The European train timetable for 2015 is now live, with many new services launching this weekend. Read about what's new in rail in 2015.
NEW TODAY! London to Avignon and Marseille | Direct Eurostar
After the success of the weekly service that ran in previous summers, Eurostar has announced a new year-round direct train from London calling at Lyon, Avignon and Marseille.
From 1 May 2015, a new direct Eurostar from London to Marseille will launch, offering a year-round service from the UK to Provence. The same train will call at Lyon Part Dieu and Avignon TGV before it arrives at Marseille St Charles station, in the town centre. The new train will initially run three times a week (on Monday, Friday and Saturday) and then increase to five times each week in July 2015 (Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday). Booking opened today for the whole summer and into October 2015!
London to Geneva via Lille | Eurostar and TGV Lyria
Eurostar has announced a new year-round service from London to Geneva via Lille, in collaboration with TGV Lyria.
From Sunday 14 December 2014, a new direct train will run from Lille to Geneva four times per week in each direction. The new service will connect with onward Eurostar trains, cutting journey times to 6 hrs 20 mins. And with an easy change of trains at Lille Europe, the new link avoids the stress of crossing Paris. Booking is open now up to three months in advance.
Milan to Marsielle | Thello daytime train
Thello, which currently runs overnight trains from Paris to MIlan and Venice, has announced a new daily direct train from Marseille to Milan (and vice versa). The new service will serve the resorts of France's Côte d'Azur including Toulon, Nice and Monaco, and Italy's Riviera di Ponente, Savona and Genoa.
The new train will launch from 14 December 2014. Tickets for the Milan to Marseille train are available on Loco2 from £22.50 one-way.
Simplified Eurostar fares
Last month Eurostar announced a new simplified fare range, doing away with non-flexible tickets. No more non-exchangeable, non-refundable tickets! The cheapest fares are now semi-flexible, meaning that any ticket can be exchanged for a fee. Single fares are now cheaper too, just half the price of a return ticket: the best value tickets are now £34.50 one-way, down from £39.
Night train cuts
Sadly, the timetable change also sees the withdrawal of a number of overnight services, including the popular Paris to Munich and Amsterdam to Copenhagen trains. Unfortunately, this is indicative of a trend throughout Europe, which reduces options for green travellers seeking an alternative to aviation.
But where there are losses, there are also opportunities. So, we look forward to finding new and exciting routes to make train travel in Europe easier. We'll update our destination guides for the most popular routes as we discover them.
Main image and thumbnail: Eurostar, all rights reserved
Great coastal train trips
From France's Cote d'Azur to Cinque Terre in Italy, coastal train trips are a fantastic way to explore some of Europe's most scenic destinations.
Train stations then and now
We look at some of Europe's finest train stations, and see how they've changed over the years.