Trains or planes? The most sustainable way to see Europe

As the demand for eco-friendly tourism continues to soar, we're making smarter choices about the way we travel.

If you're planning a European trip but want to be mindful of the environment, opting to catch the train over the plane for short-haul trips between citites is your best bet.

With train companies such as Eurostar offering daily trips from London to iconic citites such as Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels, you can easily make your way around the continent while minimising your emissions.

The greener choice

Eurostar trains have many innovative features, but being able to maximise energy efficiency is something that more travellers are placing value in. As each train is 400 metres long, they have the capacity to hold around 900 passengers each trip, which is twice as many as a jumbo jet.

In just three-and-a-half hours you can travel from London's St Pancras station and arrive in Amsterdam. These routes are direct and provides travellers with a fast, comfortable, environmentally-friendly alternative to the airlines. 

For example, the high-speed rail journey from London to Amsterdam emits a staggering 80 per cent less carbon per passenger than a flight on the same route. When you consider the capacity is twice the size of a jumbo jet, there are plenty of carbon savings to be had.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The luxe experience

Not only will you be saving the planet, train travel between countries such as France, England and The Netherlands is quick, conveinient, reliable and luxurious.

Making your way to an European airport can be costly, and a drain on your time. High speed rail departs from the centre of each city and the trains have plenty of space for luggage (Eurostar allows two suitcases and one piece of hand luggage per customer), so you don't need to worry about squeezing in to a seat with all of your belongings.

For those who want the first-class experience, Eurostar offers Business Premier, where customers can avail of express check-in, access to the business lounge and complimentary drinks and three-course fine dining designed by Michelin-star chef, Raymond Blanc.

They've also been awarded the Sustainable Restaurant Assosication's accreditation as a Two Star Sustainability Champion for their commitment to sourcing and using locally-produced ingredients and pursuing a socially and environmentally responsible approach.

The cost

You'd think after reading about the benefits, the train would be steep, but travelling this way across Europe is surprisingly affordable. Fares from London to Paris start at just £29 and from London to The Netherlands you can buy fares as low as £35, as part of a return trip.

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You can see the latest special offers for Aussie travellers from Eurostar, here.

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