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train travel in europe

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train travel in europe

Hello all, i need some advice/help...im going to be visiting Europe in September for 2 months, starting is Oslo and probably ending in Greece (stops in england, france, germany, italy, belgium, morocco, switzerland and czech republic) i want to do all my travels via the trains but not sure if theres just one pass i can buy or what is the best method. Its confusing researching online from the US. Any help is appreciated.


Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: train travel in europe

It is very unlikely that a pass will be worthwhile. You will almost certainly do better by buying ordinary point-to-point tickets direct from the train operators.

Start by reading the excellent advice on www.seat61.com

Quainton, United...
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2. Re: train travel in europe

The gold-plated super-dooper option is to buy a Eurail pass (if you are resident outside Europe). Fully-flexible, but you pay for that. It doesn't 'save' money, it costs money.

Though if you are under 26 years old, the 'youth' 2nd class pass is pretty good value, and worth considering.

Remember with a pass there are still fees to pay in France, Italy, Spain, you can reckon on 10 euros per inter-city journey, so budget for that.. Also in France there's a quota for passholders which is small and often sells out, making it difficult to use a pass in France unless you book well in advance.

The cheap option is to pre-plan an itinerary 2-3 months ahead and pre-book each leg direct with the relevant train operator using cheap advance-purchase tickets.

For example:

Oslo to Copenhagen from 46 euros www.sj.se (Swedish Railways)

Copenhagen to Hamburg from 29 euros www.bahn.de/en (German Railways)

Hamburg to Amsterdam from 39 euros, www.bahn.de/en

Amsterdam to Paris from 35 euros, www.thalys.com or www.b-europe.com

Paris to Nice from 25 euros, Paris-Barcelona from 59 euros or Paris-Turin-Milan from 29 euros, www.capitainetrain.com (easy way to book French Railways)

If it helps bring things into sharp focus, consider a specific journey from Berlin to Amsterdam:

1. Booked in advance at www.bahn.de/en, advance fares start from 39 euros upwards, like budget air fares.

2. Bought on the day, a full-price full-flex ticket is 116 euros.

3. An adult Eurail pass works out at perhaps 60 euros per day, that's 1st class as there's no 2nd class version.

4. A youth 2nd class Eurail works out at perhaps 40 euros per day.

Pass rates vary, as the longer the pass, the less it works out as on a per day basis.

So, now we can state what should be obvious...

Is a pass the cheap way to go? No, buying a 39 euro advance ticket is the cheap way to go.

Should you buy a pass at all? No, if you can commit to a no-refunds no-changes 39 euro cheap ticket you can get 2-3 months ahead, but yes if you demand flexibility and want to save over the 116 euro fare you'd have to pay for a flexible ticket or one bought on the day of travel. And yes if you're under 26 as this gives unlimited travel flexibility, probably worth the few euros more than the cheapest ticket to have that back-up and flexibility.

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3. Re: train travel in europe

Do you really mean Morocco? It is not in Europe and you can't get there by train from Europe! Monaco perhaps?

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4. Re: train travel in europe

Sorry for including MOROCCO, taking the ferry there from Spain. If you have any comments/assistance regarding the train travel for the other countries listed it would be a big help.

I'm leaning towards the advice I've received about pre-booking each leg individual tickets from man-in-seat-61. BTW, thank you sir for that great information!

5. Re: train travel in europe

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