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Snooze across Europe: ÖBB Nightjet trains are now available at Trainline

by Betsy Autran, posted 18 July 2018 | Add comment

For some time tickets from ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways) have been available through Trainline–a big step for us to which we’ll happily give a throwback toast with a Gösser in hand. 🍺 But our connection to ÖBB in March 2018 didn’t just mean offering tickets for journeys throughout Austria, it’s much, much more! Let’s talk about Nightjet trains.

Perhaps you’ve heard of Nightjet trains, the famous fly-by-night trains of Europe. We mentioned them in our article introducing ÖBB tickets, but these midnight voyages deserve their own moment in the sun (although they much prefer the moonlight). Nightjet trains are the epitome of railway romance and are a great choice for adventurers seeking that special experience while on a shoestring budget.

Put on your night cap! A multitude of destinations throughout Europe are just forty winks away, and you’ll be pleased to know these tickets are quite easy to book through our website and apps.

ÖBB Nightjet

Wake up in a new city and go, with Nightjet!

Italy, Croatia, Slovenia, and Hungary for more

The Nightjet trains travel through Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Slovakia, Croatia, Slovenia, Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic. Zzzigzag your way to the most beautiful cities in Europe: Vienna, Verona, Berlin, Basel, Prague, Zagreb—the list goes on, and tickets are available from just €29. That’s less than you’ll spend on one night in most hotels, and you’ll be drifting through dreams across Europe. You can book your tickets up to 180 days in advance to save the most money on your journey through the land of nod.

ÖBB Nightjet to Verona

Wake up to the sunrise on Lake Garda? Take a Nightjet to Verona.

Here are some sample naps to ignite your imagination:

Munich-Salzburg-Padova-Verona-Milan

Vienna-Linz-Salzburg-Villach-Udine-Venice

Munich-Salzburg-Ljubljana-Zagreb

Berlin-Magdeburg-Freiburg-Basel-Zürich

The ÖBB Nightjet system offers a variety of options to suit your personal comfort needs and sleeping habits. If you’re a night owl or you prefer to admire the passing landscapes by twilight, or you’re just the thrifty type, then you can book a place in a 6-seat compartment. Each carriage is equipped with toilets and washrooms so that you can arrive at your destination fresh as a daisy with morning dew. These seats on the Nightjet trains offer the cheapest fares, with tickets available from only €29.

ÖBB Nightjet 6-seat compartment

Grab a seat and get there on a shoestring overnight.

If you struggle to sleep while sitting up, or you’re a bit of a drooler, you’re better off in the couchette carriages where you can doze off in a horizontal position. These 4 or 6-bed compartments are perfect for families or small groups. Blankets, sheets, and pillows are provided for a cosy night’s sleep, as well as mineral water in the evening and breakfast in the morning. Tickets for a couchette in a 6-bed compartment are available from €49, or in a 4-bed compartment from €59.

ÖBB Nightjet

Whisk the whole sleepy family by Nightjet from Munich to Milan.

But maybe you’re looking for something a bit more lavish. Book yourself in a Sleeper Cabin, which offers the most comfort of all. In the Nightjet Sleeper Cabins, you have the choice between 1-bed, 2-bed, or 3-bed compartments.

Still dreaming of more? Book the deluxe compartment and you’ll have your own private bathroom equipped with a sink, shower, toilet, shower gel, and towels. But of course that’s not all, in the evening you’ll be given mineral water, tasty treats, beverages, and a daily newspaper, then in the morning a large breakfast with choice. As a VIP of the train, your ticket will also grant you access to the ÖBB lounges at no extra cost. That’s the way to travel! Tickets for one night in a Sleeper Cabin are available from €69. In this case, if you snooze, you won’t lose.

ÖBB Nightjet sleeper cabin

Wake up refreshed in a Sleeper Cabin.

Sleep easy

Booking Nightjet tickets with Trainline is pretty simple. Enter the desired route and departure date and in the search results you’ll find the Nightjet trains, recognisable by the little half-moon symbol 🌜, our indication for night train journeys. Once you’ve chosen your preferred train, you can pick the seating/couchette option in the “Zone” field on the right side. You’ll see what your ticket costs before you pre-book and pay.

