traveler100 (talk) 07:36, 15 April 2015 (UTC)4

Status WIP to make usable[edit]

  • The country's major cities
    • Berlin, Bremen, Dresden, Hamburg - Usable Yes Done
    • Cologne, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Munich, Nuremberg - Guide Yes Done
  • The country's other destinations
    • Baltic Sea Coast (Germany), Bavarian Alps, Harz, Lake Constance - Extraregion Yes Done
    • Black Forest, Middle Rhine Valley, East Frisian Islands, Franconian Switzerland, North Frisian Islands- Usable Yes Done
  • regional structure Yes Done
  • Get in Yes Done
  • currency, language, cuisine, and culture Yes Done
  • most prominent attraction Yes Done

Status WIP to make guide[edit]

  • Bremen (state)- merged with city so Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations Yes Done
      • Bremen, Bremerhaven - usable Yes Done
  • Hamburg - usable. Yes Done
  • Lower Saxony - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • Hanover, Celle, Göttingen, Lüneburg - guide Yes Done
      • Brunswick (Germany), Hildesheim, Wolfsburg, East Frisian Islands, Cuxhaven, Oldenburg, Elm Lappwald - usable Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Rostock, Wismar, Jasmund National Park, Schwerin, Stralsund, Greifswald, Neubrandenburg, Bad Doberan, Binz, Sassnitz, Bergen auf Rügen, Peenemünde, Rugia- usable. Yes Done
      • Baltic Sea Coast (Germany), Usedom - extraregion Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Schleswig-Holstein - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • Travemünde - guide Yes Done
      • Lübeck, North Frisian Islands, Kiel,Flensburg, Neumünster - usable. Yes Done
      • Other towns in region can regard as not major for usable assessment.
      • Holstein Switzerland - extraregion Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - maybe little more detail.
  • North Rhine-Westphalia - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • Düsseldorf, Bonn, Cologne - guide Yes Done
      • Aachen, Gelsenkirchen, Dortmund, Münster, Paderborn, Wuppertal, Duisburg - usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - more detail would be good.
  • Rhineland-Palatinate - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Cochem, Koblenz, Mainz, Oppenheim, Sankt Goar, Traben-Trarbach, Trier, Worms, Speyer, Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler,Neustadt an der Weinstraße, Kaiserslautern, Ludwigshafen - usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Saarland - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Saarbrücken, Saarlouis, Merzig, Mettlach, - usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Hesse - usalbe Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • Frankfurt - guide Yes Done
      • Darmstadt, Wiesbaden, Fulda, Offenbach, Giessen, Kassel, Marburg - usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Thuringia - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Jena, Erfurt, Weimar, Eisenach, Gera - usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Berlin - usable Yes Done
  • Brandenburg - Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Potsdam, Cottbus, Frankfurt an der Oder, Spreewald - usable. Yes Done
      • should any of the other towns be regarded as major and need to be usable?
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Saxony - usable - Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Dresden, Leipzig, Zwickau, Chemnitz, Plauen, Bautzen, Meissen, Görlitz- usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Saxony-Anhalt - usable - Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • - guide Yes Done
      • Halle, Dessau, Quedlinburg, Magdeburg, Wittenberg- usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Baden-Württemberg - usable Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • Stuttgart, Konstanz - guide Yes Done
      • Mannheim, Freiburg, Heidelberg, Baden-Baden, Ulm, Tübingen, Karlsruhe, Heilbronn - usable. Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done
  • Bavaria - usable - Yes Done
    • major cities and other destinations
      • Munich, Bayreuth, Nuremberg - guide Yes Done
      • Landshut, Passau, Regensburg, Füssen, Würzburg, Bamberg, Augsburg - usable. Yes Done
      • Bavarian Alps, Lake Constance, Bavarian Forest- extraregion Yes Done
    • Get in - Yes Done
    • most prominent attractions - Yes Done

Further discussion[edit]

Thanks for the list, whoever posted it. Now there are two questions: What can we do to improve the status of the mentioned articles and second might translation be of use? (imho translation often proves of limited use do to the "cultural differences" between German and English WV). I see what I can work on, being German and kinda sorta speaking the language (a bit, at least;-)). Best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:17, 19 April 2015 (UTC)

Most just need to have listing format and a check that the web link and the establishment is still valid. For the ones missing listings I find yelp.de, tripadviser and map.google are good enough to pick out a couple of eat and sleep options. If you want to do a good job of getting articles from outline to usable, see here. --Traveler100 (talk) 20:22, 19 April 2015 (UTC)
Regarding the outline status for Bremen (state); I just vfd that article, as we don't have an article on Hamburg (state) or Berlin (state) and I don't think these kinds of article add much of value to the traveler to WV. Best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:26, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
I think it is a reasonable proposal. The only difference from Hamburg and Berlin is the existence of Bremerhaven city as a part of Bremen (state). This would have to be accommodated in the breadcrumb structure (is part of). Maybe this is not a real problem, I don't know... In any case Bremerhaven would have to be navigated to from Bremen article early on. Danapit (talk) 09:22, 21 April 2015 (UTC)
Besdies that Hamburg also has the island of Neuwerk, that has its own article in the German WV.... Hobbitschuster (talk) 11:06, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

Hey guys! I just wanted to chime in and thank you for the tremendous amount of work you are putting into this project. I have quite a lot of German destinations on my watchlist, and this is the first such coordinated effort I've seen here. That's the community spirit, boosts my morale and hopefully everybody else's, and shows how far we've all come in bringing ever-better guides to our readers! PrinceGloria (talk) 09:18, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

This whole issue has great potential for cooperation between de-WV and en-WV, which imho has been lacking in recent times, maybe due to cultural differences. I have raised the issue at their pub, but the response was rather confusing to me. I could probably translate some stuff, but I don't want to translate stuff that is outdated or wrong about places I have never been to. Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:39, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
there is plenty to do even if you do not know the town. For example re-formatting places of interest to the standard listings syntax. Also checking the current eat, drink and sleep listings are still valid. Check the web links, if still there assume still open. If bad link then search on google maps or yahoo, if no longer exists they are often labelled Permanently Closed. Final check is to look on TripAdvisor and Yelp, if latest review entry is more than two years old I delete the listing. Can use the same logic to copy eat and sleep entries from the German site. For See most historic sites are still valid. --Traveler100 (talk) 07:05, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Exactly! PrinceGloria (talk) 12:42, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

Aren't we going a bit too fast?[edit]

Amazed and humbled as I am by the momentum and effort put into the current push to elevate Germany to guide status, I started to get worried if all of the destinations covered by it are given the attention due. While there is a straightforward requirement for every hierarchy level to tick some boxes, I am not sure if we did not leave some of the articles with nothing but the minimum needed to have the boxes ticked.

I am not sure if there is any reason to hurry (maybe there is a slot in Featured Destinations or something), but I would rather we spent more time each week on truly in-depth work on a particular Bundesland, including its destinations but also the main article. Some of the "checked" destinations above could use really small work to be elevated from just box-ticking to actually useful and inviting. Am I on my own here or have I just looked at some really poor examples? PrinceGloria (talk) 19:14, 2 May 2015 (UTC)

Yes some of the article deserve more attention. The main motivation was however to get Germany, which is a good article, to officially be at guide status. But yes there is a big gap between a usable and a guide city article. What has shocked me is how incorrect some information is; Dortmund was a particularly bad example but many other have old closed listings which I think should be a minimum for all articles. --Traveler100 (talk) 19:38, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
Listings are one thing, but many of the articles are simply not proper guides in any shape or form. E.g. "Dortmund is a city in the North Rhine-Westphalia region in Germany." does not do as a complete lead to any article, guide, usable or outline. It may be disappointing to find that a restaurant had closed or that the museum's opening hours changed, but many of the articles do not even tell you why you should go there (OK, in case of Dortmund there is no convincing reason anyway). PrinceGloria (talk) 19:41, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
Ultimate aim is to make these articles guides, but trying to set a goal that is achievable in a reasonable time. --Traveler100 (talk) 20:04, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
It would be a rather impossible goal to make every German region and major destination a guide, but we can try to spend a bit more time with every Land to make sure the interested travellers are given a good and useful overview :) PrinceGloria (talk) 20:29, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
This is of course neither here nor there but 80 000 soccer fans would probably disagree with your nothing to do in Dortmund quip ;-). And more to the point, yes we a re hurrying a bit, but imho some articles would not have gotten even a fraction of that attention in a million years without this initiative, so I don't see the harm. As for the rushing... In a sense the sheer amount of content is akin to painting the golden gate bridge... Once you are done the paint at the beginning has started to fall of again and the only way to get a rest is to hurry ;-). I don't even want to imagine what kind of work it would be to bring the United States of America article up to "guide" according to our criteria... Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:24, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
My point is exactly that some of those articles have their only few minutes in the spotlight during this initiative. If we leave them as they are they will probably linger as poor as they are, which will draw away readers who might find them and get discontented with the sample quality of WV they got. I am not sure that getting Germany to guide as such will help many travellers, bt doing what I mentioned in the process surely will, and this is what I find a worthwhile goal. PrinceGloria (talk) 21:43, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
We could advance a lot faster if there was any semblance of cooperation between en-WV and de-WV, but so far I have seen nothing of that and don't even know of any user who is a regular contributor on both. (I rarely, if ever write stuff on de-WV, because the structure of articles over here appears to be clearer more concise and more logical to me) Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:50, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
but please not too slow. --Traveler100 (talk) 07:43, 23 May 2015 (UTC)
Now heading (in person) to Greece, Sweden, Norway and Lombardy and those are my priorities, please bear with me for now. PrinceGloria (talk) 08:06, 23 May 2015 (UTC)
Understand, just got back from a few weeks travelling, is difficult to keep up editing at the same time. Have a good trip. --Traveler100 (talk) 14:37, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

