Amenities and seating options on day trains
Where can I find specific information regarding the services offered on the train I'll be taking?
We try to provide you with as many details about your train trip as possible. When you’re searching for train fares and schedules, click on the train numbers listed on the results page. Then you can click the various classes of service to view the “Meals & Concessions” and “On Board Services” tabs to see what that train offers.
If you have already booked your trip, you can find this information by browsing our train information pages
Are European trains “pet friendly”?
Generally, yes. European trains are very accepting of cats and dogs.
They’re allowed on trains, though they may need to be contained in a pet carrier or wear a muzzle or leash. Pets are not allowed on some trains in Great Britain, Spain, Ireland, Norway, and Finland. If you are traveling on an overnight train with your cat or dog, you will need to occupy the entire sleeping compartment as a courtesy to other travelers.
Currently the only animals that are permitted to travel on Eurostar are guide dogs for the visually impaired.
Some trains require advance reservations for pets. Unfortunately, Rail Europe cannot make reservations for your pet. This will need to be done locally. In general, dogs normally travel at half the fare of a second class ticket, payable directly to the conductor
What do I do if no one comes to check my train ticket or rail pass?
It’s best to keep your travel documents (train ticket/rail pass and reservation) out and ready to be checked by a conductor. If for any reason a conductor does not come by to check your ticket/pass during your entire journey, no worries. Simply get off the train at your destination station and continue with your travel plans.
Please keep in mind that you will need a valid rail pass or train ticket to travel on board trains in Europe. If your pass or ticket were not looked at, it is an unusual occurrence.
Is there WiFi onboard?
WiFi availability is increasing on European trains. This service, however, is not currently offered on ALL trains. Where it is offered, it’s usually complimentary with the purchase of a first class ticket. If you’re traveling in second class, you may incur a fee to connect to the WiFi service.
Here is a brief list of trains offering WiFi:
- ICE (select trains)
In addition, WiFi access can typically be found at many major train stations throughout Western Europe. More than likely, you’ll encounter a small fee to use the WiFi service. In some stations first class ticket/pass holders will find complimentary WiFi, usually in designated first class lounges.
Are there ATMs on board?
While there are ATMs located in most major European train stations, there are none on the trains themselves. Check with your bank to make sure that your debit or credit cards are compatible with the ATM systems in Europe. Most ATM cards in Europe require the use of a PIN code to withdraw money.
Will the train cars be air conditioned/heated?
All European trains are fully heated and almost all of them are fully heated and air-conditioned as well.
It can happen that some regional trains servicing local villages for short distances may not have air-conditioning. In these situations, travelers are permitted to open the train windows.
Are there bathrooms on the train?
Yes! Bathrooms can be found on all trains in Europe. Bathrooms are easily accessible on all trains and are frequently marked with the letters WC (Water Closet). They’re usually found at the front or back of each train car and typically include a sink, toilet and locking door.
Are European trains "child friendly"?
Many European trains have baby changing facilities and/or family friendly play areas.
Intercités trains in France, some InterCity Swiss trains, InterCity Finnish trains and ICE trains in Germany offer play areas or dedicated compartments for families with children. The Austrian RailJet is even equipped with a movie theater especially for children.
Please note: If traveling on Eurostar, you shouldn’t travel in Premier class with children. This area is dedicated and caters primarily to business travelers.
Can I open the train windows?
If you’re traveling on a slower train you may have the option to open a window, depending on the age and configuration of the car. However, most modern rail cars are air-conditioned and you won’t have the option of opening the windows.
For safety reasons, high speed trains don’t offer the option of opening windows.
Are there facilities on board for disabled travelers
Special amenities for disabled travelers are offered on trains and at many train stations, and are clearly indicated with pictograms (for telephones, toilets, elevators, etc.).
Special equipment is also available for use by disabled travelers but must be reserved locally in advance. You can do this while you’re in Europe by inquiring at the rail station or through your hotel concierge.
Be sure to specify if you need personal assistance (whether with a wheelchair, boarding, etc.).
Are there smoking and non-smoking sections on trains?
Smoking is not permitted on any trains in Great Britain, Denmark, Ireland, Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg), France, Hungary, Spain, Turkey, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Norway, Sweden, or Poland.
Smoking is restricted on trains in Finland and the Czech Republic.
Smoking is also prohibited in lavatories and dining cars. And you must observe special regulations at stations where you usually find dedicated smoking areas or rooms.
What do I do with my luggage?
Once onboard you’ll need to find a place to put your bag(s). Small and medium sized bags typically fit on racks located above the seats. Larger suitcases and items can be stored in racks found near the train door entrance.
In addition, you’re responsible for your luggage. The railways assume no responsibility in case of loss or theft of baggage carried on board.
If you’re traveling on Eurostar, Thalys or a TGV, you’re limited to two large items per traveler (maximum 85cm in any one dimension), plus one small item of hand luggage. On Eurostar, there’s room for luggage above the seats and for larger items at the end of each coach.
Be advised that when traveling on Eurostar, or any French train, you must properly label your bag(s) with your first and last name. In general, it is a good idea to keep luggage tags on your baggage for easy identification.
If traveling within Switzerland, our “Fast Baggage” option may be a convenient alternative for you.
Will my luggage be safe, accessible and in my line of sight throughout my trip?
Your luggage will either be safely above you in a luggage rack, or at the end of your train car. These are the designated locations for luggage storage. You will be able to access your bags as needed.
You are responsible for your luggage. The railways will assume no responsibility in case of loss or theft of baggage carried on board.
Be sure to have luggage tags with your name and contact information securely attached in case you leave anything behind.