A train ticket makes it very easy to travel from one European city to another. Just sit back, relax, and embrace the gorgeous scenery that passes you by. Traveling by train is part of the journey!
Point to point Tickets
We’ve worked out that if you are only doing a couple of train journeys between two cities on your visit to Europe, then a point to point train ticket is the best option for you.
The great thing about point to point tickets is that you can choose a few major European cities and go directly to them, right into the heart of each city.
We can help you choose the best ticket for all the major European train operators right here and if you see a ticket you want, and the price is right, you can book it and, in most cases, we will honour the fare for 48 hours.
Have a look at our top point to point cities below and see if any of them catch your eye:
Paris-Geneva-Lausanne-Zurich with TGV Lyria is a popular point to point ticket choice as the train takes you on a journey through some of the most beautiful countryside and right to the centre of some very different cities.
Florence-Rome, Milan-Venice with Trenitalia and the Frecciarossa trains – the only way to see Italy is by train as you sit back and soak up the stunning scenery on the way to the centres of these top point to point cities.
As you can see from the examples above, point to point train tickets not only transport you right into the centre of some incredible cities but you can visit more than one country too. So you can get the Thalys from Paris to Cologne and then the ICE train in Germany to Berlin or Munich. Or you can stick to one country; if you are travelling around Spain with Renfe and the AVE trains you can buy point to point tickets from Madrid to Barcelona or Seville and Valencia.
From the heart of one city to the next
If you know your travel dates, we can help you find the best fares and schedules for your itinerary. Simply enter your departure and arrival cities to the right, along with the date and time of day you wish to travel.
Types of Trains
High speed or leisurely, you travel in comfort.
The European Rail Network
Over 100,000 km of European adventures - just waiting to happen!
YOU'RE ALMOST THERE
Q. Do I need to buy a reservation if I already have a rail pass? How do I book one?
A. If you plan to travel on a high speed, scenic, or overnight train, you will need a reservation as many of these types of trains require them - even if you have a rail pass. Seat reservations guarantee you a seat on the train you wish to travel on. While additional fees apply, many trains offer reduced fares to passholders. When you reserve your train, be sure to check the box that states "I have a rail pass", this will allow our system to find the best fare possible for your journey.
Q. Can I take any train that travels between the two cities for which I bought my train ticket, or do I have to take a specific train?
A. The answer depends on what type of ticket was issued for your journey. In most cases, we issue tickets that include a seat reservation whenever required or possible. If your tickets include a reservation, you will need to board the train for which the reservation was issued.
If you were issued a train ticket without a reservation, then yes - you can board any train traveling between the cities for which your ticket was issued. It is always advisable to inquire at the train station whether or not a reservation is needed for the train you intend to board. There are certain countries that we cannot issue reservations for: Portugal, Greece, Hungary, Romania, and other Balkan nations. Reservations may be required but will need to be purchased locally.
Q. Should I buy my rail pass or train ticket before I leave for Europe?
A. Yes. We find that when traveling abroad, it’s always best to book before you depart from home. That way, you’ll arrive with the proper paper documents in-hand and avoid fully booked trains that can disrupt your travel plans. This is especially important during the summer months when trains in Europe tend to sell out quickly due to increased tourism.
Most trains can be reserved 90-days in advance of the day you’d like to travel. Again, it’s best to reserve as soon as possible to guarantee that you’ll have a seat on board.
Q. What is the 7:00 pm rule?
A. Overnight train journeys departing after 7:00pm and arriving after 4:00am without any change of train will count as one travel day. The date of arrival should be recorded on your rail pass.
Overnight train journeys departing after 7:00pm that arrive or involve a connection between midnight - 4am count as two travel days on your rail pass.
Q. I’ve booked a print at home e-ticket. What do I need to do before getting on board the train?
A. Your print at home e-ticket will be forwarded to you as one of three methods:
- A PDF included as a link on your Rail Europe booking confirmation email
- A unique 6 character e-ticket confirmation code that, along with a photo i.d., is checked when on the train
- Sent via a separate email, in addition to your Rail Europe booking confirmation email, forwarded to you after purchase
Your Rail Europe booking confirmation will clearly indicate which type of print at home e-ticket is affiliated with the train ticket(s) you have purchased.
If you were signed into your account when you booked your print at home e-ticket, you can also find all PDF links in the booking history located in your dashboard, as well as the itinerary tab of our iPhone app or mobile site.
All print at home e-tickets must be printed before arriving at the train station.
Q. Can I purchase a rail pass when I'm in Europe?
A. In general, rail passes can only be purchased prior to your arrival in Europe and cannot be purchased locally. If you’re already in Europe and would like to purchase a rail pass, we may be able to assist you, please call us at 1-800-622-8600.
With international shipping, we can send your rail pass to Austria, Belgium, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, or Switzerland. The fee for orders sent to Europe is $40 USD or $45 CAD and delivery takes 3 to 7 Business days.
Q. What do I do if my train goes through a country not listed on my rail pass?
A. If your train travels through a country not listed on your rail pass, even though the country of origin and country of arrival are covered by your rail pass, you need to purchase a ticket for the uncovered portion of the journey. We suggest doing this at a ticket counter in advance. You don’t need to buy a ticket for the entire journey, just the section not covered by the purchased rail pass.
Q. How do I read my RENFE print at home e-ticket?
A. If you are traveling to Spain and have purchased a RENFE train ticket please be advised that RENFE train tickets are available in Spanish only. We offer a guide to assist you in reading your ticket.
Q. I’ve written the wrong date on my rail pass travel calendar box. What should I do?
A. If the wrong date is written in the travel calendar box, you will need to enter the correct date in the next travel calendar box. Unfortunately, once the date has been entered in the travel calendar box, it cannot be corrected and there’s no way to recover that travel day on the rail pass. Be very careful when filling out the date on your rail pass as mistakes cannot be corrected. An altered travel date could be viewed as an attempt of fraud and could lead to fines or other penalties.
Q. What should I do if I missed my scheduled train? Can I take the next one?
A. If you’re traveling with open tickets, you can take any train that doesn’t require a reservation, traveling on the route for which your open ticket was issued.
If you have an open train ticket and a reservation, you can forfeit your reservation and still use your open ticket on a train running on the same route that doesn’t require a reservation.
If your train ticket is a combined ticket and reservation, then you cannot simply board the next train. You may need to purchase a new train ticket for that train or exchange your current ticket for a new one.
First, read the exchange conditions for your train ticket. This can be found printed with your actual ticket if you have a paper ticket, or on your Rail Europe email invoice. This will allow you to determine whether your train ticket is exchangeable or not.
If you have a non-exchangeable ticket you will have to purchase a new train ticket, regardless of the delivery method of your ticket.
If you have a semi-flexible or flexible ticket (i.e. your train ticket can be exchanged for a fee and/or under certain conditions), then you may be able to exchange your current ticket for a new one. In general, these exchanges must take place prior to the train’s departure.
Contact us as soon as possible to initiate the exchange process, before the train’s departure. If you are unable to reach us by phone, seek the assistance of a station agent. Never board a train with a train ticket that includes a reservation for a different train, unless specifically authorized to do so by a railway official.