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Calling Train Ticket Experts

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Jun 20th, 2013, 01:08 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Mar 2007
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Calling Train Ticket Experts

When traveling by train most of the time we have had passes or just purchased as we go,especially in Italy. This time I think I would like to get our tickets online before we go.Where do I begin, which website, etc? Are they mailed to me or do they have to be picked up.Think I would want them in my possession when I left home. Also, advise on best trains to take between the cities would be nice to know. Obviously the shortest time and less changes but don't know if there is something else I should know. I see we will be able to take ES from Turin to Rome and that is a good thing.

Our itinerary is from Frankfurt airport to Strasbourg, Freiberg ,Lucerne, Turin and Rome.
Travel is end of August and in September.

Many thanks.
violetduck is offline  
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Jun 20th, 2013, 01:23 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
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For Italy it's http://www.trenitalia.com/
Switzerland - http://www.sbb.ch/home.html
Germany - http://www.bahn.de

Tickets can be printed at home.
hkto is offline  
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Jun 20th, 2013, 02:23 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
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For the kind of details you seek I suggest contacting http://www.budgeteuropetravel.com/. Call Byron or Linda. They are in Ann Arbor and are very helpful.
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Jun 20th, 2013, 02:30 PM
  #4
 
Join Date: May 2004
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We booked several different inter-city sectors on Trenitalia when we travelled in December. Trains were great - clean, efficient, comfortable and fast.

You print a booking voucher with all details including seat allocations before you leave home and use this for travel - no need for individual tickets.
bendigo is offline  
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Jun 20th, 2013, 03:34 PM
  #5
 
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This site will make you an expert: www.seat61.com
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Jun 20th, 2013, 04:17 PM
  #6
 
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The Swiss site is www.sbb.ch/en

You can use the Swiss site to buy your tickets from Lucern to Turin; you can also use it to buy the tickets from Freiberg to Lucern
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Jun 20th, 2013, 04:25 PM
  #7
 
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$70 a day for a 5-day Eurail Select Saverpass means about 50 euros a day for first-class train travel for all those rides - compare with the cheapest tickets you can get and if even remotely close go first class - 50 euros a day and you can select your trains as you go along - hop on any train in Germany and Switzerland and easily get mandated seat reservations in Italy (add 10 euros a train however) - so do not neglect the pass if the cost of 2nd class tickets which usually must be booked weeks in advance to get discounted fares and then typically cannot be changed nor refunded - if it is even remotely close to the 50 euro a day figure go first class with a pass. I'm not sure what the difference may be but I do know in decades of European rail travel that first class definitely has significant benefits and is a much more relaxed ride than 2nd class (which ain't bad don't get me wrong but just a lot more crowded, smaller seats, etc.
For lots of great info on European trains I always spotlight www.seat61.com (great info on discounted tickets), www.ricksteves.com and www.budgeteuropetravel.com.
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Jun 20th, 2013, 07:26 PM
  #8
 
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>>>I see we will be able to take ES from Turin to Rome and that is a good thing.<<<

Trenitalia no longer uses ES as a description for any of their trains. The fastest trains in Italy are the AV trains, Frecciabianca, Frecciarossa and Frecciargento. Look for the super economy discounts. Check 1st and 2nd as sometimes prices can be very close. Trenitalia has just added some more trains for Turin/Rome.

http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/v/inde...003f16f90aRCRD

Trains crossing borders, you want to book from the departing country website. Sometimes you get an e-mail code to use as a ticket. Other times, you get a confirmation code to pick up your tickets at a station.

While sbb.ch will let you book Luzerne/Torino, it might not be the best deal/price. There are Supersaver/Smart Fares for the EC trains between Lucerne and Milan (you have to change in Milan anyway) as cheap as 22chf on sbb. From Milan to Torino, you can find supereconomy for as little as 9€ for the fast train on Trenitalia. Pay attention to the Milan stations as some of the sbb connections have you changing stations, not just trains.
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Jun 21st, 2013, 07:08 AM
  #9
 
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ttt
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Jun 21st, 2013, 07:37 AM
  #10
 
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Isn't it nice when we have people giving others ALL the possible options for a change rather than the usual rote response? Thank you, Kybourbon and keep voting against those two fools (you know of whom I am speaking).
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Jun 21st, 2013, 09:57 PM
  #11
 
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I have an upcoming trip, and let me say that I LOVE the bahn.com website. If you can arrange your trip so that you are entering or leaving Germany you have a better chance of getting a good deal.

For our upcoming trip, we have purchased all of our tickets in advance. For spontaneity pay the extra money for a rail pass.
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Jun 22nd, 2013, 06:40 AM
  #12
 
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Freiberg is horribly far out of your way. You don't, by chance, mean Freiburg im Breisgau? My tip is: Use the correct names of the places you want to visit or you'll end up in the wrong destination. The booking systems do what you write, not what you want...
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Jun 22nd, 2013, 09:42 AM
  #13
 
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How many Freibourg/Freibergs/Friburgs, etc are there in Germany and Switzerland?
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Jun 22nd, 2013, 02:35 PM
  #14
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Thanks to all for your help. I did talk to Byron at BETS and he was very helpful. I am still working on checking all fares and the German website is the easiest for timetables. The Freiberg ( yes, there are MANY and that was confusing at first) is the Freiberg im Breisgau in the Black Forest a couple of hours from Strasbourg.

I have changed the itinerary and now going to Orvieto instead of Torino for several reasons.

Thanks again. I could not plan these trips without all your help.
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Jun 23rd, 2013, 01:16 PM
  #15
 
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The Freiburg im Breisgau is spelled Freiburg im Breisgau, not Freiberg im Breisgau. Good point made by quokka and PalenQ.
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Jun 23rd, 2013, 02:43 PM
  #16
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Thanks spaarne. We are going to the one near Strasbourg and is the Freiburg im Breisgau. Too many bergs and burgs for me.
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