Good evening everyone. A few days ago, I learned that Google Flights can also show train schedules for a few routes in Europe. This is a pretty cool feature since you can easily determine if a train ride is better deal than a short European flight.
I did some digging and found this article posted on the Google Travel Blog:
Now Google Flights makes it easy to compare the time and cost to ride vs. fly when trains are a logical and good alternative to many flight routes in Europe.
We started by adding train options for routes in Italy and Spain. Today we’re excited to announce a partnership with Deutsche Bahn in Germany to bring their expansive, fast rail service to Google Flights.
This launch lets you use Google Flights to find train options for 56 destinations and nearly 400 routes across Germany and Northern Europe. Popular routes include domestic routes like Frankfurt-Munich and Hamburg-Stuttgart, as well as international routes like Zurich-Frankfurt and Frankfurt-Amsterdam.
“The Google Flights partnership specifically helps us reach international travelers. For many German and European routes, trains are an attractive alternative to flights. Deutsche Bahn´s integration into Google Flights is another step in our partnership with Google already providing train routes and itineraries for Google Maps,” said Mathias Hüske, Head of eCommerce at DB Vertrieb GmbH – Deutsche Bahn AG.
Google Flights also makes it easier to sift through long lists of similar trains. In the same way we group similar flights, trains are grouped together — with departure times displayed across a one-day timeline.
“On many routes the convenience of a train connection from city center to city center can offset travel times to and from the airport. We’re excited to bring European travelers even more options with expansive trains data from Deutsche Bahn,” said Noam Ben-Haim, Senior Product Manager, Travel.
Whether you’re shopping on a mobile device or desktop, Google Flights makes it easy to scan available trains and flights — to quickly determine which is best for you. Give it a try on your next European trip.
Here is how the Google Flights + Trains search engine works. If your European route has a subsequent train route, the route will show up in your search results, along with the usual flights. In my Frankfurt to Paris example, there are 5 Deutsche Bahn trains that range from $65-$108 one way, along with several flights on Air France and Lufthansa for $184 or more.
If you want to narrow your search down to just train times, click the Trains drop down menu and select Only Trains.
All the available train results will show up and all flight results will be hidden.
If you find a train ticket that looks good, you can click through and purchase the train ticket directly from the train operator (Deutsche Bahn, in this case). Clicking on the blue box will take you right to the booking page.
Double check the cities, date, times, and price before purchasing your train ticket.
If you hate trains, no problem. You can have Google Flights show only flights by clicking on the Trains drop down menu and clicking Only Flights.
All the available flight results will show up and all trains results will be hidden.
As of now, the trains feature only works in Europe. You cannot search train networks in the US, Asia, or any other part of the world. I’m sure Google is working on adding additional train networks to Google Flights. They might want to change the name of the service to Google Travel…
If you have any questions, please leave a comment below. Have a great evening everyone!