Help with 12 day/11 night itinerary for Europe by train

  • 12 July 2022
  • 3 replies
  • 105 views

We will be landing in Paris from Singapore early morning on the 17th and will be flying out mid-day on the 28th from Brussels. We are a family of 4 (2 teens) so we’d probably rather visit more places. We have the Eurail 4 day pass. This is what I’ve thought of so far:

Paris: 3 nights

20th: Paris to Strasbourg (already reserved on TGV)

Strasbourg: 2 nights (day-trip to nearby towns eg. Colmar)

22nd: Strasbourg to Munich

Munich: 2 nights

24th: Munich to Amsterdam

Amsterdam: 2 nights

26th: Amsterdam to Bruges

Bruges: 1 night

27th: Bruges to Brussels

28th: Flying out of Brussels

 

Could anyone please critique this itinerary, or suggest alternative places to go? We’re unsure about Munich, especially as Strasbourg → Munich and Munich → Amsterdam trains are very hectic with switching trains etc.

Could anyone also suggest whether to reserve seats on the trains where it isn’t required (eg. ICE trains). It is peak tourist season so I suppose it will be a good idea.


3 replies

Userlevel 7
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It is high season and the routes you will take are popular so I think that would be good to make reservations on the ICE trains even if it isn't mandatory. If the train gets too full, people without reservation can have to leave the train due to security reasons. 

 

Here is some useful information from the experienced travellers in the Community regarding both planning, reservations and activation of pass and travel days. 

 

Planning

The rail planner is normally not up to date, as it only is updated once a month, so to be sure of the time table you better check the timetable and availability on the websites of the national railways. The bigger national railways, like DB (Germany) SBB (Switzerland) and ÖBB (Austria) cover several countries. 

 

Reservations 

The advice from the experienced travellers in the community is to use other ways to make reservations than the Interrail/Eurail website.  You can look at the guide in the link:

https://community.eurail.com/train-connections-reservations-47/how-to-get-reservations-105

If you, after having looked at the guide, have questions about how to make specific reservation, please give your travel details (departure date, time and route) preferably in a new topic, and you will get advice.

Please note that Interrail/Eurail charges an extra fee of 2 EUR per person and ticket in addition to the fee for the seat reservation.

 

Activation of pass

During the activation process, when you choose the start day of the validity of the pass, the first day of the validity period is automatically made a travel day, even if you don't enter a journey, the advice is therefore not to activate the pass before the first travel day as you only can deactivate the pass before 00.00 on the day the validity starts. If your travel plans change in the last moment you will loose travel days if you have activated the pass in advance.

It can be wise to make a test and activate the pass with a start date well in the future and then deactivate the pass immediately, just to see that everything works.

 

 Activation of travel day

The advice from the experienced travellers in the community is also never to activate a travel day, that is connect a journey to your pass, until just before boarding the train, otherwise you might loose a travel day if your travel plans change in a late stage  You can't delete a travel day in the past. A travel day can only be deleted until 23.59 CET the day before the travel day.

@AnnaB Thank you for your response. Given that I have zero experience with European trains, how many minutes do you think one would need to switch from one train to another? On my routes I’ve seen 5-6 minute interchanges but I wonder if it will be too hectic.

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

@AnnaBThank you for your response. Given that I have zero experience with European trains, how many minutes do you think one would need to switch from one train to another? On my routes I’ve seen 5-6 minute interchanges but I wonder if it will be too hectic.

That really depends on the station and if it is a country where the trains usually are on time. Like in Switzerland it is normally no problem with short interchange times.

What routes so you have with short interchange times?

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