Train Travel


Train VS Flying

Train travel can be a better choice (especially between European cities) – think of the time you have to allocate when flying such as checking in, passing security, boarding, flying, collecting luggage and arranging transport from the airport. Also the airport would be away from the actual city centre. The luxury of train travel is that you save a lot of time (the train takes you right to the city centre in most cases) and also you only have to be checked in say 30 minutes prior to leaving. And also saving the time you would have to go through security measures. If the distance is longer than between European cities or say US cities, then best to stick with flying (this is the case between major Australian cities).

Elaborating more on the tradeoffs of train travel are within the below two links (Independent traveller even does a cost benefit analysis between flying and rail using various routes)

divide


Travelling comfortably on the train.

As usual the standard advice stands – drink plenty of water and eat well. On most train services there is a carriage which offer beverages and miscellaneous foods, but this if often at an inflated price. It’s best before you travel to stop off at a nearby supermarket or convenience store and stocking up on goodies for choice and prices. As train journeys can be monotonous, bring along some reading material can be a world of good, as well as a charged up iPod or smart phones (in some cases wifi service may be available on the train or at the station).

Train services:
– Dining cars

Overnight / Long train journeys

Types of train
– Day Trains (First or second class)
– High speed train (First or second class)
Types of sleeping
– Sleepers
– Couchettes
Reclinign seats

This wiki provides a good reference on how to remain comfortable when taking your train journey: http://www.wikihow.com/Have-a-Comfortable-%26-Safe-Rail-Journey-in-Europe

divide


Train Travel Safety

Whilst train travel is considered a safer choice, you should never be complacent in addressing your own security. As mentioned before, luggage security is a major aspect and this can be remedied by securing your luggage to the train infrastructure in the luggage hold.

Most trains (especially high speed trains) have security cameras and even TV screens for your references, which is a welcome addition.

Like in flight, if you fancy a sleep on the train, don’t leave yourself open to be compromised by potential thieves – especially if travelling solo. So try to keep your belongings at hand and if left in the overhead lockers, then lock up your luggage. Your aim is to try minimising your risk as much as possible. If you see anyone acting (what you would consider) suspicious on the train, discreetly inform a train attendant or worker. Better safe than sorry.

One issue which we faced was safety in the actual train station. As you would imagine if you are wandering the station with a lot of luggage, it can make you a target for thieves and scammers.

An example is like in Naples main train station in Italy, where we were hassled by a beyond shady guy, who had then approached us if we needed a taxi. Note: Naples is not considered a relatively safe city in Europe due to levels of crime. After subsequently declining, they did not stop to follow us and we could then spot their colleagues in crime around. In this case we found the security staff and informed them of the situation – then awaited the people to wander away. It turns out the guy was known to police for past criminal discretions.

If strangers (which your intuition tells you are suspicious) approach you, assert yourself. If they persist, then try to find a place away from the situation (eg ticket offices, retail stores).

divide


Luggage

Managing luggage whilst travelling by train can pose some problems, especially as space is tight. This is especially the case if you’ve booked an overnight cabin on your journey (in our case it was from Venice, Italy to Vienna, Austria where you literally have to play Tetris if you dare have more than one standard sized luggage bag.

On the other hand (again sing the example of Europe), if travelling by intercity rail or fast train, then usually there is sufficient space in the luggage hold areas (usually located near the entrances of the train doors). It can get pretty full if you arrive close to the boarding time, so it’s advisable if you have more than one bag to get in early. There are also overhead baggage compartments above your seat and also under your seat, but this only suits carryon luggage (think flying and the carryon luggage). If putting your luggage in the luggage hold, as it’s not in close proximity to your seat, there is the risk that your belongings may stray if not made secure.

From firsthand experience travelling on the high speed trains in Italy, we brought along a cheap dog leash (metal core) and also a travel combination lock. We threaded the leash through the luggage handles and then secured it around the metal bars which make up the luggage hold support, with the combination lock. Obviously of course you would have put locks on your actual luggage too and a bright coloured luggage strap helps too, to identify your luggage. This way you can be assured you luggage is there when you are about disembark at your destination, even after the train has stopped along the way. You don’t have to use a leash (this was just a cheap practical option which we thought up, but generally any mechanism which will secure your luggage to the train infrastructure.

These links provide a good reference on your own personal security and safety, whilst also your luggage:

divide


On the train

So you’ve booked your train travel and you’re ready to board. At first it can be a bit confusing as to which carriage you are meant to be on, but your train ticket should disclose this clearly and you will also find information assistants wandering around the platform. The nature of trains are that there are varying classes (like flying) and if you think you can get away by sneaking into a superior class on the train – think again. During the journey there is a train attendant whom checks all the tickets of the passengers and you may face consequences if you are caught, let alone awkwardness when you are kicked out of the carriage. It’s just not worth it, so if you’re not sure, then ask.

You’ll find more tips on rail travel here:  http://wikitravel.org/en/Tips_for_rail_travel

divide


Booking train travel

Train travel prices are quite competitive (especially in the European market where train travel is considered more convenient). As personal preference, I always pre book my train tickets from back at home, but many may chose to book when they arrive. For smaller intercity journeys it may be ok, but for inter-country journeys it’s advantageous to prebook due to space and pricing.

In Europe, ticketing is quite efficient and there are even self serve computer kiosks where you can arrange your travel. Ideally it’s best to go to the actual counter, where you can ask questions and prevent the possibility of yourself booking an incorrect ticket. This may be why the train counters are often busy (especially in peak travel times).

Some great train booking agencies are ‘Train Providers, Booking and Information’ section below.