Red links in article[edit]

Anyone want to plunge forward and create pages for the red links in some of the articles image descriptions? --Traveler100 (talk) 14:37, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

Which and where? Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:06, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
Winterswijk in image of border, Bad Hersfeld in talk image, Neuwerk and Zugspitze in Natural attractions section images, Köthen under Gasthaus image, Hattingen camping image. --Traveler100 (talk) 04:25, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
Red links don't mean that articles MUST be created. Zugspitze surprises me though, considering it is Germany's most important mountain. It should at least redirect to Garmisch-Partenkirchen --Andrewssi2 (talk) 09:55, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
Don't you think that mountains are a bit like lakes in not usually getting their own article ? 149.241.48.78 20:40, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
I believe that we handle it by containing the mountain in a National Park article --Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:26, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
I just created Neuwerk. Our coverage of the German North Sea coast as a whole could be improved. But I am not really surprised by its quality as the overwhelming majority of the tourists in that area are Germans and almost everything is in German only. And given the level of cooperation between de-WV and en-WV.... Hobbitschuster (talk) 13:52, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

A tendency of de-WV that crops up in Germany-related articles?[edit]

I have found a lot of redlinks linking to small and tiny hamlets and villages of questionable touristic value that I had never heard about. Now I know for a fact that de-WV loves listing way too many cities regions and districts (thus making the beginning of their articles unwieldy and a good case for our rule of nine maximum), and thus many of the places that redlink on en-WV actually have articles on de-WV. The question we have to ask: Is this a bug or a feature? And: In which cases should we create articles? In all other cases I would simply advise to remove the redlinks (and maybe even the mention of the place) and be done with it. Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:26, 29 May 2015 (UTC)

There's nothing wrong with redlinks. Now, if the number of links (whichever color they are) is excessive, then there's a case for pruning and/or splitting the region. But I wouldn't remove them just because they're red. Powers (talk) 00:49, 30 May 2015 (UTC)
Well, we can remove red links if they obviously point to a subject that is not an article. If German WV wants to point to a hamlet with 10 houses and nothing else then fine, but we shouldn't copy that. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 04:28, 30 May 2015 (UTC)
No, real places should be redirected to the article that covers their area. Powers (talk) 22:27, 30 May 2015 (UTC)
No, we are discussing the copying of content from Wikivoyage DE to Wikivoyage EN. A degree of moderation may be required. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:45, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

Are we done? Is Germany guide now?[edit]

I checked the list and added at least one eat and sleep listing to every place on this list that is still considered an outline. Is that it? Can we declare Germany a guide now? Or did I overlook something? Should we look at all or some of the pages we worked on again? Anyway, even if this is not yet the end but only close to it, a huge thanks to all who helped, particularly Traveler100. This was (and still is) really good work and I think the next place to tackle would be the US, making them "usable" at least, or better yet a "guide". Cheers. Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:22, 10 June 2015 (UTC)

Hobbitschuster nice end sprint. I like to have more than one listing under eat and sleep (have added a few) but technically all towns done except Gera. --Traveler100 (talk) 08:55, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I wouldn't want to rain on anybody's parade or diminish the splendid mobilization and effort, but I believe technically declaring Germany a guide is not a proper goal. Hesse, for one, has a one-liner introduction and no "Understand". Even if this is acceptable by our standards, I believe this simply shows how deficient the standards are, not how good the articles are. I believe it would be good to spend more time on every Land-level article at least. What is the point of rushing, why not try to make it a truly MODEL guide for other countries rather than an exercise in formalities? PrinceGloria (talk) 11:34, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I polished up a bit on Hesse. Please trim down and fill in to your liking. Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:13, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
So technically we are there to make Germany a guide. What do people feel needs improving to make it qualitatively a guide? --Traveler100 (talk) 12:17, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I am also curious. Apart from trimming down on the verbosity (sorry, that's a tendency in my mother-tongue creeping through) here and there and reducing the amount of redlinks for places unlikely to get an article any time soon, what is still left to be done? I think the "Germany" article had or was approaching guide status long before we started this effort. I think the formalities for all 13 Länder and the three Stadtstaaten are also fulfilled, so there seem to stand only minor details in the way of declaring Germany a guide officially. There is still the issue of (imho superfluous) regions in some articles with many of said region articles being the barest of bare outlines... But that is not (yet) part of the project nor the criteria for making the top level article a guide, if I am not mistaken. Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:33, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Hesse still doesn't have a lead though. I would need a bit of time to make a list of all the things I believe still deserve fixing. I would focus on one Bundesland at a time and now focus on qualitative issues after the formalities are cleared. How about a week for each Bundesland (perhaps beginning with Hesse), where we all focus on it only, make a dynamic list of issues we spot and rectify them? If it takes less than a week, we go to the next one. PrinceGloria (talk) 12:57, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I think it'd be best if we had a more detailed list at the talk pages of each individual state and only a general overview (if any) here at this talk page... Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:04, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

Hierarchy below Bundesland[edit]

While many Länder are not further subdivided, some are and as I have seen in the case of Hesse and Bavaria, their subdivision, especially pages like North Hesse or Lower Franconia are rather empty and filled with redlinks or links to stubby outlines. Now either we put in a lot of work (which imho can't be done without more help from de-WV than we currently seem to be getting) or we make a radical decision to - for now - eliminate the stubby outlines and have them recreated once the content organically grows to make them necessary. As they now exist they might satisfy somebody feeling for regions and subregions and sub-subregions that may or may not actually exist, but they seem to not serve the traveler all that much. Best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:04, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

But you can't scrap North Hesse without scrapping Rhine-Main which does contain information, nor scrap Lower Franconia without scrapping Upper Franconia, etc. Plus, folding the subregions back into the parent regions would leave Franconia with 21 cities under it, and Hesse with 36, which is a megalist quite beyond the point where we would normally try to start subdividing. I think it would be better to direct efforts toward making the region articles more useful, rather than retracting the hierarchy into an overstuffed parent region that cries out to be re-subdivided. Texugo (talk) 14:23, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
I partially agree, but if you look at (some of) these "cities" they are hamlets with bare outline articles and it is questionable at best whether they really truly deserve an article at all. Compare that in a sense to the discussion on county articles that seems to have been resolved largely with the conclusion against them in the USA. For some places one or two lines in the "go next" section should suffice. And as to the emptiness of articles that really do deserve more content... We could use some help from de-WV there... Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:32, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
We should treat this case-by-case - sometimes it makes more sense to close down stubs not going anywhere, sometimes a better approach is to expand them enough to make them worthwhile guides. E.g. in case of North Hesse it would be hard to remove this subregion, as there is nothing to merge it with, as all three other subregions are full of destinations and can and should reasonably stand on their own. With Bavaria, there might be a case to remove some superfluous division levels, but this needs to be discussed @ Talk:Bavaria IMHO. Could we focus on one Land at a time, as I suggested, for now on Hesse? PrinceGloria (talk) 16:29, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
Fair enough. It just seems to be yet another issue creeping over from de-WV, that may or may not have a place here. While somebody from Middle Franconia would probably argue to no end about the "huge differences" from his place to Lower Franconia, most visitors would be like: "yeah, I don't care. It's all the same to me." Hobbitschuster (talk) 16:37, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
At that level in the hierarchy, regions are organizational tools, to keep from overwhelming articles with dozens of destinations. Powers (talk) 17:04, 13 June 2015 (UTC)

The effort concerning levels of the hierarchy below "Bundesland" seems to have stalled[edit]

While we did do some work on Hesse or rather its subregions, that work is far from done and we haven't even begun to address any of the subregions of any of the other states. Is there still somebody interested in doing something about this or should we focus on other things instead (if so, what?). Best wishes Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:21, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

