Take a look at the European routes and trains section of the site to find out where you can travel in Continental Europe by rail. Once you’ve decided where you want to go, use the journey search tool in the top right of the page to find out the dates and times you can travel.
You can also pop into our Travel Centre at 193 Piccadilly, London W1J 9EU and buy a copy of the Thomas Cook European Rail Timetable. Priced at £15.99, it includes detailed maps and timetables for 5,000 locations and 50,000 connections across Europe.
You can order your tickets online or call us on 08448 484 064 between 9am – 7pm Monday to Friday, and 9am – 6pm on Saturdays. You can also buy tickets from our Travel Centre at 193 Piccadilly, London W1J 9EU. You’ll need to have your passport with you if you’re buying an InterRail pass. Any orders made by phone or at our Travel Centre will be subject to a booking fee.
You can book most Eurostar journeys up to 4 months in advance. Most other European train journeys can be booked up to 3 months before travel. If you’re planning a journey more than 4 months in the future, you can search for tickets as usual, then opt to receive an email reminder. We’ll then send you an email when tickets for your chosen journey go on sale.
Our website does not have the ability to book specific seat allocations due to the volume of different trains we offer and the number of different train configurations that exist across European trains.
You are able to check the seats you have been allocated once the journey has been added to the basket. However, please be aware that once the booking has been completed, it is not possible to amend the seating.
If you do have specific seating requirements, you would need to book via our call centre on 0844 848 5848, or at our Travel Centre at 193 Piccadilly, London W1J 9EU. (Booking fee applies).
If you book a through-fare, then you would need to travel in the same class of service for each leg. If you wish to book a different class of service, you would need to break the journey down and add each leg separately to the basket. Please be sure to leave enough time to make your connections. We recommend 30 minutes for a platform change and 60 - 90 minutes for a station change.
We accept most major credit and debit cards including Visa, MasterCard, Switch, Maestro and Delta. We do not accept American Express. A 2.5% charge is made for credit card payments.
Print at Home:
This can be selected for Eurostar, some SNCF and Thalys journeys. Once you’ve completed your booking you will receive an email from us. This will include confirmation of your itinerary and instructions on how to download and print your ticket(s).
For Thalys tickets, you will also receive an email directly from Thalys containing your ticket(s).
Ticket on Departure:
This can be selected for Eurostar routes and journeys to more than 1400 destinations in France. We’ll send you a confirmation email and some instructions when you book, which you then use to collect your tickets from a self-service machine at the departure station at any time before you travel. You should allow plenty of time before your train is due to depart to do this. This ticket collection option is free of charge. A full guide to collecting your Ticket on Departure can be found here.
Tickets by post:
We’ll send your tickets by first class post before you travel. There’s a charge of £2.25 for this. Please allow 10 days for delivery. Alternatively, we can send them to you by special delivery to arrive by 1pm the following working day for a charge of £8. Bear in mind that you’ll need to be at home to sign for your tickets.
It depends where you’re going. Eurostar trains arrive at Gare du Nord in Paris, from where you may need to transfer to one of the city’s other main stations to continue your onward journey. The departure station will be clearly indicated on your ticket. We recommend allowing 1 – 1.5 hours to cross major cities, and half an hour for a platform change within the same station.
You can buy Paris Metro tickets from us at the same time as you buy your rail tickets if you’re having them delivered by post.
Some European journeys offer connections in Lille or Brussels via a simple platform change. You’ll need to break your journey into segments in your online search – i.e. London to Lille, then Lille onwards.
For Eurostar services you’ll need to check-in at least 30 minutes before departure. You don’t need to check-in as such for other European trains but it’s advisable to turn up about 15 minutes in advance to allow enough time to find your platform, especially if you are carrying luggage.
Drop us a line using the ‘Email us’ form down the page selecting the relevant contact reason from the drop down menu. You’ll need to quote your booking reference number, as well as the full names of all passengers for visa applications. A charge may apply for some requests.
It’s always advisable to take out travel insurance before your trip so you can be reimbursed for the cost of your ticket as we can’t replace your ticket or pass if it gets lost or stolen. If your ticket is stolen, you’ll need to contact the police before you can make a claim on your travel insurance. You can buy a new ticket at the station’s ticket office.
It depends on the after-sales conditions of your purchase. If you’re eligible for a refund, you’ll need to get your ticket endorsed by a train official (if possible) and post it to us with a covering letter within 28 days of the travel date to: Customer Services Department, Rail Europe Ltd, 34 Tower View, Kings Hill, West Malling, Kent ME19 4ED.
Compensation is usually only offered if the train operator considers the delay to be within their control.
As a general rule you can take two items and one piece of hand luggage free of charge. You can also take skis, snowboards, golf bags and other bulky items free of charge and even take your bike as one of your two items if it can be folded down into a carry bag.
For Eurostar trains, the following information applies:
Adults are permitted two items and one piece of hand luggage free of charge, and children are permitted one item and one piece of hand luggage.
Sports equipment: Items under 85cm at their longest would count as part of your luggage allowance. Items over this length would need to travel as registered baggage, excluding skis and snowboards, which can be counted towards your luggage allowance.
Bike Bags: A bike bag with a maximum length greater than 85cm would need to travel as registered baggage. Bags under this length can travel as part of your luggage allowance.
There’s no charge for taking a folding bike that fits into a bag on Eurostar. Alternatively you can book a space for it or have it sent to your destination as registered baggage. If you're taking it as part of your luggage allowance, the bike bag must be no greater than 85cm at it's longest. Bags over this length would need to travel as registered baggage. Our Eurostar pages have more information about taking your bike from the UK to France and Belgium by rail.
