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Thomas Cook's European Rail Timetable?

Does anyone buy the Thomas Cook Timetable these days or have online resources made it unnecessary? I read a great article in the Financial Times this week-end titled "Be sure to change trains at Gare du Nord" by Jan Morris (it can be found online at http://www.ft.com/home/us. It tempted me to purchase one (and a magnifying glass) not only for planning purposes but also for dreaming about trip possibilities.

Posted by
12040 posts

For convenience of seeing all the available trains in one time table, Thomas Cook really is hard to beat. You can use individual national rail websites, but Thomas Cook offers the convenience of showing everything in one convenient book. I have only once found anything comparable to Thomas Cook, a now defunct Eurorail website that had complete time tables of most major European cities. The site is now closed, and I have not found any other comparable free resource since.

Posted by
19091 posts

I have used both Thomas Cook, in the last century, and Bahn.de ever since then. Bahn.de is certainly more convenient (weighs less). For my last to Europe, I bought and loaded their complete set of European time schedules, and it proved itself valuable during the strikes. It is a little difficult to get due to the language difference. I tried to get ETBD to carry it, but they told me (HaHaHa) that their customers were not that computer literate (then why are we here?).

Posted by
2779 posts

www.bahn.de has changed the frontpage. Now there are language buttons like on any other travel website in the world ;-)

Posted by
3313 posts

I still have a copy from 1995 and it's amazing how often I look at it to see what routes might be possible on a future trip. I don't have to download it, it doesn't take batteries and it works outside. I wouldn't rely on it for actual schedules but since they don't move the railroads very frequently, I figure it still is reasonably accurate about routes.

Posted by
3250 posts

That's true Doug! I have a dusty copy from 1988 and the route maps for every country are amazing. I know the schedules and a few routes have changed but the article reminded me that it's still a useful resource --I'm planning to get an up-to-date copy when the new one is available the end of January.