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InterRail vs standard train tickets (SPAIN)

  • 21 June 2022
  • 5 replies
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Hi, due to all the problems and uncertainty caused by the Interrail reservations process, I’m now considering just ‘paying’ for train tickets from the UK to Spain. The total cost is only GBP25 more than the Interrail plus all the reservations, but the difference could be zero if I can only get E20 Interrail reservations on SNCF - plus SNCF fares are refundable up to 2 weeks before travel, and Eurostar are exchangeable for free. And I don’t get the huge stress reservations and worrying about getting stuck! (I’m annoyed that I didn’t think of this earlier, as the Eurostar fares are now a lot more expensive than when I first checked).

Can anyone tell me whether the ‘normal’ tickets in Spain have a compulsory reservation also? I see on the Renfe website that they have an ‘optional’ reservation for an extra E8, however if you don’t pay the E8, is it (A) you just have to choose a non-reserved seat when you get on board, and if you’re unlucky you might not get a seat with your companion, or (B) you might not get a seat at all??

Thanks for any info.

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Best answer by rvdborgt 21 June 2022, 00:40

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Userlevel 7
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Normal tickets in Spain include a reservation wherever possible. Not sure what the 8€ would be for, maybe to choose your seat?

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Normal tickets in Spain include a reservation wherever possible. Not sure what the 8€ would be for, maybe to choose your seat?

Yes that’s what it says…”Selecciona tu asiento”... isn’t “choosing your seat” a reservation?

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

Normal tickets in Spain include a reservation wherever possible. Not sure what the 8€ would be for, maybe to choose your seat?

Yes that’s what it says…”Selecciona tu asiento”... isn’t “choosing your seat” a reservation?

Yes it is, but you'll get a seat regardless. For 8€ (what a rip-off) you'll get to select it yourself.

Userlevel 7
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Normal tickets in Spain include a reservation wherever possible. Not sure what the 8€ would be for, maybe to choose your seat?

Yes that’s what it says…”Selecciona tu asiento”... isn’t “choosing your seat” a reservation?

Yes it is, but you'll get a seat regardless. For 8€ (what a rip-off) you'll get to select it yourself.

Wow, I didn’t think their customer unfriendly service could sink any lower.

Ryanair by RENFE.

Userlevel 7
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Supplmt AND pricing on RENFE varies by type of train-cheapest are the MD, most expensive the superfast AVE

RENFE also has its own railpass-only valid on its own trains, incl. all REServ when needed, and its all virtual-online. Just google, IF you plan to do many trips it might be worthwhile.

On the major his-peed lines MAD to Bcn or Vlc are now also competing lower cost trains: AVLO and OuiGo with a 3d to promised come.

Also note -ONLY if asked for that when buying-all long dist tickets on AVE/Avant include a free ticket on local Cercanias trenes both at start and end.

Cheaper way to reach ESpana is probably with the overnite from Paris to Port Bou-seats (1st cl for 2nd price) or couchette-check sncf.

You are right and smart to have found this-though it also locks you in to preset plans-but most seem unable to even think it could be different.

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