If you’re looking for the perfect last-minute Christmas present for a traveler in your life (or for yourself), Eurail passes might be the answer. Eurail passes allow you to travel on most European railways (and some ferries), and is an extremely efficient, cost-effective way to make your way through Europe. From now until December 31st, all Eurail passes are discounted to some degree, and since they’re usable through the end of 2019, you have plenty of time to plan that epic European vacation.
The One Country Pass, which allows you travel anywhere within a single country, is currently 15 percent off. But if you don’t want to stop at one country, a Select Pass lets you customize a trip between two to four countries, and is being offered at a 20 percent discount. For the truly ambitious, the Global Pass gives you access to 28 countries, and it’s 36 percent off. A Global Pass for a seven-day trip would typically cost around $541, but until December 31st you can get it for just $379.
It’s important to note that when Eurail references “travel days,” it only applies to days you’re actually traveling on Eurail trains. On each travel day, you can take as many trains as you want. For one of the longest journeys, you could choose to travel from Heraklion, Greece, the southernmost Eurail station, to the northernmost station in Kiruna, Sweden — a journey of over 3,000 miles. For the most scenic route, you might decide to take the Bernina Express, which runs between Switzerland and Italy, or the seven-and-a-half-hour trip through Switzerland on the Glacier Express.