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Eurail’s Big Makeover

Eurail Global Pass Participating Countries by Ratherous from Wikimedia Commons Eurail Global Pass Participating Countries by Ratherous from Wikimedia Commons

Eurail just announced the biggest overhaul in its 60 years of existence. Among the key features:

  • Eurail Select passes — those good in contiguous seats of two, three or four countries — are gone. If you need more than one country, you need to get a 31-country Global pass.
  • Second class Global pass: To accommodate to the need to replace Select passes, the 31-country pass, formerly limited to first class, is now available in second class.
  • Short-term Global passes: Also to substitute for Select passes, Global now offers a range of much shorter options than previously, including three, five, and seven days within a month. Prices start at $257 for three days in second class, $343 in first class.
  • Senior discount: After nearly disappearing from the range of options, both Global and one-country passes now offer 10 percent senior discounts to travelers age 60 or over. Youth discounts for travelers age 12-27 remain as before. See more discounts
  • Eurostar added: The Global pass now includes Eurostar travel between London, Ashford and the Continent. It does not, however, cover other trains in Britain.
  • Two new countries: Eurail now includes Lithuania and Macedonia.
  • Open Access rail operators: Eurail passes now include open-access operators in Czechia, Leo Express and RegioJet. It does not, however, cover the much larger Italo and Westbahn open-access operators.
  • Greek Islands: New Greek Islands passes cover either 5 trips in a month entirely within Greece or 6 trips in a month including one round-trip between Greece and Italy.

Taken together, these new options make Eurailpass  more attractive than ever to lots of visitors. But to minimize your rail costs, you still need to consider buying individual trip tickets at cheap advance-purchase fares.

Ed Perkins, editor

For more travel tips from Ed Perkins, see our companion site Ed on Travel

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