To buy train tickets within Spain, use the official Spanish Railways website www.renfe.com (but see this advice first)  Or use www.raileurope-world.com or www.petrabax.com/renfe.

This page explains how to travel by train from Barcelona & Spain to other key European cities, and how to buy the cheapest tickets, usually online direct from the operators with print-at-home or collect-at-station tickets & few or no booking fees.  It doesn't matter where you live, in Europe, Asia, the USA or Australia, you can buy train tickets from Spain as shown below and save money over expensive railpasses or travel agent mark-ups.  On the other hand, if you'd rather someone sorted out your whole trip for you, see here.

I want to travel by train from Spain to...

          

       Click here to buy tickets starting in another city

Before you buy your tickets...

I recommend taking a moment to read these important tips for buying European train tickets.  It answers all the usual questions, such as "Do I need to book in advance or can I just turn up & buy at the station?", "How far ahead can I book?", "Can I stop off?", "Are there Senior fares?" and that old favourite, "Should I buy an $800 railpass or just go online & buy a €35 point-to-point ticket?".

Answering your questions about European train travel...

An introduction to European train travel

 

Senior fares (over 60)

 

Guide to Eurail passes (overseas visitors)

Important tips for buying European train tickets

Youth fares (under 26)

 

Guide to InterRail passes (for Europeans)

How to check European train times

Child fares & child age limits

 

Couchettes & sleepers on night trains

Do I need to book in advance?

Luggage on European trains

 

Train seat numbering plans

How far ahead can I book?

Luggage storage at stations

 

Wheelchairs & special needs

Can I stop off on the way?

Taking a bike by train

 

Real-time service updates

Should I travel 1st or 2nd class?

Taking a car by train

 

Hotels & accommodation

How long to allow for connections?

Taking dogs & pets by train

 

Changing stations in Paris by metro or taxi

How early to arrive at the station?

Maps of the European rail network

 

What to do when things go wrong...



Buying train tickets for journeys within Spain...

Spain to London from €119...

Spain to Paris from €59 by high-speed train...

Barcelona to Paris by high-speed TGV:  Click here for details...

First class on board a TGV Duplex   An impressive TGV Duplex.

1st class seats on TGV Duplex upper deck.  That's a 'club duo' on the left & a 'club quatre' on the right.

 

The morning TGV Duplex to Paris, at Barcelona Sants.  Red near the door = 1st class, pale green = 2nd class.

Mt Canigou in the Pyrenees

Mt Canigou & the Pyrenees...  Seen from the train to Paris, and one of the highest peaks in the mighty Pyrenees, the 2,784m (9,137 feet) high Mt Canigou dominates the skyline all the way from Girona to Perpignan

More photos about this journey...

Madrid, Seville, Malaga, Cordoba, Valencia, Alicante to Paris by high-speed AVE+TGV...

San Sebastian to Paris...

Barcelona to Perpignan, Montpelier, Toulouse, Lyon, Marseille, Cannes, Nice...

 

Turista (2nd class) seats on the S100 AVE.  These trains operate the TGV/AVE services from Madrid to Marseille, Barcelona to Lyon, Toulouse.  Panorama photo of turista (2nd) class Panorama photo of Preferente (1st) class.


Spain to Brussels from €94...

Option 1, by high-speed TGV in a single day...

Option 2, by high-speed TGV with overnight hotel in Paris...

Option 3:  Using the direct Spain to Luxembourg overnight train...


Spain to Amsterdam from €94...

Spain to Luxembourg...

Option 1:  Using the direct Spain to Luxembourg overnight train...

Option 2:  By daytime TGV trains...


Spain to Switzerland from €59...

Spain to Italy from €81...

Option 1, by TGV & scenic Alpine train with overnight stop in Geneva.  Daily from a date to be announced, perhaps summer 2014:

Option 2, by TGV & scenic Alpine train in one day.  Runs every day.

Option 3, by high-speed trains with overnight stop in Paris.  This is further to go, but cheap fares and high-speed trains make it a perfectly feasible option...

Option 3, Barcelona to Rome by luxury cruise ferry...


Spain to Portugal:  Madrid to Lisbon from €49.95...

Spain to Germany from €94...

Option 1:  Barcelona to Cologne or Frankfurt in one day by high-speed trains...

Option 2:  Barcelona to anywhere Germany by high-speed trains with overnight stop in Paris...