Here is an example for the journey from Munich to Milan:

munich-to-milan

Before you know it you’ll be counting sheep as you drift along pastures through the European countryside. And keep those sheep happy knowing that travelling by train is environmentally friendly. If you have any worries at all, we’ll be there to tuck you in. Good night!

Fly around Europe by train with Trainline

by Betsy Autran, posted 04 July 2018 | 4 comments

Here at Trainline, we think there’s no better way to see Europe than by train. We’re so convinced of this that we made a film to showcase the full breadth of incredible scenery you can see from the window seats of trains whizzing across the continent.

So what did we do?

We recruited some willing filmmakers and sent them on a railway adventure through Europe that took them across five countries in four days. Armed with a camera and some window cleaner, they captured breathtaking footage of the entire route. From the dense forests of the Rhine Valley to the snow-capped mountains of the Swiss Alps, along the Mediterranean coast from Nice to Marseille and then across the frontier into Spain, they saw and seized it all. In the film, extreme glimpses of nature contrasts with scenes from everyday life in the European cities and towns they passed, giving you a taste of all of the wonderful things you’d never see from the window of a plane.

Our favourite routes

Train route Europe Trainline Map

The route taken by our filmmakers.

If you liked what you saw in the film, we’ve highlighted some of our favourite routes for you. Read on for more information about what you can see on each leg of this magnificent journey.

From colossal to quaint

Trees and forest on train ride from Cologne to Constanz

Forests fly by on the train ride from Cologne and Konstanz.

The journey from Cologne to Konstanz, Germany can make you feel as if you’re exiting one world and entering another. From the fourth largest and most liberal city in Germany to little Konstanz, a treasured enclave with historical remnants dating back to the Stone Age, kept intact and resting like a precious jewel where the Rhine River spills into Lake Constance.

There are numerous options for stopovers on this journey, but no matter your choice, all of them will sweep you along the romantic Rhine River Valley where green is king. Peer out your window and behold the most dramatic landscapes that Germany has to offer, from plummeting hills with meandering vineyards to cliffsides that seem to have broken under the weight of such abundant beauty—and all of it dappled with fairytale villages where timber-framed houses and church steeples peer back at you through your window as if from another time.

This is a longer journey, but much to the benefit of your one-of-a-kind experience. Make this a day trip, with 7-9 hours of train travel between Cologne and Konstanz. Tickets should run between €63 and €74, a small price to pay for such a memorable migration.

Move mountains

Landscape of Swiss village church on train from Konstanz to Chur

Picturesque panoramas of the Swiss countryside.

Chur is the quintessential Alpine city and, like Konstanz, will make your heart swell with sentimental memories of reading Grimm’s Fairy Tales as a child. It’s a quiet and charming village where you can explore the little streets by foot and offers sweet recess to any weary traveller. And if your feet are tired, you’ll be grateful to sit back, relax, and allow yourself to be tucked into the Alpine Rhine on a calm train ride from Konstanz to Chur.

Amble along the edge of Lake Constance, shining like an emerald beneath the crystal sky, then watch it dwindle into the distance as you ramble down into the quaint and tranquil countryside of the Alps. Brown Swiss cows with big warm eyes and bells around their necks chew away and watch your train fly by, wondering where anyone could be headed in such a great hurry—this is clearly the only place to be.

The excursion from Konstanz to Chur should take nearly 3 hours, but we recommend the route with a transfer in St. Gallen which takes 2 hours and 23 minutes. You’ll pay between €36 to €62 for this journey into what seems like an imaginary world, and a memory to keep with you forever.

Nougat and amaretti

Lake Como, Italy from train journey Switzerland to Milan

The train journey from Switzerland to Italy is breathtaking.

There’s much to be said about train journeys between Zürich, Switzerland and Milan, Italy, but most people are speechless when their feet touch the platform. In this case, pictures truly speak louder than words. Passing through hidden tunnels and over stunning viaducts, hugging steep hillsides that seem to drop into the abyss and then ascend back into the Alpine sky, trains from Switzerland to Italy will knock off your lederhosen and invigorate your senses like the hot shot of espresso awaiting you in the Bel Paese.

