First we heard about a new sleeper-train network, linking Paris, Munich and Vienna. Then French startup Midnight Trains announced its fleet of ‘rolling luxury hotels’ that will run right across Europe.
Now the German green party has announced plans for a huge new network – including night services connecting the UK with Barcelona, Stockholm and Copenhagen.
The proposed services would allow travellers to swap hotel fees for a night on the rails. The party, which is gearing up for the German national elections this Sunday, said ticket prices would be made as affordable as possible (and promised the trains would be extra quiet). Plus, it goes without saying that it plays into their whole ‘eco-friendly’ thing too.
The map shows the rail lines stretching from UK destinations like London, Birmingham and Glasgow to other big Euro cities like Lisbon, Rome and Zagreb. Overall, more than 40 cities would be served by the new routes.
For the plans to go ahead, the green party would need to win some government representation on Sunday, while the Europaweites Nachtzugnetz (Europe-wide night train network) would also need EU approval.
To make the policy extra appealing to voters, they’ve really been hammering home the price difference between rail and flight fares – highlighting the fact that at the moment, the greener choice is often more expensive.
The group said: ‘Those who travel a little longer to protect the climate should not have to pay extra. At present, international air traffic enjoys enormous tax advantages. These distortions of competition must be corrected urgently.’
Germans: you know what to do.
Looking for more ways to reduce your carbon footprint when travelling? Here are 12 ways to be a better tourist right now.