How to Travel in Europe by Train

How to Travel in Europe by Train
Whether you are country hopping around Europe or just traveling from one city to another, trains are one of the quickest and easiest ways to get around. The rail system in Europe connects most major cities with stops in lesser known locales, providing access to major tourist attractions as well as outdoor attractions such as the Swiss Alps. Eurail connects 21 European countries together and offers a variety of ticket types and price points to suit most travelers.

Instructions

Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Timetable Route map
  • Timetable
  • Route map
Step 1
Plan your itinerary before purchasing a rail pass. Map out how many countries you will be visiting and the duration of time you will be traveling.
Step 2
Visit the Eurail booking site (see Resources) before you leave home or visit a ticket counter at the local station if you are already abroad to view the types of passes available. Select a global pass if you will be visiting many countries or a select, regional or one-country pass if you are traveling in a smaller area of Europe.
Step 3
Request any discounts you qualify for, including student or youth pricing, senior discounts and group discounts.
Step 4
Pick up the latest copy of the train schedule and map for each country you plan to visit. Find schedules at the station or access the timetables on the Eurail website.
Step 5
Verify that the train you plan to take does not require reservations or additional fees, such as for a sleeper car. Check the schedule for trains requiring reservations and make the reservation up to 90 days before you travel at the station or via the website.
Step 6
Check the schedule for the train's departure platform number once you arrive at the station. Follow the signs directing you to the correct platform then look for your train number.
Step 7
Check the placard by the train car door before entering to verify it is the proper class for your ticket and that the destination for that particular car matches your desired final destination---trains are often split and cars from the same train number go to two separate destinations.

Tips & Warnings

 
Keep your pass easily accessible at all times, as it may be requested at any point during travel. Most local trains allow passengers to bring bags, but high-speed trains do not. Inquire ahead of time so you can plan your train route accordingly. Bringing your own snacks or meals with you saves money over buying train food.
 
Keep your pass easily accessible at all times, as it may be requested at any point during travel.
 
Most local trains allow passengers to bring bags, but high-speed trains do not. Inquire ahead of time so you can plan your train route accordingly.
 
Bringing your own snacks or meals with you saves money over buying train food.
 
Eurail only allows three items of luggage per passenger. Ship excess luggage ahead or inquire in advance at the station for special accommodation for the extra bags.

Resources

Article Written By Jenny Harrington

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications. Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.

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