Within each website is a vast amount of information, such as train station maps, journey maps, times of arrival and departures and also general options you can consider. It also links with the actual service providers in each country. From past use, Rail Europe have been a competitively priced pick as through the year they run sales and have an easy to use booking system. In the users account you will have a ‘wallet’ where it discloses all the train tickets you have purchased.


Disruptions to travel / Passenger rights

Europe Travel passenger rights – Rail – http://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/travel/passenger-rights/rail/index_en.htm

divide


Train Tips

divide


Train Providers, Booking and Information.

Note: All the below train resources are inter-city services (Longhaul to mid haul) between major cities, not metropolitan train systems. For metropolitan rail services, refer to the ‘Regional Reference page’ within each country section.

 

Some websites of the actual train providers are listed within the links in the relevant regions below.


Train / Rail Links

General Worldwide

Information / Booking Portals

ACP Rail – https://www.acprail.com/
– Rail passes – https://www.acprail.com/rail-passes/
– Train tickets – https://www.acprail.com/train-tickets
– destinations – https://www.acprail.com/destinations
– Blog – https://www.acprail.com/blog/

 

Infinity holidays – Rail (Booking agency) – http://www.infinityholidays.com.au/rail

Rail Bookers – Australia – https://www.railbookers.com.au/

 

– Guides and brochures – https://www.railplus.com.au/downloads/brochures/

– Great train journeys of the world – https://www.railplus.com.au/great-train-journeys/
– Rail passes by country – https://www.railplus.com.au/rail-passes-by-country/
– Rail timetables – https://www.railplus.com.au/rail-planning-tools/rail-timetables/

  • Rome2Rio (http://www.rome2rio.com) – inland Ferry and Marine travel options, addition to its offerings of flight, rail and other travel mode options.

Trainline – https://www.thetrainline.com/
– Live departures – https://www.thetrainline.com/live
– Blog – http://blog.thetrainline.com/

Wikipedia – Airport rail link – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airport_rail_link
Wikipedia – Airport people mover systems – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_airport_people_mover_systems Wikipedia – High speed rail – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-speed_rail
Wikipedia – High speed railway line – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-speed_railway_line
Wikipedia – List of high speed railway lines – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_high-speed_railway_lines
Wikipedia – List of high speed trains – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_high-speed_trains

Wikipedia – List of Railway companies (Operators by country) – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_railway_companies
Wikipedia – List of Railway companies by Country (Category)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Railway_companies_by_country

Wikipedia – List of transport companies by country – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Transport_companies_by_country

Wikipedia (Rail transport by country – systems) – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_transport_by_country

Wikipedia – Proposed rail infrastructure by country – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Proposed_rail_infrastructure_by_country
Wikipedia – Proposed railway lines by country – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Proposed_railway_lines_by_country


Australia, New Zealand and Pacific

Information / Booking Portals

Rail pass information / options:

Notable Train Journeys

    • Coastal Pacific – Christchurch and Picton, New Zealand

Glenbrook Vintage Steam Train – New Zealand

    • Kuranda Scenic Rail – Cairns, Queensland

Melbourne to Sydney sleeper service – NSW countrylink.
Northern Explorer Train – Auckland to Wellington, New Zealand

Seasider Train – Dunedin, New Zealand
Spirit of Queensland – Brisbane to Cairns, Queensland
Spirit of the outback – Brisbane to Longreach, Queensland
Taieri Gorge Railway – New Zealand

Journey Beyond Rail
https://journeybeyondrail.com.au/ – Brochure – https://journeybeyondrail.com.au/contact/view-brochure/

– Journeys- https://journeybeyondrail.com.au/journeys/
    • The Ghan (Adelaide–Alice Springs–Darwin): 1 round trip per week
    • The Indian Pacific (Sydney–Adelaide–Perth): 1 round trip per week
    • The Overland (Melbourne–Adelaide): 2 round trips per week
    • Great Southern

      Tilt Train – Brisbane to Rockhampton, Queensland
      Trans Australian Railway – Port Augusta in South Australia to Kalgoorlie in Western Australia
      TranzAlpine Train – Between Christchurch and Greymouth through the Southern Alps.

      Providers (Also Booking)

       

        • – Northern Explorer, Interislander, Coastal Pacific and TranzAlpine.

       

      – XPT Regional trains – https://transportnsw.info/regional/regional-train-fleet-facilities/xpt-regional-trains


      Asia

      Information / Booking Portals

        • China Railways –

       

        • Cambodiarailways –

       

       

        • Hong Kong Railways –

       

        • Indian railways –

       

      Indonesia railways –
      Japan railways –

      Japan train planning – Jorudan – http://www.plannerjorudan.co.jp/English

      • JP Rail (General Japan rail Information) – http://jprail.com/
      • JR Central (Nagoya and Fuji Region – Rail Operator) – http://english.jr-central.co.jp/
      • JR East (Tokyo Region – CBD and regional – Rail Operator) – http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/ and rail pass – http://www.Jreast.co.jp/e/eastpass

      • JR Hokkaido (Hokkaido Island – Rail Operator) – http://www2.jrhokkaido.co.jp/global/
      • JR Kyushu (Kyushu Island – Rail Operator) – https://www.jrkyushu.co.jp/english/
      • JR Shikoku (Shikoku Island – Rail Operator) – http://jr-shikoku.co.jp/global/en/
      • JR West (Kansai Region) – https://www.westjr.co.jp/global/en/

      Korean rail (South Korea) – http://www.letskorail.com/
      Laos Railways –
      Malaysia Railways
      Myanmar railways –
      Philippines railways –
      Sri Lanka railways –

      Taiwan high speed rail – http://www.thsrc.com.tw
      Taiwan railways – http://www.railway.gov.tw
      Thailand railways –

      Vietname Railways –

      Rail pass information / options:

      KOREA

      Pass types:

      Korea Rail Pass

      Pass classes:
      Standard Class only

      Pass length:
      Consequetive pass – 1, 3, 5, 7 consecutive days
      Flexi Pass – 2 or 4 days within a 10 day period

      Benefits:
      – Use on all Korean train lines

      Seat reservation:
      – Included in price
      – Reserve locally in Korea

      JAPAN

      Pass types: (8)
      Japan Rail Pass
      Unlimited travel on Japan railways, affiliated buses and ferries.

