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Booking trains on Renfe

Melbourne, Australia
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34 posts
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Booking trains on Renfe

Despite reading all I can find about using the Renfe site (including the train sticky & the man in seat61), and helpful advice from people here, we are still struggling with bookings. We seem to be only getting the "top of the range" AVE very fast trains coming up when we search the options to book on a particular route, which is giving us very few alternatives. I have heard about "media distancia" trains: can someone tell me how to get these up on screen to consider?....Maybe there is something we're not doing right.

Thank you all,

Kay

Malaga, Spain
Destination Expert
for Malaga, Andalucia, Madrid, Zaragoza, Valencia, Seville
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1. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

Kay:

When you query trains from City 1 to City 2, all the trains should appear, whether they are the AVE or media distancia trains.

When are you planning to travel? Between what cities? The full schedule comes out only 62 days into the future. Between 62 days and 4 months into the future you will only see a partial schedule.

Oswestry, United...
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2. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

Media Distancia (or whatever) trains may not run between your two points. If they are not shown scheduled when you input tomorrow's date, they do not run ever.

Melbourne, Australia
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3. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

Last night we managed ok to book Avila to Salamanca for lateish June & our first Renfe train, as compared to more expensive AVE trains. We got a message today from Rail Europe re another booking we were attempting through THEIR website that trains are not yet available due to the summer schedule, as people had been suggesting.

Looking at trains Seville to Avila, changing in Madrid, the website showed 3 available trains only AVE trains costing Aus$148 but no cheaper or alternative trains: I would have thought there'd be lots of other trains on that route...any idea why nothing else came up? I do realise it's early to book but had worried we'd need to as we are going at peak tourist time. Am I being too

anxious & just need to chill & wait a bit longer to book?

Oswestry, United...
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4. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

Re: #3 and

'Am I being too anxious & just need to chill & wait a bit longer to book?' - Yes.

and

'Looking at trains Seville to Avila, changing in Madrid, the website showed 3 available trains only AVE trains costing Aus$148 but no cheaper or alternative trains: I would have thought there'd be lots of other trains on that route...any idea why nothing else came up?' - Presumably because, as you have already been advised, the summer schedules are not yet posted by RENFE, but on many an occasion Rail Europe has been known to not provide full schedules. As I have already suggested, input an imminent date at the RENFE site to see what is almost certainly going to be what will be scheduled.

and

Why are you dealing with an agency like Rail Europe which will charge extra for it's tickets when you are aware of, have the guidance and managed to purchase from RENFE?

Edited: 01 May 2014, 11:50
London, United...
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for Costa de la Luz
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5. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

The Seville to Madrid leg should show many trains going to Atocha. There are only a very small number of trains running from Atocha to Salamanca from memory. most leave from Chamartin. You can use a good rate train to Atocha and use the CERCANIAS local train to go to Chamartin.for no expense using the CombinadoCercanias reference.

Chamartin to Salamnaca can be booked as well or just buy your ticket at Chamartin.

Melbourne, Australia
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6. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

Thanks for the further info. It's obvious we should wait to book, & I'm reassured it sounds like there will be no problem. Sorry for my impatience, but it's my 1st experience with trains in Europe & as we are travelling at peak tourist time I feared trains may be fully booked & we had to get in early. Also obviously keen to get cheapest fares as I understood you need to get in early for them.

To answer: we were having a look on the Rail Europe site curious to see if anything different came up. I now understand Rail Europe just uses the Renfe site!...Yep, I'm a slow learner!

7. Re: Booking trains on Renfe

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