There is, RL has just crept in and starts becoming something of a hobby drawing me away from WV ;) Bear with me a bit, I will be back in business when back from Expo in July. PrinceGloria (talk) 19:28, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
Have been off the grid for a week or so and currently travelling in other parts of the world at the moment. Plan to update article were I have been recently, but will get back to Germany articles at some point. --Traveler100 (talk) 01:49, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
Thinking about merging the Rhineland-Palatinate parts of Lahn Valley and Westerwald into a single region. Any suggestions on a name for "North-East Rhineland-Palatinate" corner? --Traveler100 (talk) 16:48, 12 September 2015 (UTC)

Muslims in Germany are not so homphobic[edit]

"in some deprived areas 'gay-bashing' is popular with Neonazis, muslims or other groups?!" this sentence is condemning Muslims to be homophobic like Nazis. some few Muslims in Germany are, but not all. so I edited it. --Nosratraad (talk) 11:46, 22 August 2015 (UTC)

The wording is probably problematic. But other than a small minority of young Muslims and a big majority of Nazis (of almost any age below senility), homosexual people have hardly anything to fear in terms of violence in Germany. Surely there are some conservative Christians (usually Catholic, but not necessarily always) in rural areas who disapprove of homosexuality, but they are mostly elderly and don't act violently on their opinions. Nazis and a very small number of Muslims on the other hand... Hobbitschuster (talk) 13:32, 22 August 2015 (UTC)
Yes, my experience is that many Muslim people I knew in Germany disapprove of homosexuality, but are not outwardly hostile. Linking with Nazis is very misleading. Andrewssi2 (talk) 23:20, 13 September 2015 (UTC)

Schengen suspended[edit]

I heard Germany suspended Schengen, althought temporarily and introduced border controls with Austria. Should we update this article? Also, I wonder how ongoing European refugee crises affecting a common traveller to affected countries and should we mention something in relevant articles? .--Saqib (talk) 21:09, 13 September 2015 (UTC)

Right now those things are mostly day to day. Several countries have temporarily suspended cross border rail and/or ferry travel but reinstated it shortly thereafter. Imho those things should only be mentioned if they endure more than a couple of days. This would be a good thing to mention in travel news, but we don't have that any more Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:14, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Wikivoyage often extols the benefit of free travel of Schengen, which is effectively suspended in many places right now. You may (or may not) be right that restrictions will be lifted shortly, but the travel impact is real for anyone traveling in the Europe right now. Andrewssi2 (talk) 23:28, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Does anybody have any good update on the extent of Schengen being suspended? I just travelled out of Munich yesterday and there was no sign of it being suspended in any way. I'd link to an official source if we have one. The one thing for sure is that international trains to/from Budapest-Keleti are mostly suspended/cancelled. PrinceGloria (talk) 07:59, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
PS. In case you have not been following this closely, the whole thing mainly happens in the media. I was in MUC over the weekend and actually stayed close to the train station. There was only one instance where I actually did encounter a small group of migrants being very orderly guided through a corridor by ample, relaxed police (it was rather the small number of migrants than the number of the police that made it ample). Media snippets of temporarly crowding make it appear like the city is currently overflowing, which it is not to an extent you may be led to believe.
Merkel did make a PR faux-pas and possibly did not help the situation by waiving the immigration procedures, which in a way was the only thing to do in view of the actual facts, and quite a humanitarian move as well. This obviously did cause repercussions especially in the conservative Bavaria, where Merkel's slightly more conservative coalition partner CSU has a strong voter base in the (actually!) Lederhosen-and-Dirndl-wearing countryside. The people of Munich are more or less OK with the migrants (I had the opportunity to listen to them) in humanitarian terms, and Munich itself is anyway as multi-kulti as possible, so if somebody is afraid of huge amounts of non-Germans, they would have had to run away from MUC long ago.
What happens here, however, is that the media and right-wing politicians are doing their best to gain some sensationalist currency out of it, so to counter them, CSU had to make it look like they are "reacting to the crisis" and distance themselves from the more liberal stance of Berlin. This in turn necessitated for Berlin to support CSU not to cause a PR rift and hence the Interior Ministry talking about border controls - and media picking it up as abolishing Schengen.
Just FYI, there are multiple trains between Vienna and Munich bookable even for today and even more ones from Salzburg, where one can change from Vienna. What has been stopped a few days ago are shuttle trains especially for the refugees, but this does not affect most travellers (unless we have migrant readers here). The only train station seriously affected is Budapest-Keleti, mostly because Orban is KEEPING the migrants INSIDE the station for PR purposes. PrinceGloria (talk) 08:21, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Well, I have seen quite a few (up to hundred) people, presumably migrants, lying here and there in Munich Hbf around 6pm yesterday. While Munich Hbf is a chaotic place altogether, this was something unusual, although I can't say whether these were the migrants in question or some homeless dark-skin guys who simply decided to spend their day on the train station. --Alexander (talk) 09:19, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Some, but not all, vehicles are being checked on the German border from Austria. This is causing tailbacks of traffic and a delay of an hour or so crossing the boarder. --Traveler100 (talk) 10:41, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Although I appreciate 'reports from the ground', I can't help wonder if we still need a warning. For example France is now considering suspensions to the Schengen treaty.
When I lived in Munich, I would often drive to Austria without my passport (I'm not a German citizen) and think nothing of it. I would say that wouldn't be the case if I were still living there today. Something does seem to have changed. Andrewssi2 (talk) 10:55, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Alexander - such a shame we didn't meet up in Munich (by 6 PM I was already helping myself to complimentary LH hot chocolate though)! Andrewssi2 - this article is from 2011. Even for current coverage though, the British media sometimes have less of a grasp of what Schengen is and how it works. And that you can suspend some of its usual conveniences, as many countries did for major sporting events and such, but nobody was talking of the EU falling apart then. For now, the situation is so fluid I would avoid notices unless a condition remains forseeably stable. PrinceGloria (talk) 11:05, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Most of the things happening are mostly day to day. Trains are suspended and run again from one day to the other and Schengen has been suspended for short periods in the past (I think the first to do that were Denmark a few years ago to loud protests from Germany - their most important customers in tourism). If we were WP, we'd be having giant edit wars over the issue right now, but would probably mostly get up to date information out there. As our contributor base is much more limited I'd advise to don't say anything unless it appears reasonably certain to stay that way for at least a week or longer. See the Ebola warning-boxes that nobody bothered to remove for way too long... Hobbitschuster (talk) 11:52, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
It's better to wait for another few days and see how the situation develops. At the moment, one can only say that services on the Budapest-Vienna-Munich route may be suspended or subject to delays, but we never know whether in few days same thing happens on the Vienna-Prague-Dresden route, or elsewhere.
To Andrewssi2: I don't think that crossing borders without a passport has ever been a good idea. You were just lucky to avoid police checks. People are required to have proper identification documents when traveling in Schengen area. Germany performed random checks on the Czech border since Czech entered Schengen zone in 2008, and I have seen Germans running into trouble when they tried to cross this border without documents. The very notion of the Schengen zone as an entirely border-free territory is not correct. The borders have been there at any time. Some of them were completely open like the one between Germany and Austria (until yesterday), but others were monitored very carefully. This is something that one should keep in mind when traveling, and regardless of the current emergency situation. --Alexander (talk) 12:31, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Well, I suppose ID cards in Germany (and many other Euro countries) are mandatory, but my EU Driving License should have been OK. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:26, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
I should also emphasize that "Schengen suspended" title is entirely wrong. Border checks have been introduced, but there was no information that people with Schengen visas issued by other countries will not be allowed into Germany. Neither any control in the airports is performed. Therefore, the whole news is about border checks, not about the Schengen agreement in general. --Alexander (talk) 12:36, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
There is another thing which is unrelated to Schengen: Free movement. French Guyana for one is not and probably will never bee part of Schengen. But it is a wholly integrated part of France and as such EU citizens (including Brits) have every right to reside there for as long as they please without any further permission required. I know for sure that the oft-quoted law to have ID at you at all times is not in fact a law in Germany. Citizens above the age of 16 are required to possess ID. But they can just leave it at home. If police wants to see ID, you have to show them though and if you don't have it with you, you may go to your house with them to retrieve it. As for crossing borders, national ID (as opposed to a passport) should suffice and a driver's license is sufficient for that purpose if I am not ill-informed (which may be the case, given that I don't have one). Hence if you cross from Germany to Austria in your own car a driver's license should be sufficient. I guess. This whole stuff is needlessly complicated, if you ask me. But than again, the EU flag could just as well be 12 asterisks with all the overlapping and contradictory treaties that make up my home country... Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:52, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Kind of concerning to see 'Brits' being described as somewhat different to EU citizens. We actually are 100% EU citizens as anyone from (for example) Luxembourg. The 'in/out' referendum next year may change that, but until then we are EU :) Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:28, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Of course Britons (at least those living in mainland Britain; let's not delve into the endless asterisks of oversees possessions) are EU citizens (until further notice, sadly) but the UK is not a member of Schengen, they staunchly refuse to participate in the Euro (or even semi-tie their currency to it like Denmark does) and they give an appearance of whishing to join only part of the EU more often than not. What I was referring to is that the EU (which the Brits are of course a part of) and Schengen (Which the UK is not a part of) are often conflated, especially by lay-people. Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:48, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
The Schengen treaty is about travel, not residency. You can hold any view you want of the British (which you obviously do), but I won't accept any suggestion that they are not full EU members. Andrewssi2 (talk) 23:06, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Also, you can be a member of Schengen without being in the EU in the first place (Norway, Switzerland). ϒpsilon (talk) 04:10, 15 September 2015 (UTC)

