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Rail Pass Policies

How do I use the bonuses that come with rail passes?

Take advantage of extra pass benefits by contacting the individual company in advance, or show them your pass when you make your booking. Some offers may require an advance reservation, so make sure you check if this applies to that specific offer.

You can see the offers, and their rules, listed on the Benefits page of the Pass Guide.

Does each trip I take require using a separate day of travel on my rail pass?

No. You may take as many trains as you like within the 24-hour period for each day on your pass.

Can I use my rail pass on any train within its area of coverage?

In most European countries, the vast majority of train lines are part of a national rail service, and any rail pass will usually be valid on all of those trains.

However, many countries also feature a handful of private rail lines, plus regional or urban commuter trains, and a rail pass may or may not be valid on those (or, in some cases, a pass will only get you a discount on certain private scenic lines). You must read the rules of the pass for each country to determine which train lines are included.

For example: In Italy, the local Metros (urban subway systems) are not included on the Italy pass.

What is the "validity period" of a rail pass?

The duration of time the pass will be valid, once you validate it at your first train station. For example, Eurail passes come in 15-day, 22-day, and 1–, 2–, and 3-month versions. If you validate a two-month pass on May 15th, it will be valid until July 14th.

What is the 7 p.m. rule?

With a flexipass, rail days are normally counted from midnight to midnight.

However, when traveling on a direct overnight train you do not have to burn two rail days. On any train that departs after 7 p.m. (19:00 on European train schedules) and arrives at its final stop after 4 a.m. (04:00), you only need to enter the arrival date on your rail pass calendar.

What is a travel day on a rail pass?

A travel day is a 24-hour period during which you can travel on trains with your rail pass. It lasts from 12 a.m. (midnight) to 11:59 p.m. on the same calendar day—though, for overnight trains departing after 7 p.m., you need only enter the following day's date on your pass.

What is the difference between a flexipass and a consecutive-day pass?

A consecutive-day pass provides unlimited rail travel for the duration of the pass, once it has been validated. For example, if you buy a one-month pass you can travel on as many trains as you like on any day during that month.

A flexipass gives the pass-holder a two month period during which to use the number of days specified by pass. For example, if you buy a two-month flexipass with 10 days of travel, you can use each of those ten days at any point during the 60-day validity period.

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What is a rail pass?

A rail pass allows a passholder to travel by train without purchasing a ticket, though you may be required to purchase seat reservations on some trains. Rail passes are valid either for travel throughout a single country or in several countries, and have varying time frames in which they can be used.