Using a Rail Pass
Am I eligible for a pass?
Permanent residents of Australia & NZ are eligible to purchase any Eurail Pass irrespective of what passport they hold. However residents of Europe, the United Kingdom, Turkey and the Russian Federation are not eligible to purchase or use any Eurail Pass.
Double check your Pass
Checking your pass after you have received it from Rail Europe:
The names on Eurail Passes need to be exact as per passport, or the traveller will not be able to use it once in Europe. It is important to check that all names and details are correct. If you are to discover you have made an error, you will need to send it back to Rail Europe by traceable mail to get it reissued for a small fee.
Validating your Pass
Before using your Eurail Pass, you will need to get it validated at any manned ticket window at a train station in one of the countries your pass is valid in. If an on-board train conductor has to do it for you, you will have to pay a fee.
It is also important to know that you must validate your Eurail Pass within 11 months from the date of issue. Validation can be done at the ticket window before you board the train. Please note once you have the pass validated you cannot change the date.
You can begin your first journey after 00:00 hours on the first day of validity of your pass and you must finish your last trip by 23.59 hours on the last day of validity.
How often can I use my pass?
The number of journeys that your pass entitles depends on if you have a flexi or consecutive pass.
Flexi passes can only be used for a certain number of travel days within a set period. On your first date of travel, after your pass is validated, you must record the date in the travel calendar printed on the ticket. Be very careful when doing this, dates cannot be altered once you have filled them in. If you need to change the date you may lose a day. If you do not fill in a date at all this means you will risk a substantial fine or having your pass confiscated by the ticket inspector.
Consecutive passes can be used every day during the period in which the pass is valid.
You can travel on as many trains you can fit into one day's travel, but be aware you will need to pay for seat reservations on any fast trains you take. This can be done before you go, or when you get to the train station.
What if I travel through a country not on my pass?
If any part of the journey goes through a country not covered by your pass, you will need to buy a point to point ticket for that section. This can be done locally at the train station, or before you travel.
Making seat reservations
If you plan go on any fast trains, you will need to make a seat reservation for these trains before you hop on with your pass. This can be done at the same time as purchasing the pass, or it can be done locally. Rail Europe recommends you purchase your seat reservations before you depart Australia, as passholder fares are subject to availability and sell out quickly in peak season. Pre-purchasing tickets will also avoid finding that the train you want is fully booked.
Regional trains do not require any seat reservations.