The Skinny on Eurail Passes

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There are several European countries in which you can use EurailPasses, which allow for unlimited train travel. While most of the countries are fair game to travel around with a standard Eurailpass, others have restrictions.

If you plan to rack up the miles, get a standard Eurailpass. These are available for 15 days ($605), 21 days ($785), one month ($975), two months ($1,378), and three months ($1,703). Childrens prices are roughly half. Holders of these passes also receive discounted fares on Eurostar (the channel tunnel train between Paris and London or Brussels and London). This pass is valid for travel in: Austria, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Norway, Czech Republic, Poland, Finland, Portugal, France, Romania, Germany, Spain, Greece, Sweden, Hungary, Switzerland, Italy.

If your plans call for only limited train travel within 3 to 5 bordering countries, opt for the cheaper Eurail Selectpass. Prices start at $383 for 5 days of rail travel within any 2 month period within three countries .

There are also Single Country Passes for unlimited travel within one country; prices vary greatly depending on the country.

In addition to standard EurailPasses, ask about special rail-pass plans. Among these are the Eurail Selectpass Youth (for those under age 26) and the Eurail Selectpass Saver (which gives a discount for two or more people traveling together).

Whichever of the above passes you choose, remember that you must purchase your Eurail passes at home before leaving on your trip. As well, reservations must be made for some trains, like sleeper trains. Reservations generally cost a few extra euros.

There are some restrictions to who can purchase EurailPasses depending on whether you live in or outside Europe.

See Rail Europe's How the Pass Works for answers to your specific pass questions.

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