Rail Europe has shared that four new high-speed rail projects are currently under construction and will be due to open from as early as the European spring this year.
Providing higher efficiency and better quality services to which rail travellers are growing accustomed, rail carriers across Europe are continuing to upgrade their fleet and services to meet increasing passenger demands and expectations.
These four new train services will add to the continent’s expanding portfolio of existing high-speed services, with the latest addition being the Gotthard Express in Switzerland, which started operations in December 2016. Rail Europe says these services will no doubt create even more demand for rail travel in Europe, for not only will travellers enjoy faster and more comfortable train journeys, but they will also be able to travel further and still spend quality time indulging in local experiences.
Spring in France will see the services of the new Paris-Rennes begin operation, reducing travel time between the two cities to 1:25 hour, 30 minutes shorter than the current service.
Then from mid-year, the new Paris-Bordeaux high-speed service will save travellers an hour of travelling time from the current three-hour journey.
In Germany, Berlin and Munich will be brought closer together with their new high-speed connection service scheduled to start in December. The direct connection will travel at 300 kilometres per hour, shortening the journey to under four hours from the current six.
Finally, in 2018, Spain will introduce the world’s fifth largest, third deepest and the second most complex tunnel, “Variente de Pajares”, which will link Madrid to Asturias via the cities of León, Oviedo and Gijon. Journeys on the current route will be shortened by about two hours.
In addition to the increasing number of local rail commuters in Europe, Rail Europe reports that the four million-plus international travellers using the same train services each year when touring the continent continues to rise as well. Globally, the company enjoys an average of 7% increase in rail pass and ticket sales each year.