If you are lucky enough to get to Europe during your college years, save money and time by traveling within the continent with Eurail. Whether you are abroad just for a special break trip, or for a whole semester, consider getting a discounted Youth Pass from this train organization. (And consider taking me along. Pretty please?)
How much is the Eurail discount?
Eurail offers a flat 20% off Youth Passes for non-European residents. Either first or second class fares qualify, with a few exceptions. You can select a pass for within one country, within 2-4 countries that share borders, or buy what they call a “Global” pass, which gets you to up to 5 different countries in Europe, and they don’t have to share borders. (Choose from 28 different countries.)
Depending on the pass you purchase, you will have between 3 and 8 days of travel within a month. (Huh?) Okay, so you purchase a pass that allows you to travel up to 4 days only within the country of Spain. Once you activate your pass at a train station in Spain or at the website, you will have a month to use it on up to 4 different days, say one day to travel from Madrid to Barcelona, and a few days later from Barcelona to Granada, then to Pamplona, and finally back to Madrid. So to save yourself money, plan where you want to go so you don’t over-purchase the number of days you want.
How to qualify for Eurail youth pricing?
To qualify for the discount, you must be 27 years old or younger on the first day you use your pass, and you must not be a resident of Europe. Your pass will be shipped to you in advance of your travel, and must be activated within 11 months of purchase. So if you’re planning that trip, you have some time, but don’t wait too long. (And seriously, don’t forget to invite me!)