Traveling between these European cities is much faster by train than by plane

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There are many advantages to traveling in Europe – with so many different countries in close proximity to each other, it’s easy to experience countless different cultures, activities and cuisines in one trip. Europe’s major cities are well connected by inexpensive short-haul flights, major highways, accessible bus routes, and an extensive rail network, making getting around the continent a breeze.

a red train is waiting on the platform inside the train station

More and more European countries are making significant investments in them high speed railway systems. just last week Spain announced adding a fourth brand of high-speed trains giving travelers even more options and more competitive prices for travel across Europe. But with the growing popularity of rail travel, we have to ask – is it really worth it?

an Italian train is waiting at the station

There are many advantages to traveling by train instead of flying in Europe. Most major train stations are located close to the city center or at least have good public transport links to get there. Security and customs lines do not exist, and baggage politicians are much more generous.

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a man in a suit looks excited as he sits on a train with headphones and an open computer

Train seats usually have more space than airline seats and can also be more comfortable. Reliable and often free Wi-Fi access facilitates productivity, and most lines have quiet carriages where passengers can work with fewer distractions. Train journeys are less likely to be full or congested, making last-minute rail travel easier, and the timetable is predictable and usually has shorter delays than flights.

the mountains and waters of Switzerland are brightly framed inside a passenger train

Train travel can be very scenic, allowing passengers to see more of the countryside that they miss when traveling by plane, and they can also often offer great value to budget-conscious travelers. Train travel is often much cheaper than flights.

Many companies offer weekly or monthly passes that include multiple trips across their networkwhich makes train travel a great option for tourists who want to visit multiple cities. Some European countries even promote tourist trips by rail, offering special benefits. Rail is also much more efficient than flying, making it a great eco-friendly option.

Beautiful view from the train window in Switzerland, Europe

But in most cases, time is money. While most would agree that rail travel has many advantages, how does this measure up when comparing the length of time it takes to complete a journey? High-speed trains are fast, but are they faster than airplanes?

The answer is a firm no, but when you factor in the time spent traveling to the airport, queuing, waiting and the journey itself, some routes are faster by train, in fact some inter-European journeys take 2 hours faster than flying!

Couple of young happy travelers get on the train, train travel concept

Travel planning site research Omio looked at the differences between rail and air travel across several metrics to determine which train routes are actually faster than air travel. The study took into account the length of journeys, the distance from the airport/stations to the city centre, the minimum check-in time and even the amount of carbon dioxide emissions created by each mode of transport.

Full length side portrait of handsome bearded gentleman with ticket and passport hurrying to catch train. Modern train in the background

Which routes are faster by train?

The study found 27 European routes that take less time by train. Let’s take a look at a few of the most popular:

Berlin train with the sun

London – Brussels: time saving – 136 minutes

The train journey from London to Brussels takes 121 minutes and the flight time is 65 minutes. But when you add in a minimum of 90 minutes to check in at the airport and 117 minutes to travel to and from the airport, trains are the clear winner on this route.

The cheapest fare we found was on Eurostar. A one-way ticket on a Saturday in June is $79 and includes 2 pieces of luggage plus 1 carry-on bag and free Wi-Fi. Tickets can be reserved online, by phone or at the station. By comparison, a non-stop British Airways flight on the same date costs $66.

Aerial view of London with Tower Bridge, The Shard and Tower of London, England, UK

Frankfurt – Cologne: time saving – 124 minutes

Traveling by train from Frankfurt to Cologne will save passengers more than 2 hours! Germany’s high-speed trains are impressively fast, and there are currently no direct flights between the two cities. This means that the actual journey time takes 30 minutes longer than traveling by train because you have to change trains.

A train ticket between two destinations can be booked Deutsche Bahn and costs less than $20 for a Saturday in January. The fastest flight we could find for the same date is Lufthansa, which stops in Munich at 1 hour 20 minutes and costs $232

An image of the skyline of Frankfurt am Main at twilight-blue time.

London – Paris: time saving – 108 minutes

The journey from London to Paris will take 136 minutes by train and 70 minutes by plane. When you add in the waiting time at the airport and the intercity tourists who have to travel to get to the airports of both cities, rail is a great choice.

In early spring, Eurostar one-way travel between London and Paris costs $84, while the cheapest same-day British Airways flight is $122.

Sakt-Ker Montmartre Paris

Rome – Naples: TSaving time – 87 minutes

The train journey between the Italian cities of Rome and Naples is only 20 minutes longer than the flight, and both cities have train stations very close to the city center, while the journey to the airports is not so convenient.

Trenitalia will take travelers from Rome to Naples for less than $15 in 2 hours and 44 minutes. The ITA flight between the same destinations takes 50 minutes and costs $98.

View of the Gulf of Naples towards Vesuvius in the background. Naples, Italy Naples is the regional capital of Campania and the third largest city in Italy after Rome and Milan, with a population of almost 1 million people. It is the second most populous metropolis in Italy and the 7th most populous urban district in the European Union.

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This article originally appeared on Traveling between these European cities is much faster by train than by plane

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