Train seat reservations
For most local and regional trains, you can just hop on and off. However, your InterRail pass doesn’t always guarantee you a seat, and sometimes you are required to make a reservation. Rules for making reservations vary between rail companies and countries. Make sure you understand reservation fees before you travel, so there are no surprises.
While planning your trip, remember you may be required to make a reservation if you:
travel between countries
use high-speed trains
choose a night train
Most reservation fees vary between €0.25 and €20. You can view reservation fees here:
Fees can change throughout the year. The most up-to-date fees can be found on our website.
When to make reservations
For many high-speed services, international trains and all night trains, an advance reservation is compulsory. Keep in mind that travelling on a night train is a great way to save on accommodation costs.There is a year-round limited allocation of seats for InterRail pass holders on the TGV, Thalys,InterCité de Nuit and the ICE (Paris – Frankfurt route only). After this limit has been reached you’ll have to buy a full price ticket. So it’s worth reserving yourself a seat in advance, especially during peak times (May-September and school holidays) or if you have a plane to catch at the other end.
Read more about when to make reservations
How to make reservations
If a reservation is required, you’ll need to arrange this in advance. The easiest ways are:
at the ticket office of a train station or by using a self-service machine.
through the Deutsche Bahn (DB) Call Centre.
online with a few rail companies. Currently you are able to make online reservations for travel within and to and from Germany, Italy and Sweden.
Read more about how to make reservations
How to avoid reservations
Depending on what’s most important to you – speed of travel or keeping budgets down – you may want to try to avoid trains that have a reservation. You can do this by researching an alternative route that doesn’t require an advance reservation. Sometimes this will mean a longer journey with more changes, but it also means you have the chance to stop off at more places, plus the entire cost of the train will be covered by your pass.
Read more about how to avoid reservations