TODAY’S BLOG OFFERS YOU A QUICKFIRE GUIDE TO PLANNING, USING AND GETTING THE ABSOLUTE MOST OUT OF YOUR INTERRAIL EU PASS.
THE EXCITEMENT OF PLANNING.
Now this may just be the teacher in me but I love nothing better than planning a new trip, and a whole month of travels was a great excuse to get lots of prep hours in – down at a local cafe with my SO, the laptop, the ipad, a frappuccino, a cheeky wee slice of carrot cake and two excited faces.
RESEARCHING THE BEST TICKET FOR YOU.
Now we started by making a list of all the places in Europe we wanted to travel to, and then we realised that we are neither made of money nor free forever. So we shortened it, and then shortened it again, and again… Until we finally came up with our definitive list of places we would go on our 33 day Europe interrail trip!
The interrail eu website was the best tool for this! With different ticket options, information on different countries, local events going on, railway maps and 24 hour itineraries it is more than helpful in getting you started and on your way! Now whether you fancy the one country pass or the global pass, the decision is entirely yours. We personally got the Global Pass which meant we could go to as many countries as our hearts desired!
THE DAY IT ARRIVES IN THE POST!
2. LEARNING AS YOU GO ALONG.
Now, your tickets have arrived and so has the day when your travel begins…
You can plan and read as much as you can before you go but nothing is really the same as the tips you learn along the way. One of the best things we found along the way was this: You do NOT need to reserve every train. Now friends had previously warned us about this (oh beware of extra costs in reserving trains) however it’s not really true. Yes, you do have to reserve trains in France, and you will want to because they are so popular. BUT wherever you see the words reservation optional – it is infact that – optional! We reserved a few before we realised it was unnecessary and started chancing our luck and let me tell you in 8 countries we never had a problem getting two seats together on a train! Sometimes it pays to be a couple of chancers!
3. RECORD YOUR TRAVELS THE OLD FASHIONED WAY!
I honestly admit that I am never without my phone, camera and even polaroid camera BUT i seriously advise getting yourself a little travel diary. Notebook, travel journal, whatever you want to call it – GET ONE! They are absolutely perfect for spending hours on trains recording your travels, funny moments, little doodles, whatever you like!!! It doesn’t have to be perfect it just has to be you! And in years to come you can look back and remember all the wee moments you might have forgotten and let me tell you – you will not regret it!
Voy a vivir un millon de adventuras.
4. SQUEEZING THE MOST OF OUT YOUR TICKET.
Here’s a cheeky wee tip from me to you… We chose the 10 Journey Global Pass but we actually squeezed 13 stops our of it! Wanna know how? Buses! If you choose to visit countries such as Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Italy, Switzerland that are relatively small and close together, you may be able to jump on a cheap bus which means you can see another city AND save a train journey for a big one that you couldn’t otherwise stomach on the bus.
We would definitely recommend doing this if you can, who could argue with more another opportunity to see somewhere new?
5. THE INTERRAIL EU APP.
Now I cannot recommend this app enough! It is absolutely amazing and to whoever made it… I applaud you! It could not be simpler, type in where you are and where you want to go. Easy as that! And no matter how obscure the town, or how far away the two are – it will tell you absolutely which train to get, at exactly which time and there you go! In our 33 days, 13 towns and cities and 8 countries we never once had a hiccup and what more could you ask for really?
So enough from me…
I hope you have found this useful and if you were humming and hawing about whether to do it or not… If I were you – I definitely would!
I would do it all again in a heartbeat.