Learn how to book train seats with Interrail

Many European train companies have the option to reserve seats on their trains. It’s the best way to guarantee your seat – especially if you’re travelling in a group or along popular routes. Reservations aren’t included in your Interrail Pass, but we’re here to help you find and book your seats.

Let the Interrail Pass stretch your budget even more as you discover Europe. Discover all the current benefits below.

Frequently Asked Questions about seat reservations

No, reservations are not included in your Interrail pass. Train reservations are required for most high-speed trains and all night trains. It’s often possible to avoid reservations by taking regional trains instead. Reservation fees are included in the Interrail Premium Pass. If you have a Premium pass, you still need to book the free reservations through our Reservation Service. Read our reservation guide for more information or book your reservations with us.

You can make reservations for most high-speed and night trains from 3 months in advance. Many of these trains get fully booked, so we advise you to make your reservations at least 2 months in advance.

The French Thalys and international TGV trains have a limited number of seats available for Interrail pass holders. We recommend that you make reservations for the high season (May – August) and at weekends as early as possible. If a train is fully booked, use the Interrail timetable to find another train, or check out our suggested alternative routes in France.

Yes, you can easily avoid making train reservations. Reservations are only required for night trains and most high-speed trains. If you travel with (slower) regional trains instead, you can go anywhere in Europe without having to reserve a seat.

E-ticket reservations are only available for domestic day trains in Spain and Italy, and for day trains between Italy and Switzerland. All other reservation tickets are only available as paper documents, which we send to you by registered mail. It is not possible to print the tickets yourself or to have them mailed to you.

Once you’ve requested your reservations in the Reservation Service portal, you will see an expiry date at the bottom of the screen. You must be sure to make your payment for the reservations before this expiry date. After this time we can no longer guarantee that the reservations are available and they will be automatically cancelled. If you still want you reservations after they’ve expired, you need to make a new reservation request.

If your order has the status Submitted or Waiting for Shipping, this means our team is working on it. When the order has been processed, you will receive an email informing you of the status update. If your order contains e-tickets, these will be sent to you in a separate email. We are currently experiencing extremely high volumes of reservation orders, so it can take up to 7 days to process your order. We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience and understanding.

The delivery of your reservation tickets depends on whether they are standard paper tickets or e-tickets. Please note that your order may consist of both paper tickets and e-tickets. Standard paper tickets: Once you have made your final submission, you will receive a Track & Trace number in the Reservations Service portal. You can use this number to track the delivery of your reservations. If the package hasn’t arrived by the estimated date of arrival, you can contact us via the Reservations Service portal – see the section marked Contact. E-tickets: Once you have submitted your request, it will be processed within 2 business days. After processing, you’ll receive the e-tickets by email. If you haven’t received your e-tickets within 2 business days, you can contact us via the Reservations Service portal – see the section marked Contact.

If the details on your reservation ticket are incorrect, email us at, including your booking reference number and a copy of your tickets with details of the error.


Learn when you need to book a seat reservation for your trip. We’ll tell you how to use the timetable to find out if your train needs to be reserved. We also explain the different reservation types. Find out if you need a seat reservation


Find out the seat reservation fees for European trains. These fees differ per train and train type. For night trains, the fees depend upon your choice of sleeping accommodation. Check seat reservation fees


Yes, you can! Most European trains don’t need a seat reservation at all. Travel around with regional trains and you can avoid the reservations for high-speed trains and night trains. Read more on how to avoid seat reservations


In advance

To have more available options, we advise you to book as soon as possible. This can be done between 3 months and 1 week before your train’s departure. Popular trains can get full, so we advise to book your seats 2 months in advance.

You can book your tickets:

  • Via our Interrail Reservation Service
  • Through the Rail Planner App
  • By phone
  • Online

Do you already have your Interrail Pass? If you want to book multiple trains, the Interrail Reservation Service is your best option. For a small booking fee, our rail experts will make your seat reservations for you!


If you’re already at a train station and need to reserve your seat quickly, you can make seat reservations:

  • At the international ticket desk
  • Using a self-service machine

Find out more about how to book seat reservations

Do you have an Interrail Pass that’s valid in Italy? You can order e-tickets online up to 3 hours in advance through the Reservation Self-Service system. You can book:

  • Domestic trains in Italy;
  • The Thello train between Italy and France; and
  • The EuroCity train between Italy and Switzerland
What is Interrail?

Interrail takes you to your dream destinations in Europe. Our train passes give you the freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want!


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