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DB Group rail in Germany




     DB rail passenger transport in Germany




          DB Long-Distance




          DB Regional




     DB Cargo (Germany)




DB Arriva (rail: United Kingdom, Denmark, Sweden,
the Netherlands, Poland and the Czech Republic) 1)




DB Regional (bus) 2) 




DB Cargo




To measure punctuality, we continuously compare the actual arrival time for each train/bus journey with the scheduled arrival time. We use a punctuality rate to summarize the arrival of on-time trains/buses or up to a defined maximum delay.
1) Change of methods in the UK Trains line of business in 2021 with retroactive adjustment of the figure for the first half of 2021.
2) Figure for the first half of 2021 adjusted.

In Germany, punctuality in rail transport decreased significantly. The reasons for this development were:

  • High level of construction activity: From March 2022 onwards, there is a very high level of construction activity alongside a continued increase in the demand for network capacity.
  • Highly utilized railways: About 25% of all trains run through higly utilized railways.
  • Increased primary disruptions: Particularly in the area of infrastructure (for example switches, tracks, interlockings), there is an increased incidence of primary incidents due to the ageing of the equipment and its susceptibility to faults.
  • Special external events: In particular, the rapid sequence of hurricane force storms in February 2022, which in some areas caused severe damage throughout Germany, especially in northern Germany and North Rhine-Westphalia.
  • 9-Euro-Ticket: In June 2022, capacity utilization in regional rail passenger transport also increased significantly. This led primarily to more excessive stopping times and train delays on tourist routes and at weekends.
  • Unstable operating situation: The unstable operating situation in long-running long-distance and freight transport led to disrupted operating processes (including vehicle and staff rotations that no longer worked, and maintenance windows that could no longer be adhered to), which in turn had a negative effect on punctuality.

Capacity and punctuality program

Since January 2022, the Capacity and Punctuality Program has been focusing on optimized management of rail capacity in the highly utilized networkµ 40 f. in order to reconcile the competing aims of the shift in the mode of transport, modernization/expansion and operational quality under the Strong Rail strategy. The following targets were set:

  • stabilizing operating quality in 2022 and 2023 through targeted countermeasures,
  • converting the highly utilized network on the most important corridors and hubs into a high-performance network by 2030,
  • and renovating the busy corridors.

By meeting these targets, we achieve for our customers greater punctuality, a significant reduction in infrastructure-
related disruptions and high-performance corridors with low construction activity into the 2030s following the renovation.We are addressing these topics over three time horizons:

  • stabilization in 2022,
  • predictive management in 2023, and
  • rapid capacity expansion in 2024 onward (working toward a high-performance network).

The following measures have already begun to stabilize operations in 2022:

  • Improving capacity utilization management: Identification and management of peak construction work during 2022, assessment of capacity utilization and development of construction project-specific measures. Regular capacity utilization meetings are also held to ensure early coordination with customers (in two regions so far, but we plan to expand this).
  • Increasing construction efficiency: This includes reviewing all major construction projects for their operational corridor impact and analyzing planned construction sites for the second half of 2022.
  • Reducing disruptions: This includes expanding preventive maintenance in order to best bridge the time until the full renovation.
  • Optimizing operational management: This will be achieved by setting up the Rhine Valley plan corridor and by managing capacity and setting up a border coordination system in Basel.

Predictive management is already being implemented for 2023 on the basis of the Stabilization 2022 program. This includes, in particular, securing capacity and managing capacity utilization (smoothing peaks in construction and capacity utilization at an earlier stage), increasing robustness (identifying critical points and time periods with the subsequent reorganization of the construction program) and ensuring the overarching control system is maintained. The goal of establishing a high-performance network will then be achieved through rapidly expanding capacity in 2024 and subsequent years. To this end, from 2024 onwards, two to three busy corridors will be renovated each year. In addition to the concentration of all construction projects, the renovation also includes increasing the performance capability through improved standard equipment and customer-friendly construction.

Outlook - Top targets strong rail



2022 (Mar
2022 (Jul
 Punctuality DB Long-Distance (%)


~ 80

~ 70

Punctuality DB Regional (rail) (%)


~ 95

~ 93

Punctuality DB Cargo (Germany) (%)


~ 72

~ 67

Based on the development to date and updated estimates, we have adjusted some of our expectations for the development in the 2022 financial year:

  • As a result of the unsatisfactory operating situation, we expect weaker development in customer satisfaction and punctuality:
    • At DB Long-Distance, we expect lower customer satisfaction due to the low punctuality and the tense operating situation.
    • At DB Regional (rail), we expect lower customer satisfaction, in particular as a result of infrastructure-related restrictions on operating quality, more heavily utilized vehicles and space restrictions during the summer months in connection with the 9-Euro-Ticket.
    • We have adjusted the forecast for punctuality values downward, at DB Long-Distance significantly, at DB Regional and DB Cargo less clearly. This was mainly due to heavier capacity bottlenecks in infrastructure, primarily as a result of construction work, and greater expected demand for rail passenger transport.

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