A magnificent journey like this can cost between €29 and €122, depending which route you choose and how early you book. You can expect a direct train from Zürich to Milan to take 3 and a half hours, but once on board, you’ll wish it would last forever.

Mediterranean medley

Train window Nice to Marseille

Sit back and cruise along the cerulean coastline between Nice and Marseille.

Nice is known for its stunning turquoise waterfront, its perfect sunlit climate, and ratatouille! You can expect hordes of French families to be splayed across its perfect sunny beaches from July ‘til August during the French holiday months, but Nice is nice to visit any time of the year.

Marseille is the second-largest city in France and it’s known for being intense and different from any other place in the country—it has its own unique culture and is buzzing with life.

The ride by train from Nice to Marseille is no less extraordinary than these two towns. From the window of this train you’ll see hues of blues you’ve never imagined as you sail by train along the Mediterranean coastline through historical cities like Antibes, Cannes, Toulon and eventually into the city of Pastis with plenty of pastiche, Marseille!

This journey will take between 2 and a half to 3 hours, during which time you’ll wish you didn’t ever need to blink. Depending on whether you choose a route via TGV or TER, the cost for this ride can fall anywhere between €9 and €80. We always suggest booking online and as early as possible to benefit from the cheapest available fares!

Flantastico

Sky and clouds outside train window journey from Madrid to Málaga

Blue skies for miles between Madrid and Málaga.

The mountains surrounding the capital of Spain greet you with a welcoming balmy hug. Madrid is everything they say it will be and will leave you wanting more, but all good things must come to an end (except those never-ending tapas) and Andalusia is singing your name. The journey to Málaga from Madrid will swing you through the extremes of Spain’s varied landscapes and drop you teetering on the edge of its dazzling aqua coastline. At moments, you could imagine yourself racing across the terrain of the wild, wild west, but once you climb into the hills of Andalusia, you will know undeniably where you are, because there is nothing else like it on Earth.

Between these cities and others, like Cordoba and Antequera, you can expect to see picturesque scenery as you soar past national parks and nature reserves with mountain ranges that linger like watchful giants all along the horizon. Upon entering Málaga your train and your universe will slow to a halt, allowing you all the time in the world to soak up the sun and dive into the bottomless paella that this city has to offer.

The train from Madrid to Málaga should take up a little less than 3 hours of your time, which will indeed be precious. The fare runs between €40 to €95 and, as usual, the earlier you book the less you can expect to pay. More bang for your buck, as we say!

Cover your tracks

Train window view outside Madrid, Spain

Truly experience Europe, by train.

Travel in Austria and beyond with Trainline

by Betsy Autran, posted 28 March 2018 | Add comment

Travel throughout all of Austria by rail and road: tickets from the Austrian rail operator ÖBB (Österreichische Bundesbahnen/Austrian Federal Railways) are now on sale at Trainline!

Beautiful view of Salzburg skyline with Festung Hohensalzburg and river Salzach in winter, Salzburger Land, Austria.

Walking in a winter wonderland, Salzburg.

After adding WESTbahn to our network last year, our team doubled their efforts to bring you to Austria and beyond. By connecting to ÖBB, we now offer tickets for the City Airport Train which joins Vienna Airport to the centre of the Austrian capital. But why stop at Austrian rail? Pretty soon, we’ll also offer tickets for those famous international Nightjet trains you’ve heard so much about!

ÖBB tickets at Trainline

The Austrian railway company ÖBB has an extensive network that stretches over 4,826 kilometres. These trains glide through 246 tunnels and over 6,344 bridges and viaducts—imagine the views!

shutterstock_470312681-570x323

Vying for viaducts? Austria is a land of plenty.

The main route serviced by ÖBB is the Semmering line, which connects Vienna Central Station to the Alps. This journey offers plenty of incredible views. Considered the first “mountain line” ever built (between 1848 and 1854), the section between Gloggnitz and Mürzzuschlag is now considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Our Austrian friends are not kidding around when it comes to traveling by train. You can now book this trip with us, and of course all other routes operated by ÖBB.

