Anonymous
Anonymous asked in TravelEurope (Continental)Other - Europe · 9 years ago

Booking point-to-point tickets online or france-italy rail pass?

london-paris-venice-florence-rome if possible add nice

I will be visiting this cities. What do you suggest buy point-to-point tickets or go with the rail pass?

Which of the two options do I save money?

Which of the two options is more convenient?

visiting this May is that a peak season

1 Answer

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  • Steven
    Lv 5
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Hi Jacob,

    If I understand correctly, it appears as though you will have a total of 4 travel days.

    The Eurail France-Italy pass starts with a minimum of 4 travel days within a 60-day period, so it looks good to start with, but in this case the pass is not a good fit for you.

    First off, no Eurail pass covers the Eurostar between London and Paris - you need to purchase that ticket separately at http://www.eurostar.com/

    So that means that you actually have 3 travel days within France and Italy, so you would be buying one day too many with the Eurail pass.

    Additionally, most trains are cheap in Italy and are usually cheaper than the cost of a Eurail pass (perhaps the only western European country where that is the case). That being said, if you have a Eurail pass, you need to pay a hefty reservation fee (typically 18-24 Euros) for each trip that you take on a high-speed train. When you travel from Venice - Florence and then Florence - Rome, you will be taking a high-speed train (unless you opt for a much, much longer and less direct route). So when judging the cost of the Eurail pass, you would need to factor in at least an extra 36 Euros for these reservation fees.

    Finally, your trip from Paris to Venice will be on an overnight train. Again, you will need to pay a separate reservation fee for this route (make sure you reserve this one at least a couple weeks in advance) and the cost of the reservation fee will depend on the kind of accommodations you would like to have on the train - reclining seat, couchette bunk, or private compartment. Each one more expensive than the last.

    I am a big fan of Eurail passes. That being said, I do not believe that it is right for you with this trip. To get the best value, I would recommend that you purchase your own Eurostar ticket from London to Paris online (and do it as far in advance as you can, as you will get a discount for an early purchase), and purchase point-to-point tickets for travel within Italy at the train stations - you can use their excellent automated ticket machines. Between Paris and Venice you might want to consider flying on an inexpensive airline like EasyJet. If you want to take a night train, I would reserve that one online in advance - can be purchased either through the Rail Europe website at http://www.raileurope.com/ or through the SNCF (France Rail) website at http://www.tgv-europe.com/

    Have a great trip!

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