      JR East Pass – Nagano, Niigata Area
      The JR East Nagano Niigata Area Pass provides unlimited travel on JR trains in the Greater Tokyo area, in Nagano and Niigata prefectures and in the Shonai Region of Yamagata Prefecture

      JR East Pass – Tohoku Area
      The JR East Tohoku area has many natural attractions. In addition to the abundance of natural beauty and quality hot springs, there are numerous national treasures and historical World Heritage Sites.

      JR Hokkaido Pass
      Rail travel on the Island of Hokkaido. Visit the capital Sapporo famous for the snow festival.

      JR Kyushu Rail Pass
      Rail travel on the island of Kyushu.

      JR Northern Kyushu Pass
      This Pass covers rail in the Northern part of the Island of Kyushu

      JR Kansai Wide Area Rail Pass
      For travel in the Kansai Area: Shiga,Tsuruga, the Nankai Area, the Okayama Area and Kinosaki-Onsen.

      JR All Shikoku Rail Pass
      Travel freely in Shikoku by train

      Pass classes:
      – Green Pass (Superior – exlcuding private compartments and sleepers)
      – Ordinary Pass – (Standard class)

      Pass length:
      7, 14, or 21 consecutive days

      Benefits:
      Unlimited travel on JR Network
      – Require to still buy train tickets in metro city areas.
      – Travel on shinkansen (Except nozomi fastest service)

      Seat reservation:
      – Included
      – Reserve seats made in Japan in JR rail office

      Notable Train Journeys

          • 21st Century steam – Java, Indonesia

       

      Darjeeling Himalayan Railway – india
      Deccan Odyssey (Ex Mumbai) – India
      Delhi to Nepal

            • Eastern and Oriental Express – Singapore to Bangkok, Thailand

      Janakpur Railway – India and Nepal
      Khyber pass railway – Pakistan
      Nilgiri Mountain railway – India
      Seven stars – Kyushu, Japan

      Golden Chariot – Two routes (Ex Bangalore) – The Pride of the South and The Southern Splendor – India
      Kyushu Japan train –
      Maharajas’ Express- Delhi to Mumbai, India (And 5 other routings.
      Nagano to Minami (Resort Hybrid Scenic Train) – Japan
      Palace on Wheels (Departs Delhi)

      Royal Rajasthan on Wheels – (Ex Delhi) – India

      Seven stars Railway – Japan

          • Shinkansen (Bullet train) – Such as Osaka / Kyoto to Tokyo, Japan

      – Includes the new super fast chuo Shinkansen trains

      Current routes:
      Akita Shinkansen: Tokyo – Sendai – Morioka – Tazawako – Kakunodate – Akita.
      Hokkaido Shinkansen: Aomori – Kikonai – Hakodate (Hakodate-Hokuto Station). – http://www2.jrhokkaido.co.jp/global/english/shinkansen/index.html
      Joetsu Shinkansen: Tokyo – Takasaki – Echigo-Yuzawa – Niigata.
      Kyushu Shinkansen: Fukuoka (Hakata Station) – Shin-Tosu – Kumamoto – Sendai – Kagoshima.

      Hokuriku (Nagano) Shinkansen: Tokyo – Takasaki – Karuizawa – Nagano – Toyama – Kanazawa.
      Sanyo Shinkansen: Osaka – Kobe – Okayama – Hiroshima – Kokura – Fukuoka (Hakata Station).
      Tohoku Shinkansen: Tokyo – Nasushiobara – Koriyama – Sendai – Morioka – Aomori.

      Tokaido Shinkansen: Tokyo – Yokohama – Nagoya – Kyoto – Osaka.
      Yamagata Shinkansen: Tokyo – Fukushima – Yonezawa – Akayu – Kaminoyama-Onsen – Yamagata – Shinjo.

      Planned route/s:
      Chuo Shinkansen (Shorter cutting across track): Tokyo – Kanagawa – Yamanashi – Nagano – Gifu – Nagoya – Osaka

      Shiki shima train suite – Luxury train – Tokyo to the Tohoku and Hokkaido regions – Japan – https://www.jreast.co.jp/shiki-shima/en/

      Yangon to Mandalay – Myanmar (Burma)
      Providers (Also Booking)

      Twilight express – Japan night train – http://twilightexpress-mizukaze.jp/en/index.html


      Americas (North, Central and South)

      Information / Booking Portals

      Wanderu (North america train booking portal) – https://www.wanderu.com/

      RailPlus – Canada – https://www.railplus.com.au/canada-by-rail/train-tickets/
      Railplus – USA – https://www.railplus.com.au/usa-by-rail/usa-train-tickets/

      Rail pass information / options:

      CANADA

      A) Canrailpass – System (Entire VIA network)

      Canrailpass – System Base
      10 trips in 60 days
      7 trips in 60 days

      Canrailpass – System Extra
      7 trips in 60 days
      10 trips in 60 days

      Canrailpass – System Unlimited
      Unlimited trips in 60 days

      Details: https://www.railplus.com.au/canada-by-rail/rail-passes/canrailpass-system/details.htm

      B) Canrailpass – Corridor (Quebec & Ontario)

      Canrailpass – Corridor Base
      7 trips in 21 days
      10 trips in 21 days

      Canrailpass – Corridor Extra
      7 trips in 21 days
      10 days in 21 days

      Canrailpass – Corridor Unlimited
      Unlimited trips in 21 days

      Details: https://www.railplus.com.au/canada-by-rail/rail-passes/canrailpass-corridor/prices-info.htm

      UNITED STATES

      USA Rail pass

      Segments – city to city.

