Germany: World Champ with Rhythm Disturbances

by | Jun 27, 2023 | Facts & Fun | 0 comments

Germany is the world’s leading logistics market. In figures this means:

  • More than 700 billion tonne-kilometers of annual transport performance (500 billion of which in road freight transport alone)
  • Around 4.7 billion tons transported (3.9 of which by road)
  • More than 180 billion euros in industry sales and
  • More than 600,000 employees at the predominantly medium-sized logistics service providers and freight forwarders.

This makes the sector the third largest economic sector in the country after the automotive industry and trade. In addition to its central location in Europe, the reasons for this are the high quality of the services and a distinctive expert knowledge. But although there are almost 25 million truck driver’s licenses in circulation in Germany, the industry is also suffering from a shortage of drivers here.


The vast majority of trucks on the road are diesels

Around 3.55 million trucks are registered in Germany, around 3.3 million of which are diesel-powered. Ores, stones and earths as well as mining products are far ahead in terms of the goods they transport, followed by foodstuffs and luxury foodstuffs.

With a length of 830,000 km, Germany has a considerable road network. The 13,155 kilometers of highways and the federal roads are subject to tolls. Germany collects around 7.5 billion euros annually as a result. Polish, Czech and Romanian trucks account for the largest share of foreign vehicles.

Traffic jam on the A2, Germany’s most important east-west route. Photo: th-photo/Adobe Stock


A2 is the highway with the heaviest truck traffic

Truck traffic on German autobahns shows a pronounced weekly rhythm: When the ban on trucks ends at 10 p.m. on Sunday evening, the working week begins on the autobahns and with it a flurry of inbound traffic from east to west. On Saturdays, this reverses at the end of the working week. This regularly leads to bottlenecks and traffic jams, especially on the A2, the highway busiest with heavy truck traffic in the country.


The bus is popular for group travel

The drivers of the nearly 4,000 bus companies in Germany are also often stuck in traffic jams. With their approximately 80,000 registered vehicles, they generate more than 14 billion euros in sales per year. Buses are the most popular mode of transport, especially for group trips of ten or more people. Unlike trucks, which are subject to a speed limit of 80 (over 3.5 tons) or 60 km/h (over 7.5 tons) outside built-up areas, buses are allowed to travel at 100 km/h on the autobahns.


Other countries such as France, Greece, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Austria, Romania, Poland, Switzerland, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Hungary also have weekend driving bans for heavy commercial vehicles. What do you think? Are such driving bans still in line with the times? Leave a comment!


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Stefan Kohl

Stefan Kohl

Every word a hit – Stefan has been writing for more than 20 years about this industry


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