Just BTW - a driver's license is NOT a valid border crossing document under Schengen. It's a passport or a national ID. PrinceGloria (talk) 05:07, 15 September 2015 (UTC)

To clear up the confusion above, what I find said about the British opinion vis-a-vis the EU is that it seems they are only in until something better presents itself. Just look at the current debate about leaving it... Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:34, 6 January 2016 (UTC)

There is a debate being had, but that doesn't have any travel implications today. If the British do vote to leave later this year then there will still be a lengthy transition period. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:45, 6 January 2016 (UTC)

The regional breakdown of Germany below the "Bundesland" level[edit]

Swept in from the pub

So I know this is a difficult issue, but it seems that we will have to deal with this for some time. There is some sort of agreement (happened prior to my arriving at WV, so I can't say how we got there) of dividing Germany into its 16 Bundesländer. However, there are some regions, both extra-hierarchical and not, that are in some ways problematic. If we look at this formulation that I changed, I guess you can see where the problem lies. While some Bundesländer are at least in the most part recognizable regions, other regions go across state lines or don't really have clear boundaries. And I don't think it makes sense to subdivide a region into a region which is on the other hand the child region (at least in terms of its name) of some other region like a mountain range. Unless of course there are clearly evident reasons to do so. And than there is the issue that we have tried to resolve earlier but got stuck with that many of those regions contain very little in the way of actual information. Either they have places in them that redlink, or they link to outline articles, which - of course - condemns them to outline status themselves and hence their parent regions to no better than usable. But that is a whole other can of worms. And than there are Rhine and Danube (currently vfd'ed) that run through the whole shebang. I don't think we should duplicate or triplicate content, but on yet another hand no matter how we slice and dice it some distinguishable regions that are known to locals and travelers alike will still not fit our regional hierarchy. And in that case extra hierarchical regions are of course fine. But they have problems that have been discussed elsewhere. I know asking for Germany to get to star - status is a lot to ask, but I would have to think long and hard how that is even possible as things now stand. Because for that, all Bundesländer would have to be at guide status, as would have to be all 9 cities and other destinations linked from the main Germany page. But of course for the cities to be at guide level, all the districts of them would have to be at usable, which means there would have to be an automatic destarnom for Germany if we change the district layout of Cologne creating but a single outline district. And to get the Bundesländer to guide we would of course either find consensus on not subdividing them or get all their subdivisions to usable, which of course means we have to figure this out. And that's not even getting to our problems with the coverage of rural areas. I know this is more questions than answers, but given that Germany currently has guide status, the only practical goals of the Germany expedition with regards to things happening to the Germany page can be a starnom or a DotM nomination. And for that there is neither a path I can see nor an established precedent in the sense of what a country needs to have to get there. Hobbitschuster (talk) 23:35, 8 January 2016 (UTC)

I do not think the main goal is to get a country to Star level, particularly by the method of deleting unfinished articles and red links to valid locations until there are only guides. There is a lot to be done in Germany (and other countries) as the bottom level. Getting cities from outline to usable and then bottom level regions to usable. This can be done, I have done it with a number of regions but it is work. There will always imperfect structure but I do not think that is a major hindrance to this site. The only way to get 100% clear structure is to use administrative boundaries which I do not think helps the traveler, as although this may be clear at state level it is not at county level. --Traveler100 (talk) 07:55, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
So, what do you want to do: improve the content, or fulfill some formal criteria, put the star on the article, and bestow someone with another medal?
I read articles about Germany quite often, and I know that they can be anything between very useful and essentially useless, even if marked as usable (example here). There is obviously a lot of room for improvement, and why would not the German expedition just work on that?
More generally, it is a basic and unsolvable problem of how detailed a travel guide should be. Describing Germany in every small detail is a life-long task, and from this perspective the country article will never reach the star level (and it should not). On the other hand, you can consider that small details about Germany are not needed in the English travel guide. There is a large but limited number of destinations that international tourists will visit, and whenever they plan on going to the infamous region of Vogtland, they are likely good enough in German in order to read the German guidebook. In my opinion, the sub-regions are not needed for every Bundesland. For example, Saxony could happily live without them if about 12-15 key destinations are chosen, and others are just listed somewhere (thus, Saxon Switzerland should be one bottom-level article because no foreign traveler will spend more than a day there). It's kind of against the existing policy and against the regional hierarchy built in the past, but, if you want to make articles about Germany as useful as possible, you should probably proceed with this strategy in mind: select a limited number of key destinations within each Bundesland, bring them to the guide status, and write good articles about individual Bundeslaender that first-time visitors will be able to use. Ignore sub-regions and less important destinations, because few people will read them anyway. I don't know whether it can be a star in the end, but at least it will be a very useful thing for non-German-speaking travelers. Viel Spaß! --Alexander (talk) 09:18, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
Some good points made by Alexander. I have started a list of key destinations in Germany than deserve attention. --Traveler100 (talk) 10:25, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
I am not entirely sure how to interpret what User:Atsirlin and User:Traveler100 are saying. If I read them correctly, Traveler100 thinks that not even the currently redlinking things should be removed and if anything more not less regional subdivision is required. Atsirlin on the other hand appears to advocate a consolidation and a focus on bigger cities and a consolidation of rural areas such as Saxon Switzerland (which is in fact visited several days in a row by some mountain climbers, though some of them are based in Dresden and make day-trips instead) into city or park articles. In the case of Saxon Switzerland a park article actually makes a tremendous amount of sense because it is as a matter of fact a national park and boofen (Saxon dialect for sleeping in the nature of the national park) indeed has a long tradition and is still practiced by climbers, so the Can you sleep there test is clearly fulfilled. It may of course be possible that I misrepresented what either of you are saying, but if even a part of this disagreement does in fact exist, I think we have to talk about this. Best wishes. Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:53, 9 January 2016 (UTC)
You have not got the point, I think. Less sub-regions is better, so they should not have been created in the first place. But now they have been created, and you can't remove them. They can be reviewed, though, and a few of them can be transformed into bottom-level articles like Saxon Switzerland. On the other hand, the whole regional subdivision of Saxony must stay because we have far more than 9 city articles, and there is neither policy nor common sense to combine Colditz and Grimma within one article, even if both cities are absolutely irrelevant to any English-speaking traveler coming to Saxony.
My suggestion is to forget about these subregions for the time being. They can stay and they should not bother anyone as long as there is good coverage of the most important destinations within each Bundesland. Again, take Saxony. It lists 8 cities, but it lacks Freiberg that does not even have its own article, despite the gorgeous mineralogical museum and the pretty old town, the only real Old Town in the whole Saxony, I think. Isn't it clear now how to improve the coverage of Saxony? Elaborate on the 8 existing articles for the most important cities (Bautzen, Görlitz, and Plauen are rather undeveloped even if called "usable"), write the Freiberg article, provide more details for the article on Saxony itself. For example, it mentions local wine produced near Dresden, but the Dresden article lacks further information about the wine. In the end you should have guide-quality articles on the main destinations where people are going to travel. The rest is unimportant. --Alexander (talk) 21:29, 9 January 2016 (UTC)

Bakeries and composed desserts[edit]

I would like to say, first of all, that German bread is so far the greatest I've ever had. But what's missing is a section specifically devoted to the variety of excellent desserts to be had in Germany, both baked and composed. I was thinking about this while looking at this picture of Krapfen which was recently promoted to Quality Image on Wikimedia Commons. I think it would be great to give the prospective visitor some sense of what s/he can expect in a visit to a good bakery in different parts of the country. I know there are people who are more familiar with the names and varieties of German desserts than I. Let's create a separate section for them. Also, should the "Local specialties" section of "Eat" include desserts? I had wonderful Kaiserschmarrn in Bavaria, and there are other characteristic composed desserts there, such as Topfenstrudel. But actually, the things that surprised me, other than the almost invariably excellent quality of bread, were things like Karottenbrot, Blümenbrot made with wildflowers from the slopes of the Alps, Eierlikör Krapfen, made with high-alcohol-content egg liquor, and always, the almost totally bitter hot chocolate I loved so much. Germany has much better food than I thought it would, what with the negative comparisons I had heard with Italian and French food. Ikan Kekek (talk) 09:28, 25 May 2016 (UTC)

