For those who plan to be visiting Europe in 2020 maybe consider taking a train? They’re not nearly as bad as what you think if you’ve ever taken one in the US, and they’re a lot more affordable there too. They are adding extra trains in anticipation of extra travelers this summer, and they are even adding some overnight rides. The best part is you go to sleep leaving one city and you wake up in a new city ready to go on another adventure!
And now for some good news … rail operators across Europe are responding to a growing interest in travel by train with the launch of a number of new services. Particularly exciting for fans of sleeper trains is the launch of several new overnight services, in a welcome reversal of a recent trend among operators to drop night trains.
The switch over to new 2020 timetables takes place in the early hours of Sunday 15 December (though not all services will start on that exact date: some only start in the new year or spring 2020).
Previous years have seen the launch of new European high-speed lines, such as the new fast links from Paris to Strasbourg and Bordeaux, and a bold new high-speed line through the hill country of Thuringia, bringing travel time from Berlin to Munich down to four hours.
The are no route openings for 2020 but the new timetables demonstrate how European rail operators are developing new services to make optimal use of existing infrastructure. Notable among them is Österreichische Bundesbahnen (OBB), Austria’s main rail operator, which is expanding its network of daytime trains (branded Railjet or Eurocity) and overnight trains (Nightjet). In doing so, it establishes Vienna as the best-connected city by rail in Europe in 2020. Only Moscow comes close in having connections to so many other European capitals.