If your bike can be folded down and fits into a bag you can take it on all French trains and most high speed and local services in Europe.
Some trains also allow you to book a space for your bike without dismantling it. You’ll need to book a space for your bike at the same time as you buy your ticket, and so you would need to call 0844 848 5848 to book. Our guide to European routes and trains has details of how to take bicycles on Europe’s various train services.
With the exception of guide dogs and hearing dogs, Eurostar doesn’t allow pets on board, so you’ll need to find an alternative route into Europe. Once you’re there it’s easy to travel with your four-legged friend. Each rail company is slightly different, but the general rule is that your pet will need to be kept in a carrying cage. Larger dogs should be kept on a lead with a muzzle. In France, dogs are charged 50% of a full adult fare if they’re on a lead, while dogs and other pets in a carrying cage are charged a fixed fare of around £5. You’ll need to book in advance.
If you want to take your pet on an overnight train, you’ll need to reserve a whole compartment for yourself and your pet.
You can’t book a ticket for your pet online, so give us a call on 08448 484 064.
Most modern European trains have dedicated areas onboard for disabled passengers. You’ll need to book one of these spaces in advance. Give us a call on 08448 484 064 with the dimensions and weight of your wheelchair or mobility scooter and we can help you with this.
Bear in mind that the quality of disabled access varies from station to station. Our guides to the major Destinations & stations and European routes and trains will help you plan your trip.
If your train’s delayed and you miss your onward connection, ask the guard to indicate this on your rail ticket. You can then take it to the ticket office at the station and they may be able to book you a seat on the next available service. However, this is not guaranteed.
If your tickets were sent by first class post, please allow 10 days for delivery. If they still haven’t arrived, give us a call as soon as possible after the 10 days has elapsed on 08448 484 064 with your booking reference and we’ll reissue your tickets free of charge. If your tickets were sent by special delivery, give us a call after 1pm on the expected delivery date and we’ll look into it for you.
Our booking system seats customers as close together as possible if you book the tickets at the same time. Unfortunately it’s not possible to request specific seats, so any further tickets purchased later may be for seats in a different part of the train.
You can check your seating prior to confirming your booking online. If you need to add another person for part of your journey, give us a call on 08448 484 064 and we’ll be happy to help.
It depends on the after-sales conditions of your purchase. These will be explained at the time of your booking and sent to you with your confirmation email or your invoice. If you're eligible for a refund, here's what you need to do:
The address to send your refund requests to is: Ticketing Department, Rail Europe Ltd, 34 Tower View, Kings Hill, West Malling, Kent ME19 4ED.
Please note, an administration fee will apply for each booking you wish to amend.
If you booked your trip through a travel agent or tour operator, you'll need to contact them for your refund.
If the after-sales conditions of your ticket allow an exchange, you can do this in the following ways. We can only exchange tickets for an equivalent train at a different date or time on the same route.
All exchanges are subject to availability, and you may need to pay additional costs if there's any difference in price with the original booking.
It depends on the after-sales conditions of your purchase. You can find these in the email or invoice we sent to you when you bought your tickets. If you’re eligible for a refund, you’ll need to get your ticket endorsed by a train official and post it to us with a covering letter within 28 days of the travel date to: Customer Services Department, Rail Europe Ltd, 34 Tower View, Kings Hill, West Malling, Kent ME19 4ED.
We’ll get your refund to you as quickly as we can, but please allow 28 days from receipt of your paperwork.
Booking confirmation and Print at Home emails are sent as soon as a booking is completed. If you have not received either of these emails, please check your spam or junk folders, as email security settings may have redirected your emails there.
If you still cannot find your confirmation, please email us using the form below. Please select ‘I haven’t received confirmation of my booking’ as your Contact Reason, and include all passenger names and details of the journey booked.
Normally, French services can be booked 90 days in advance, but this is currently not possible on some routes because engineering works are taking place in France for the next few months. The engineering works mean, the timetable for some routes, for some parts of the day, may not be released 90 days in advance. In some exceptional cases, the confirmed timetable may not even be released until 7 days prior to departure.
The delay in confirming and allowing bookings on these services is because trains are being rescheduled as a result of the engineering works, which usually take place overnight. The train operator has told us that timetables are likely to be altered by up to 15 minutes for daytime services, or 60 minutes for overnight trains on affected routes only. These delays could affect both departure and arrival times.
The engineering works are affecting a small percentage of services each day. Until the track maintenance company confirm the engineering works, SNCF as the train operator, and Rail Europe Ltd as a distributor, are unable to guarantee that these services will run.
Trains affected by this rescheduling will not appear online, and will not be available to book via any Rail Europe channel.
We always recommend that you book all journey legs and services at the same time. We do understand the difficulty that this can cause when trying to book at the best possible fare. However, customers who choose to book connecting services before SNCF timetables are confirmed, will be constrained by the terms and conditions of the tickets as accepted at time of booking. If the amended SNCF timetables subsequently do not allow for connecting services, we can only assist where ticket conditions permit exchanges or refunds.
Rail Europe Limited Registered office: 34 Tower View, Kings Hill, West Malling, Kent, ME19 4ED
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Rail Europe is the UK's leading specialist in tickets and passes for European rail travel. As the UK representative of the French National Railways (the SNCF) we've helped millions of travellers book train travel for the best part of a century. Great news if you're planning a trip to - or around - the Continent by rail. Trust us to give you expert advice and provide the best ticket or pass options for your travel needs.
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