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Amsterdam to Paris to Gimelwald to Rome

I just received the confirmation on 3 and a half weeks paid vacation from my work. I am thinking about doing Amsterdam to Paris to Gimelwald to Rome, ryanair flight to London, train to Dublin (via ferry at Holyhead) and back home from there. I would be spending about three days in each location with the exception of Amsterdam and London. I have a couple of questions about how to maximize each dollar while on the trip. I figured that I would book the Thalys high speed train from Amsterdam to Paris, then get a select 3-country 5 Day Select Eurail pass/Or Global Eurail pass for the Paris-Gimelwald-Rome? My main point of concern is whether it would be worth getting the eurail pass. Will the needed trains for this excursion be covered all the way?

Planning on June 22nd to July 16th.

Posted by
4833 posts

Generally speaking, passes do not pay, especially if there are added reservation or upgrade fees to fast trains that you need to add on. The pass would be especially tough to justify if you are only using 2 or 3 of the days. For example, it looks like a 5 day, 3 country, 2nd class, with two people traveling together runs about $375 per person, plus you very likely will have reservation fees in Italy and seating could be very limited in France. If you know your dates, buying point to point tickets well ahead may be the best route.

Ryanair would be fine back to London, look at Easyjet and other discount airlines as well.

Unless there is a special attraction with the train and ferry to Dublin, consider Ryanair as well.

Posted by
11158 posts

Here's his excellent discussion of all the issues involved in buying passes, vs. discounted single tickets, vs. full priced tickets: http://www.seat61.com/Railpass-and-Eurail-pass-guide.htm#Should%20you%20buy%20a%20railpass%20or%20pay-as-you-go

Here is a great list, from The Man In Seat 61, about where to look to book the least expensive train tickets for each route: http://tinyurl.com/bo8x6o6.

If you do decide to buy single tickets, you'll want to buy them as soon as they go on sale to get the best prices (the prices only go up as you get closer to travel). Start looking now, to see how far in advance you can book tickets, and to familiarize yourself with the websites and their procedures.

Yes, for any flights, look at Skyscanner to see all your options: http://www.skyscanner.com/ Remember that London has six airports (at least as far as the airlines are concerned) and Rome has two airports. Particularly on the London end, it can take a lot more time and/or money to reach some of them compared to others, negating any savings on the "cheaper" tickets. Also, some airlines may charge more than others for checking a bag and may have more stringent limits for carry-ons. Carefully look at total costs before buying, and realize that budget airlines make their money by enforcing all their rules strictly. A "legacy" carrier like British Air or Alitalia can work out cheaper in the end - or not; again, you have to check.

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you for all of the info, that blog is extremely helpful.