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The Eurail Pass, what is it? whom is it for?

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dès 167€ 1 Month

40 000 destinations

33 Countries

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The Eurail Pass is an all-in-on ticket that allows you to travel in the majority of trains all across Europe. It was created in 1959, and while it was originally composed of 13 countries, it is today regrouping 33 countries. Concretely, the pass allows you to gain access to the railway network of the countries associated with Eurail. It’s exceptional flexibility sets it apart : you can go anywhere you want, anytime you want!

L’Eurail Pass, c’est quoi ? pour qui ?

L’Eurail Pass, c’est quoi ? pour qui ?

4.4/5 - (19 votes)
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Traveling by train in Europe with Interrail & Eurail

The train serves as a privileged way of discovering Europe and its touristic destinations. Each year, thousands of travelers decide to wander around the Old World via its railroads in reason of its numerous and practical advantages. Not only does it provide a significant independence by offering a direct access to the city centers that you could wish to visit, but it is also an affordable and sustainable way of transportation, like I had extended on in an other article. In this period of ecological awareness marked by a desire to explore the world in new and diviersified ways, the train therefore stands outs for various assets.

It has now been a few years since european countries have decided to establish a communal structure enabling travelers to cross borders and visit their cities by rail: the Eurail and InterRail. In this article, I will elaborate on the functionings and particularities of the first one. To learn more about the second one, just click on this link!

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The Eurail Pass & Interrail
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starting from 167€ for a month

40 000 destinations

33 countries

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Eurail & Interrail Countries

InterRail railway map with travel time

Source : interRail.com

List of countries included in the Eurail & InterRail passes

Austria
Belgium
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bulgaria
Croatia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Finland
France
Germany
Britain
Greece
Hungary
Ireland
Italy
Lithuania
Luxemburg
Montenegro
Netherlands
North Macedonia
Norway
Poland
Portugal
Romania
Serbia
Slovakia
Slovenia
Spain
Sweden
Swiss
Turkey

Eurail and InterRail : what’s the difference?

There are two ways to travel across Europe by train : the Eurail Pass and the InterRail Pass. The Eurail Pass is applicable only to non-european citizens or non-european residents. The InterRail is for european citizens only. It can however be used by non-european citizens when they are considered official residents of a European country. In this last case, an proof of European residency is necessary.

If the difference between Eurail and InterRail is important when purchasing your tickets, know that both passes offer identical packages, at the same prices.

The Eurail Passes

When you purchase an Eurail ticket, you have the possibility to choose from two options
« Global Pass » | « One Country Pass »

1° : The « Global Pass »

The « Global Pass » is valid in all 33 Eurail countries. It allows you to travel freely across all concerned countries. The « Global Pass » however varies according to the number of days during which you travel.

1.1 : Flexible

With this option you can choose without restraints your travel days in a period of 1 or 2 months. For example, if you pick the package « 4 days of travel in a month », you are not obligated to use these 4 days all at once. You simply have to choose 4 days during the month, from the activation date of your Pass.

  • 4, 5 or 7 days of trave in a month
  • 10 or 15 days of travel in two months

1.2 : Continue

With this option, you do not have to choose your traveling dates in advance. You can circulate freely during the period in question. For example, if you pick the package « 22 consecutive days », you may take whatever trains you wish to during the 22 days, starting the day you activate your Pass.

  • 15 or 22 consecutive days
  • 1, 2 , 3 consecutive months

2° : The « One Country Pass »

Like it is implied in its name, the « One Country Pass » can only be used in one country. It allows you to travel unrestictedly in the national network that you have chosen, depending on the package you have opted for. For each country, you have the option to choose between 3, 4, 5, 6 and 8 days of travel in a month time frame.

Attention 1 !

4 countries are not eligible with this Pass : Germany, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro and Switzerland.

 

Attention 2 !

Regarding the « One Country Pass », each country offers specific rates and conditions. It is therefore important to look at the different options and gather all the information necessary before settling on a package!

 

Overview of the InterRail Pass : Price / Duration / Number of travel days

Récapitulatif du pass interRail : Prix / durée / nombre de jour de voyage
Overview of the InterRail Pass : Price / Duration / Number of travel days

What is a “travel day”?

