The European Union’s DiscoverEU program makes it easier for young people to travel across Europe conveniently and affordably by train. Any 18-year-old who is a citizen of the EU is eligible for a free Interrail pass, which will give them access to 40,000 destinations across 33 European countries. There are 60,000 Interrail passes being made available in October 2021, with passes allocated to EU member states based on population size.
According to the DiscoverEU website, “As an 18-year-old citizen of the European Union, DiscoverEU offers you the opportunity to participate in a travel experience that will enable you to take advantage of the freedom of movement throughout the European Union, explore the diversity of Europe, learn about European cultural heritage and history, and connect with people from all over the continent. Furthermore, DiscoverEU enables you, as a young person, to develop life skills of value to your future, such as independence, confidence, and openness to other cultures.”
Successful applicants must use the passes between March 2022 and March 2023 for a period of up to 30 days. Due to COVID-19, those possessing the pass will be given flexible bookings and routes, Lonely Planet reports.
Anyone who received their free Interrail rail pass in November 2019 will have until August 31 of this year to use it to account for time lost during the pandemic.
To apply for a pass, visit the European Youth Portal once passes become available.