      – 8 segments over 15 days
      – 12 segments over 30 days
      – 18 segments over 45 days

      Classes:
      Coach (Economy)
      Business
      First class

      Sleeper options:
      Superliner roomette
      Viewliner roomette
      Superliner / viewliner bedroom
      Superliner / viewliner bedroom suite
      superliner family bedroom

      Notable Train Journeys

            • Acela Express – Washington – New York – Boston (1st Class and Business Class), United States.

       

      Adirondack – Montreal – Albany – New York, Canada / United States

      Amtrak Cascades – Vancouver – Seattle – Tacoma – Portland – Salem – Eugene, United States / Canada

          • Andean Explorer – Between Cuzco and Lake Titicaca, Peru

      Bennett Scenic Journey – Return day trip from Skagway, Alaska – USA

      California Zephyr – Chicago – Denver – Emeryville, CA (San Francisco), United States.

      Canadian (The) – Vancouver – Jasper – Edmonton – Toronto (Coast to Coast), Canada
      Capitol Limited – Washington DC – Cleveland – Chicago, United States.

      City of New Orleans – Chicago-Memphis-New Orleans, United States

      Coastal classic – Alaska
      Coast Starlight – Seattle – Portland – Oakland (San Francisco) – Los Angeles, United States.

      Copper Canyon railway, Mexico
      Corridor Service (Eastern) – Montreal – Ottawa – Quebec – Toronto – Niagara Falls (East Coast) Canada

      Crescent – New York – Atlanta – New Orleans, United States.

      Cumbres and Toltee Railroad – USA
      Denali star – Alaska

            • Direct-to-the-Wilderness rail service – Alaska

      Durango and Silverton Railroad – USA
      Empire Builder – Chicago – St Paul – Seattle/Portland, United States.
      Empire Service- New York – Albany – Syracuse – Rochester – Buffalo – Niagara, United States.

      Explorer (The) – Cuzco to Machu Picchu
      Ferrocarril Central Andino – Peru
      Ferrocarril del sur – Peru
      Glacier discovery – Alaska
      Guyaquil and Quito Railway – Ecuador
      Hiram Bingham Express – (Between Poroy and Macchu Piccu) Peru
      Jasper-Prince Rupert train – Jasper to Prince Rupert, (West Coast) Canada
      Keystone Service – New York – Philadelphia – Harrisburg, United States.

      Lima to Huancayo train, Peru

          • Lake Shore Limited – New York/Boston – Albany – Chicago, United States.

       

            • La Trochita – Argentina

       

            • Maple Leaf – New York City – Niagara Falls – Toronto, United States / Canada

       

          • McKinley Explorer – Alaska

      Montréal–Gaspé train – Canada (Suspended)

      Nariz del diablo Train – Quito to Guayaquil scenic train – Ecuador
      Northeast Regional – Boston – Providence/Springfield – Hartford – New York – Washington DC – Richmond – Lynchburg/Newport News – Virginia Beach, United States.

      Ocean (The) – Montréal-Halifax, (East Coast) Canada
      Pacific Surfliner – San Luis Obispo – Santa Barbara – Los Angeles – San Diego, United States.

      Patagonia Express, Argentina.
      Pennsylvanian – New York – Pittsburgh, United States.

      PeruRail’s Vistadome: Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu (return)

            • Rocky Mountaineer (Privately owned)-
              – Vancouver to Lake Louise or Banff

      – Rainforest to gold rush – Vancouver – Whistler – Quesnel – jasper
      – Journey through the clouds – Vancouver to Kamloops – Jasper

            • – Coastal Passage – Seattle USA, to Vancouver, Canada – Then connects to all other routes.

      Two Classes – Gold leaf or Silver leaf.

      San Joaquin – San Francisco Bay Area/Sacramento – Bakersfield/Southern California, United States.

      Silver Service – New York – Washington, DC – Charleston – Savannah – Jacksonville – Orlando – Tampa/Miami, United States

      Southwest Chief – Chicago – Albuquerque – Los Angeles, United States

      Sunset Limited – New Orleans – Houston – San Antonio – Los Angeles, United States

      Sugar cane steam – Cuba
      Texas Eagle – Chicago – St Louis – Dallas – San Antonio – Los Angeles, United States

      Tren Crucero – Ecuador

      Vermonter & Ethan Allen Express – Washington/New York – St Albans, New York – Rutland, United States

      Vistadome – Cuzco to Macchu Picchu – Peru
      White Pass and Yukon Railroad – USA / Canada
      Winnipeg-Churchill train – (West Coast) Canada

      Providers (Also Booking)

      – Blog – https://blog.viarail.ca/

      Inca Rail – http://www.incarail.com/


      Europe

      Information / Booking Portals

       

      – Interrail (Europe train passes) – http://www.interrail.eu/

      European rail guide – Maps – http://www.europeanrailguide.com/maps

      Go Euro (Train booking portal) – http://www.goeuro.com/trains/

      Loco 2 (European train booking) – https://loco2.com/

      – Interactive travel map – http://www.raileurope.com.au/plan-your-trip/interactive-travel-map/
      – Journey insights – http://www.raileurope.com.au/train-tickets/journey-insights/
      – Rail passes – http://www.raileurope.com.au/train-tickets/rail-passes/
      – Travel ideas and itineraries- http://www.raileurope.com.au/plan-your-trip/travel-ideas-and-itineraries/
      – Train tickets – http://www.raileurope.com.au/train-tickets/train-tickets/

