Global pass v buying tickets

  • 14 November 2022
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After reading many posts from newbies asking whether a Gkobal Pass was cost effective I put my mind to my experience this year with a First Class senior 10 day in 2 months GP.

As a numbers nerd I wondered how my travels had worked out, so I did a worked example based on the same trains but about a month from now and with a pass bought today. Choosing a midweek day (Wed 14 Dec) I did a small spreadsheet of individual journeys and first class saver (No flexibility), first class advance flexible, same for second class, and pass at todays prices and reservations. 

The details are below but simply put:

Pass costs (First Class sen and reservations - at todays prices) 581 euro.
Lowest cost saver tickets - 1050 euro 

Pre-paid flexible tickets - 1726 euro 

So savings were at least 470 euro pp but against flexible tickets the saving was over 1000 euros.

For those wishing to analyse further here are the workings:

All prices are from normal operator sites.

The Trip involved these travel days and their prepaid prices (1st saver/1st Flex/2nd saver/2nd flex)

Syracuse to Salerno                                      37 - 77 - 30 - 56

Salerno to Bologna                                        64 -124 -  48 - 87

Bologna to Munich to Nuremberg                  70 - 277 - 56 - 163

Nuremberg to Frankfurt to Brussels               90 - 277 - 72 - 164

Brussels to London to Leeds                         262 - 354 - 152 - 206

2 days day roving cote d’azur                        50 - 50 - 50 -50

Nice to Paris to Lille                                       103 - 103 - 78 - 78

Lille to London to Leeds                                 262 - 354 - 152 - 206

(Note Second part much less than planned for family reason - planned Nice - Venice - Vienna - Prague and fly home)

For this itinerary a 10 day pass would currently cost 401/361 euro 2nd or 534/481 (Ad/Senior) euro first class. Our reservations added about 100 euro.

So cheapest inflexible tickets would cost 750 euro 2nd class or 1050 1st Class but, like low cost flights, miss one and cost would rise rapidly, and all remaining tickets lost if plans inadvertently changed.

For a flexible pre-paid option the totals become 1118 second class and 1726 euros first class. This does though still force you to stick with your planned itinerary.

I appreciate every case is specific to the traveller but this may show how, irrespective of all the key benefit of a Global Pass (Total flexibility to change right up to the day at the only cost of reservations) the savings can be dramatic.

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