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The Ultimate Interrailing Guide: Tips & Tricks

Daniel Riley February 16th, 2017 1,742 views


In 2015, I had the privilege of interrailing across Europe with four of my friends. It was a two week venture beginning in Rome and then on to Florence, Venice, Budapest, Vienna and Prague. Whilst on this journey, I picked up a few tips and tricks that are sure to help any other traveller planning their next adventure.

Book accommodation in advance

Book accommodation in advance

Whilst not the most essential thing in the world, it certainly helped us on our trip. The comfort of entering a completely unknown city but at least knowing that you have somewhere to sleep takes a lot of stress away and allows more time for the actual sightseeing. Although it does take a bit of time in advance, it is definitely recommended for those who know exactly where they are going.

List 3 things you want to see/do per city

List 3 things you want to see/do per city

No doubt when you're interrailing, the cities that you visit will often be  quite big with hundreds of things to do. With usually only a couple of days in each city, it is essential to prioritise which sights you want to see or what events you want to do. This way you don't get caught up rushing around the cities trying to see every sight there is just for the sake of it. It is better to select a few and enjoy them properly!

Overnight Trains

Overnight Trains

Depending on the different destinations of your trip, you may find yourself having to book train journeys that are 10+ hours long! Rather than wasting a full day travelling, twiddling your thumbs on the train eager to arrive, an overnight train instead is highly recommended. That way you can have an extra day sightseeing, whilst getting some much needed rest!

Change your currency before travelling

Change your currency before travelling

Again, this is only really recommended if you know the countries you're going to be visiting. Once you are out in various countries, it is extremely hard to find not just currency exchanges but also exchanges which give you a half decent rate. So if you want to get more bang for your buck, it is best to change before you travel! Don't forget, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Sweden are European countries that DO NOT use the Euro currency.

Transport systems are different

Transport systems are different

It is worthwhile quickly looking over all of the transport options available to you when you arrive in the cities so you that you know how to get places in the quickest and safest ways possible. This helps to avoid areas of the city that can be dangerous. It is also worth noting what is required when travelling around the city. For example, in Italy it is possible to be fined for not validating your ticket on public transport, even after you have paid for a ticket!   Putting the handy tips aside, my most important piece of advice is to approach interrailing with an open mind. The cultures and people will be different from what you are used to. Not everything will go as planned, but that's just part of the experience. With a combination of planning and flexibility, you are sure to have the adventure of a lifetime!

Got any essential tips that we've missed out? Check out our city break guides to help you plan your next adventure!

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