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Top Low-Cost Trains To Explore Europe This Summer 

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Train travel can be a great way to explore the most incredible destinations in Europe and enjoy the advantages of a flight-free journey:

  • No airport chaos.
  • Arriving at the station just a few minutes prior to departure.
  • No turbulence.
  • Eco-friendly travel.
  • Beautiful landscapes.
  • Cheaper tickets.
Train at the station during sunset

Yes, train travel can be cheaper than air travel, and there are low-cost companies offering great fares for international travelers. 

Staying up to date with the most recent train routes—like the new routes opening in 2023 and 2024— and government announcements can be a great way to make the most out of your next Europe tour.

smiling woman observing map in Europe

For those interested in getting a train ticket and saving money, these are the top low-cost train companies offering cheap tickets this summer: 

Italo: Explore Italy’s Top Destinations 

From Torino to Napoli, from Venezia to Genova, or from Rome to Ferrara… this low-cost train company is one of the most popular in Italy and offers great routes and prices for travelers.

Italo offers tickets starting at €10.90. The company features new sales and routes on its official website.

Right now, they have tickets from Milan to Rome starting at €19.90 and from Milan to Venice starting at €10.90. 

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Train in the Italian coast Cinque Terre

Italo’s fast trains also go as fast as 300 kilometers per hour, and they offer three classes of service. 

The company also has alliances with other services in the industry, and customers can get discounts, like special rates at the Vatican museum. 

OuiGo: Cheap Train Fares France And Spain

This French low-cost train company was founded in 2013, and since then has been offering cheap tickets in traditional and high-speed trains for travelers to explore over 50 destinations across France.

Ouigo train stopped at train station

In 2020 the brand expanded to Spain, so now tourists can also enjoy this service in international destinations. 

Ouigo France has recently announced a new summer sale and is already selling one-way tickets for the summer starting at €16!

Travelers arriving in Paris can explore the city and then take a train to the French Riviera and visit the beautiful Nice or admire the south of France and visit Montpellier and Bordeaux.

Young Woman Looking Happy Looking Out The Window As She Rides A Train In An Unspecified Location

In Spain, tickets are even cheaper with OuiGo Spain. Fares start at just € 9, and visitors easily discover great destinations in this country—including most of the best cities for digital nomads in Spain— and it connects to top cities like Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia, and Tarragona.

Customers can download the app to purchase tickets and show them while traveling, and also stay tuned for last-minute fares and new sales.

Avlo: Fast And Cheap Trains In Spain

Avlo is a low-cost, high-speed train service in Spain—operated by Renfe, the national rail company. 

Tickets start at just  €7, and the routes connect the main cities: Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, and Alicante.

Aerial view of Barcelona

The trains travel as fast as 300 kilometers per hour —around 186 miles per hour—so passengers arrive at their destinations fast.

Through the app, travelers can also access PlayRenfe, a free and limitless wifi service that offers a great variety of entertainment for passengers. 

Users can check their emails, scroll through social media channels, chat, and enjoy the content offered by the company: live sports, movies, books, games, music, documentaries, and more.

man working with laptop in train

When purchasing tickets, travelers should bear in mind that certain fares do not include luggage, and other services might not be included as well. The final price might vary depending on each traveler’s needs.

Lumo: An Electric Rail Option In The UK

If you are looking for a cheap and sustainable option in Europe, Lumo is probably the most innovative option. 

This train company offers fully electric routes on the East Coast. 

Train in UK at sunset

Lumo offers services to London, Stevenage, New Castle, Morphet, and Edinburgh. 

And it is committed to helping travelers reduce flight shame and save money. Travelers can download its app and get the best fares

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.


Monday 15th of May 2023

Hi Andrea! I loved your article and I added the destinations mentioned to my list. Last year, I was in Porto, Portugal and had the amazing experience of traveling in the Douro Historic Train. It was like taking a trip back in time. The route is along the Douro River. The steam locomotive and the 5 historic carriages travel the distance of 37 kilometers from the city of Régua to the city of Tua. The railway goes through a beautiful landscape with hill covered with vineyards that are the source of the famous Port wine. The train tickets cost 45 euros and can be bought from the official railways company website: LINK The following day, I took a low cost guided tour (30 euros) that left Porto, and we stopped in Braga, Gêres and Ourense. I really liked Ourense, Spain, which has many hot springs, each with a different temperature and amazingly, admission was free. That's right, 100% free. For those interested in these tours, check here: LINK In the next vacations I hope to visit Ourense again and maybe the Pyrenees in France, where there are also many hot springs. As you can guess, I fell in love with the hot springs. Cheers to everyone, Thanks for the TOP article Andrea!

Connie Yeats

Tuesday 21st of March 2023

The photo of the Italian train is not one of Italo's fleet but a Regional train of the state owned company. The orange train at the head of the article appears to be an Estonian one which is not mentioned in the piece. Lumo calls at Newcastle and Morpeth in England.