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Rail travel Europe

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1. Posted by Matt_83 (Budding Member 7 posts) 6y

Hi
I'm travelling Europe in August and i need advice on where to get cheap rail travel. I have looked at Rail Europe and would like to know are these prices genuinely the going rate. Does it really cost £113 from Lyon - Zurich. Is they any cheaper way of doing this. I have run up a £590 budget in rail travel over 18 days :S ??

Any help would be appriciated

2. Posted by flyingbob (Inactive 842 posts) 6y

Rail Europe is an OK website for checking train times and connections, although it's thin on the ground for details of Eastern Europe services.
However - apart from a few offers that it has from time to time, its prices are to be avoided.
Go on to the rail companies' websites directly. You'll be pleasantly surprised, regardless of whether it's Eastern or Western Europe you're travelling to.
Also check out direct prices - v - rail passes. It more often works out cheaper to get individual tickets.

3. Posted by Matt_83 (Budding Member 7 posts) 6y

Thanks for the Advice. I'll give that a try :-)

4. Posted by Sallyxx (Budding Member 42 posts) 6y

£113 sounds a lot for a single journey, but it depends on the type of ticket, type of service, class etc. First of all, check that you are searching for what you think you are searching - it's too early to book train tickets for next August, so I'm a bit surprised that you've got a quote.

Travelling by train in France in August tends to be really good value and quite often the cost of first and second class is the same, but you'll have to book later in the year. I use the German railways website for planning purposes, but have often found that Rail Europe offer better value tickets and deals, especially for travel in/through France.

5. Posted by Sallyxx (Budding Member 42 posts) 6y

If you haven't done so already, check out the website of The Man in Seat 61. It's a mine of information for rail travel in Europe and the world.

6. Posted by Matt_83 (Budding Member 7 posts) 6y

Thanks for the Replys.

I already Tried seat 61 and that redirects me to Rail Europe when i look at train fares. I will try the German railways website. The Quotes i got were not for August because like you said its too far in advance. I just got a general quote for this november just to give me an idea of what it will cost. If there usually cheap in August though i will check again nearer the time.

Thanks again :-)

7. Posted by Sallyxx (Budding Member 42 posts) 6y

Try getting a quote that is far enough in the future to allow for advance purchase discounts to kick in. Like in the UK, the price you'd pay for train travel tomorrow is often different (higher) than if you bought now to travel in two weeks' or two months' time.

Also check the class of travel and type of service. A first class ticket on a fast service will cost way more than a second class ticket on a regional service, and the difference in travel time isn't always considerable.

If you're making a dummy booking for this coming Friday, chances are that only first class tix are available.

Also, if your journey isn't direct, consider splitting the ticket, i.e. pricing two tickets from point A to point B, and from point B to point C, rather than from A to C via B. Sometimes this allows you to take advantage of special offers on part of the journey.

[ Edit: Edited on 02-Nov-2010, at 16:51 by Sallyxx ]