Please sign in to post.

Purchase eurail tickets

I am trying to purchase a 3-day Scandinavian Eurail pass with seat assignments and obtaining paper tickets. The web site chatbot says I can do this, but then when I start the purchase, the only option that comes up is a mobile pass. How do I select a paper pass?

Posted by
5956 posts

Where are you trying to buy the pass? And are you sure it is a good idea?

Posted by
35 posts

We were on the Eurail web site.

What about the good idea? Don't understand. We have a set itinerary mapped out with hotel reservations already. Flights booked too. Nailing down transportation next.

Posted by
5956 posts

Are you sure a pass is better than individual tickets? What does your itinerary look like?

Posted by
35 posts

It is a 3-day flexible pass. We will us one pass for each segment between Bergen, Oslo, Stockholm ending in Copenhagen over two weeks. Doing it this way allows us to confirm our transportation before we leave. We will be in Europe before this and may not be able to look into it.

Posted by
19021 posts

Have you tried the official Eurail site? (I guess you answered that before I finished this post.)

That still won't help you with seat assignments. That's the dirty little secret about rail passes. You might have to look to the individual national rail lines for those. Or you could obtain the seat assignments at the ticket counters when you get to the country, but that would defeat one of the supposed advantages of a rail pass - not having to stand in ticket lines.

Has anyone used Euraide recently for seat reservations? Once upon a time, they were the place to go for seat and overnight reservations you couldn't find anywhere else.

Personally, I don't believe in rail passes. A little over 20 years ago, I made my first RS era trip to Europe. I bought a GRP from ETBD. After I came home, I looked up all of my rail trips on the Bahn website and figured I had maybe saved a few dollars, but not much, and might have saved money without the pass by using different trains.

Since then (10 trips), as I have learned to use national rail websites (particularly the Bahn's), I have compared rail passes to individual tickets, day passes, and advance purchase tickets, and a rail pass has never made sense (or cents). A rail pass might give one a little flexibility, but not enough to warrant a big price difference I would have to pay.

Posted by
35 posts

Yes, we were on the Eurail website. the chatbot said we could do this - tickets and seat reservations in first class. Sending an email has not been replied to yet.

Posted by
5956 posts

If you are buying a 3 day pass just to do one trip each travel day, you are probably wasting a lot of money. Buy three individual tickets instead, the total cost of those will probably be less than the cost of the pass.

Posted by
35 posts

We are buying a 3-day flex pass, not a standard pass. We will use each day for a separate day's travel. By buying in advance, it is cheaper, and upgrading is not that much more. Getting a paper pass gets around the 72-hour window that Eurail imposes on reservations.

Posted by
5956 posts

I assumed it was a flexible pass. And I still think three single tickets bought in advance will be cheaper.

Posted by
35 posts

Either way, we would like paper tickets with assigned seats. It is getting the paper tickets that we have a problem with. Anyone have experience with this particular process?

Posted by
6740 posts

For 3 segments, I really do not think that a pass is the cheapest OR easiest option...
On the Seat61 website mentioned just above, look at the pages for Norway and Sweden to see how to buy the three tickets that you need. Should be on www.vy.no for the Bergen to Oslo train and www.sj.se for the other two.

Also, when is your trip? There is work on the line between Oslo and Stockholm; currently there are still a few direct trains, but not at very convenient hours (very early morning, or evening).

Posted by
8147 posts

Okay. I went online and priced those three specific routes with advance purchase and compared them to the flexi-pass and the flexi-pass won by about $70 each person. Now you would need to subtract the cost of the reservations which are additional, but I don't see any reason to keep telling the OP that they have made a bad choice.

I am sorry to say I don't have an answer to your original question and doubt many here do since few people have made this purchase. Your best bet may be waiting to hear back on your email.

Posted by
6740 posts

My understanding is that the OP has not bought the pass yet ("trying to purchase"). The major issue here is not the cost (the pass isn't that expensive, and certainly quite a bit cheaper than 3 full fares), but the complexity: by the time one figures out how to make Eurail reservations, the three tickets would long have been bought through each country's national railway company.

Of course, if the pass is already purchased, then I am sure there will be a solution for the reservation woes.

Posted by
35 posts

Trip is in late June. Thanks balso and Carol. I checked out the vy.no web site. Interesting they only have one class of travel.

To make life more interesting, I would like to figure out how the get off the train at the Asker station so I can board another train that stops near the Thon hotel ( Nationalteatern station). That way I don't have to figure out how to back track to the Nationalteatern station using a train.

Posted by
5956 posts

and certainly quite a bit cheaper than 3 full fares

True, but do you really need full fare tickets? Buy them in advance and they are much cheaper.

I would like to figure out how the get off the train at the Asker
station so I can board another train that stops near the Thon hotel (
Nationalteatern station).

What exactly do you want to know?

That way I don't have to figure out how to back track to the
Nationalteatern station using a train.

The fastest way is probably to travel all the way to Oslo S.

Posted by
35 posts

When purchasing train tickets from Bergen to Oslo, if given a choice - does one side of the train have better views that the other?

Posted by
26412 posts

I haven't taken that trip yet. I've read comments on this forum and in guide books, and this is the consensus of those comments:

The scenery between Bergen and Voss is said to be nice but not fabulous. The suggstion is to sit on the left side of the train traveling from west to east.

I do not know anything about the section of the trip between Voss and Myrdal; it didn't figure in any of the comments I read about scenery. Most people skip that section of the rail line as a result of doing the Nutshell itinerary.

The most dramatic part of the train trip is apparently between Myrdal and Oslo. You (traveling from Bergen) would do best to sit on the right side of the train. One person suggested that on the segment of the trip nearest Bergen (after you descend from the plateau, I think), there are better views on the left (the side with the river). It seems, though, that those river views are not as dramatic as the views from the other side of the train at the higher elevations. Therefore, choosing to sit on the right side of the train between Myrdal and Oslo seems the right decision.

Again: This is just what I have read.

Posted by
5319 posts

No one buys full fare tickets.

And look at all the hassle and extra steps the pass has required. Just buy the tickets like normal travelers do - from the website for the actual company that runs the train for a specific time.

Posted by
60 posts

I sat on the right side of the train heading east (Myrdal to Oslo). The view and scenery were great from either side; I had an unobstructed view to the left so I was able to take it in looking either way.

[Spoiler alert re: scenery] But if you want to get the best idea, you can watch a 2009 documentary that celebrated the 100-year anniversary of the Bergen Line. A Norwegian TV station (NRK) filmed the entire trip in real time from on board the train - 7+ hours with every minute of the trip on film. "Bergensbanen minutt for minutt" is available on the NRK website (på Norsk). You may be able to find a version with English subtitles online. The narration isn't all that critical, though, as it is all about the scenery. An English-language article about the documentary is available here.

Posted by
5956 posts

I agree with Southern Lights, the scenery is great on both sides.

Posted by
35 posts

We plan to purchase individual segment tickets. It is important to get seat assignments as my wife cannot travel backwards and leave it up to chance to buy tickets the day of.

Posted by
5956 posts

We plan to purchase individual segment tickets.

In that case, do it ASAP. For a June trip the cheapest tickets are probably gone by now, but the price will only go up. Buy Bergen-Oslo from www.vy.no and the other tickets from www.sj.se