Smart ÖBB rates

The news gets better: we offer discounted rates and promotions direct from ÖBB. With Sparschiene tickets you can travel anywhere in Austria from €9 in second class or from €19 in first class. You can go beyond Austrian borders to cities like Prague with Sparschiene Europe fare, from €19 in second and €29 in first class.

Joining air to rail

View of Vienna from Saint Stephane's cathedral, Austria

What are you waiting for?

Fresh off your flight to Vienna Airport, you wonder how to get to Café Landtmann as quickly as possible to taste that famous Sachertorte you’ve heard so much about…

With the City Airport Train (CAT), the connection between Vienna Airport and Wien-Mitte station is 16 minutes without intermediate stops. A train leaves every 30 minutes and a one-way ticket costs only €11.

On board the CAT you can enjoy free WiFi! Brag to your family and friends that you’re fast on your way to dipping your face in that rich chocolate cake, or plan your next stop to another city in Austria (and book your ÖBB train tickets for example). Or simply relax and flip through newspapers and magazines available on board. Your 16 minutes of transit will be well-used.

Go in the dark of night

Much to the chagrin of train enthusiasts, rail companies across Europe have a tendency to suppress their night train offers in order to favour better daytime coverage. ÖBB is a rebel in this regard. Allow yourself to be lulled to sleep by the dependable click clack of rails passing beneath your bed, or if you’re too excited to sleep, watch the stations and landscapes slip away into the night. Pull the curtains back to a beautiful sunrise and adventures in a whole new city.

The Nightjet serves many destinations in Austria, Germany, Italy, Slovakia, Croatia, Slovenia, Poland, Hungary, and Czech Republic. You’re truly spoiled for choice in terms of traveling after hours. Nightjet tickets are not yet available from us, but you should see them coming soon.

Gif of the Darjeeling limited film by Wes Anderson.

Kick off your shoes and relax in a night train.

The Sparschiene Nightjet fare is available from €29 for journeys from Munich to Rome via Villach, Bologna, and Florence. In other words, the perfect opportunity to lie down after a good beer and wake up with a strong espresso. Tickets on the Nightjet still include a default seat reservation, but you can opt for a more comfortable option by choosing a couchette in a sleeper carriage that includes breakfast.

As usual, the cheapest tickets are the ones that go the fastest. We advise you to plan your Nightjet journey as soon as sales open, 6 months before your intended departure.

Austria soon! 

As you may have guessed, we are pleased to offer ÖBB, Nightjet, and CAT tickets in Austria and elsewhere in Europe. And as the Austrians are great party-goers and drink an average of 109 litres of beer per year per person, we leave you with a “Prost!”

France: the best train trips and cities for food

by Betsy Autran, posted 16 January 2018 | 2 comments

Yesterday the French rail operator SNCF opened their 2018 spring ticket sales for departures up to May 22nd, so we decided to whet your appetite for travel in France and feed you a soupçon of inspiration for tantalising train journeys this season.

If you’ve noticed a theme here, it should be said that we’ve got a deadline to get this blog post in before lunchtime, don’t underestimate the power of an empty stomach!

We’d like to suggest that you let your belly be your guide across France, the land of plenty. Here are some suggestions for alluring train journeys and tempting reasons to book them.

Lille

Lille, United Kingdom - August 28, 2013: Panorama of Lille Grand Palais with some tourists in the foreground. There are cobered seating areas outside the restaurants and cars travelling at the bottom of the shot.

Lille, France is a charming city just one hour from Paris by train.

If you’re planning to spend some time in Paris, you’ve perhaps considered a day trip to a nearby city to see what lies just beyond the holy périphérique. Our suggestion for today: Lille!

Lille is only a brief one-hour train ride from Paris Gare du Nord, and there are plenty of coach journeys throughout the day as well, if you want to take it just a tad slower. We have consulted our Lillois colleagues to find the best that Lille has to offer! You can rest assured that there is plenty to keep you busy and sated in this delightful city.