      Rail Plus – Trains in Europe – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/trains-in-europe/
      – Europe seat and bed reservations portal – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/seat-and-bed-reservations/general-information.htm

      Rail pass information / options:

      European overall region:

      Railplus – Europe by rail – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/

      Seat 61 – EU Rail pass guide – https://www.seat61.com/Railpass-and-Eurail-pass-guide.htm

      Eurail Global Flexi Pass – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/eurail-passes/eurail-global-flexi-pass/prices-info.htm

      Fare lengths:
      5 days in 1 month
      7 days in 1 month
      10 days in 2 months
      15 days in 2 months

      Eurail Global Continuous Pass – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/eurail-passes/eurail-global-consecutive-pass/prices-info.htm

      Fare Lengths:

      5 days continuous
      22 days continuous
      1 month continuous
      2 months continuous
      3 months continuous

      For Both of the above pass types:

      Classes –
      First class – Adult, Youth, 60+ saver, Saverpass
      Second class – Youth

      Fare types:
      Adult
      Adult Saver: 2-5 people travelling together at all times
      Child: 4 – 11 years (Children travel FREE and must be accompanied by an adult. Maximum 2 FREE children per adult)
      Rail Plus 60+ Saver*: Must be over 60 years of age and 2-5 people travelling together at all times
      Youth: 12 – 27 years inclusive

      High Speed and premier trains require seat reservations.

      Countries you can explore are Austria, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland (Republic), Italy, Luxembourg, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.

      Eurail Select Pass (2 Countries) – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/eurail-passes/eurail-select-pass-2-countries/prices-info.htm
      Eurail Select Pass (3 Countries) – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/eurail-passes/eurail-select-pass-3-countries/prices-info.htm
      Eurail Select Pass (4 Countries) – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/eurail-passes/eurail-select-pass-4-countries/prices-info.htm

      Fare types:

      Adult
      Adult Saver: 2-5 people travelling together at all times
      Child: 4 – 11 years (Children travel FREE and must be accompanied by an adult. Maximum 2 FREE children per adult)
      Rail Plus 60+ Saver*: Must be over 60 years of age and 2-5 people travelling together at all times
      Youth: 12 – 27 years inclusive

      Countries selected need to be bordering countries.

      Participating countries: Austria; Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg); Bulgaria; Serbia & Montenegro; Croatia/Slovenia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Finland; France; Germany; Greece; Hungary; Italy; Norway; Portugal; Republic of Ireland; Romania; Slovakia; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland and Turkey (Liechtenstein is considered part of Austria)

      Specific Regions:

      Balkan flexi Pass
      – Bulgaria, Bosnia Herzegovina, Macedonia, Greece, Serbia, Montenegro, Romania and Turkey.
      – 3, 5,7, 10 or 15 days of travel in two month period.
      – 1st and second class

      Central Europe Triangle pass
      – Austria, Slovakia, czech republic and Hungary
      on routes:
      – Vienna to Prague, Prague to budapest, Budapest to vienna
      – Vienna to Prague, Prague to Salzburg, salzburg to Vienna

      Eastern European Pass
      – Austria, Czech republic, Hungary and slovakia
      – 1st or second class
      – 5 to 10 days of travel within a 1 month period
      – Consequentively or non-consequetively

      Scandinavia – Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland
      – 3,4,5,or 8 days within a 1 month period
      – 1st or second class

      Individual / Single Countries passes:

      Railplus – Single country passes – https://www.railplus.com.au/europe-by-rail/eurail-passes/eurail-single-country-passes/

      AUSTRIA

      BENELUX – Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg
      – 3,4,5,or 8 days within a 1 month period
      – 1st or second class

      BULGARIA

      CROATIA

      CZECH REPUBLIC

      DENMARK

      FINLAND

      FRANCE

      Eurail France Pass
      – 1st class or 2nd class
      – 3,4,5,8 days in one month period
      – Consequentially or non consequentially
      – Unlimited travel on each day
      Reservations – Reservation cost included, Prereserve online for TGV fast trains (Compulsory)

      GERMANY

      GREECE

      Eurail Greek islands pass
      – Ferry from italy and return
      – Ferry travel between islands

      HUNGARY

      IRELAND

      ITALY

      Eurail Italy pass
      – 1st class or 2nd class
      – 3,4,5,8 days in one month period
      – Consequentially or non consequentially
      – Unlimited travel on each day
      Reservations – Reservation cost included, Prereserve online for Trenitalia fast trains (Compulsory)

      NORWAY

      POLAND

      PORTUGAL

      ROMANIA

      SLOVAKIA

      SLOVENIA

      SPAIN

      SWEDEN

      SWITZERLAND
      – Swiss Travel Passes
      Consecutive OR flex types.
      Unlimited travel on trains, boats and buslines – also selected public transport
      – Includes Glacier express
      – Free entry to exhibitions and museums
      50% reduction on most mountain top trains and cable cars

      Swiss Transfer ticket
      – One inbound rail journey from swiss airport or border town to a single city in Switzerland – and return. Must be completed in one day.

      Swiss half fare card
      – 50% discount on point to point tickets.

      UNITED KINGDOM

      Classes: First or second class

      Fare timing
      – Anytime
      – Offpeak (weekends and after 10am weekdays)
      – Advance purchase – (Open 12 weeks prior)
      Britrail Consecutive Pass

      England, Scotland and Wales. The Britrail Consecutive Pass is valid for any 4, 8, 15, 22 days or 1 month of consecutive travel

      Britrail Flexi Pass

      England, Scotland and Wales. The Britrail Flexi Pass is valid for any 3, 4, 8 or 15 days unlimited travel within a 1 month period. Travel days may be used consecutively or non-consecutively.