When mentioning "Krapfen" both the multitude of different terms used for them (Pfannkuchen, Berliner, Krapfen...) depending on the region and the local variations such as them being filled with Hiffenmark in Franconia which is unknown to most Northern Germans (they won't even know that the fruit in question is edible in any form) should be mentioned, if not discussed in detail... Dresden for example is famous for a cheesecake-like cake called "Eierschecke" and Fanconia is known for Küchla which are also known under slightly different names elsewhere... All in all, we might have to think of a "German cuisine" article after all... Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:04, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
I think that such an article would not be inappropriate. Ikan Kekek (talk) 15:14, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
Of all the assorted weirdness that gets articles recently, this in turn gets my wholehearted support. As does trying Polish and Danish breads as well! PrinceGloria (talk) 20:37, 25 May 2016 (UTC)
"assorted weirdness that gets articles lately" - care to name an example or two? Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:31, 25 May 2016 (UTC)

Germany is at guide status could it be featured?[edit]

So Germany has - after a long considerable effort of many editors - been promoted to "guide" and imho deservedly so. As our current policy says any place or travel topic at guide status or better can be featured in one of our three categories (off the beaten path, destination of the month and featured travel topic), I am asking here whether the same rule applies for country articles? And if so, what (if anything) would be necessary to have Germany featured (and in which category)? Hobbitschuster (talk) 00:06, 1 August 2016 (UTC)

I'll answer the larger question: Sure a country could be featured; why not? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:27, 1 August 2016 (UTC)
Destination of the Month. Germany is a destination and it's certainly not off the beaten path. At a quick glance I don't see any major issues with the article. ϒpsilon (talk) 10:31, 1 August 2016 (UTC)

I am not going to argue whether or not this article deserves guide status, and whether or not it should be featured, because those topics turn out to be unnecessarily sensitive. However, I should make several remarks after a quick reading of transport-related Get in and Get around sections.

  • First, there are some factual mistakes. Cologne-Bohn airport is not connected to an ICE line. The Stuttgart-Zurich train (advertised as part of the high-speed route to Milan) is painfully slow and hardly makes sense when there are so many (direct and connecting) flights, which are at least twice faster.
  • Second, it is unclear why the "By plane" section of "Get around" says something about obscure airports like Frankfurt Hahn. To the best of my knowledge, no domestic flights arrive there, and this part is simply irrelevant. What is relevant (and not mentioned in the article) is when domestic flights make sense. In fact, they do make sense for most connections that run across the whole country, unless there is a direct high-speed link like Frankfurt-Hamburg, but such links are few.
  • Third, I found the organization of Get around / By train very strange. It does link to Rail travel in Germany, but it lacks essential information on how to buy tickets. As a rule, you should not board a train in Germany without a ticket (unless you really have money to spend), and this should be written in bold letters somewhere. There are also important issues with tickets purchased online (must be printed or displayed in an app, require a credit card or other identification). Those issues are much more important than the long story of regional tickets that somehow occupies even two different sections ("Regional travel" and "sharing group train tickets").
  • Fourth, the separation between local networks (Verkehrsverbund) and national rail system is a cornerstone of German public transport. It is the first thing you should know if you want to understand what is going on with tickets and trains, but again this idea is totally missing from the article (and hidden somewhere inside Rail travel in Germany).
  • Finally, "German transportation runs with German efficiency, and getting around the country is a snap" is very misleading. I hope I don't have to explain why.

--Alexander (talk) 13:25, 1 August 2016 (UTC)

Rail travel in Germany as well as the corresponding coverage in this here article does need updating and straightening of prose. I don't think the buying of train tickets over the internet is too difficult, but then again I consider carrying photo ID at all times a normal part of being an adult. As for your implicit point that German transportation is at least not as good as its (international) reputation, I very much doubt this. There at best a dozen countries - very likely less - in the whole world where coverage is more dense and travel speed is higher. France for instance does have faster trains from the big cities to one another (especially when going to/from Paris), but trying to go from one mid-sized city to another can be next to impossible. The less said about British or American trains, the better. And Japanese trains are very expensive compared to Germany. To say nothing of the huge number of places that have a handful of buses that may or may not die crossing the next hill as their "public transport". Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:49, 1 August 2016 (UTC)
Should you buy train ticket with one credit card and carry a different credit card, you will have to buy another ticket on board, because you "did not have proper identification". Lots of people got into this trap, especially foreigners.
I am not talking about the coverage. I am talking about efficiency. Constant train delays and occasional train failures render German railway less useful and attractive than internationally perceived. Coming to the speeds and coverage (which I did not imply in my original comment), they are of course good compared to many other countries. However, the excellent road network means that cars will easily win over trains for all but high-speed lines and for all but rush hours. After all, car-sharing became so popular in Germany because trains do not meet the demands of the country, both price-wise and connection-wise. --Alexander (talk) 15:30, 1 August 2016 (UTC)
Are you by any chance German? The only people complaining about German trains being "always" late and "not faster than cars" are Germans. And as I have one credit card (and one alone) and tend to carry it around, I also don't see the problem with the multiple credit cards. But sure, by all means, mention that. The DB website also does, but apparently most people are incapable of reading fine print these days. (By the way, the fine print of Postbus also requires you to carry ID if you take one of their buses). Hobbitschuster (talk) 16:15, 1 August 2016 (UTC)
No, I am not German, but it does not change the situation. I do not have a car, and from time to time I have to rent one because trains do not bring me where (and when) I want to. That's just an observation from a fairly frequent traveler who barely missed his bahn.comfort status last year. And if you want to know how often German trains are delayed, just go to a big train station and check the displays. I think 20% would be a fair estimate, and it is a lot, at least when you think about getting somewhere on time.
Regarding the ID, carrying an ID with your name and carrying a specific credit card are two different things. Frankly speaking, I don't know why DB even introduced this feature instead of asking for passenger name, which would be sufficient. --Alexander (talk) 16:34, 1 August 2016 (UTC)
Noting the credit card id topic is a good point. It is not uncommon for young travellers to have their transport tickets bought online by parents. For us older travellers we have card from different banks, in different currencies and private and company business cards. It is not uncommon for me to keep some in the hotel safe while only carrying a few in my pocket on a short trip (to minimize damage due to loss or theft). As for reliability of trains. My experience is has been good and bad in Germany, definitely better service than USA, better quality than UK, but no where near the service and punctuality of Japan. --Traveler100 (talk) 21:59, 1 August 2016 (UTC)

5 km/h on "Spielstraßen" is not realistic[edit]

Reading the section "by car" like this: "Speed limits are taken seriously [...] 5 km/h on "Spielstraßen"" may lead to confusion. Germans normally do not drive that slow on Spielstraßen, not even in their driving lessons. 5 km/h is officially the limit, but 10-15 km/h is the normal speed on these streets. Anyway, it could be added that you should never drive more that 20 km/h to fast, because this is the critical limit for really serious penalties. —The preceding comment was added by 134.61.100.97 (talkcontribs)

My brother once drove me through a Spielstraße with - I think it is called Standgas - where you basically have the motor just a bit above idling and not even pressing the pedal. It was maddeningly slow, but according to him that's what they teach you in driving school. He also showed me a full on emergency break (as it slam the pedal down as hard as it gets) from roughly 50 km/h which is another thing you do in driving school but hardly ever in real life. Was quite interesting to know, but yeah, realistically, most people will drive through Spielstraßen (which I am not quite sure whether they are actually still legally a thing as opposed to "verkehrsberuihgter Bereich") at that maddeningly slow speed any moderately ambitious long distance runner can beat. Hobbitschuster (talk) 16:41, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

The AfD, Pegida and right wing populism[edit]

I know that we should be very cautious indeed to let our political biases get the better of us, but overall I fear this article does a disservice if it does not mention the recent rise of right wing populism and the associated anti-Islam sentiment, the anti-immigrant rhetoric, increasing right wing political violence and homophobic utterances that would have been unthinkable a few years ago. Now I understand the impetus behind this edit, but if we have the text as it is now, readers might think homophobia is nonexistent in Germany, which sadly is not the case. And yes, I know other countries have bigger right wing populist movements than does Germany, but this is no good reason to leave the very real consequences of hate-mongering in Germany unmentioned. To give just one example from recent headlines, just ahead of the October 3rd festivities in Dresden bombs were placed in front of a mosque in Dresden (and some other thing in Dresden I cannot presently recall) by someone who turns out to have been a Pegida-sympathizer or even a speaker at one of their rallies. So there is a very real - if remote - danger and especially "foreign looking", Muslim and homosexual travelers need to be aware of this. Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:29, 9 December 2016 (UTC)

