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Rick Steves Tours selling train tickets

Can we purchase train tickets thru Rick Steves Tours? Trying to purchase train tickets from our local travel agencies is difficult.

Posted by
20780 posts

As far as I know, RSE doesn't sell train tickets.

It's generally not a problem to buy long-distance train tickets from the website of the company operating the trains. Regional-train tickets can usually be purchased easily at the departure rail station after you get to Europe. Most if not all European train stations have vending machines with English as an optional language.

If you tell us what specific tickets you need, we can provide more guidance.

Posted by
1493 posts

Where and when will you be traveling? Some tickets aren’t available yet for summer travel.

Posted by
21644 posts

You can and it is easy to buy tickets directly from the train company. There are also third party sellers, like Rail Europe, that will sell tickets but generally at a higher price or includes additional fees. Sometimes it does not make sense to buy ticket in advance. If you buy discounted tickets in advance, they generally come with restrictions -- no change, no refund, etc. The ONLY reason to buy tickets in advance is to take advantage of any discount offers. For some trains there are no discounts.

Posted by
4203 posts

On an initial trip, the purchase of train tickets can be overwhelming. You can browse the Man in Seat 61 for some help, though that website is a little overwhelming on first visit too. In general, the best deals are the country specific train site. Like Renfre for Spain. Oui/SNCF for France, Trenitalia for Italy, etc. I use 3rd party sites when I have credit card issues. Rail Europe is generally more expensive than others, like Trainline. I have never found rail passes (which you'll see discussed in the RS guide) to make any sense for my travels. Lastly, for some countries, the high speed trains, are the tickets you may want to buy in advance.

I have found this forum to be quite helpful on the issue of train tickets.

EDITED TO ADD: I did buy a Swiss Travel Pass for Switzerland. I priced out my plans and that one did make sense.

Posted by
7443 posts

We bought train tickets from Rick Steves years ago and know that we paid more for them asI believe they were sold through Rail Europe.

Posted by
31435 posts

Bill H,

As mentioned in a few previous replies, it would be really helpful to know which countries you'll be visiting, which routes you'll be travelling and therefore which tickets you'll require. In some cases, it's better to buy tickets in advance to save money but in other cases it's much easier to just buy the tickets at local stations.