When are School Breaks in Germany

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School breaks in Germany heavily influence the travel landscape: higher prices, reservations for popular destinations are needed, traffic on the German Autobahn is substantially more and leads to delays caused by traffic jams.

School Breaks in general:

The major school breaks are

  • Winter
    ca. 2-3 weeks starting before Christmas and lasting into early January. School usually starts between January and January 10.
    If you are visiting Germany during January you will definitely find destinations less crowded after that time.
  • Easter / Spring
    ca. 1.5 weeks around Easter
  • Summer
    ca. 6 weeks; the beginning is staggered so that each Federal State starts slightly delayed. This avoids too much traffic chaos on the main Autobahn routes. Most traffic will be encountered heading southern direction.
  • Ascension Day / Pentecost
    ca. 1 week sometime in May or June
  • Autumn / Fall
    ca. 2 weeks; starts in most Federal States around mid of October and lasts until the end of the month or early November.

If you need to know the exact starting dates for each Federal State then please refer to the official German Website “Kultusministerkonferenz”: Kultusminister Konferenz — Government website (German language): Ferien in Deutschland

Some terminology in English and German…

in English in German
School break Ferien
School year Schuljahr
Vacation Urlaub
Winter Winter
Christmas Weihnachten
Spring Frühjahr
Easter Ostern
Ascension Day / Pentecost Himmelfahrt / Pfingsten
Summer Sommer
Fall / Autumn Herbst