To clarify I do not think that racism should be tagged to the AfD, it is much more widespread in Germany among many groups, non political as well as the full left to right spectrum. --Traveler100 (talk) 20:45, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
I would say we shouldn't provide any punditry to the AfD, UKIP, Tea Party, etc. Too much interpretation and ultimately not helpful to us as a travel guide --Andrewssi2 (talk) 21:28, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
We are of course not a political website and we should not provide punditry. But ignoring the rise of racism, homophobia and all that and where it comes from is not exactly true to our mission either, is it? Hobbitschuster (talk) 00:07, 10 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm sort of reminded of the Simpsons take on Fox news "not racist but #1 with racists". AfD does have anti-immigration and 'family first' policies, and that may attract people with racist and homophobic views. That said, what actual relevance does that have? Does the existence of AfD mean that gay people are in danger? Andrewssi2 (talk) 10:33, 10 December 2016 (UTC)
Well xenophobic violence and harassment as well as homophobic comments have certainly risen. Just like with Brexit or with Trump, I think the political environment has a bearing on this. Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:18, 4 January 2017 (UTC)
The large refugee influx last year obviously has impacted German society, so xenophobia is a safe assumption. But what evidence is there of increased homophobia in Germany? (you may be right, but I haven't noticed anything in the news) Andrewssi2 (talk) 20:29, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Request for a bot[edit]

Swept in from the pub

Now I have come across the spelling "Strasse" or "strasse" a lot in articles about Germany. This is not and has never been the correct spelling in either Germany or Austria (I am ignorant as to Namibia, Liechtenstein and Luxembourg or the German speaking part of Belgium). However, Switzerland has gotten rid of the "ß" some time ago. Would it be possible to write a bot that replaces every instance of "strasse" or "Strasse" with "straße" or "Straße" in all articles on Germany and Austria and all destinations contained therein but leave the idiosyncratic Swiss spellings in place? Or would that be too difficult to implement? I would be willing to look after the bot, but doing it by hand is a daunting task. Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:54, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

I thought the double 's' was an accepted typographical substitute for eszet all over the Germanophone world. Powers (talk) 23:20, 29 October 2016 (UTC)
You can spell it like that - if no other way to write it is available but that's clearly not the case here. We have all those letters, so why not use them? And Switzerland has in fact eliminated "ß" some time in the 1930s (I think, but don't quote me on the date). At any rate, if you open the Neue Zürcher Zeitung vs. the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the lack of "ß" in the former will be the most notable spelling difference. Hobbitschuster (talk) 23:55, 29 October 2016 (UTC)
For people with no familiarity with German, the ß is confusing and the 'ss' is much easier to understand. As Powers mentions, the eszet perfectly acceptable in those 3 German speaking countries. I would urge not inserting the ß in Austran and German articles for this reason. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 03:01, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
No, Hobbitschuster is correct. Given that this is the English Wikivoyage, the only time that words in other languages should appear in our articles is in street addresses, subway or bus stations, in the "alt=" argument of listings where we provide the official local-language name of the attraction, and in a few other cases where knowledge of a local-language term is essential. In all those cases, it's necessary to reflect the spelling that visitors will see on signs, maps, menus, etc., which in Germany and Austria includes ß. Far from avoiding confusion, substituting the eszet with the double S will only create confusion for those unfamiliar with German. See Wikivoyage:Foreign words for further details. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 05:01, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
I strongly agree with AndreCarrotflower. The Eszet should be used in articles for countries where it is used in names, and not in articles about Switzerland, where it is no longer used. Ikan Kekek (talk) 09:46, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
Whatever we decide on, I'd like it to be consistent. And for me consistency with the way it is written locally would be the most logical way to go. Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:06, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
The Ezset is used on all official road signs, so from that point of view I would change my opinion above. I just get the impression that Germans as a whole are not particularly attached to ß Andrewssi2 (talk) 21:50, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
I'd like to give some input on this concerning the case of Liechtenstein. I believe Liechtenstein does not use the eszett (see here for instance). Drat70 (talk) 09:45, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
So there is no bot forthcoming? Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:29, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

The "Buy" section[edit]

Is partially outdated, partially not well written and partially from the standpoint of someone who considers discounters low quality (which they objectively aren't, they're just lower on brand names and organic stuff). There should be some rewrites imho. Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:29, 18 February 2017 (UTC)

Historical articles: German Reich?[edit]

Some historical travel articles describe events in German history (Hanseatic League, Thirty Years War, World War I, World War II in Europe and Cold War Europe. The Austrian Empire also has an article. Can we find a scope for an article about German history, or at least parts of it? An article named German Reich could describe Germany and associated territories from 1870 to 1945, with some words about German industrial heritage, and the transition of architecture from romantic buildings through the Bauhaus school, to Albert Speer's work. Maybe, the Holy Roman Empire could warrant an article on its own. /Yvwv (talk) 13:54, 4 April 2017 (UTC)

If you have a look at Thirty Years War and Hanseatic League, I fear that the articles will remain in a half-state of not being nearly as useful for travel as I hoped when creating them. There is of course a lot of architecture dating to the era from 1870 to the 1940s, but for most of it you don't have to know which Wilhelm governed when. We might though want to put the focus more on the industrialization of Germany, because the most striking buildings of this era are industrial or housing and not monuments to the glory of Kaiser Wilhelm. Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:12, 4 April 2017 (UTC)
Unlike the Austrian Empire, Hanseatic League or Holy Roman Empire that have left marks across several modern countries, most places that belonged to the German Reich are still part of Germany. So I am not sure what the point of such a travel topic would be. Revanchism travel to the lost Eastern provinces? (I know this is actually an industry: bussing travellers aged 80+ to their lost homes in East Prussia or Silesia..., but they will unlikely use Wikivoyage) I do not really see what the common factor of a 1870–1945 era is supposed to be. For the industrial age, we already have Industrial tourism which could be filled with more sites in Germany (or formerly German territories, if you like), we have World War I where more German sites could be added, and of course World War II in Europe which I would interpret loosely and include everything related to the Nazi era. If we cover historical periods or territories, we should stick to those that fascinate (for the good or bad) a considerable number of travellers. I do not think this is the case for Imperial Germany. --RJFF (talk) 18:20, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
I fully agree. Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:38, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
You could create one for imperial history w:Kingdom_of_Prussia which is pre-1918. Post-1918 you will get into uncomfortable territory, and as stated above aspects such as Albert Speer's architecture is covered by existing German articles. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 21:46, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
OK, now a Prussia-themed article sounds much more interesting to me. This is more likely to be a topic English-speaking history buffs might find worthwile enough to organise a travel itinerary along its lines. But it should probably focus on the glorious era of Frederick the Great (and his predecessors and successors) in the 18th century, with the parks and gardens of Berlin and Potsdam, fortresses, museums of military history and battle sites rather than remnants of the late-19th and early-20th century Wilhelmian era (which is, I think, not a well-known or popular topic in the English-speaking world). But then again, as Hobbitschuster pointed out, we already have a number of articles on history topics that are probably more popular, and still are little more than stubs awaiting a lot of work. --RJFF (talk) 13:32, 9 April 2017 (UTC)
Actually I find it very likely that people are interested to write / read about Germany 1933-1945. Keep in mind that "German Reich" would be the wrong name, as that is the (English) term for Germany 1919-1945. Ziko (talk) 14:13, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
The German Reich came into being under that name in 1871 (constitutional scholars will point out, that technically speaking it was just an enlargement of the 1866 North German Confederation, but literally nobody else cares). That said, while understanding what happened between 1933 and 1945 is important for understanding today's Germany, I would very much dislike giving even the appearance of endorsing "pilgrimage" to Nazi sites. Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:30, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
I am well aware of the background :-) But the Anglophones use "German Empire" for 1871-1918 and "German Reich" for 1919-1945, because they find "Empire" unsuitable for a country without an Emperor. Ziko (talk) 15:34, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
Pilgrimage... that is an impression that has to be avoided, indeed. But I don't think that a list of e.g. the ELDE-Haus in Cologne or a concentration camp site is an invitation for right wing extremists, not more than any other presentation of NS era sites. Ziko (talk) 15:36, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
In the United States, at least, "German Reich" is completely equated in the public mind with the Nazi period. Perhaps some historians might be exceptions to this rule, but everyone else, when hearing the word "Reich" thinks Nazism only. The Kaiser is not considered to have ruled during the Reich here, though of course in German, his empire was called a Reich.
Also, concentration camps are already dealt with in Holocaust remembrance. Any that are not currently listed there or could use more explanation can be added. Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:07, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
I find it extremely weird to translate "Reich" different ways when talking about the same (short form) name, but if that is a convention in anglophone historiography, so be it... Of course "Reich" can mean anything between "realm", "empire" or just "state" and the Weimar Republic (which makes the counting of "three" Reichs even more BS than it already is) would have become the "Deutsche Republik" had the crypto-monarchists (and not so crypto-monarchists) not made a last second victory/compromise at the Weimar constitutional convention... That said, we may of course mention stuff like the "Topographie des Terrors" in Berlin in their respective article, but we should really be looking at this from the perspective of the dignity and memory of the victims, not anything that even remotely smacks of "general X was a good military leader" "Riefenstahl was a good film maker" "Speer was a good architect" or other BS that certain TV stations on both sides of the pond like to engage in. Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:05, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for your insight, Ikan - I gues that many topics/places from 1933-45 could be integrated into the Holocaust remembrance, even if they are not directly linked to the murders of Jews (e.g. NSDAP rally place in Nuremberg, school in Braunschweig etc.). Ziko (talk) 17:24, 30 May 2017 (UTC)
I think that's right. But in the case of a school, only if it was especially associated with Nazism, as of course the entire education system was used by the Nazis to indoctrinate young people. Ikan Kekek (talk) 22:10, 30 May 2017 (UTC)

