asking for trouble

Berlin Extras

I wrote about what I got up to on my recent Berlin trip (part 1 / part 2 / purchases) but here’s some extra bits that I want to be able to remember for next time including hotel, travel and food.


Hotel & Location

I stayed at INNSiDE Berlin Mitte, which I was generally happy with. I lucked out on a top floor room and this wall was the view when I got out of the lift! My room faced out though so I had a bit of a view. It was also massive and had the biggest bathroom I’ve ever seen. The best perk was a fridge with 3 free fizzy fruit drinks + still & sparkling water – the fruit drinks were lovely and a random replacement appeared every day. There was also a free 14 day pass to an app for newspapers & magazines in all languages, which is such a great idea. My very British complaint is that there’s no coffee/tea maker in the room or free coffee downstairs, but it is an upgrade option.

The location was pretty good too, close to a U-Bahn (subway) station that was a few stops from central Berlin and a tram stop that was 3 stops from the main train station. There’s some restaurants and a 24 shop nearby but I didn’t end up using them. I did have a nice breakfast at a nearby cafe one morning.


Flights & Public Transport

I flew into Berlin Brandenburg airport from Glasgow with Easyjet, my first flight in 4.5 years! Nothing much had really changed but I did find it all a little confusing, especially security with no checked-in luggage. Funniest moment was getting my suitcase opened on the way home because of my big bag full of Haribo. The security guy didn’t even blink, let alone laugh :)

Berlin U-Bahn

Public transport in Berlin was amazing, I was so impressed. €8.80 for a 24 ticket that you can use on the S-Bahn (overground trains), U-Bahn (subway), trams and buses. I didn’t take any buses but the rest were all great and easy to navigate. You can buy the tickets in an easy to use app, plus there’s another one for checking routes. Google Maps was often better for this though.

The weirdest thing by far for me is that there are no ticket barriers or conductors – instead there are random checks from roving inspectors. I had my ticket checked once in 6 days! Presumably it works well though and it saves a lot of hassle. I still did so much walking though with 23,000 steps some days.

Food & Restaurants

Food turned out to be one of my biggest issues, mainly because I’m just not used to eating out any more and I’m one small person who can’t manage big meals. I always seemed to come across interesting restaurants at completely the wrong time of day or when I’d already eaten. Instead, I had smaller snacky meals – I loved all the bakeries with piles of filled rolls, croissants, mini pizzas etc. and also shopped a lot for hotel snacks at REWE, a supermarket with a lot of healthy options and a hot bakery.

I also found myself eating at food courts in shopping malls, which sounds terrible but the food was always good and there was a lot of choice. The best one was at Bikini Berlin, an upmarket boutique mall, with many vegan/organic type restaurants – and windows looking onto the zoo! I also had to try currywurst and got a great tip from my cousin for Brammibal’s Donuts who had some amazing flavours that you wouldn’t even notice are all vegan. Vegan definitely seemed to be a big trend in Berlin and you’d have no problem eating extremely well there.


General Tips

I think my biggest disappointment with Berlin was how international it is so I very rarely needed to use my German, which is a shame after 5 years of Duolingo lessons. Even a lot of cafes/takeout places used English for the flavours etc. so you couldn’t even order in German if you wanted to! It was still really helpful for reading signs etc. and I only had to resort to Google Translate once or twice. I did also feel very confident that I could deal with a lot of different situations if they had happened, whether that was asking for directions or helping someone.

Miffy Shop Berlin

Cash is definitely over and I made a huge mistake bringing so much. Other than public toilets, I think I could have done the whole trip without any cash. Many restaurants are cash free and most other places seemed to prefer it. I would recommend just bringing a small amount of Euros plus some of your home currency that you can convert if needed.

I expected mobile data to be an expensive nightmare post-Brexit but my cheapo basic plan included data for £2.50 a day + an additional spending cap you set yourself. I never went over the minimum as there’s free wi-fi at every station and most cafes/museums etc. I don’t know if it was the German provider I was connected to but when there wasn’t wi-fi, I often couldn’t get a usable connection – sometimes even the dreaded E, let alone 3G. This seems bizarre when somewhere as remote as Iona has 5G everywhere! I managed okay but I would research this more next time. I was glad I had an offline maps app (


April does seem like a great time to visit. Okay, it might snow, but it’s just as likely you’ll get 25C sunny weather. It was also so quiet, especially away from big touristy places and I very rarely had to queue. I always got a seat on the train/tram too and even at bigger stations when there was a wait.

You can see all my Berlin photos on Flickr. I hope to go back again soon.


Hello! I’m Marceline Smith, the designer and owner of Asking For Trouble. I create illustrated stationery, accessories and gifts using my cute characters inspired by Japanese kawaii. This is my business and personal blog where I write about my creative doings, inspirations, travels, Japan trips and daily life. Read more »

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