In the north of France, a welcome attitude towards travellers and hearty food is strong. Since spring is still a tad bit chilly up north, you’ll need to get yourself into a cozy traditional French restaurant like Le Chat dans l’Horloge and order yourself Le Welsh.

The Welsh is a French variation on Welsh Rarebit. You’ve got all the important features: bread, cheese, ham, cheese, a little mustard, and more cheese with an egg perched lightly atop it all like a happy little hen. This hot and gooey bowl of deliciousness will heat you up on any drizzly day. Like the people of Lille, it is warm and welcoming and will treat you kindly.

Another Flemish favourite is Carbonnade, a rich and hearty dish of beef stewed in beer with onions, mushrooms, and even spiced bread thrown into the cooking pot. If you’d like to keep it light and you’re feeling less traditional, we’d recommend ordering a side salad instead of fries (we’re just kidding, you can have both!).

If you enjoy strong cheese, you should order anything with Maroilles while you’re in Lille as it’s produced in this region.

A french Maroilles semi-soft unpasturised cheese from Flanders in France

Maroilles, a yummy (strong) semi-soft unpasturised cheese from northern France.

Afterwards you may want to take a walk to see the sights and find a tasty treat for dessert. Gaufres Flamandes (Flemish waffles), are a thinner and lighter cousin of the traditional waffle. Kind of like the crèpe of the waffle world. There are two places where you must try these delectable treats: Meert and Aux Merveilleux de Fred. If you’re low on time, go for Meert. Aux Merveilleux de Fred also has a presence in Paris and it’s not to be missed.

Toulouse

Along the Garonne river at Toulouse city before sunset in France

Toulouse, France: the Pink City.

You may have plans to head to sunnier climates, in which case you should really consider Toulouse, the Pink City. From Paris, Toulouse is a 4-hour daytime ride, or there’s also a night train that departs at around 21:00 and arrives at 06:00—just in time for breakfast!

Toulouse is a charming city with many buildings made from red brick—a far cry from the beautiful but monochromatic Haussmann architecture of Paris. Space science enthusiasts will appreciate Toulouse as it’s home to The National Institute of Aeronautics and Space. But history buffs won’t be left out! Toulouse is also home to two UNESCO World Heritage sites: the grand Saint-Sernin Basilica and the Canal du Midi. It’s a city with one foot in the past and one in the future.

But onto more important matters: what does one eat in Toulouse?

If you curl around the winding streets of Toulouse after dark, your nose may lead you to a door from which emanates the savoury smells of meaty southern stew, braised duck, foie gras, and sizzling sausage. Welcome to the Cave of Cassoulet. Do not be put off by the mysterious narrow and uneven staircase which winds down into a basement closed off by an old curtain from grandma’s closet—trust the olfactory and pass right through to get yourself a big steaming bowl of Cassoulet.

Cassoulet is a rich, slow-cooked stew and a force to be reckoned with. It’s a total inundation of pork sausage, goose, duck, pork skin, mutton, and white beans bubbling up like a veritable cornucopia of cuisine, typically served by the heaping ladleful into an earthenware pot.

Classic French bean and sausage casserole seasoned with herbs de provence in natural light.

Cassoulet comes in many variations, all of them absolutely delicious.

For desserts, the Pink City presents extraordinary sweets in a flavour unlike any other: the delicate violet. From cookies to cakes and candies and liqueurs, you will find a bouquet of goodies with hints of the aromatic little petals of violet flowers.

Lyon

Lyon cityscape from Saone river with colorful houses and river, France

The Lyon cityscape along the Saone river.

Lyon is an incredible city and is just a 2-hour TGV ride from Paris. It sits in the perfect spot in France where you are only a train ride away from skiing in the Alps, sunbathing on the beaches of Côte d’Azur, or hiking in the myriad of national parks that surround the entire region. And when it comes to cuisine, Lyon is considered the food capital of the world. The Lyonnais are a lucky and spoiled bunch.

Sit down for lunch in any traditional Lyonnais “bouchon” (a type of restaurant specific to this region) and you won’t be disappointed by the food and wine. Lyon will also surprise you with a handful of excellent beer bars boasting a massive selection of brews. It’s a city without limitations as far as gastronomic pleasures go.