Option 3:  Barcelona to Paris by TGV, Paris to Berlin, Hamburg, Munich by time-effective sleeper train...

Option 4:  Barcelona to Geneva by TGV, overnight stop, Geneva to Munich next day...


Spain to Austria from €88...

Option 1:  Barcelona to Geneva by TGV, overnight stop in Geneva, onwards to Austria next day by Railjet...

Option 2:  Barcelona to Paris by TGV, Paris to Munich by time-effective sleeper train, Railjet to Austria...


Spain to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Oslo...

Spain to Prague...

Spain to Warsaw & Moscow...

 


Railbookers tailor-made train travel & hotels

If you just want to buy train tickets at the cheapest price, book online as shown on this page.  However, if you want someone to sort out your whole trip for you, arranging all your trains, hotels and transfers, and to look after you if anything affects your arrangements, talk to Railbookers.  Railbookers can tailor-make a train trip around Europe to your own specification.  Just tell them what you want and they'll advise you on the best trains, routes & hotels.  They get good reports and a lot of repeat business!  They now have offices in the UK, North America and Australia.

  UK call 020 3327 0761, www.railbookers.com.

Call toll-free 1-800-408-3280 or www.us.railbookers.com.

Australia call toll-free 1300 971 526, www.railbookers.com.au.

  New Zealand call toll-free 0800 002 034 or see website.


Find hotels in Barcelona & other cities

 

◄◄ Hotel search & price comparison.

www.hotelscombined.com checks all the main hotel booking sites at once to find the widest choice of hotels & the cheapest seller.  It was named as the World's Leading Hotel Comparison Site at the World Travel Awards 2013 and I highly recommend it, both to find hotels in even the smallest places and to check that another retailer isn't selling your hotel for less!

www.booking.com is my favourite booking site.  It's really clear and you can usually book with free cancellation and so confirm your accommodation at no risk months before train booking opens.

Other hotel sites worth trying...

Backpacker hostels...


Travel insurance & health card...

 

 

Columbus direct travel insurance

Get travel insurance, it's essential...

Never travel overseas without travel insurance from a reliable insurer, with at least Ł1m or preferably Ł5m medical cover.  It should also cover cancellation and loss of cash (up to a limit) and belongings.  An annual multi-trip policy is usually cheaper than several single-trip policies even for just 2 or 3 trips a year (I have an annual policy myself).  Here are some suggested insurers.  Seat61 gets a small commission if you buy through these links.

In the UK, try Columbus Direct or use Confused.com to compare prices & policies from many different insurers.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition or are over 65 (no age limit), see www.JustTravelCover.com.

        If you're resident in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland or the EU, try Columbus Direct's other websites.

  If you're resident in the USA try Travel Guard USA.

Get a spare credit card, designed for foreign travel with no currency exchange loading & low or no ATM fees...

It costs nothing to take out an extra credit card.  If you keep it in a different part of your luggage so you're not left stranded if your wallet gets stolen, this is a form of extra travel insurance in itself.  In addition, some credit cards are significantly better for overseas travel than others.  Martin Lewis's www.moneysavingexpert.com/travel/cheap-travel-money explains which UK credit cards have the lowest currency exchange commission loadings when you buy something overseas, and the lowest cash withdrawal fees when you use an ATM abroad.  Taking this advice can save you quite a lot on each trip compared to using your normal high-street bank credit card!

You can avoid ATM charges and expensive exchange rates with a Caxton FX euro currency Visa Card, or their multi-currency 'Global Traveller' Visa Card, see www.caxtonfx.com for info.

Get an international SIM card...

Mobile phones can cost a fortune to use abroad, and if you're not careful you can return home to find some huge bills waiting for you.  I've known people run up a Ł1,000 bill in data charges just by leaving their iPhone connected during a simple trip to Europe.  However, if you buy a global SIM card for your mobile phone from a company such as www.Go-Sim.com you can slash the cost by up to 85% and limit any damage to the amount you have pre-paid.  It cuts call costs in 175 countries worldwide, and you can receive incoming calls and texts for free in 75 countries.  It's pay-as-you-go, so no nasty bills when you get home.  It also works for laptop or PDA data access.  A Go-Sim account and any credit on it doesn't expire if it's not between trips, unlike some others, so a Go-Sim phone number becomes your 'global phone number' for life.

 


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