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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Might have to do an emergency flying trip to Berlin later and will be taking the wife’s e-Niro 4.

Can I get away with a debit/credit card and Apps, or are RFID cards essential?

My usual general direction is Eurortunnel, then motorway/autobahn all the way taking in Antwerp Ring/Kennedy Tunnel, over the border into Germany near Wankum, bit of the A57 then A2 from Oberhausen and eventually down the HeerStrasse to Charlottenberg.

Increasingly elderly Mum stayed on in Berlin after retiring from the Embassy/British Army. Was only a matter of time before she did something daft leading to a midnight hospital dash! 🙄
 

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If you need to set up quickly without waiting for cards then your options are:
1. You can use IONITY app. Just setup account / Credit Card for payments. Multiple chargers per location, reliable, fast. But expensive these days!
2. Shell Recharge app (works well with Shell, Fastned, Allego chargers). RFID card is very useful as occasionally starting charge with app does not work. Also you can start IONITY (I tend to have problems starting ionity charger from app; RFID card works way better).
3. Plugsurfing app - as a backup for Shell Recharge
 

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I've just been watching some interesting clips regarding the palaver you had to go through driving from West Germany to Berlin. Thank God it's not like that now!
 

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I've just been watching some interesting clips regarding the palaver you had to go through driving from West Germany to Berlin. Thank God it's not like that now!
But it was good fun and quite exciting, if a little nervy, passing through the various Russian/East German checkpoints. We were briefed not to stop for the East German police!
 

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MG EZS 2020
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Remember to check what you might need in regards to driving licence and insurance stuff if your there after the 31st.
There is an upside to that. Just had an email from my insurer and they will send me a green card for free.
 

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@i3S Were you stationed in Berlin? I was at Gatow and worked in T'berg.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
@i3S Were you stationed in Berlin? I was at Gatow and worked in T'berg.
Not me. Mum’s lived in Berlin 30 years now. Firstly Charlottenberg, Dickensweg, which is off the HeerStrasse behind the BP (now Aral) on the same street as the British Military Hospital, down the hill from the Olympiastadium.

I used to be a presenter on the wireless for BFBS British Forces Radio and by coincidence, 10 years after she moved to Germany I was posted to the network broadcast centre in Herford. Lived in Krefeld near Düsseldorf, then Münster. Germany’s such a fabulous place to live and spend time in.
 

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Ionity & Fastned
not cheapest but very high chance of a unit being available to use when you turn up

i was looking at Norway via Holland/Denmark in my Kona next Autumn.

Assume you tried A Better Route Planner app to see options with or without preferences turned on.
 

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I'm afraid I have nothing useful to contribute. Just here to laugh at Wankum and Dickensweg, because I'm childish.

Hope your trip goes well.

If you use Fastned, set up autocharge in the app. It's magic!
 

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I've just been watching some interesting clips regarding the palaver you had to go through driving from West Germany to Berlin. Thank God it's not like that now!
I hope you were taking notes, this might be what the Eurotunnel experience will be like in a few days. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for all the advice and help. COVID’s rather done for this unfortunately.
UK is considered higher risk so the bundesgesundheitsministerium have ordered that until at least Jan 6th we have to arrive with a fresh negative test done in UK, then quarantine for 10 days, or 5 if we get another negative test after arriving.

One also has to pre-register arrival with the bundesamt so they know where you’re staying.

Completely sensible response to the current situation. Even if one were stupid/selfish enough to try and evade the rules, with UK plates, one would probably get stop checked at some point and the police would likely have access to the pre-registration data.

Fortunately Mum’s medical insurers will pay for a carer at home when she gets out of hospital and a friend will look after her until then. Not an ideal situation, but not much is at the mo!

We’ll see if the rules are relaxed after the 6th and maybe head over then.
 

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We’ll see if the rules are relaxed after the 6th and maybe head over then.
It will be interesting to see what the border looks like by then. This could be another significant challenge for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
It will be interesting to see what the border looks like by then. This could be another significant challenge for you.
Maybe but doubt it for passenger vehicles. Freight possibly.

No visa required for length of stay. Checks will be similar to normal at the tunnel (almost always have passport checked at both frontier points anyway) and car insurer’s giving free green card to boost cover from third party outside UK to fully comp.
 

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It will be interesting to see what the border looks like by then. This could be another significant challenge for you.
That takes me back to when I was stationed in Monchengladbach in the mid 60's. There was a Canadian Master Sergeant there on an exchange visit who had a g/f in Antwerp. Late one Friday me and a mate were off duty until Monday and this guy offered to take us to Antwerp for the w/e when he travelled to see his girl.

We jumped at the chance and threw some things in a bag and set off soon after midnight. As you will know, the direct route goes into the Netherlands for a few k and then on into Belgium. Back then there were still borders and barriers. It was getting on for 2am when we approached the first barrier but the driver was actually speeding up.

There was clearly a man sat on a chair in the road by the barrier with binoculars looking our way. Our driver switched the car lights off for a few seconds. The guard leapt to his feet and rapidly raised the barrier as we swept through at high speed. We were bemused by this. He laughed and said that he had a Maple Leaf badge on the front and the guard watched for him every Friday at around this time. With the lights off he could see the badge and allowed entry with zero delay.

So much for border formalities.
 

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Just here to laugh at Wankum
It used to be a huge laugh to buy the windscreen sticker as you passed over the border. Just so you could have Wankum in your back window. It sort of wore off after the 10th time.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
It used to be a huge laugh to buy the windscreen sticker as you passed over the border. Just so you could have Wankum in your back window. It sort of wore off after the 10th time.
Wankum of course the last stop before the tunnel/ferry that takes British Forces Germany tax free fuel coupons....and consequently the place where many jerry cans have been laid to rest behind its hedgerows 🤣
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
That takes me back to when I was stationed in Monchengladbach in the mid 60's. There was a Canadian Master Sergeant there on an exchange visit who had a g/f in Antwerp. Late one Friday me and a mate were off duty until Monday and this guy offered to take us to Antwerp for the w/e when he travelled to see his girl.

We jumped at the chance and threw some things in a bag and set off soon after midnight. As you will know, the direct route goes into the Netherlands for a few k and then on into Belgium. Back then there were still borders and barriers. It was getting on for 2am when we approached the first barrier but the driver was actually speeding up.

There was clearly a man sat on a chair in the road by the barrier with binoculars looking our way. Our driver switched the car lights off for a few seconds. The guard leapt to his feet and rapidly raised the barrier as we swept through at high speed. We were bemused by this. He laughed and said that he had a Maple Leaf badge on the front and the guard watched for him every Friday at around this time. With the lights off he could see the badge and allowed entry with zero delay.

So much for border formalities.
🤣 Spent quite a bit of time at JHQ (Mönchengladbach). This is what it looks like now. Be warned, you might need a hanky

And then there’s Wegberg British Forces Hospital. Such a waste
 

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Yes, you're right, very sad to see it in such a state. Much the same for many dis-used military establishments in the UK, as well. Best not to look.
 

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Raf Gatow is now a military museum.
 
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