The Advantages of Train Travel – Reasons to Consider Rail

in Train Travel

When it comes to dollars and cents, we all know that trains beat planes nearly every time. But there are plenty more reasons to choose this frugal travel option when you’re seeing this world. Previously we’ve waxed lyrical about the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway in India and the Shinkansen Bullet Train in Japan. Here we take a more general worldview and look at some of the non-monetary perks of rail travel.

While planes travel faster than your average train, they also sap time before you board. Most flights require you to arrive two hours before they hit the air. Just think what you could do with that sort of time. Invest in some extra shut-eye, take in a museum, or indulge in some shopping without those notorious airport price tags. Whatever it is, it’s likely better than spending time in an airport. By contrast, you need only arrive for a train before it departs from the station!

Of course, you need to arrive two hours before a flight leaves because checking-in is a nasty, laborious process. Who wants to deal with lengthy queues, invasive TSA scans, and the obligatory striptease to pass through the metal detector? Trains do away with the entire check-in mess.

Feel free to load up your suitcase too, because trains have no weight restrictions. So long as you can pull your case, you can take it on board. This is a real bonus for anyone who loves to stock up on souvenirs and girls with shoe fetishes!

Once you’re settled into your train seat the fun really starts. That’s right; while plane travelers will be twiddling their thumbs waiting to turn on their iPads or Kindles you’ll be using all your electronic devices. Those 15 technology-free minutes during take-off and the 15 technology-free minutes at landing all add up!

You might want to switch those devices off though, because the train will treat you to some stunning scenery. While watching clouds go by from a plane window is exciting for a while, it soon becomes tired. Instead train windows offer an ever changing vista of mountain ranges, coastal waters, and other natural splendors.

You also won’t be bored out of your skull watching that mind-numbing safety demonstration. It’s not that trains are any safer, but everything is a lot more straight forward. There’s no tricky belt buckle, no drop-down oxygen mask, and no inflatable evacuation slide. That slide would of course be a plane perk, but when was the last time you got to use it?

Shinkansen Bullet Trains

Shinkansen Bullet Trains

And let’s not forget all that extra space you’ll enjoy. Trains have none of the claustrophobia factor of airplane economy seats. That’s a real perk if you find yourself sandwiched between Mrs. Heavy Smoker and Mrs. Heavy Set!

The journey’s been great, and it’ll continue to be that way until you ease into your destination. There’ll be none of that painful ear popping as you pull into the station and no vicious jolt when you get there. And as you pat your much thicker wallet, I’m sure you’ll be glad you chose the train.

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