Brioche aux pralines roses ( spécialité culinaire de Lyon, dessert)

Brioche aux pralines, a speciality of Lyon.

But what we’d like for you to try are the dazzling pink gems found on fluffy pastries in the display windows of Lyonnais bakeries: pralines. Carmelised almonds that come in a vivid shade of hot fuchsia pink, supposedly inspired by rose gardens of the Rhône region. If you have a sweet tooth, any brioche aux pralines will set your tastebuds ablaze with sweet pink passion. The treat is so popular you’ll find many other delights coming in variations à la praline including ice cream, meringue (another typical French treat), and chocolate mousse.

Bonus: picturesque picnics in France

If you’ve ever walked past a French park or green space on a good weather day, it’s no secret that the French will seize any opportunity to throw a good picnic. And picnic food is something else they’re doing very right: baguettes, cheese, charcuterie, wine, and pâtisseries lurk around every corner of any city.

If you’re interested in taking your train travel experience to the next level, consider one of France’s many picturesque train routes like the La Ligne Cévenol or La Ligne des Hirondelles.

La Ligne Cévenol

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Viaduct of Villefort on La Ligne Cévenol between Clermont-Ferrand and Nîmes.

This train between Clermont-Ferrand and Nîmes will bring you through breathtaking landscapes of the Cévennes, a mountainous region in south central France. The route is famous for the majestic views that can be seen from its windows, and it slows down during certain parts of the journey to allow passengers to fully enjoy the experience. It passes through tunnels and over stunning viaducts like those of Fontannes and Chapeauroux, through the remarkable Allier Valley, past the dazzling gorges of Langeac, up to its highest point at La Bastide-Puylaurent, and then downward into the extraordinary and historical city of Nîmes.

It is permitted to eat on this train, so you could swing by a cheese shop, a charcuterie, and a bakery in Clermont-Ferrand before departure and fill your basket with plenty of gourmet enticements for the ride. Or alternatively, you could have a picnic in the departure or arrival cities: there’s Jardin Lecoq in Clermont-Ferrand and Jardins de la Fontaine in Nîmes,  surely one of the most impressive parks in all of France.

Note: due to rail work on La Ligne Cévenol from February 18th until March 2nd, the final three stops between Alès and Nîmes are temporarily operated by bus. The train still provides a 4.5-hour ride through the majesty of the Cévennes.

La Ligne des Hirondelles

High angle view landscape of Bugey mountains, from beginning of Jura in France, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes region. There is an old stone viaduct from Cize-Bolozon villages crossing Ain river in the valley. Arch bridge architecture under bright full moon, moonlight in summer with beautiful blue clear star sky, with milky way from space. This viaduct is a combination rail and vehicular, connecting the communes of Cize and Bolozon. An original span built in the same location in 1875 was destroyed in World War II. Reconstructed as an urgent post-war project due to its position on a main line to Paris, the new viaduct reopened in May 1950. It carries road and rail traffic at different levels.

The Viaduct of Cize-Bolozon located in Jura, France.

This route is called “The Line of the Swallows” in French because those who watched the workers build the viaducts of Morbier and Morez said that workers were befriending the swallows at such great heights!

This train that runs between Dole and Saint-Claude provides a gorgeous ride through 36 tunnels and across 18 viaducts nestled in the impressive forests and mountains of Jura. You are guaranteed outstanding views of sweeping hills, rivers, vineyards, and valleys as well as the admirable architecture of the historic viaducts. It is an otherworldly experience that too few tourists get to see during their stay in France.

Just like most French trains, you can pack a lunch to bring along if you wish. Consider gathering goodies at Les Halles de Dole, a covered market that opens on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday mornings where you can find fresh fish caught in the local rivers or buy products from local honey producers like pain d’épices, a sweet spice bread most popular around Christmas.

Around Saint-Claude, you have many paths to explore where you can find a quiet spot under the lush forest canopy and eat to your heart’s content. If you’re not feeling so green, there are charming little restaurants freckling this town, you won’t go hungry.

