To check train times & fares in Austria, see the official Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at.

This page explains how to travel by train from Innsbruck 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 Innsbruck as shown below and save money over expensive railpasses or travel agent mark-ups.

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

          

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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...


Innsbruck to Salzburg, Vienna, Graz & other destinations in Austria...

The ΦBB (Austrian Railways) website is www.oebb.at.  Seat reservation is optional on most Austrian internal trains.  Until recently there was little advantage in pre-booking, you can just turn up buy a ticket and hop on.  However, in 2011 ΦBB introduced yield-managed variable pricing which means you can now save money by booking in advance.  Tip: When registering, UK is listed as 'Vereinigtes Konigreich', USA as 'Vereinigtes Staaten von Amerika'.  As of 2012, a new private operator also operates on the Vienna-Linz-Salzburg route in competition with ΦBB, see www.westbahn.at.


Innsbruck to London from €62..

See the London to Austria page for full details of times, fares and how to buy tickets in either direction, including Salzburg to London from an amazing €59.

From Innsbruck, you'd first book the excellent City Night Line sleeper train from Munich (depart 22:50) to Paris (arrive 09:24) at German Railways website www.bahn.de (English button top right, you print out your own tickets).  Fares start at €43 in a seat, €59 with a couchette, €104 in a 2-bed sleeper or €134 per person in a deluxe sleeper with shower & toilet if you pre-book, maximum 90 days ahead.  Then use www.bahn.de again to book a connecting ticket from Innsbruck to Munich, from €19.  Then book a connecting Eurostar from Paris to London using www.eurostar.com, from €45.


Innsbruck to Paris from €44...

Innsbruck to Paris by sleeper train:  This is the easiest and most time-effective option.  First, go to www.bahn.de and book the excellent City Night Line sleeper train from Munich to Paris leaving Munich at 22:50 and arriving Paris Gare de l'Est at 09:24.  You print out your own tickets.  Fares for this sleeper train start at €43 in a seat, €59 with a couchette, €104 in a 2-bed sleeper or €134 in a deluxe 2-bed sleeper with en suite shower & toilet, booking opens 92 days ahead.  In Munich, I recommend having dinner between trains at the Mongdratzerl restaurant inside the Hauptbahnhof itself.  Now add an Innsbruck to Munich ticket also booked at www.bahn.de.  Make sure you allow at least 45 minutes to change in Munich in case of any delay.

Innsbruck to Paris by daytime train:  It's possible to travel from Innsbruck to Paris in one day.  To book, split the journey like this:  Book a morning train from Innsbruck to Munich at www.bahn.de from €19.  Allow at least 45 minutes to change in Munich in case of delay.  Book Munich to Paris from €39 as a second transaction at www.bahn.de.  Coming from Innsbruck, you might also try splitting the journey at Stuttgart or Munich.

The scenic route?  There's a scenic route from Innsbruck to Paris via Switzerland.  First travel from Innsbruck to Zurich on a modern Railjet train through the scenic Arlberg pass, see the Arlberg Pass video here.  Book this leg at www.oebb.at from €19 with print-at-home tickets.  Allow at least an hour in Zurich for a safe connection.  Then take a double-deck TGV-Lyria to Paris in just 4 hours, booked at www.sbb.ch from €25, also with print-at-home tickets.  You can do this journey in a single day, or split it into two with an overnight stop in Zurich.


Innsbruck to Brussels & Bruges from €58...

You can travel from Innsbruck to Brussels in a single day.  However, to see the cheap fares you need to split the booking.  First, go to www.bahn.de and book from Innsbruck to Cologne on a morning train from €39.  There's at least 1 direct InterCity train.  Then use www.b-europe.com to book a high-speed Thalys or ICE train from Cologne to Brussels from €19, allowing at least 45 minutes to change in Cologne.


Innsbruck to Amsterdam from €58...

Innsbruck to Amsterdam by sleeper train:  First go to www.bahn.de and book the direct City Night Line sleeper train from Munich (depart 22:50) to Amsterdam (arrive 08:56).  Fares start at €43 in a seat, €59 with a couchette, €104 in a 2-bed sleeper or €134 per person in a deluxe sleeper with shower & toilet, booking opens 90 days ahead.  Then use www.bahn.de again to book a connecting ticket from Innsbruck to Munich from €19, allowing at least 45 minutes to change in Munch in case of any delay.

