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5 Worst Things About Rail Travel In Europe (& 5 Good Things)

Traveling by train is something that the majority of travelers around the globe can do, and they do so for a variety of different reasons. Some make more sense than others, but either way, we want to take a look at one continent in particular - and why there's so much discussion surrounding it.

Europe is a phenomenal travel destination and nobody is ever going to deny that, with trains being one of the primary ways to get around. However, while some may see this as some kind of safe haven, there are reasons why some folks consider it to be anything but.

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10 WORST - Poor Word of Mouth

Getting by on a reputation is one of the most frustrating aspects of life in general, let alone in travel.

One thing that we find really annoying in regards to trains especially, though, is that there’s always another story about how the next European city or country will be different – and it’s never accurate.

The myth that German trains are incredibly friendly and punctual is the first thing that comes to mind because, after four visits there, we can confirm that just isn’t the case, and it isn’t the only guilty party.

9 GOOD - Low Expectations

As a follow-up from the last entry, something we tend to notice is that when we travel on these trains across Europe, the low expectations that many new travelers have ends up leading to an okay experience.

Whether it’s the food or drink onboard or the company they’re with, it’s as if they’re wearing tinted glasses that give them a better impression of what is happening around them.

In that sense, you could certainly argue that the first two points are connected and bounce off of one another quite well.

8 WORST - Rarely On Time

It doesn’t matter whether it’s ten minutes late or it is an hour late because a late train is a late train. It shouldn’t be that difficult to keep to a schedule, and the thing that frustrates us the most is how many boneheaded excuses they come up with.

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Some things can’t be avoided but most of the time, it just feels like they’re making it up on the spot. If you want people to stop complaining then here’s a novel idea: actually invest in making the trains better and more sustainable.

7 GOOD - Safe Form Of Travel

For the most part, you can relax in knowing that you’re safe on most European trains. While they may be a little bit old and worn down, it’s not like they’re going to go crashing off the tracks or anything like that.

Those cases are extremely rare, and potentially even more rare than plane crashes in some instances.

We aren’t saying you shouldn’t have your guard up just in case, but it’s never nice having to worry about everything that could go wrong, so spend some time thinking about what could go right.

6 WORST - Uncomfortable

Part of us wanting to see progressive improvements with these trains stems from the fact that many of them are just so unbelievably uncomfortable. Sure, you may be in a position where you can spend lots of money on first-class tickets and we feel very happy for you, but even then, there’s no guarantee of a good time.

If you’re in the standard class and you’ve got a journey that requires a few hours of traveling, then we can just about ensure that your back is going to be killing you by the end of it.

5 GOOD - Lots Of Good Apps

Across the entirety of Europe, there are many great apps that can help you if you ever find yourself in a spot of bother. One that tends to include quite a few options from the perspective of European travel is Trainline, which stretches from the United Kingdom to many different countries in the continent (especially if you use the website).

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You should definitely make sure you check out which apps are available before you make your way to any European destination, but rest easy knowing that help is always just a click away.

4 WORST - Aggressive Passengers

With people being allowed to drink on trains in many countries across Europe, it makes for some pretty drunken passengers trying to interact with you. There’s a chance they could get pretty angry when doing so, too, and at the same time, there’s also the possibility of drunken strangers taking it upon themselves to make your experience less than pleasant throughout the course of your journey.

3 GOOD - Interrailing

Being able to travel between so many unbelievable countries with such ease is a fantastic commodity, and it’s one of the big reasons why people choose interrailing as a great travel tool.

There are some wonderful deals out there to help you pick where you’re going, when you’re going and how long you’re going for.

It’s one of the big perks of living in Europe if you’re a traveler, and we’d highly recommend throwing it onto your bucket list if it wasn’t there already.

P.S: just try and minimize the night trains!

2 WORST - Rude Staff

You may get lucky and not have to deal with rude staff, but there are so many cases where they just don’t take the feelings of the commuter into consideration.

If there are no issues then you may get lucky and have a pleasant experience, but this really does speak volumes about the type of conditions that these workers have to deal with.

RELATED: 10 Things People Do On Trains That Attendants Can't Stand

Sure, they’re moody and could probably use an attitude adjustment, but given the state of many of these trains in Europe, as we’ve described, you can’t really blame them.

1 GOOD – Stunning Views

You could be heading down through the south of France, across Italy, down into the depths of Poland and beyond because wherever you are, there’s a very good chance that the views you’re going to witness will be out of this world.

They have a lot of great countrysides to be found throughout Mainland Europe and in places like Scandinavia and the United Kingdom.

You’re never far from that reveal of looking out the window and thinking “wow, this is a place that actually exists, huh?”.

It’s a pretty good feeling.

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