If you hate flying, are tearing your hair out at the stress of airports, or simply enjoy rail journeys, have you considered taking the train to your Spanish or French holiday home?
Maybe if you are not in a rush and can take some time to enjoy the journey, it could be a very civilised way to travel to your overseas bolthole.
Don't also assume that booking the train connections and navigating Spanish rail websites might be a lot harder than using the Easyjet.com.
Today rail-booking specialist Loco2.com is launching a partnership with the Spanish state-owned rail operator, Renfe, making it much simpler to book Spanish train tickets online.
From 18 February 2014, it will be possible to book hassle-free, in one go, any Spanish train ticket at Loco2.com – Bath, Brighton or Birmingham to Barcelona for example - including advance deals known as “Turista Promo” fares, offering discounts of up to 70 per cent.
All tickets will be available to print at home.
By simplifying the booking process, Loco2 hopes to encourage more people to ditch the plane and opt instead for a lower-carbon journey by train. And with low-cost airlines bringing in all kinds of baggage restrictions and extra costs, it might just be a lot less stressful!
The company already has unrivalled coverage – Loco2.com is the only website to allow travellers to book all UK, Eurostar, French and German rail in one place, as well as popular routes in other countries – south to Sicily and east to Poland.
The addition of all Spanish trains brings the company closer to comprehensive coverage of the European rail network.
The announcement of the Renfe partnership comes soon after the launch of a direct TGV between Paris and Barcelona in December 2013, which has already become one of Loco2’s top-selling routes.
This new high-speed service means that it’s now possible to travel from London to Barcelona by train in a day. It costs from around £175 return and takes 10 hours.
Other new routes available as a result of the partnership include the entire AVE high-speed network – the longest in Europe at 3,100km. Barcelona to Madrid is possible in fewer than three hours, with prices starting at £28.50.
Scenic routes are affordable, too: the 4.5-hour journey from Barcelona to Alicante, along the Mediterranean coast, costs just £15.50 when booked in advance.
Could make the journey to your holiday home as much fun as arriving there...
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