The "Buy" section of Germany[edit]

Swept in from the pub

I have previously raised this at Talk:Germany but to no avail. I have now begun to edit a bit, but I think a lot of work still remains. If you have any questions about the facts such as they are, I am probably a good source for most of them. Please also keep in mind that run-on sentences are sort of "my thing" (I am trying to reduce it, really) so on that in particular I'd ask for your help. Other than that, some images would be nice, wouldn't they? Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:29, 4 April 2017 (UTC)

Für deutsche Muttersprachler mag es verständlich sein, zu viele Kommas in einem Satz zu verwenden, wenn sie auf Englisch schreiben. No big deal. Luckily, copyediting is my thing, so I'll likely pitch in to help. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 16:40, 4 April 2017 (UTC)
Danke sehr. I have cut some things from the section which to me seem of scant relevance, like prices of cigarettes or what to do with old DM (the Euro was introduced in 2002 - 15 years ago - and by now DM have more collector's value than face value). Hobbitschuster (talk) 16:41, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Excessive editing of history?[edit]

I'm a big fan of conciseness and removing excessive verbose from WV, but I know there has been some good thought put into Germany past few months, so are these reductive edits today too excessive? --Andrewssi2 (talk) 00:47, 25 May 2017 (UTC)

I'm of course biased on this, because most of the stuff that was thrown out was written by me, but I think some of it at least should be put back in. That said, some of treatment copyedits were worthwhile and should be kept. Hobbitschuster (talk) 07:46, 25 May 2017 (UTC)
So what do we do with this? Maybe @Ziko: wants to weigh in as well? Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:34, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for pinging me. Are there general guidelines for history sections? In my opininion the section should be concise and with regard to the traveller, not repeating things from other sections etc. By the way, I also deleted text that I had added earlier. Ziko (talk) 14:11, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
To my knowledge, there are no general guidelines on history sections. Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:58, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
There is Wikivoyage:Article_templates/Sections#Understand , although that isn't massively helpful. I believe the history section is a throwback to the Lonely Planet (physical) guide books, which is awesome when you didn't have internet on the go. However I do believe that Wikivoyage should focus on what it does best (being a travel guide) and Wikipedia focus on what it does best (being an encyclopedia). Countries should have a history section on Wikivoyage, but (I believe) they should be a summary of what you would find in Wikipedia and not an equivalent replication. Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:55, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
So like: What are tourists likely to hear from a tour guide, so that they can make the link to a historical period. For example, the Hanseatic League is something that you hear about e.g. in the name of a city or about a touristic event, unlike other (South German) leagues of cities from the middle ages. Ziko (talk) 17:22, 30 May 2017 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I would not call what is currently there an equivalent repetition, nor would I apply that label to what was there before. Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:00, 30 May 2017 (UTC)

Actually the words I used were 'equivalent replication', not 'equivalent repetition'. In any case I apologise if that cause offence. I wasn't referring to your edits but rather the large amount of detail generally in country articles. Likewise it also doesn't look good when there is almost zero content about a country's history, so these edits are appreciated. Andrewssi2 (talk) 22:03, 30 May 2017 (UTC)
No, the example is a specific building with its architecture. Ziko (talk) 19:12, 31 May 2017 (UTC)
I think our basic guideline in writing, editing and judging "History" sections would be, is this background information we'd want a visitor to know? If so, include it/leave it in. If not, remove it, or move it to the "History" or "Understand" section of a regional or city article if it's relevant there. And in cases in which information that should be brought to the attention of visitors isn't there, it should be added.
If we agree on the basic criteria, we then can argue about which information is sufficient, interesting or fun and which isn't. But I think this is how we serve the traveler. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:24, 1 June 2017 (UTC)
On the specific edits linked at the beginning of this thread, I would restore most of them. Part of the point of Wikivoyage is to be fun to read, not clinical. I believe in pithiness, but that pith still has to work with roots, a stem, some leaves and flowers in season, or the plant will die. However, some pretty leaves and flowers won't kill the plant. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:28, 1 June 2017 (UTC)
Keep it short and simple - if a reader is interested in more history, there is still Wikipedia. Ziko (talk) 16:22, 14 June 2017 (UTC)
We all understand that Wikipedia exists. It's an encyclopedia. And unless we want "accidental tourists", we shouldn't make the argument that useful and fun background should be deleted just because people reading a travel guide could instead pick up the virtual version of an encyclopedia.
So can we please argue about the specific information you deleted, instead of having fruitless global arguments about Wikipedia? Why did you delete this?
a notable example is by the reconstructed Roman fort of Saalburg near Bad Homburg
Why did you delete "by Pope Leo III"? What's the problem there? Why did you delete " and he also founded Worms"? Is that not true? What was the advantage of deleting "(now a UNESCO world heritage site)"? Why was it important to delete "While there were some earnest efforts at modernisation in the 15th to early 17th century, ultimately the Holy Roman Empire lost all but the most nominal central political power."?
Why do you think it's important to delete this, which seems obviously travel-relevant?
"Today some remnants of the era are now museums, such as the Franconian/Thuringian town of Mödlareuth, which was divided during the Cold war, leading to US soldier in the area calling it little Berlin, or the former Stasi prisons in Bautzen or Berlin Hohenschönhausen. While many pieces of the Berlin Wall were destroyed outright or sold to enthusiasts around the world, parts have been preserved in their original location as monuments or art installations. The most widely known such installations is the eastside gallery in central Berlin. If you want to avoid the tacky Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin, Bernauer Straße (the street which had windows walled shut, as the houses were in the East and the street in the West) is more accurate — if chilling — with its museum and monument." Ikan Kekek (talk) 17:25, 14 June 2017 (UTC)
The text changed a lot from an abstract level to a very concrete level, mentioning single places and attractions. For example the Cold war section you mentions, goes very much into detail and then especially about one specific city (Berlin; you will find about these topics in the article about Berlin). Pope - the name of the specific pope is not necessary here. Always ask the question: how can we have it as long as necessary, and as short as possible. Not what is fun to the writer, but what is useful here (and not elsewhere) for the reader. Ziko (talk) 09:58, 15 June 2017 (UTC)
Where is the assumption that history sections should be short and go out of their way to be vague (e.g. not mentioning the name of a pope even it is literally one additional word) and never mention any destinations coming from? I think the history section of a travel guide does well to tie in the story it tells to places where that story becomes evident. And the pain of the Berlin wall is hardly anywhere more present than in Bernauer Straße. Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:42, 15 June 2017 (UTC)
I agree with Hobbitschuster. Pithiness, as I said above, is good, but it is quite unnecessary and not particularly desirable to delete the name of a Pope for brevity's sake. And connecting history to visitable places is precisely what can differentiate Wikivoyage "History" sections from Wikipedia. I think we should do it whenever possible, within reason. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:43, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

Hi, I am not sure what you mean by "fun to read". Wikivoyage should be informative, not entertainment. As you said, the more specific information, also about specific locations/attractions, are better placed in articles about German regions, states or even cities. Ziko (talk) 20:56, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

(1) Read Wikivoyage:Tone: Lively writing is welcome. The requirement of being fair should not be taken to mean that all writing must be bland and encyclopedic. Wikivoyage should celebrate travel, and you should feel free to share the adventure and excitement of the journey and the destination through your writing. (2) We have a basic philosophical difference on this. Part of the whole point of higher-level articles (above the city/other destination level) is to provide highlights that link to lower-level articles. The fact that that leads to a degree of duplication is unimportant because in the bottom-level article, the attraction is described in greater detail, with information about hours, contact information and admission fees. Ikan Kekek (talk) 21:23, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

"Migrationshintergrund"[edit]

I'm not entirely sure the current definition of "Migrationshintergrund" (roughly "migration background") is entirely accurate. The statistisches Bundesamt has the following definition, last changed in 2016 "Eine Person hat einen Migrationshintergrund, wenn sie selbst oder mindestens ein Elternteil nicht mit deutscher Staatsangehörigkeit geboren wurde. Im Einzelnen umfasst diese Definition zugewanderte und nicht zugewanderte Ausländer, zugewanderte und nicht zugewanderte Eingebürgerte, (Spät-)Aussiedler sowie die als Deutsche geborenen Nachkommen dieser Gruppen." which is at odds however with the definition of the Bundesagentur für Arbeit which says "Ein Migrationshintergrund liegt vor, wenn 1. die Person nicht die deutsche Staatsangehörigkeit besitzt oder 2. der Geburtsort der Person außerhalb der heutigen Grenzen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland liegt und eine Zuwanderung in das heutige Gebiet der Bundesrepublik Deutschland nach 1949 erfolgte oder 3. der Geburtsort mindestens eines Elternteiles der Person außerhalb der heutigen Grenzen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland liegt sowie eine Zuwanderung dieses Elternteiles in das heutige Gebiet der Bundesrepublik Deutschland nach 1949 erfolgte" which is closer to what is written in the article.