When opt for the flexible packages available with the Eurail Pass, you get a certain amount of “travel days” over a given period. In this case, one day of travel corresponds to one day of use of the pass. For each travel day, you can take freely whatever train, boat and bus you want from midnight to midnight. Let’s pick an example: you have chosen the option “10 days of travel within two months”. If you take two trains the day you activate your pass, the two trips will count as 1 day of travel until midnight. If you do not take a train the following day, no day of travel will be counted. However, if you take a new train 3 days later, then a second day of travel is recorded.

Concerning night trains, Eurail thought ahead! When you take a train at 10 pm with an arrival time of 9 am the next morning, only one day of travel is counted, namely the day of the departure. On the other hand, if you take another train after 11:59 pm the day you arrive, a second day of travel is recorded.

Activate and use the Eurail Pass

You have chosen you traveling package and are now ready to embark a new adventure exploring Europe?
The only thing left to do is to now know learn how to use your Eurail Pass in real situations. To benefit from its advantages, you must first activate it, and then, after your departure, register each of your trips.

1° : Activate the Eurail Pass

When traveling, in the event of a passenger screening, it is the Pass itself that you will have to show. In other words, the Pass acts as your ticket in each of the trains you will take. For that to happen, it is mandatory to ACTIVATE your Eurail Pass. This activation is done at once, and must be completed before boarding the very first train. The validity of the Pass depends soly on its activation, which means that the Pass cannot be used unless you activate. Please note: you have 11 months, starting the day of the purchase, to activate it.

To activate you pass, you have two options:

At the station

In order to activate your Pass, you simply have to go to the ticketing area of any train station of a country involved with Eurail, for free! The train station’s agent will note on your Pass the date of departure, and, by doing so, the end date of its validity. Your passeport number is required. Your Pass will be stamped so as to prove the authenticity of the informations.

On the website at the time of purchase

In the event that you already know your departure date when purchasing the Pass, it is possible for you to pre-activate it before receiving it. On the website, when you buy the Pass, all you have to do is select the option “activate my Pass” and choose the starting date of validity. Your passeport number is, again, required.

2° : Register your travels

Something very important to know is that you must register each of your trips for the duration of your journey. Before boarding a new train, you have to remember to indicate every detail of your trajectory, such as the departure time, the station of departure and the station of arrival. These informations must be noted either directly on the Pass or in the “My Trip” section of the Rail Planner app.

Be careful!: You must make a well-informed decision between the Pass and the app because once you have made your choice you have to respect it during the whole duration of your trip.

Options « flexibles »,

If you have opted for one of the « flexible » options, meaning multiple days of travel in a given period, you have to complete the calendar directly on the Pass before the departure of the first train of each day of travel.

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App store interrail

Download the InterRail App

  • Consult, off-line, your trains’ schedules
  • Plan your trip from start to finish
  • Board without worries
  • Make your reservations
  • Benefit from additional discounts

Le Pass InterRail, FAQ

Est-ce que le Pass est gratuit pour les enfants ?

L’Eurail Pass est gratuit pour les enfants de 4 à 11 ans, dès lors qu’ils sont accompagnés par un adulte ayant, lui aussi, son Pass.

Dois-je réserver préalablement tous les trains que j’emprunte ?

Avec votre Pass, la réservation n’est, en principe, pas obligatoire pour les trains régionaux et locaux. Par contre, la réservation est obligatoire pour les lignes à grande vitesse, les trains internationaux (Eurostar, Thalys, TGV, AVE, Transitalia, etc.) et les trains de nuit. Les réservations peuvent se faire en gare, sur le site de la compagnie, sur le site Eurail et sur l’application Rail Planner.

Dois-je anticiper des frais supplémentaires ?

Des frais additionnels vous seront demandés dans les cas suivants : wifi, nourriture, choix des sièges. Si vous êtes intéressé par l’une ou plusieurs de ces options, renseignez-vous car les frais varient d’une compagnie à l’autre.

Combien de temps dois-je attendre avant de recevoir mon Pass ?

Lorsque vous achetez votre Pass, vous avez le choix entre deux options. Avec l’option « Premium Shipping », votre Pass sera livré chez vous en 1 semaine. Avec l’option « Economy Shipping », comptez environ 2 semaines. Vous avez la possibilité de suivre le transfert de votre commande, directement depuis votre compte sur le site internet de l’Eurail.

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