Interrail mobile pass issues

  • 16 October 2021
  • 10 replies
  • 383 views

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

I've been travelling quite a lot over the past few months, getting good value out of my 3-month continuous pass :)

Finally I've now also caught up with the posts in the Interrail community, as some of you might have noticed. Additionally, I've been taking notes about things in the app that are not quite right or misleading and that's what this post is about. Some of the notes are already older, from a previous trip with a mobile flexi pass; I could not re-check all of them (I don't have a valid Interrail at this time) and they may have been fixed in the mean time.

So here goes, in no particular order...

  1. The app said an internet connection is needed to activate a day on a flexi pass ("Add to pass" for the first journey of the day), although the phone had been online only half a day earlier. The mobile pass FAQ does not mention any other requirement than being online at least once every 3 days. If for certain actions an internet connection is needed, then please add that to the FAQ.
  2. Without internet, many actions, such as going to "My Pass" and then to "Show ticket" takes a very long time (several minutes for each of both steps). Adding a journey to a trip and then to the pass without internet access took 30 minutes, which is way too long.
  3. When you open "My Trip", then sometimes the app scrolls to the bottom automatically. That is a good thing. However, that can take quite some time if the list gets long, certainly if you have a 3-month pass. Can't the app just go to the bottom without scrolling?
  4. Manual entries in My Trip do not appear in the map. This should however be possible though for journeys between known stations.
  5. In Germany, for Flixtrain, the planner says that an addition reservation is needed. In reality, Flixtrain is not in the pass network. The latest app (version 20.0.0) even suggests you can book reservations for it.
  6. In Czechia, the JHMD trains do not have a warning "Not in pass network":
    - Obrataň - Jindřichův Hradec
    - Jindřichův Hradec - Nová Bystřice
  7. In Austria, some trains do not have a warning "Not in pass network". This is possibly the case for all trains operated by the NÖVOG. Some examples:
    - Gmünd NÖ - Litschau
    - Gmünd NÖ - Großgerungs
    - Krems an der Donau - Emmersdorf an der Donau
    - Altnagelberg - Heidenreichstein
  8. If you only get a reduction for a bus/train/ferry, then a journey shouldn't use a travel day. However, this does not (always?) seem to work. I.e. if you add a ferry Stockholm - Turku, then it currently takes a travel day and that should not happen. The workaround is not to add such journeys of course but that requires a level of knowledge and awareness that cannot be expected.
  9. In Italy, many regional trains in the Emilia-Romagna region are missing, now operated by "Trenitalia-Tper". Examples: Rimini - Ravenna, Bologna - Ravenna, Ferrara - Ravenna. Is there any hope that these trains will be included again? It's also quite possible that something similar is also true for other regions in Italy.
  10. The stations in Prague are only included with the name "Prague" and not with "Praha". As a minimum however, the station name as used locally should be recognised and that name should be used in the planner results. When typing station names, it is a good idea of course to recognise often used exonyms such as "Prague".
  11. In Belgium, stations seem to appear in the travel planner results with their French names only, also for stations in Dutch-speaking regions, also when you enter the Dutch name (which is recognised). This is very confusing if you're not aware that French equivalents exist or if you don't know them (e.g. for smaller towns). In addition, it is incorrect from the passenger's point of view: the station name used in the planner results should be the one(s) used locally and that you see at the station itself. Some examples:
    - Louvain instead of Leuven
    - Anvers instead of Antwerpen
    - Grammont instead of Geraardsbergen
    - Gand instead of Gent
  12. The app is quite picky about station spelling, in particular about whether, in multi-word names, a dash or a space is used. A station name should be recognised even if you type a dash instead of a space and vice versa.
  13. It is not possible to add a journey to your trip that overlaps with another journey already in the trip. That makes it impossible to add a late train that you would otherwise not be able to catch when changing trains. It would be OK to warn that the journey you are about to add overlaps with another journey but it should not be blocked. It may be possible to add such a journey manually but that should not be required in my opinion.
  14. The minimum connecting time is not implemented correctly in some stations and as a result, some connections are not shown. Some examples:
    - 6 minutes in Benešov u Prahy (CZ)
    - 5 minutes in Kladno (CZ)
    - 4 minutes in Havlickuv Brod (CZ)
    - 7 minutes in Foligno (IT)
    - 5 minutes in Seregno (IT)
    - 4 minutes in Kreuzlingen (CH)
    - 3 minutes in Konstanz (DE)
    I've found these examples only by using the app for my own journeys and I'm afraid there are many more examples. These connections are shown in the operators' own planners and in e.g. the DB and ÖBB planners, which normally means that the correct connection times are available in the MERITS data and at the European Timetable Centre. That probably means that there's a problem with the implementation in the rail planner app.