      England Consecutive Pass

      England only. The Britrail England Consecutive Pass is valid for any 3, 4, 8, 15, 22 days or 1 months consecutive travel.

      England Flexi Pass

      England only. The Britrail England Flexi Pass is valid for any 3, 4, 8 or 15 days unlimited travel within a 1 month period. Travel days may be used consecutively or non-consecutively.

      South West Consecutive Pass

      Travel in the south west of England and Wales. The Britrail South West Consecutive Pass is valid for any 3, 4, 8, 15, 22 days or 1 months consecutive travel.

      South West Flexi Pass

      Travel in the south west of England and Wales. The Britrail South West Flexi Pass is valid for any 3, 4, 8 or 15 days unlimited travel within a 1 month period. Travel days may be used consecutively or non-consecutively.

      London Plus Pass

      The convenient way to see the south east of England. The Britrail London Plus Pass is a Flexi Pass valid for unlimited travel for any 3, 4 & 8 days in 1 month. Travel days may be used consecutively or non-consecutively.

      Spirit of Scotland Pass

      Explore Scotland – the land of lochs and legends. The Britrail Scottish Freedom Pass is a Flexi Pass valid for unlimited travel for any 4 days in 8 days or 8 days travel within 15 days. Travel days may be used consecutively or non consecutively.

      Central Scotland Pass

      Visit some of the famous spots in Scotland’s central belt. Perfect for ‘days-out’ trips from Glasgow or Edinburgh. Valid for any 3 days within 7 days.

      Scottish Highlands Pass

      Unlimited travel around the Highlands and North of Scotland. The Britrail Scottish Highlands Pass is a Flexi Pass valid for unlimited travel for any 4 days within 8 days. Travel days may be used consecutively or non consecutively.

      More details:
      Rail Plus – https://www.railplus.com.au/uk-by-rail/britrail-passes/

      Europe Night Sleeper trains:

      Berlin Night Express (http://www.snalltaget.se/en) : Berlin-Malmo, Sweden

      Caledonia Sleeper (Scotland) (https://www.sleeper.scot/) : London-Fort William, London-Inverness, London-Aberdeen, London-Glasgow, London-Edinburgh

      City Night Line (by DB – Germany)(http://www.bahn.com/i/view/GBR/en/prices/europe/overnight-travel.shtml): Amsterdam-Innsbruck, Amsterdam-Zurich, Hamburg-Zurich, Munich-Hamburg, Berlin-Zurich, Prague-Zurich, Munich-Berlin, Munich-Rome, Munich-Milan, Munich-Venice, Oberhausen-Prague

      Europe Nightjet Trains (By OEBB – Austria) – (https://www.oebb.at/en/angebote-ermaessigungen/nightjet): Vienna-Rome, Vienna-Livorno, Vienna-Venice, Vienna-Milan, Vienna-Hamburg, Vienna-Dusseldorf, Vienna-Zurich, Graz-Zurich, Villach-Zurich, Vienna-Danzig, Vienna-Krakow, Budapest-Bucharest, Cologne-Warsaw, Munich-Budapest, Zagreb-Munich, Berlin-Budapest and more.

      Hellas Express: Belgrade-Thessaloniki (reservations can be made only at European rail stations)

      Intercites de Nuit (http://intercites.voyages-sncf.com/train/intercites-nuit): Paris-Nice, Paris-Irun, Paris-Albi, Paris-Savoie, Paris-Briancon, Paris-Portbou, Luxembourg City-Nice, Luxembourg City-Portbou, Strasbourg-Nice, Strasbourg-Portbou

      Night Riviera Sleeper (https://www.firstgreatwestern.co.uk/your-journey/night-riviera-sleeper): London-Penzance

      Paris-Moscow Express (http://rzd.ru/): Paris-Moscow

      SJ (https://www.sj.se/sj/jsp/polopoly.jsp?d=18877&l=en): Gothenburg-Ostersund, Gothenburg-Lulea, Stockholm-Ostersund, Stockholm-Lulea, Malmo-Stockholm

      Thello (https://www.thello.com/?iLangID=3): Paris-Venice, Marseille-Milan

      Trenhotel (Spain Domestic and international) – (http://www.renfe.com/EN/viajeros/larga_distancia/productos/trenhotel.html): Madrid-Vigo, Madrid-A Coruna, Barcelona-Vigo, Barcelona-A Coruna, Barcelona-Gijon, Barcelona-Granada, (Lusitania) Madrid-Lisbon, Lisbon-Hendaye

      Notable Train Journeys

        • Al Andalus (Ex Seville) – Spain – Various routes
        • Alburla Railway – Switzerland

       

      • Arlbergline – Arlberg Line runs between Innsbruck and Bludenz, Austria.
      • Bergen Railway – Between Bergen and Oslo, Norway
      • Bernina Express – Chur or St Moritz to Tirano, Switzerland.
        • Black Forest Lines – Offenburg to Konstanz AND Freiburg to Seebrug, Germany.

      British Pullman – UK

          • Central Alps round trip (BUS) – (June to October Only)- Meiringen–(Grimsel)–(Nufenen)–(Gotthard)–(Susten)–Meiringen

       

        • Centovalli Railway – Between Locarno, Switzerland and Domosossola, Italy.

