A regional train run by Austrian Railways ÖBB at Seefeld in Tyrol (photo © Peter Lovás / dreamstime.com).
There are some German phrases which cannot easily be translated into English. “Einfach Raus” is one of them. A close English idiom (though not a literal translation) might be “Let’s head out!” But you do not need to be a linguist to realise that Austria’s Einfach-Raus-Ticket is a great deal for couples or small groups keen to explore Austria by train for a day.
The Einfach-Raus-Ticket is valid any day of the week, although on weekday mornings travel may not start until 09.00. The ticket is valid right through until 03.00 the following morning. It requires a minimum of two passengers travelling together and may be used by up to a maximum of five people. The fare for the ticket is currently €33 for two, €37 for three, €41 for four and €45 for five travellers.
This is effectively a rover ticket, allowing travellers to roam at will across the Austrian rail network. But the small print is important. The ticket can only be used on local and regional train services. So don’t even think of hopping on a Railjet, Eurocity, Intercity or Euronight train. The Einfach-Raus-Ticket is a great deal for those who are not in a hurry, but have time to wander. It’s perfect for travellers wanting to explore Austrian secondary routes or branch lines – provided of course there are always at least two people travelling together.
Although the Einfach-Raus-Ticket is promoted as being valid across the Austrian rail network, it’s worth bearing in mind that the restriction on faster services does create some no-go zones. The most conspicuous of these is the Arlberg route. There are no regional trains over the central section of the Arlberg line (the 64 km between Bludenz and Landeck-Zams) and hence the Einfach-Raus-Ticket cannot be used on that particular stretch. So before investing in one of these great-value tickets it is worth checking if your intended journey can indeed be completed without recourse to premium trains.
This text was first published as the ‘Tip of the Month’ in the June 2016 edition of the European Rail Timetable. The information has, however, been updated for this post.