What do you say, which definition should we follow? Or should we just use a definition that people perceive with no regards to the legal definitions of (quasi) government entities? Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:45, 16 July 2017 (UTC)

Imho it can't be WV's job to juggle between what the statistisches Bundesamt, Arbeitsamt and regular folks think Migrationshintergrund means and come up with something "entirely accurate", as you put it. (One wonders what could possibly be entirely accurate if in any case the statistic we're talking about is currently "approximately 20%".) How about something like "approximately 20% of the population is reckoned to be foreign born or first generation German, the definition of which is not always clear, even to Germans." Griffindd (talk) 07:59, 17 July 2017 (UTC)

I'd go even further than the last half of that sentence and say "the definition of which is unclear and contradictory even between different official sources". What most of the definitions seem to have in common is that they don't regard the people who left territory east of the Oder Neiße line in the 1940s as "foreign" whereas they do regard people of Turkish descent as "foreign" which to me is a political rather than a logical concept. Hobbitschuster (talk) 12:04, 17 July 2017 (UTC)

Scare-mongering on Nitrates[edit]

This edit makes it sound, as if tap water in some places were some Flint, Michigan levels of bad in Germany. I don't think that's even remotely true. And the average person will expose themselves to far worse when drinking bottled waters (plastic decays over time, stuff leaches etc. etc.) than tap water. Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:10, 22 October 2017 (UTC)

It is true, but due to German data protection laws it is difficult to prove. Try asking your local health department for statistics on still births and blue born babies, see how long before you are removed from the building. In my case the regional administration did after discussions provide vouchers to people to purchase crates of bottle water. You can tone it down if you like but please do not portray water in Germany as totally safe. Yes it is way better than many places in the world and I would drink in small quantities but not regularly from some areas particular those were it is filtered river or ground water where upstream is heavily fertilised. --Traveler100 (talk) 18:56, 22 October 2017 (UTC)
Look. I will not argue the way the maximum values for Nitrates are set. I will just sate for the record, that they exist. I will also state for the record that there is no official limit for Nitrate in bottled water and that the limit for Nitrate in Germany is comparable to the same limit in other developed countries. It is also important to remember that this is a travel guide and the vast majority of the people reading this will be exposed to any type of German beverages for rather short times, so it makes less sense to talk about - supposed or real - chronic risks. Also keep in mind that there is a difference between Nitrates in groundwater and Nitrates in the water delivered to consumers. Municipal water providers will routinely dilute water to get below the limit. here is a Stiftung Warentest article on bottled water vs. tap water. Hobbitschuster (talk) 21:17, 22 October 2017 (UTC)
"routinely dilute water" With what? Powers (talk) 20:47, 26 October 2017 (UTC)
Lower nitrate water, to get below legal limits Hobbitschuster (talk) 11:31, 29 October 2017 (UTC)
Sorry, I guess that's obvious, isn't it? I was mostly reacting to the seemingly nonsensical idea of diluting water. Powers (talk) 21:09, 30 October 2017 (UTC)
Well yes, it kinda is. That said, you'll have to be particularly unlucky to get tap water with nitrate above legal limits. Groundwater is of course another story (and the source of EU litigation against Germany) Hobbitschuster (talk) 00:09, 31 October 2017 (UTC)

Verkaufsoffene Sonntage[edit]

this edit introduced a third link supposedly telling people about Sunday openings of retail stores. I am not entirely sure we even need one. What say ye? Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:39, 6 November 2017 (UTC)

What is nice about German towns is that they are pleasantly un-busy on a Sunday. Can look at the buildings but still take in a good meal and drink without the crowds of shoppers. Is useful to have warning when a town's shops are open. --Traveler100 (talk) 06:38, 7 November 2017 (UTC)
My question would be why do we need three different links for this? That is confusing. Andrewssi2 (talk) 07:06, 7 November 2017 (UTC)
Agree, could we find a single comprehensive source? --Traveler100 (talk) 07:14, 7 November 2017 (UTC)
For now I commented it out. Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:42, 13 November 2017 (UTC)

Locomore, Leo Express and Flixbus[edit]

Swept in from the pub

Okay the following may be a bit complicated and it has implications for Rail travel in Germany, Intercity buses in Germany and destination articles along the Berlin-Wolfsburg-Hannover-Frankfurt-Stuttgart corridor.

Locomore has gone bankrupt after barely five months of operation in May - they just had too little capital to absorb the early losses, especially competing head on with DB who simply added departure right around the time Locomore trains left/arrived on several of the stations. But Locomore has since been in talks with various national and international companies to restart service in some form or sell off assets to cover debts. Well, Leo Express (a Czech private rail and bus operator active for years in Central and Eastern Europe) expressed interest and a deal was struck. In seemingly unrelated news, Flixbus had long registered an internet address under "flixtrain" and recently filed the paperwork necessary for a subsidiary under that name to run trains. Well Leo Express has a pre-existing cooperation with Flixbus and thus the tickets will now be available on the Flixbus website apparently with a symbol indicating that a train and not a bus is booked. Locomore had at the time of its launch announced that it had already secured "dibs" on several other routes (if you want to run a train on German tracks you have to pay DB Netz and tell them when and where and how, the latter well in advance) and it is possible that Flixbus/Leo Express will expand in the future. At any rate, trains are planned to run again starting August 24 of this year and tickets can already be booked. Hobbitschuster (talk) 10:15, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

A shame that Locomore did not work but the journey time was a little long and not having enough capital to get through the first few years in business shows some lack of business sense. Anyway, all that is relevant for the articles is what routes and services are currently running and links to the correct web site. Who owns what and their economic history is something for Wikipedia. --Traveler100 (talk) 16:22, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
Booking is already possible via the Flixbus website. The first few tickets reportedly sell for 9,99€ Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:08, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

Pictures[edit]

So User:Ziko has been adding a bunch of images to this article. When are there too many images here? Hobbitschuster (talk) 23:55, 2 December 2017 (UTC)

Definitely there now, at least in some sections. I've got a really wide screen and there are already so many images in some sections that they push down into subsequent sections. Powers (talk) 01:32, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

Rewrite "eat"?[edit]

I don't know, I am not all that happy with the "eat" section... I think it presents German cuisine as too boring and too uninfluenced by foreign cuisines, when in truth the very fact that "traditional" German cuisine relies heavily on potatoes should tell you something about how much of a melting pot the culinary scene actually is... Anybody with me in this? Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:21, 6 March 2018 (UTC)

What exactly are you thinking of adding? I really love German food but it is very basic adn traditional: meat, starch (potato/paste based) and one vegetable or a really good side salad (better than most countries). There is also a great selection of Italian, Bulkan and Turkish restaurants and obviously the international styles you see the world over such as Indian, Mexican and Japanese but not seeing that influencing German restaurants outside of the larger cities. --Traveler100 (talk) 22:14, 6 March 2018 (UTC)
I am more of thinking, "what would we write if there were nothing there right now" Hobbitschuster (talk) 01:08, 7 March 2018 (UTC)

Re-write[edit]

I think that the article right now seems more like a Wikipedia article, rather than a travel guide.

It needs clean-up and re-writing. --Mahmudmasri (talk) 19:18, 15 March 2018 (UTC)

What in particular do you think needs to be rewritten? On some things you might just wv:plunge forward and we'll see afterwards if the additions and changes are good or bad. Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:27, 15 March 2018 (UTC)

Risks from anti-Semitism[edit]

Should we mention that the main leader of the Jewish community in Germany recommends for Jews not to wear kippot (yarmulkes) in public in its major cities? To put it in perspective, here's what the leader of the Berlin Jewish community said:

The head of Berlin's Jewish community, Gideon Joffe, described anti-Semitism as "increasing," adding that things were gradually becoming "uncomfortable" in Berlin. But he also said the situation was "far removed" current trends France or Belgium, where anti-Semitism is more prevalent.

My feeling is that a brief mention is probably warranted.

By the way, I notice that Belgium#Stay safe has no warning for identifiably Jewish people. Unfortunately, it probably should, and I guess I should broach the topic at Talk:Belgium.

Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:01, 29 April 2018 (UTC)

Table manners[edit]

I am German and haver never heard or followed any of the rules stated here. Either I am a complete barbarian or those rules are only valid for restaurants with 3 Michelin stars, which I don't visit... --Renek78 (talk) 20:58, 22 June 2018 (UTC)

Are you a Visigoth, an Ostrogoth, a Frank or a Vandal? :P ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 21:23, 22 June 2018 (UTC)