Why are train trips returning in Europe?

LUXEMBOURG: On a rainy day in October, passengers who were getting off were forced to take a long detour amid security and traffic jams.

The king and queen of Belgium returned to their country by train in an attempt to promote concern for the environment.

An increasing number of people now choose to travel by train instead of taking short flights due to the impact it has on the environment and said Romain Schwartz, Luxembourg for Tourism (LFT). Interestingly, Luxembourg will soon become the first country in the world to offer everyone

The 'Flygskam' or 'flight shame' movement originated in Sweden in 2017 when singer Staffan Lindberg announced his decision to stop flying. Since then, it has spread throughout Europe, with 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg doing much to popularize the greener alternative to air travel.

At the train station in Rotterdam, waiting for a train to Paris, Vasudha and her husband Krishna Chaitanya said they prefer to travel by train while they are in Europe. “In addition to the fact that it is less demanding with the environment, it is also cheaper and more comfortable. It only takes me 15 minutes to get to the station to take a train, but to fly I have to go to the airport and that too a couple of hours before, ”said Vasudha.

Eurail, for example, gives access to an extensive network of more than 35 European railway and shipping companies in 40,000 railway stations, covering up to 31. Everyone can also take advantage of hundreds of benefits and price reductions across Europe.

Travelers can access discounts on European ferry routes, boat tours, hotel rooms, museum tickets, city cards and more. To make the experience cheaper for travelers, Eurail announced a permanent 37% discount on global passes in January.

“We have reason to believe that sustainability is playing a key role in the popularity of train travel. It is interesting to note that the Scandinavian countries are showing the highest growth rates year after year when it comes to traveling in our train passes, with Sweden showing an impressive + 80% in 2019 so far compared to 2018, says Carlo Boselli, general manager Eurail and Interrail.

He adds that the trend is also reflected in customer behavior. “In Eurail we are very aware of the fact that the tourism industry plays a key role in the unsustainable impacts of travel. Therefore, we try to do our best, helping to drive change towards a sustainable journey. Together with the entire rail community, we strive to make travelers aware of the fact that traveling by train means making a responsible decision, helping to reduce the harmful impact that airplanes or cars have on the environment.