      Cheese Train Switzerland – Montreux-Château-d’Oex

        • Chemins de fer de la Corse – Corsica, France

       

      • Chocolate Train Switzerland – Montreux to Broc, Switzerland.
      • Cinque Terre Coastal train line – Cinque terre, Italy
      • Danube Express – http://www.danube-express.com/
        – The Transylvanian (eastbound): Budapest – Kecskemét – Sighişoara – Braşov – Veliko Turnovo – Kazanlak – Istanbul
        – The Transylvanian (westbound): Istanbul – Kazanlak – Veliko Turnovo – Braşov – Sighişoara – Kecskemét – Budapest
        – The Bosphorus to the Baltic: Istanbul – Kazanlak – Veliko Turnovo – Braşov – Sighişoara – Kecskemét – Budapest – Košice – Cracow – Wieliczka – Malbork – Gdańsk – Warsaw
        – The Polish Explorer: Warsaw – Malbork – Gdańsk – Kraków – Wieliczka – Košice – Budapest
        – The Istanbul Loop: Budapest – Kecskemét – Sighişoara – Braşov – Veliko Turnovo – Kazanlak – Istanbul – Plovdiv – Sofia – Novi Sad – Budapest

      Dublin to Rosslare Harbour – Ireland –
      Duoro Valley – Portugal

      El Expreso de La Robla – Two routes (Ex Bilbao) – Northern Spain
      – La Robla Route, which is available in spring and
      autumn through Castile and León
      – Green Paradise Route,
      which traverses Cantabria and Asturias in the summer months

      El Transcantàbrico (Ex Santiago de Compostela – Two routes) – Spain
      – Santiago de Compostela to León
      – Santiago de Compostela to San Sebastian.

      Ferrocarril de soller – Majorca, Spain

        • Flåm (Flåmsbana) Railway – Between Myrdal and Flam, Norway.

      Geneva to Vienna

      • Glacier Express – Zermatt to St Moritz, Switzerland.
      • Golden Eagle from Moscow (Russia) to Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia)
            • Goldenpass Line – Lucerne to Montreux (Via Interlaken), Switzerland.</li
              Gornergrat Railway – Zermatt–Gornergrat – SwitzerlandGotthard Base tunnel route – Bellinzonia (Italy) to Lucerne (Switzerland)

      Gotthard Panorama express – Lucerene (Boat) to fluelen to Bellinzona / Lugano

      Grand Hibernian – Ireland

              • Harz Mountains Narrow Gorge – Germany

       

            • Inlandsbanan scenic train – Kristinehamn to Gällivare , Sweden.Island of Man Narrow Gauge – Island of Man – UK

      Jura round trip (Watch Train) – Neuchâtel–La Chaux-de-Fonds–Glovelier–Delémont–Neuchâtel, Switzerland.

      Lavaux-Simplon-Centovalli Line – Geneva to Brig to Locarno, Switzerland

            • Le Petit train – Jaune – France
      • Le Train des Pignes Scenic Train – Nice to Digne-les-Bains, Provence, France

      Lötschberg Mountain Route and Centovalli – RegioExpress Lötschberger: Bern to Brig then Centovalli Train: Domodossola (Italy)–Locarno
      Lucerne-Interlaken Express – Switzerland

          • Museumstoomtram Hoorn Medemblik scenic train – 20km through tulip fields between the villages of Hoorn and Medemblik, The Netherlands

      Northern Belle – UK

      • Pre Alpine express – St Gallen to Lucerne, Switzerland
          • Rauma Line – Dombås to Åndalsnes, Norway.
          • Red Arrow – St Petersburg to Moscow, Russia.
          • Rhine Valley Line – Koblenz to Mainz, Germany.

      Rigi Round trip – Luzern–Vitznau–Rigi Kulm, Switzerland

      Rome to Syracuse Train – Italy (Train gets loaded onto ferry to cross the strait of messina

      • Royal Scotsman Train service – Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom.
            • Settle to Carlisle Line – England – UK

       

          • Semmering Bahn – Glognitz to Semmering, Austria.

      Switzerland mountain trains
      – cogwheel railway train
      – panorama aerial cableway

      – Rigi
      Pilatus
      Schynige Platte
      Stanserhorn
      Titlis
      Gornergrat
      Matterhorn Glacier Paradies
      Harder Kulm
      First
      Schilthorn
      Monte Bre
      San Salvatore
      Brienzer Rothorn
      Glacier 3000 – Les Diablerets
      Montreux–Glion–Rochers-de-Naye railway
      Interlaken to Grindelwald / Lauterbrunnend / Wengen
      Linthal to Barunwald

      – Jungfraujoch scenic train – Interlaken to Jungfraujoch, Switzerland
      – Switzerland mountain train tunnels and infrastructure programme – https://www.alptransit.ch/en/home/

      Three City Line – Lucerne to Chur (Via Zurich), Switzerland

        • Thuringian Forest – Germany

       

        • Tran-Siberian Railway Express – Moscow to Vladivostok, Russia.

      Transcantabrico Gran Lujo – San Sebastian to Santiago de Compostela, Spain
      Thuringian Forest – Germany

      Venice Simplon Orient express – Paris to Istanbul (Via Venice) (also other routings).
      Volalpen Express – St Gallen to Lucerne

        • Welsh Highland Railway – Wales, UK
          • West Highland line – Scotland, UK

       

        • Wilhelm tell express – Lugano or Locarno to Lucerne, Switzerland.

      Wolsztyn to Pozan and Leszno – Polan

      Providers (Also Booking)

      – Travel information – http://www.eurostar.com/uk-en/travel-info
      – Fares – http://www.eurostar.com/web/uk-en/travel-info/travel-planning/eurostar-fares-and-fees
      – Service information – http://www.eurostar.com/rw-en/travel-info/service-information

      – Classes – Business premier, Standard premier, Standard class.

      – Destinations: French Alps (Seasonal – Bourg St Maurice, Moûtiers, Aim la plagne), Avignon, marseille, Lyon, paris, Lille, London, Ebbsfleet (UK), Ashford (UK), Brussels, Marne la valle (Disneyland Paris), .
      – Future destinations: Antwerp, Amsterdam – City, Amsterdam – Schiphol airport)

      Ticketing: – Rail passholder fares (One day off pass) , child and youth fares.

