InterRail and InterRailing
InterRail tickets are a great, cost-effective and easy way to experience a number of countries and cultures in Europe in one trip. Many gappers choose to travel by train by going InterRailing thanks to the flexibility it allows and the ease in which you can get from point to point. There are different InterRail tickets available for different lengths of time, and you can use the trains on allocated days depending on your ticket type. A 10 days pass, which includes 5 travel days starts from £161 and you can go all the way up to a month-long trip for £387.
If you're under 26 you can get a huge discount, making InterRailing a great way to travel around and meet people.
There are 30 European countries included in the InterRail Global Pass, including the always popular France, Italy and Germany. Also included, depending on the destination, is discounted and free ferry travel. If in Greece, you can jump off and explore the island of Corfu, all for free and included in your pass, for example.
If you need any more advice on buying your ticket, accommodation or how interrailing works, check out this comprehensive and totally awesome Beginner's Guide to Interrailing.
Why Explore Europe by Train?
InterRail passes are cost effective
If you are under the age of 26 you can see as many of Europe's stunning countries as you like for a whole month, using a Global Pass for under £400! If £400 is more than your budget will allow then you could choose to have unlimited travel in just one European country with a One Country Pass for around £100. Money could also be saved by travelling on trains overnight as you could avoid having to pay for accommodation on those nights. Also, if you fall in love with a country and want to stay longer than planned you won’t have to buy a new ticket as InterRail passes are flexible!
It’s a great way to see Europe
The main appeal of an InterRail ticket, is the fact it saves you lots of time and money as there's no need to buy point-to-point tickets. Unlike an aeroplane, when you're travelling on the train you'll be able to see the wonderful places you are going past through the window and even choose to stop if something catches your eye. A lot of the overnight trains have sleeper carriages, which means you will be refreshed and eager to get going when you arrive at your destination; and in the money from not paying for a hostel.
Places you'll see
When InterRailing, you can easily pick and choose which parts of Europe you wish to see from the 30 participating countries, but here's a little taster...:
You could be witness to the majesty of Berlin; go and walk through the cobbled-streets of Budapest; visit the small cafes in Ljubljana; stand under the Eiffel Tower in Paris; and imagine the gladiatorial contests at the Colosseum in Rome.
Benefits of European rail
Most of the above pretty much explains the benefits of using European rail as transport, but here is a recap. Compared to paying for petrol and parking, InterRail passes are a lot cheaper. Travelling by European rail is very flexible so you can come and go as you please and even adapt routes, which would be much harder if you decided to travel by aeroplane. Even if you decide not to stop off at a particular place or country, you are likely to get a glimpse of it out of the train window when you pass by on route to your destination. Better yet if something does catch your eye you can decide to stop and look around for a bit or even just grab a coffee.
If you are travelling with friends train carriages make it a lot easier to sit in groups as they have more space than aeroplanes and it means you don’t need a designated driver as you would do if you were travelling by car, as the train driver does it for you! Finally, train stations are commonly right in the city centres meaning you wouldn’t have to lug all your stuff about or pay for extra transport as you would do if you arrived at an airport.
Planning Your InterRail Adventure
Budgeting for your trip
Deciding on your InterRail route
With so much to do and see deciding on a specific route can be tough. That’s why we suggest you simply have a rough idea of the places you want to see and go from there. Whether you are going to one country or lots our countries section can help you discover what to expect and make a list of top things to do and see. Take a look at these top 10 InterRailing experiences to spark your inspiration.
What should I take InterRailing?
We have a nice little packing list which you may find useful – don't forget your toothbrush! But the main thing to remember is what you don’t pack you can buy out there. No trip can happen without all those important documents – so quick check, have you got your:
- InterRail ticket
- Copy of your passport
- Debit card
- Prescription medicines
One last thing to point out is that it is often easier to travel light, especially if you are going to be walking to accommodation from the train station. A good weight for your backpack is 10-12kg, perhaps give it a test run before you go up to your local train station to check you can carry the weight.
Who should I travel with?
Friends, partner, siblings or your nan? Or you could brave it and go alone, it's completely up to you. Europe has something for everyone, you could travel around different coffee shops writing that novel you have always wanted to, hit up all the bars with your friends or go for romantic walks with your other half. In fact you are travelling alone you may even find romance like the characters in Before Sunrise. Whatever you chose to do we know you will have a blast!
InterRailing through Europe can be expensive, which is why we've got the perfect guide for you - InterRailing on a Budget.
It's a quick guide giving insider hints-and-tips on how to save money on the road, meaning you can afford that extra beer or two!
It's generally considered that the further east you travel the cheaper InterRailing is... for more ideas see our popular routes section...
Idea of the Month
Idea of the Week
Darren is our country expert for Germany. He likes the country so much he lives there, and he's not even German...
Darren has travelled around the world and after a short stint back in Scotland he decided to move to Germany. Like a true backpacker he took to the country with zeal and has explored all that it has to offer, which helped him in writing this guide to Germany - give it a read. You won't be disappointed...