Any feedback from the Interrail/Eurail team would be greatly appreciated :)


10 replies

Userlevel 6
Badge +7

Thanks rvdborgt, for taking the effort to list your feedback and sharing it with us. It has been passed on to the relevant teams. We will get back to you soon. Cheers, 

Userlevel 6
Badge +7

Hi rvdborgt, 

Hereby the feedback on the points you made:
 

  1. We have an FAQ about the internet requirement where we mention the rule to be online at least every 3 days. We assume that you are referring to the FAQ “Do I need an internet connection to use the Rail Planner App?” – we indeed don’t make a mention of it there. We can consider that, although the information can be found in another FAQ: '’Do I need an internet connection to use the Railplanner app?'’
     

     

  2. We are aware of performance issues when not connected to the internet, although it’s the first time we’re hearing of 30 minutes, that’s indeed way too long. We’ve added some improvements in the last month, so the performance should have gotten a bit better and we’re including another improvement in the coming 21.0.0 release. But, it’s indeed still an issue that we’re continuously looking into. Unfortunately, it had to do with the way the app was set up in the beginning, so it’s quite a complex thing to solve.
     
  3. We are not aware of the app doing this, Our App Team tried to reproduce it on their devices but for them the My Trip doesn’t scroll automatically. Could you perhaps provide a video of it? 
     
  4. To mark the journeys on the map we use coordinates of the stations. And, indeed for journeys that are entered manually we have no way, at the moment, to collect those coordinates. It’s something on the backlog that we’d like to improve in the future, but we have no fixed timelines for this yet.
     
  5. This needs to be checked. It has been added to the backlog as tasks. I will update you on the outcome once completed. 
    Added: Has been fixed in November
     
  6. This needs to be checked. It has been added to the backlog as tasks.I will update you on the outcome once completed. 
    Added: Has been fixed in November
     
  7. This needs to be checked. It has been added to the backlog as tasks. I will update you on the outcome once completed. 
    Added: Has been fixed in November
     
  8. Such reductions are considered Pass benefits. As explained on the page you do not need to use a travel day, if you make use of discounted Pass benefits. In case of both the paper and mobile Pass, you do not have to add the journey. You only need to show you have a Eurail/ Interrail Pass on location. It is not a workaround but it is the way it is and always has been. However, good you are pointing out it is not clear to users. We acknowledge that the pass benefit rule may not be known by everyone and can lead to lost travel days. We will look into ways to make it clearer. 
     
  9. This needs to be checked. It has been added to the backlog as tasks. I will update you on the outcome once completed. 
     
  10. The local name is indeed missing. In this case, we would have to add local station names for each station. We've decided for now to use the English names which in general are easily recognizable for most people. We do have a few local names in the planner already. We will look into what is required to make it possible, and perhaps only of the most well known stations. 
    Added: This is being worked on at the moment with our timetable provider. 
     
  11. This needs to be checked. We will look into this to see how other timetables handle this. At this point we don’t have plans to do anything in this area but we will consider to have it as an improvement point in the future. It has been added to the backlog as tasks. I will update you if we decide to make changes there.  
    Added: this has been tested and both Dutch and French names come up. Both names are used in the timetable. If you do see cases only showing the name in French, do let me know (and provide a screenshot)
     
  12. We will look into this. At this point we don't have plans to do anything in this area, but we will consider to have it as an improvement point in the future. 
     
  13. Technically, journeys cannot overlap. If a train is missed or travel plans change last minute it should still be possible to delete a journey and add a new one (also if that journey is already in the past).
     
