What is difference between reservation recommended against required

  • 12 July 2022
  • 2 replies

Hello.. I am new to this eurail website and I started planning my travel and I saw in planner in mobile app I turned on filter for No seat reservations required and searched for travel from kopenhagen to hamburg. In the results I get I see high speed train and one IC train and it says the reservation is recommended.

I want to know is it just a suggestion or I have to do reservation in that case?


Best answer by AnnaB 12 July 2022, 22:57

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During the summer there is mandatory reservation on all direct trains between Denmark and Germany.  The app and the planner are not always up to date. 


The advice from the experienced travellers in the community is to only make reservations through the Interrail/Eurail website if no other option is available. 


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


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. 


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:

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.

Userlevel 7
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If a train has mandatory reservation you must have a reservation to travel, like X2000 and IC trains in Sweden. 

If a train has optional reservation, like all domestic day trains in Germany, you can travel without a reservation and just find a free seat. However if the train is too crowded, the staff might, for security reason, ask people without reservation to leave the train.