Innsbruck to Amsterdam by daytime trains:  It's possible to travel from Innsbruck to Amsterdam in one (long) day, using excellent German ICE trains.  It can be booked at www.bahn.de, but to see the cheap fares you need to split the journey.  First book from Innsbruck to Frankfurt (select Frankfurt am Main Hauptbahnhof), allow at least 45 minutes for the connection, then book Frankfurt to Amsterdam.  This way you'll see cheap fares, Innsbruck to Frankfurt from €39 and Frankfurt to Amsterdam from €29.


Innsbruck to Luxembourg...

You can travel from Innsbruck to Luxembourg by daytime trains, but you should split the booking like this:  Go to www.bahn.de and book from Innsbruck to Trier from €49.  Now add a regional train ticket from Trier to Luxembourg for a fixed-price €17 or so, also at www.bahn.de.  The reason you split the booking is that Trier is in Germany, and cheap Spezial fares are only available for journeys to or from Germany.


Innsbruck to Zurich, Basel, Geneva & Switzerland from €29...

There are a number of excellent daily Railjet trains from Innsbruck to Zurich in Switzerland, with fares from just €29.  You can buy through tickets from Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck or most Austrian stations to Zurich and most other Swiss stations at the Austrian railways website www.oebb.at, Innsbruck-Zurich from €19.  The scenery through the Arlberg pass is superb, watch the Arlberg Pass video and see for yourself.

Here's some tips for using www.oebb.at:  For English, click 'English' top right.  Use the journey planner to bring up trains from VIENNA (which will appear in German as WIEN) to ZURICH.  Enter the number of people in your party and your dates and time of travel.  Locate a direct Railjet train with 0 changes in the search results and click on the 'ab €19' link - this means 'from €19', it will show the cheapest price available for that train.  Now select 'SparSchiene Schweiz' (= Swiss Saver Fare).  A reserved seat is not essential, it's optional for an extra €3 and not a bad idea.  You print your own ticket.  No changes or refunds are allowed at the cheapest prices, of course.  When registering, UK is listed as 'Vereinigtes Konigreich', USA as 'Vereinigtes Staaten von Amerika'.


Innsbruck to Venice, Florence, Milan, Rome & Italy from €39...

By sleeper train:  There is a direct City Night Line sleeper train from Innsbruck to Milan, Florence & Rome, leaving Innsbruck just after 23:00.  Fares start at €59 with a couchette, €104 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper, €134 in a 2-bed sleeper with shower & toilet.  For some reason it's not bookable from Innsbruck on either oebb.at or bahn.de/en, so book by phone with a DB agent (in the UK, call 08718 80 80 66).

By daytime trains:  Excellent EuroCity trains with restaurant car link Innsbruck with Verona throughout the day via the scenic Brenner Pass, with one train leaving Innsbruck around 13:27 running beyond Verona to Venice.  It's a lovely journey, see the video here.  To book this, go to the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at and book from Salzburg to Verona.

If you're heading to Venice, ideally aim for the once-a-day direct train leaving Innsbruck at 13:27 and arriving Venice Santa Lucia at 18:10, you can then book from Innsbruck to Venice all in one go at www.oebb.at from just €39.  On all other departures a change in Verona is necessary, so you have to split the booking, first book Innsbruck to Verona at www.oebb.at then Verona to Venice at www.trenitalia.com.

If you're heading to Florence, Rome, Milan or anywhere else in Italy, book from Innsbruck to Verona at www.oebb.at then from Verona to your final Italian destination at either www.italiarail.com (easy to use, recognises English place names, the small booking fee will be refunded if you email them at seat61@italiarail.com with your PNR) or Italian Railways own website www.trenitalia.com (much more fiddly to use, requires Italian language place names, no booking fee, read this advice on using it first).  Both sites are ticketless, you simply quote your booking reference on board the train.  I'd allow at least 45 minutes in Verona to make a connection, in case of any delay.  The reason for splitting the booking is that Austrian Railways cannot access Trenitalia's ticketing system.


Innsbruck to Barcelona & Spain...

Option 1, by sleeper train via Paris...

Option 2, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Zurich or Geneva...


Innsbruck to Munich or anywhere Germany from €19 or €29...

You can book daytime trains from Innsbruck to anywhere Germany from €19 or €29 using www.bahn.de, and in most cases you simply print out your own ticket.


Innsbruck to Budapest from €19...

