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Re: Tarjeta Dorada pass

Has anyone purchased the above that gives you discounts on Spanish trains for ages over 60. If so, is it better than buying the Spanish version of a Eurail pass. It would be for 5 - 6 days.

Ken

Posted by
453 posts

We were very happy with the Tarjeta Dorada card. We got meaningful discounts. We got our TD at the Madrid airport RENFE office(easy), I was unable to get the card from home. Don't know if a Spanish Eurail pass is even a thing.

Posted by
27416 posts

Proceed with caution on the Spanish Eurail pass. I recall a couple of reports from travelers who had some sort of Spanish rail pass (I don't know whether it's the same one you're looking at) and they found they could only book trains in person in Spain. It was the absolute opposite of a convenient solution.

Even without the Tarjeta Dorada (which I've used), you can save a lot of money on Spanish train tickets if you buy them early. When is your trip, and what trips do you plan to take by train?

Posted by
7718 posts

I looked into the process, the main catch is that you get the best prices for tickets by buying well ahead, but cannot get the Tarjeta Dorada until you are physically in Spain, so missing out on early discounts. So basically you need to figure if you will be buying a number of tickets while there, or just buying a couple tickets well ahead, if it is the former, then sure, the latter, then just buying tickets now is probably as good. Of course, if you will be in Spain multiple times, then sure, get it so you have it.

The Man In Seat 61 has some good info: https://www.seat61.com/train-travel-in-spain.htm#:~:text=Now%20for%20the%20catch%2C%20and,You%20cannot%20buy%20it%20online.

Edit: Regarding Eurail pass for Spain, the main issue is that you still need to purchase reservations in addition to the Pass, and reservations for pass holders can be limited. Most do not find a Eurail Pass cost effective in Spain, but it depends on your trip.