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How are the trains in Europe?

Travel Forums Europe How are the trains in Europe?

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11. Posted by Sander (Moderator 5174 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

You're very welcome. :)

12. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

A few comments...

I have no idea about "SparNight"

Are special offers on all Night trains run by DB (German Railways) and most OBB (Austrian railways ones). And as DB run most international night trains from Germany, it includes international night journeys.

Fairs are a fixed price from night before to morning after (eg: it will cost the same if you get on, in, say Amsterdam as if you get on in Arnhem, an hour later, and if you get off in Stuttgart or Munich, which is 3hours later), and are available on seating and couchettes. Minimum prices are 29euro seated. SparNight are almost solely for International journeys, though a few internal German services also qualify.

The Number of tickets at each price are restricted per journey, and depending on route and date, can sell out months in advance, or still be available the day before. There are 3 levels of SparNight saving, in each level of accomodation.

There are also Day savings/specials available, some of which are fantastic value.

That website in turn points to as their equivalent of nshispeed

This isn't quite true. nachtzugreise is the Night arm of DB, whereas nshispeed is the International arm of NS.

will the charges be the same as mentioned on the websites if I book the tickets in person at the train station???? will the promotional fares still hold if the tickets are booked at the train station????

Not entirely, no. You always pay extra for buying in person, whilst some of the special offers are internet only ones. Also, the later you are the more expensive it is liable to get. Finally, certain offers/places do NOT have access to the fulldata base of international ticketing or will put on their own markup, meaning that they can sometimes only offer "normal" fares and not special offers. I haven't bought international tickets in person in NL for maybe 10years, so can't comment as to how good they currently are, but I do know that they have reigned in their international side substantially in recent years.

International night trains have bunk beds; other trains are regular seats only.

Not all International night trains have couchettes (bunks) or sleepers, though most that don't are in Eastern Europe and often are portions of dividing trains.

"Ligplaats" is a bunk bed (either 6 or 4 people (or sometimes 2, I think?) to a cabin).

Almost all in Europe are 6 berth. Some 4 berth exists, but you pay a higher price. 2bed couchette places are only in parts of Scandinavia and the UK.

"Bedplaats" is a bed, and due to them adding "1 pers." behind it (plus the higher price), I think that might be a private cabin. The English translation they give themselves is "Sleeper".

This is private, yes, though some have 2 berths (always private, so you won't share with strangers) and a few deluxe ones have double beds. Sleepers are always significantly more expensive, and rarely worth the extra unless you are a lot better off than the rest of us on TP!

I don't have any experience with booking train tickets online, unfortunately. (The few times that I took international trains I needed to book in advance, I did so in person at a train station.).

I frequently book trains by DB. Almost all are self print (you need access to an A4 printer) providing you have a credit card (or BahnCard), which you need to carry with you for the journey. These are the cheapest offers you can get.

NOTE: If you are crossing 2 borders, it will cost you significantly more money. EG Amsterdam to Copenhagen or Prague, but you can cheat. You buy a ticket to the border station separately, picking which end is better price wise. Note you will have to change trains. For example, in May 2008, I went from Utrecht to Copenhagen: It was about 50% cheaper for me to buy a ticket Utrecht-Oberhausen then Oberhausen-Copenhagen than one through ticket. These tickets were all bought in advance, and all it mean't was i had to leave Utrecht about 30mins earlier and change in Oberhausen (first station stop for day trains in Germany).

The really daft one is on through Night trains from DK/NL to Basle in Switzerland. To go to Basel Bad, you can get savings price, but to continue to Basel SBB about 1km further on, you are on normal prices. The reason being that Bad counts as Germany, whereas SBB is across the border. Thus the same ticket can cost at least triple the price.... In this case, buy a ticket to Bad, and then cheat and stay on the train

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 2, 2009, at 5:17 AM by Gelli ]

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