A whole range of trains link Innsbruck with Budapest Keleti station every day, including at least two daily direct Railjet trains and a host of other options with one easy change of train in Vienna.  Just book from Innsbruck to Budapest online at www.oebb.at with advance-purchase fares from €29 each way.  Change 'language' to 'English' top right.  You print out your own ticket in .PDF format.  Tip: When registering, UK is listed as 'Vereinigtes Konigreich', USA as 'Vereinigtes Staaten von Amerika'.  UK residents can also book online at  www.raileurope.co.uk, but without any offers.


Innsbruck to Prague from €38...

Option 1, book Innsbruck to Prague at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at.  This sells Innsbruck to Prague train tickets by Railjet train to Linz then regional train to Prague, with a standard fully-flexible fare of around €94 each way.  Unfortunately there are no advance-purchase discounts on this route.  Look carefully in the oebb.at search results for journey options shown without a bus symbol, as most of the options in the search results will involve a bus for part of the journey, which should be avoided.

Option 2 is much cheaper.  Go to the Czech Railways website www.cd.cz/eshop, click 'en' top right for English, and book a ticket from Munich to Prague on one of the four daily direct Alex trains from just €19 each way (around 500 Czech Koruna).  You print your own ticket, easy!  Now use the Austrian railways website www.oebb.at to add a connecting train ticket from Innsbruck to Munich, allowing at least 45 minutes to change trains in Munich in case of any delay, again printing your own ticket.  You'll find more information about these Munich to Prague Alex trains, with a complete timetable, on the Munich to Prague by train page.


Innsbruck to Bratislava from €14...

You can buy an Innsbruck to Bratislava ticket from just €39 at the Austrian railways website www.oebb.at.  The best journeys to look for in the search results involve just 1 change at Vienna Meidling, and you arrive in Bratislava at Bratislava Petrzalka station.  If you insist on going to Bratislava's main Hlavna station (shown on oebb.at as Bratislava hl. st.) it involves an extra change or two.

You could also break the journey up in Vienna.  Book Innsbruck to Vienna online at www.oebb.at from €19.  It's then easy to buy a Vienna-Bratislava ticket at the station for a fixed price of around €15.  Trains run from Vienna Hauptbahnhof to Bratislava Hlavna every hour, no reservation necessary or even possible, just turn up, buy a ticket and hop on.  Also consider a river trip along the Danube, Vienna-Bratislava fast ferries and hydrofoils runs at least once a day in winter, up to 5 times a day in summer, 80 minutes.  At least two companies operate, see www.twincityliner.com or www.lod.sk.


Innsbruck to Warsaw & Krakow from €39...

There's a daily direct sleeper train, the Chopin, from Vienna (depart 22:08) to Warsaw (arrive 07:19) and Krakow (arrive 07:03), with economical couchettes (6-bunk per compartment) and a comfortable and secure sleeping-car (1 2 or 3 beds per compartment).  What's the Vienna-Krakow sleeping-car like?  And there are plenty of connecting trains from Innsbruck to Vienna, I'd allow at least an hour to change trains in Vienna in case of any delay.  There's also a direct afternoon Vienna-Warsaw EuroCity train.  You can book online from Innsbruck to Krakow or Warsaw as one transaction at the Austrian railways website www.oebb.at with cheap fares if you pre-book:  Vienna to Krakow from €39 plus €26 supplement for a bed in a 3-bed sleeper or €39 for a bed in a 2-bed sleeper (per person, berth sold individually).  Vienna to Warsaw by daytime EuroCity train from €39.  Look for options with 1 change in the search results.  By all means split the booking into Innsbruck-Vienna and Vienna-Krakow if you'd like to spend time in Vienna or would prefer a safer connection, this is no bad idea.


Innsbruck to Moscow, St Petersburg & Russia...

Take a train from Innsbruck to Vienna.  Direct Russian Railways sleeping-cars with 1, 2 and 3 bed compartments with washbasin link Vienna with Moscow, journey time 2 nights.  This needs to be booked by phone.  The journey planner at www.bahn.de will give you train times.


Innsbruck to Istanbul & Turkey...

You can pick up the London-Istanbul route suggested on the London to Turkey page in Munich, Salzburg or Vienna.  This journey cannot all be booked online, at least the final leg needs to be booked by phone, but see the London to Turkey page for details of how to buy tickets.


Innsbruck to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Oslo & Scandinavia...

Option 1, using a City Night Line sleeper train.

Option 2, by daytime trains with an overnight stop in Hamburg, from €68...


Find hotels in Innsbruck & 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 £1m or preferably £5m 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 £1,000 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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