France Launches Rail Pass After Success of German Ticket

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France rail pass

Last Updated on December 27, 2023 by Rikki

Get ready to explore France on a budget! Following the success of Germany’s affordable rail pass, France is set to launch its own €49 ticket next summer. This low-cost pass will grant passengers unlimited travel on both TER regional services and intercity trains.

With the aim of encouraging train use and reducing carbon emissions, this pass provides an inexpensive and convenient way to explore the country. Stay tuned for more details on this exciting new opportunity to explore France by rail!

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France Launches €49 Rail Pass After Success of German Ticket

Introduction

France is set to launch a new €49 rail pass next summer, following the success of Germany’s popular €49 public transport ticket. The pass will offer passengers unlimited travel on TER regional services and intercity trains, as well as coverage for local bus, metro, and tram travel. Inspired by the positive environmental impact of similar rail passes in Europe, France aims to encourage train usage and reduce carbon emissions. However, transport bosses have raised concerns about the sustainability of the low price and the potential for a future price hike.

Overview

France’s new rail pass aims to make train travel more affordable and accessible to the general public. Passengers will have the convenience of unlimited travel on TER regional services and intercity trains for a flat fee of €49 per month. This pass is inspired by Germany’s successful €49 public transport ticket, which has seen over three million Germans purchase it since its launch. Transport Minister Clément Beaune revealed the details of the plan and expressed the desire to emulate the success of other European countries in promoting train use.

What will France’s new €49 ticket look like?

The new rail pass in France will require pass-holders to pay a monthly €49 subscription fee. This fee will entitle them to unlimited travel on TER regional trains and intercity trains. TER trains serve local destinations within French regions and carry approximately 1.1 million passengers daily.

Popular TER routes, such as Bordeaux to Arcachon and Marseille to Toulon, can cost around €15 and €17 respectively. The rail pass will be particularly beneficial for commuters who make these journeys frequently, as it could result in significant savings. In addition to train travel, the pass will also cover local bus, metro, and tram travel, although the specifics are yet to be finalized.

Inspiration from Germany’s public transport ticket

France’s new rail pass takes inspiration from Germany’s successful ‘Deutschlandticket’. Germany’s €49 public transport ticket was launched in April of this year and allows unlimited travel on all local and regional public transport for a flat fee. Since its introduction, over three million Germans have purchased the ticket. The pass has been hailed as the “biggest public transport reform in German history”. However, concerns have been raised about the sustainability of the low price, with transport bosses warning of a potential price hike in January 2024.

Potential impact on reducing carbon emissions

One of the key goals of France’s new rail pass is to reduce carbon emissions by encouraging commuters to switch from carbon-intensive forms of transport. The introduction of this pass follows France’s ban on short-haul flights for journeys that can be completed in less than two-and-a-half hours by train.

Other European rail passes, such as Germany’s €9-per-month ticket and the €49 public transport ticket, have had a positive impact on the environment. The German ticket, for example, helped reduce carbon emissions by approximately 1.8 million tonnes during June, July, and August of this year.

Benefits for commuters and travelers

The new rail pass in France offers several benefits for commuters and travelers alike. Passengers can save a significant amount of money on regular journeys such as Bordeaux to Arcachon and Marseille to Toulon.

For example, the cost of an intercity train ticket between Paris and Toulouse, if booked on the day, is nearly double the price of the rail pass. The pass includes coverage for local bus, metro, and tram travel. This comprehensive coverage makes it a convenient and cost-effective option for those who rely on public transport for their daily commute or travel within the country.

Challenges and sustainability

While the new rail pass in France presents numerous benefits, there are concerns regarding its sustainability. Transport bosses have warned that the low price of the pass may not be sustainable in the long term.

There is a possibility of a price hike in the future to maintain and improve public transport services. Balancing affordability with the cost of operating and expanding public transport is a significant challenge that needs to be addressed to ensure the pass’s long-term viability.

Positive examples from other countries

France is not the first European country to implement low-cost public transport passes with positive results. Germany’s €9-per-month ticket and the €49 public transport ticket have both been successful in reducing carbon emissions and increasing public transport usage.

The German ticket alone has sold over 52 million tickets, resulting in significant carbon emissions reductions. These examples demonstrate that affordable and accessible public transport options can have a substantial positive impact on both the environment and individuals’ travel experiences.

Taking inspiration from Germany’s success, France has introduced a new low-cost rail pass to attract travelers. This move underscores a broader trend towards more budget-friendly travel options in Europe. As economic challenges mount, it’s essential to see how European nations, particularly Germany, are adapting their travel landscapes to ensure that both business and leisure travel remains affordable, especially during economic downturns.

Conclusion

The introduction of the €49 rail pass in France next summer is an exciting development that aims to make train travel more affordable and convenient for passengers. Inspired by the success of Germany’s public transport ticket, this pass offers unlimited travel on TER regional services and intercity trains, as well as coverage for local bus, metro, and tram travel.

The pass’s potential impact on reducing carbon emissions and increasing public transport usage is significant. However, challenges related to sustainability and balancing affordability with the cost of maintaining and improving public transport services need to be addressed.

Ultimately, the rail pass is expected to bring numerous benefits for commuters and travelers, making train travel a more accessible and environmentally friendly option.

For an across Europe experience, starting on December 11, 2023 the Nightjet Sleeper Train from Berlin to France, will make stops at several enchanting destinations across Europe.


Hi, I’m Rikki

I’m a passionate author and blogger, sharing my thoughts and experiences on life and travel.

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