Every good meal must come to an end

We hope that this full course meal has satisfied your hunger for ideas and that you’ll find yourself on one of these trains very soon, propelled towards the promise of great food, superb views, and even better desserts.

If you have any questions about booking these journeys, don’t hesitate to contact us.

LEO Express Czech tickets now at Trainline

by Betsy Autran, posted 04 January 2018 | Add comment

Photo of Buildings and Streets of Prague, Czech Republic

Put Prague on your Czech list this year

Czech it out! We now sell tickets for the private carrier LEO Express, which operates trains and coaches all over the Czech Republic (also known as Czechia) and even to some destinations in neighbouring countries.

All aboard the LEO Express!

LEO Express is a young private company founded in 2010. The company launched its first train down a track that connects Prague to Ostrava in 2012. Now they operate trains from Prague to Košice in Slovakia and Leo Express also offers a fleet of coaches between many cities, including some beyond Czech borders.

LEO Express trains

LEO Express trains offer 3 classes, like many train carriers do today:

  • Economy Class, the equivalent to a classic second class. This includes WiFi, a movie and games portal, and on board cafe-restaurant.
  • Business Class, which includes food and a beverage in the ticket price, as well as a more comfortable and roomy interior.
  • Premium class, which includes fully reclining seats with built-in massagers, in-seat meal service, and access to a convenient parking space near the Prague train station.

For families, Leo Express trains also have a children’s compartment. Going by the official photo of their site, it looks like the ticket inspectors disguise themselves in an adorable mascot costume to visit kids in these happy compartments.

LEO Express coaches

Some coaches also offer two classes of comfort: Classic and Business. The differences between the two classes are more or less the same as on the trains: Business Class offers more space between each seat and a few other bonuses like: a sleep kit akin to what you’d receive from an airline and non-alcoholic beverages included in the ticket price.

Visit the Czech Republic on a tight budget

If Prague is the only city that comes to mind when you think of the Czech Republic, LEO Express will expand your horizons with inexpensive train and coach tickets to other cities throughout this beautiful country.

For the railway line, tickets between Prague and Olomouc start at only 5 Euro. A bargain for a travel time of 2 hours!

Old town of Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic, UNESCO World Culture Heritage site

The very charming town of Český Krumlov

Coaches offer a great sightseeing opportunity: the beautiful Pilsen (or Plzeň) is less than an hour and a half from Prague, with tickets that start at 2.70 Euro. The chance to save money on the ride to enjoy a local Pilsner fresh from the brewery is irresistible. You can also visit Český Krumlov and see a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From Prague, LEO Express will take you there in less than three hours by coach, for only 7 Euro!

Praguebility is high this year

Today, LEO Express trains and coaches connect 81 cities in 8 different countries: in addition to the Czech Republic, you can travel to Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Ukraine.

Map of LEO Express network

But wait, there’s Locomore!

You may have heard about Locomore, the German rail operator financed in part by crowdfunding that linked Berlin and Stuttgart for a while (via Hanover, Frankfurt, or Heidelberg). We admired the initiative and were fervent supporters of their beautiful orange carriages. We were saddened when we caught news of the company’s bankruptcy last May so it is with absolute pleasure that we welcome this new announcement: since August 24th 2017, traffic has resumed on this line following a partnership between LEO Express and Flixbus.

That’s not all: Locomore tickets are now available in Trainline’s search results!

We’re happy to offer you more options to travel between Berlin and Stuttgart: high-speed and regional trains operated by the German rail carrier Deutsche Bahn, Flixbus coaches, and now Locomore long-distance trains.

To a new year and furthering frontiers!

Looking back on 2017 at Trainline

by Betsy Autran, posted 26 December 2017 | Add comment

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The holiday season is about many things: filling our gullets with as much pudding and pumpkin pie as possible of course, but it’s also about spending time with those we love and reminiscing about the good times we’ve shared together.

In January 2017 we made some special resolutions that we’ve successfully realised, and we’d like to celebrate a few of those victories with you. We’ve always had you in our hearts and in our minds while pursuing our greatest ambitions. Pull up a chair, let’s get cosy, roast some chestnuts over a warm fire, and reflect.

