All aboard ‘Eurailing 101’
Crestview library class teaches ins and outs of European rail travel
CRESTVIEW — For novice independent travelers who have the urge to explore Europe by train but don’t know their ICE from their TGV, nor a Global Pass from an Interrail pass, the Crestview Public Library has a quick, easy and comprehensive solution:
The romance of European train travel has been immortalized in films such as Murder on the Orient Express and From Russia With Love. Swift, clean, efficient and—particularly in northern Europe—generally punctual, the train is the best way to get around Europe with the least amount of fuss.
Eurailing 101 will be presented on Tuesday, June 16, from 6-7 p.m. in conjunction with an exhibit on European travel — past and present — in the library’s lobby, both offered should COVID-19 restrictions be lifted and the library reopens.
Teaching the class is the display’s curator, Brian Hughes, president of the Crestview Area Sister City Program, originator of the Tulane University “Europe Bound” seminars, travel writer, and director of the Council on International Educational Exchange’s Europe Bound video series.
“By sharing with Europeans their primary form of travel, you will have an excellent opportunity to meet the locals and learn more of their ways of life,” Mr. Hughes said. “Plus, your compartment mates can be great sources of insiders’ travel advice.”
For Americans used to hopping on planes, train travel may at first seem a bit confusing, particularly when combined with being in a strange country. But in Eurailing 101, attendees will learn Europeans travel country-to-country as easily as Americans go state-to-state, and that taking a train in Europe is a simple and logical process aided by easy-to-understand signs and pictograms.
“After your first train, you’ll be Eurailing like a pro,” Mr. Hughes promises.
The class covers topics including:
- Choosing the rail pass that best suits your needs,
- How to find your train — and make sure you’re on the right carriage,
- How to book European train tickets from home,
- Traveling by high-speed express trains,
- Finding your way around the stations,
- Combining sleeping and travel time on an overnighter, and
- Eurailing just for the fun of it.
Eurailing 101 is free, refreshments will be served, questions are welcomed, and each attendee will receive a free 12-page booklet packed with helpful tips and do’s-and-don’ts.
“For an American with a rail pass, the entire continent is ready to explore at your own pace,” Mr. Hughes said. “In Eurailing 101, I’ll teach you how.”
What: 1-hour class on traveling in Europe by train
When: 6-7 p.m. Tuesday, June 16
Where: Crestview Public Library, 1445 Commerce Dr. (behind the post office)
Cost: Free, open to the public
Notes: Refreshments and a free 12-page Eurailing booklet will be provided to attendees. In the event the library remains closed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the seminar will be rescheduled.