What is RailJet?

RailJet is Austrian Railways (OBB's) high-speed train, capable of 230 km/h (143 mph) where the route allows this speed.  RailJet trains operate on the Munich-Salzburg-Vienna-Budapest route, on the Zurich-Innsbruck-Salzburg-Vienna-Budapest route and now (together with some similar blue-liveried Czech Railways Railjets) on the Graz-Vienna-Prague route.  In the future, they may also operate on the Vienna-Graz-Venice & Vienna-Graz-Zagreb routes.  At present, Railjets run at up to 200 km/h (125 mph) on sections of upgraded track, and at lower speeds on more curvaceous (and usually more scenic!) sections of line.

The morning RailJet train about to leave Munich   RailJet just arrived in Budapest

All aboard!  The morning RailJet about to leave Munich for Vienna & Budapest.  Munich Hauptbahnhof is just 15 minutes walk from Munich's famous Dom & Marienplatz.

 

The RailJet has landed...  The RailJet has arrived spot on time in Budapest's historic Keleti station, built 1881-1884.

What's it like on board RailJet?

RailJet is unusual as it has 3 classes, Economy, First & Business.  The train is all non-smoking, though station stops at Salzburg & Vienna are long enough for a smoke.  Wheelchair-accessible toilets and several wheelchair spaces are available in each train.  For more information for travellers with disabilities, see the Europe page.  Business class replaced Premium class in March 2012, with the same seating but a reduced surcharge of €15 over normal 1st class and with free drinks but not free meals.

2nd class (economy)...

Open-plan seating arranged 2+2 across the car width, most unidirectional but with some tables for 4.  All seats have power sockets and a fixed or drop-down table.  Large luggage racks are located at various points within the seating area, see the photo of the luggage rack in 1st class below, it's the same in all classes.  See the seat numbering plan here.

 

1st class...

1st class has reclining leather seats arranged 2+1 across the car width, with tables for 2, tables for 4 people and some unidirectional seats.  There are power sockets & tables at all seats.  A complimentary welcome drink of fruit juice is included.  Food & drink orders are taken from the restaurant menu & served at your seat, although meals aren't included in the fare.  See panorama photo of Railjet 1st classSee the seat numbering plan here.

 

There are luggage racks like this in all classes...

 

First class, with tables for 2, tables for 4 and unidirectional seats.

Business class (premium 1st)...

You pay an extra €15 on top of any 1st class fare to get a business class seat.  There's just half a car of business class in each Railjet unit.  A carpeted corridor runs down one side of the car, off which open several spacious 3 or 4 seat semi-compartments, semi because the compartments have no door and partitions are not ceiling-high.  Each semi-compartment has very comfortable reclining leather armchairs with adjustable footrests & fold-out armrest table.  There are power sockets & reading lights at all seats.  A complimentary welcome drink of wine or fruit juice is included.  Food & drink orders  are taken from the restaurant menu and served at your seat, although meals aren't included in the fare.  If you don't mind the extra cost, business class is highly recommended!  Note that only certain booking sites can book business class (for example www.oebb.at where you select a 1st class fare then choose a business class reservation), but if you have a first class ticket you can find any empty seat and ask to pay the €15 supplement on board.  See panorama photoSee the seat numbering plan here.

 

Bistro-restaurant car...

Anyone in any class can buy food & drink at the counter to take back to their seat or you can sit down and use the small waiter-service restaurant area.  However, in 1st & Business classes there's no need to go to the restaurant car, staff will take your order and serve you from the restaurant menu at your seat.  Food is served on proper china with metal cutlery - no airline plastic here.  The Budweiser (the Czech real thing, not the American version) & Paulaner beers are very good...

RailJet restaurant car   Meal & drinks are served at seat in first & premium classes

Tips for travelling by Railjet...

What's the journey from Munich to Vienna & Budapest like?

The train soon leaves the Munich suburbs behind and snakes through pretty Bavarian countryside, past tiny villages nestling in green valleys, picturesque chalets and Bavarian churches with tall, slender spires.  Approaching Salzburg the Alps come into view, making a great backdrop to your train ride, often with snow on the highest peaks even in June.  Just before arriving at Salzburg the train crosses the Salzach river - look to the right for great views of Salzburg's citadel & castle (see the photo below).  Soon after Salzburg the train leaves the Alps behind and snakes through hilly Austrian scenery, past Austrian churches with their bulbous spires, so different from those in Bavaria.  The train calls at Linz before reaching its maximum 200 km/h (125mph) speed on the fastest part of the journey, then it slows down again through more green hilly countryside into Vienna Westbahnhof, where the train reverses.  The train spends ten minutes in Vienna and you can stretch your legs if you like.  From Vienna to Budapest the landscape is flat, wide open farmland, now sporting more wind turbines that you've ever seen before, allegedly over 200.  Just before arriving in Budapest the train crosses the Danube, although a modern road bridge obscures the view along the river.  The train normally keeps good time, so expect an on-time arrival into Budapest's historic Keleti station, built 1881-1884. 

View of Salzburg from the train   TV screen showing the train's location   TV screen showing speed

The view from the train:  This is the view of Salzburg as the RailJet crosses the Salzach river approaching Salzburg station...

 

TV screens show the arrival times at the next station stops, the train's current speed, and maps show your current location...

What's the journey from Zurich to Innsbruck like, through the Arlberg Pass?

How to buy tickets...

Sponsored links...

Sample menu...

Railjet menu for first class at-seat service, 2013 prices.

 Railjet sample menu


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