  14. We are using a supplier who takes the data from merits but has his own logic in transfer times. So they can indeed differ from the transfer time the carriers handle themselves. In the web timetable you are able to select your own transfer times. For the app we show connections with a transfer time of 5 minutes and more by default. On the one hand we want to display all connections as shown in the operators' own planners, but we received a lot of feedback from customers that showing journeys with a 2 or 3 minute transfer time is quite deceiving. In most (larger) stations less than 5 minutes is not enough time to make the transfer (especially if you are not familiar with the station). But because we displayed those connections in the planner, users believe it's doable and until they find out that they needed more time and missed connections with reservations attached to them. Therefore, we decided to keep the default at 5 minutes. It is still possible for the user to change the transfer time in the '’Options'’ of the planner to anywhere between 1 minute and 3 hours.

Thanks again for sharing your valuable feedback with us, rvdborgt. We will keep you posted.

Cheers, 

 

I was now busy traveling on my 2 month mobile pass. 

I liked the app and it works good. But I also had problems showing the ticket when there was no or bad internet. 

Again today (so I assume on the newest version, it did take at least 5 minutes) 

This is very bad for the traveler and also for the person that wants to check the ticket. 

Userlevel 6
Badge +7

Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback with us, Vero69. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed using the App . We do understand your concerns with regards to not being able to show your ticket so we will take it along when making improvements to the app. 

I do not have a pass yet but I am planing to go mid April this year. I get a bit worried concerning the problems with showing the ticket/pass off-line. Is it possible to take a screen-shot and show as an emergency solution?

 

Userlevel 6
Badge +7

Hi Robert, no need to worry. There are only a few exceptional cases for which the Pass was not showing. Due to fraud sensitivity it is not possible to show a screenshot. Once your Pass is on your device, you can find it any time in My Pass. If you have problems showing your ticket with QR during your trip, train staff will be be able to check the details on your Pass manually to check validity. Always make sure to get in touch with our Customer Support via this form, as they can assist you as well. But as mentioned, almost all travelers do not experience issues with showing their ticket offline. 
If you have more concerns/questions you can have a look at our Mobile Pass FAQ or post it here. 

 

Hi Robert, no need to worry. 

 

Thanks Nanja, now lets hope the pandemic slows down so I can go mid April. :sunglasses:

 

Userlevel 4
Badge +2
  1. In Italy, many regional trains in the Emilia-Romagna region are missing, now operated by "Trenitalia-Tper". Examples: Rimini - Ravenna, Bologna - Ravenna, Ferrara - Ravenna. Is there any hope that these trains will be included again? It's also quite possible that something similar is also true for other regions in Italy.

Any progress on this item yet @Nanja ?

I’m reasonably hopeful Trenitalia-TPER ought to be included; all the other Trenitalia subsidiaries are.

They run a summer-only cross-country route from Pesaro to Bergamo via Rimini, Ravenna, Ferrara and Brescia called the Freccia Orobica, which I suspect would be very useful for some travellers.

Many thanks!

Userlevel 6
Badge +7

Hi Edm, thanks for checking in. Basically there is no Tper trains data in the database of the European Timetable and that's the reason we don't get them in our timetable. Our reservation specialist has been following up with them for feedback on these regional carriers in Italy and if they can pick it up with Trenitalia directly, but there is no result yet. Will keep you posted. 

Regarding the other points we would look into:

  • Point 5,6 and 7, has been fixed in November. 
  • Point 10, this is being worked on still with our timetable provider. 
  • Point 11, this has been tested and both Dutch and French names come up. Both names are used in the timetable. If you do see cases only showing the name in French, do let me know (and provide a screenshot)

    Note: I will add it in the overview above, to have everything together. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Point 11: that's easy. Dutch and French names are indeed recognised when you enter them in the planner. Here two names in Dutch:

However, when looking at the details in the planner, they become French, here for the first train in the screenshot above:

And they stay French when I add them to my trip:

 

However, in Switzerland, many exonyms are recognised but the station names as used locally are used in the planner results and My Trip. You can request a journey from Genf to Bale Sbb:

But if you open one of the results, the station names are correctly changed to their local forms:

In My Trip, the local names are also used:

 

It should be possible to use the method for the Swiss stations for all other countries.

My phone has a Dutch UI but that shouldn't make a difference.

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