Rail travel

 

As a student, I worked for five years on night trains as a sleeping car attendant. Then my professional career took place in air transport.

 

Planes and trains are two modes of transport that I love passionately. I sincerely believe that they are not competitors, but complementary.

 

On this page, I’ve collected all the articles I’ve written about train travel. My blog gives them a lot of space because it’s a way of traveling that gives me much pleasure .

 

Click on the links or photos to be redirected to the article.

 

I tested the new-generation Nightjet night train

Öbb, the Austrian railroads, have designed a new-generation night train, the Nightjet, which is a concentrate of innovations. This is a major event for the night train market in Europe.

In January 2024, I tested the new Nightjet, between Hamburg and Innsbruck, in a mini-cabin on the outward journey and a sleeper on the return.

This comprehensive article aims to be a reference for describing the customer experience of this new train.

Nightjet mini cabins

Paris Nice: in the footsteps of the Train Bleu

Paris Nice est one of France’s longest train lines with 1,088 km, linking the capital to one of France’s richest regions: the Côte d’Azur. It’s the ideal connection for night trains and it was very prestigious in the past thanks to the Train Bleu.

I tested the new service in November 2023.

Esterel

Thalys becomes Eurostar: my analysis from a brand and customer perspective

As a transport marketing professional, here’s my take on the switch from the Thalys brand to Eurostar.

Eurostar ex Thalys

Traveling by Eurostar, ex-Thalys: in the footsteps of the Etoile du Nord

During my five-year stay in Amsterdam, I had the opportunity to travel more than a hundred times on Thalys, which became Eurostar on October 1, 2023, and I became a big fan despite having worked for an airline for more than 30 years!

So I thought I’d introduce you to this fine rail company.

Thalys locomotive

Traveling to Scandinavia by train: a practical guide

Traveling by train from France to Scandinavia is a great experience, but not all that easy to organize because of the multitude of rail companies to use.

In this article, I give you all the keys to organizing your rail journey to Scandinavia.

Stockholm Hamburg night train livery

Paris – Stockholm by train

Taking the train between Paris and Stockholm is a great experience, and one I’d recommend.

The new Hamburg – Stockholm night train has made the journey quick and easy.

Train to Stockholm from Hamburg

Stockholm – Copenhagen via Gothenburg by train

There is a direct train service between Stockholm and Copenhagen that takes five hours.

However, due to track work, I had to pass through Gothenburg to get to the Danish capital. A schoolboy’s route that turned out to be much more interesting than the usual one!

X2000 SJ

Copenhagen – Paris by train: in the footsteps of Nord-Express

Traveling by train between Paris and Copenhagen used to be easy, thanks to the Nord-Express night train. Today, it’s difficult to reach the Danish capital in a single day.

In this article, I recount my return journey from Copenhagen to Paris, with a somewhat obligatory stopover in Frankfurt .

DSB train

From Washington DC to Chicago, with the Capitol Limited

Crossing the American continent by train, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, is a fantastic experience that I completed in October 2022.

In this article, I recount the first part of my trip, from Washington DC to Chicago, with the Capitol Limited.

Superliner by night

From Chicago to San Francisco with the California Zephyr

Crossing the American continent by train, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, is a fantastic experience that I completed in October 2022.

In this article, I recount the second part of my trip, from Chicago to San Francisco, with the California Zephyr.

Superliner panorama car

From New York to Washington DC on Acela, the American high-speed train

What does the Acela, the American-style TGV, look like? I tested it from New York to Washington DC to understand its specific features.

Acela

Paris-Rome by train: in the footsteps of the Palatino

If you’re a train lover, you know the Paris-Rome line is mythical. There used to be a night train like no other: the Palatino. I would have loved to have retaken it, but it no longer exists.

So I imagined a new trip to relive the magic of Paris-Rome differently, with daytime trains. A magnificent four-day land trip with stops in Turin and Genoa!

Cigarette break in Modane

From Paris to Vienna: night trains versus planes

To my great delight, the Austrian Federal Railways, the ÖBB (Österreichische Bundesbahnen), have reintroduced the night train, called “Nightjet”, between Paris and December 14, 2021.

I tested it and compared it with the Air France service.

This article is one of my “best-sellers” with a very good ranking on Google.

Match Air France Nightjet

Ruby“new interior design for Thalys trains

When I lived in Amsterdam, I was a loyal Thalys traveler for five years, from 2015 to 2020, and it’s a brand I love.

Today’s trains are around 20 years old and, inevitably, have aged. Knowing that the lifespan of a TGV is around forty years, Thalys has decided to undertake a major mid-life makeover.

Thalys invited me to discover the new trains in October 2021 at a press event in Amsterdam.

The article is in French only.

New Thalys cabin harmony

Åre: Swedish-style skiing

Åre is a Swedish ski resort 600 km north of Stockholm. To get there, the night train is an excellent choice.

Train arriving at Are station