Traveling by train, tips for an easy time.
Travelling by train is the preferred means of transport for many people. It does not have the speed of the plane or the flexibility that a car offers, but, it offers the traveler greater comfort and the possibility of traveling and knowing different countries at a fairly affordable price. To make your train trip as smooth and pleasant as possible, here are some tips.
Book tickets in advance.
High-speed trains can be costly in some countries. If we book in advance, we can benefit from the discounts offered by the companies. It is important, therefore, to plan the trip before booking the tickets.
Be Attentive to the train departure.
If possible, avoid rush hours, although it should also be remembered that there are more frequent trains. Don’t waste time and be in advance at the station to avoid scars. Many trains, especially high-speed ones, make short stops, and if we get lost, we can lose it. Have your luggage on hand and make sure you are in the correct car and train (the car and seat number appear on the ticket). If you have doubts, ask the guides or operators at the stations.
Know your arrival time.
Keep in mind the arrival time of the train at your destination. The stops are not always announced, or they may be in a language we do not know. That is why it is advisable to write down the scheduled arrival time and the last stations’ names. The names can be read on the platforms. If in doubt, ask for help from a train employee or a passenger.
Check with the train company about the luggage conditions. According to the General Conditions for the International Transport of Passengers by Train, travelers must not carry more than three suitcases, and these must be easy to handle and compatible with the space provided for luggage. The size of each suitcase must not exceed 85 centimeters. These are general rules, then each company can apply the conditions it deems necessary.
It is advisable to confirm if there is a special car for suitcases or luggage rack in the car. Trains often have luggage racks, a compartment behind the seat, or luggage areas at the end of the car.
In case of carrying objects that occupy a lot, such as a bicycle or a surfboard, these must be perfectly packed or folded. However, before taking one of these objects, it is advisable to specify it to the railway company.
If you carry hand luggage, it is advisable to place labels with your name and address. The railways do not assume any responsibility in case of loss, damage, or theft. At the stations, there are also lockers where we can leave our belongings.
Food on the train
Long-distance trains have dining cars that offer breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Other types of trains provide light meals, snacks, or drinks. We can also bring our food.
Most trains and stations offer special services for people who need some kind of assistance. There are also specialized personnel to help these travelers. This equipment must be reserved in advance through the country’s railway company, specifying the required type of assistance.
If we travel with a pet, it is advisable to inquire about the conditions required by the chosen train company regarding animals’ transport. Small pets travel free or with a minimal charge. For large dogs, there is usually a fee. Dogs are generally required to travel in a cage or with a muzzle and leash on. In some countries, dogs are not allowed on trains. Call and make sure you understand the rules. Your pet may be taken away from you. Be aware.