[Tribune de Bruno Maltor] A night train story, to the heart of Europe

In 2022, I tested many night trains. Whether it’s to travel to France, first of all, but also to go a little further on the Old Continent.

And yes, the night train is coming back. Slowly but surely. Start-ups like Midnight Trains intend to cover Europe with night trains in the coming months, and that’s good!

I see several big advantages to taking the night train in Europe. We start from the city center, we arrive in the city center. We take the time to take the time. It is a definitely poetic means of transport which puts the journey back at the heart of the adventure, of the journey. And, of course, it is an ecological means of transport.

For the curious, I also crossed the Eastern United States by train in 2022, I talk about it on this forum. The experience, very interesting, had nothing to do with Europe, so I urge you to look at the linked article.

In Europe, I therefore notably tested the train which takes me to the heart of the continent. In one night, we cover 1400 km between France and Austria, in the direction (in particular) of its capital, Vienna.

It is the association between SNCF and the Austrian company ÖBB that allows this journey to exist. And what a journey!

Everything obviously starts at Gare de l’Est. The train you board is called Nightjet, and it is a real reference for traveling in Europe by night train. From Austria, you can actually go by night train to Italy, Germany, Hungary, and so on… In short, the Austrians have a head start on this subject.

You can find everything you need in the cabin: sockets to recharge your equipment, heating if necessary, and you can obviously order food in the evening, as in the morning. The prices are also very reasonable. For example, I tested a vegetable curry for barely 9 euros.

Good surprise, too, there are showers, and they are very well maintained, even if you go there in the morning after the passage of many travelers.

As usual, I made a video on this subject, having been a fan of Vlogging for many years to share my various journeys. The result is here:

In the end, is there a negative point in testing this experience? The only real drag I can see is… the price. Indeed, if you do not do it well in advance, prices can quickly climb. But, with a little organization, we can book early tickets, and therefore, get by with an honorable budget. The seat is also from 29.90 euros, the sleeping compartment (4 to 6 people) is 49.90 euros, and the cabin at 89.90 euros. Also put into perspective with the fact that the night train allows you to save one night in a hotel.

Honestly, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience without a doubt.

Next week, I’m going to cross Canada, still by train, from Toronto to Vancouver. And I can’t wait to tell you about it on my networks, then, here, then!


To read also, the other forums of Bruno Maltor:

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[Tribune de Bruno Maltor] A night train story, to the heart of Europe