Staying young at heart

Between December 2016 and January 2017 we worked on a super secret mission to offer free youth tickets with TGVMax on the day of its official release, both on our website and mobile apps. This was a big achievement for us and a momentous opportunity for travellers between the ages of 16-27.

We have certainly made good use of it ourselves! Those in our offices who subscribed to TGVMax have toured hundreds of thousands of kilometres throughout the countryside of France, mainly on their way from Paris to sunnier climates (who can blame them?).

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Taking it to the TGVMax.

Equality for all

After months of what seemed like showing a preference towards our Android users, we made it possible for iPhone and iPad users to access everything they need on the iOS app as well. We weren’t playing favourites, of course. Some trains just move a little faster than others.

We also launched a lite version of our mobile booking experience for those who lack space on their phones and can’t possibly erase those 375 photos of Conrad, their adorable British Shorthair mix.

Helping you stay one train ahead

Last July we were able to connect to APIs for delays and cancellations of French SNCF trains. It was also the perfect opportunity to build a tiny departures board of our own in the app to view SNCF trains in real time. We passed a lot of time watching trains come and go with you. 🍿

Fine-tuning our instrument

We adapted our specially designed product for enterprises—Trainline for Business—to better suit the needs of our professional train bookers.

Version 1.0 was already very affordable with all the bells and whistles included, but you’ll be happy to know that the newest version offers a free subscription as well. If you weren’t already aware that we offer a product for businesses, you have quite a gift awaiting you under the tree this holiday season.

To all of Europe and beyond

We have always stuck firmly to our goal of offering train tickets throughout all of Europe and then some… and then all.

Starting with tickets from the private Austrian carrier WESTbahn, we made our big breakthrough into Austrian territory this year. This really opened doors for us in the way of eating more strudel.

2017 was additionally the year of coaches (the ones on wheels). We started selling tickets for 45 new coach companies since January. Forty-five! Our developers specialising in coach travel have not been idling. Most coaches we offer are sailing smoothly around Spain, but the last few arrivals in our search results cover airport-to-city centre connections in Paris, Rome, as well as others.

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Speaking the same language

Finally, we became polyglots this summer and translated our site and apps in 9 new languages, from Brazilian Portuguese to Mandarin Chinese. We also cashed in on the opportunity to display fares in 15 foreign currencies. Pretty practical if you’re curious about the price in Yen for your ticket to Zermatt this Christmas.

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You’re Yen for a treat.

Wrapping it up

We hope that you enjoyed these gifts as much as we delighted in preparing them for you. We’ll see you in the year 2018. We will continue to set our sights high but our fares low, and we hope you’ll be a part of our continuing happy story. And by the way, we’d love to hear yours.

SNCF Winter Sales Open on October 12th

by Malin Schibler, posted 05 October 2017 | Add comment

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Ah, October. The time of year, where supermarkets and shopping malls are all already eagerly getting into the festivities of Christmas. It seems that this year, SNCF has also taken on this merry spirit and will soon release their train tickets for the upcoming winter holiday period. So you can be sure to get your hands on these tickets before you even begin carving out your pumpkin for Halloween!

What’s better than December 25th? October 12th!

Mid-October traditionally calls for the sale of tickets for the holiday season (at least for SNCF trains). This year, the tickets will go on sale on Thursday, October 12th, and you’ll be able to book journeys starting December 10, 2017 to January 12, 2018. As usual, you will have to get up early (or stay up late – depending on your timezone) if you want to get the cheapest tickets. Like always, they go like hotcakes and are sold on a first come, first served basis. There is no set time announced for the sale, though we suggest to be ready to book by 06:00 in the morning (Central European Time).

We highly recommend that you set yourself a reminder to avoid missing out on this sale – and most importantly – getting your hands on the lowest priced tickets available. Since we are always thinking of you and would very much dislike seeing you being late to the game, we’ve created a reminder event to add to your calendar. So make sure you add it, set an alarm and get ready to start booking your winter holiday tickets!