Thursday, November 4, 2010

Vorteils Card - Train Transportation Option

One of the biggest decision you might come across is deciding if you should buy a Eurorail, and then deciding which one to buy!

Well before you jump to buying a Eurorail you have to know that there is this thing called a Vorteils Card that you can buy at the Salzburg Hauptbanhof or at any train station in Austria, be sure to ask for the English form (they have one!) It is a great discount train card. What you get with the Vorteils Card:

*50% off of ticket costs for all tickets within in Austria
*Special discounted tickets within Austria (special offers only)
*25% off of ticket costs for all bordering country train tickets

There are different types of Vorteils Cards, some are for families and some are for students etc. So make sure to get the one that is best for you.

You will get a paper one the day you leave, but you will receive a real card later in the mail. If you are living with a host family be sure to put their name on the mailing form too, otherwise if you are like me who only put my name they will not deliver your card, because my name was not on the house.

You will need to bring a passport picture for them when you submit the application so you can stop by the photo shop that is right outside of the train station and pay 10 euros for a set 4 passport images or you can bring one from America if you have any extras.

Also, if you decide that you want to go with a group of people to say Innsbruck, Austria sometimes you can get a group discount by buying all of your tickets at the same time. Sometimes especially for non-fluent German speakers it can be better to just go inside the ticket building and ask if anyone speaks English to explain your options to you. Also, if you have already looked up what trains you want on (the online train schedule for Austrian trains) when you go to the train station to get your tickets it is always great to have exactly what you want written down!

Also there is something called a Bavarian ticket or Bohemian ticket where it is $25 euros for an all day train pass that can include up to 5 people. So you can travel from Salzburg to Munich say for only 5 euros if you go with 5 people and go to the Hofbrauhaus for dinner and drinks and then head home - or go to their clubs! 

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