      Railteam (High speed Europe rail network – Represents brands) – http://www.railteam.eu/en/

      Wikipedia – National railway companies of Europe – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Template:National_railway_companies_of_Europe
      – Eight full members Deutsche Bahn, SNCF, SNCB, Eurostar, NS International, ÖBB, SBB and Thalys and the associated member TGV Lyria

      Wikipedia – List of European railways – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_European_railways Wikipedia – List of Railway companies – Europe – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_railway_companies#Europe Europe – https://www.eurail.com/en/get-inspired/trains-europe/useful-train-information/participating-railway-companies France (SNCF) / Spain (Renfe) – https://www.renfe-sncf.com/rw-en/Pages/Home.aspx

      – Railjet – Fast trains – http://www.oebb.at/en/leistungen-und-services/railjet

      Hello – Austrians trains budget travel train ticket portal – https://www.helloe.com/en/

      Austria Trains (Westbahn) – https://westbahn.at/en

      and https://www.b-europe.com/

      Bosnia Herzegovina (ZFBH) –
      Bulgaria (BDZ) –
      Croatia Trains (HZPP) –

      Finland (VR) –

      Germany trains – DB Bhan – ICE (Intercity express) – https://www.bahn.com/en/view/trains/long-distance/ice-ice-sprinter.shtml

      Hungary (GYSEV) – – http://www2.gysev.hu/

      Ireland (Northern) Trains – (NI Railways) – http://www.translink.co.uk/Services/NI-Railways/

       

      and http://www.fsitaliane.it/homepage_en.html

      and regional trains – http://ferrovieappulolucane.it/en/
      – Frecciarossa trains – link Turin-Milan-Bologna-Rome-Naples-Salerno
      – Frecciargento trains – connect Rome-Venice-Verona-Bari/Lecce-Lamezia Terme / Reggio Calabria on high-speed and traditional lines.
      – Frecciabianca trains – link Milan to Venice, Udine and Trieste; Genoa and Rome; up to Bari and Lecce on conventional railway lines.

      Montenegro (ZCG)-

      and https://www.nsinternational.nl/en

      Netherlands Trains – Private others – Connexxion, Keolis, Syntus, Veolia and DB Regio –
      Norway Trains (NSB) –
      Polan (PKP) –

        • Serbia (SV) –
        • Slovakia (ZSSK) –

       

      Switzerland Trains (BLS) – http://www.bls.ch/e/homepage/index.php
      Switzerland Trains – Various Private – http://www.eurail.com/europe-by-train/switzerland/swiss-railway-companies-included

      Swiss Railways – https://www.swissrailways.com/

      and http://swissau.mytraintravel.com/
      Swiss Train system – Plan your trip – http://swissau.mytraintravel.com/plan-your-trip/
      Swiss Train system – Grand train tour – http://grandtraintour.swisstravelsystem.com/en/

      TGV Lyria (France to Switzerland / Italy / Germany services) – http://www.tgv-lyria.com/en
      Turkey (TCDD) –

      United Kingdom – Virgin trains – https://www.virgintrains.co.uk/

      United Kingdom – List of companies operating trains in the United Kingdom –
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_companies_operating_trains_in_the_United_Kingdom

      UK Train delivery providers – https://www.raildeliverygroup.com/uk-rail-industry/passenger-freight-track.html#tocs

      Africa / Middle East

      Information / Booking Portals

      Rail pass information / options:

      Notable Train Journeys

      Blue Train – Cape town to Pretora, South Africa.

        • Cape town to Kimberly – South Africa
        • Hedjaz Railway – Syria and Jordan
        • Madagascar’s Railway – Madagascar
        • Massawa to Asm,ara – Eritrea

       

      – Cape Town to Dar es Salaam
      – Pretoria to Swakopmund
      – Pretoria to Cape Town
      – Pretoria to Durban
      – Pretoria to Victoria Falls

      Sudan’s railways – Sudan
      Swakopmund to Windhoek – Namibia

      Providers (Also Booking)


      divide


      Train Passes?

      The rail passes in the past have in the past offered the best value but now have become irrelevant for many travellers. To find the best deals it’s all about timing.  Rail operators are increasingly following airlines, with the best deals available to those who book early.  More than 80 per cent of the most popular high-speed rail journeys in Europe must now be reserved in advance –  the further out you book, the less you pay. It’s become easier to book and also cheaper.

      Eurail and other European rail passes are no longer the most cost effective option for many travellers.
      Passes may still be relevant for young people and others who want the ability to change plans but those with set travel dates are better off locking in individual fares. In short – rail passes are more about flexibility than cost savings now.  Rail operators have traditionally opened bookings three months before the travel date but some are extending to four months. Travellers are advised to lock in dates as soon as bookings open, as fares continue to rise towards the departure date.

      Extract from: “The cheap new way to use Europe’s trains”
      November 14, 2013, By Jane E.Fraser – http://www.smh.com.au/travel/the-cheap-new-way-to-use-europes-trains-20131114-2xiyd.html#ixzz2tYM9Qnoc

      divide
      divide


      Links last checked : / /2015


      Important Disclaimer

      Any advice and recommendations given on this website are as a general and informal guide only, taken from practical experience of the owner of this website.

      Any hyperlinks on this website that take you to third-party websites are provided for your reference and convenience only, and do not imply an endorsement of the material on the third-party sites or any association with the owners or operators of those sites.This website does not control any of these third-party sites and is not responsible for their content. You access and use the third-party websites at your own risk.

      Copyright Information

      © Anthony Warren and ‘Life Through the Lens’ 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Anthony Warren and the ‘Life Through the Lens’ Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

      Creative Commons Licence

      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.