Train trips have something magical, authentic but also fun for children. From Mum’s and Dad’s point of view, it’s almost the same except that you first have to budget for tickets for all members of the tribe. For your convenience, Little Guest has grouped all rates and discounts dedicated to families by railway company: SNCF, SNCB, Eurostar, TGV, Thalys, SBB, ICE, Renfe, TER, Trenitalia, IC, etc.
Children under 6 years old travel free with CFF provided they are accompanied by a passenger over 12 years of age with a valid ticket. The escort can take with him up to 4 children or even 8 if he is 16 years old and over.
Children from 6 to 16 years old benefit from a reduction of 50% on the base rate. Also, note that accompanied by an adult in possession of a valid ticket, children from 6 to 16 years old also travel a whole day in first-class for only 29€ or in second class for only 14€ thanks to the child’s day card.
More information on the CFF children’s page.
Children under 4 years of age traveling through Belgium, France and England travel free of charge on Mom’s or Dad’s lap. The most autonomous people who occupy a seat benefit from a favorable rate thanks to the child’s ticket. If Mom or Dad is traveling alone with a baby and siblings under 4 years old, the older ones must have a seat. Important note: Eurostar trains have changing tables for the little ones but also microwaves to warm the baby’s dish or bottle.
Children aged 4 to 11, for their part, also benefit from the child ticket but only in « Standard » class.
More information on Eurostar’s travelling with children page
Children under 4 traveling on their parents’ lap board free InterCités trains. If a baby prefers to travel on his own seat, he benefits from toddler’s rate at only 9€ (this offer does not apply to night trains). With the Child-Family card, not only does baby travel for free sitting in his seat but in addition, Mom and Dad each receive a discount of 25 to 50% on their tickets.
With or without the Child-Family card, children from 4 to 12 years old always pay half the price of an adult ticket.
More information on families’ rates at SNCF InterCités.
Accompanied by a parent or grandparent, children under the age of 15 travel for free through Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Germany. Important note: only children older than 6 years must be mentioned on the ticket of their companion.
If families do not benefit from special offers with InterCity Express, they do with the German company. In particular, there is a baby compartment where children under 3 are safe, and the family space that brings together tribes with children from 3 to 12 years old, with children’s entertainment available on weekends and on some lines, and also children’s menus, served with a surprise toy.
More information on the family ICE page.
Children under 4 travel free on their parents’ lap on Renfe trains. Children who wish to have their own seat can enjoy, like children under 14, a 40% discount on the Flexi or Esencial rate.
The company caters for families with young children thanks to its sheltered seats, numerous changing tables and children’s products and menus available at the bar. The company has even planned a fun carriage, a do-it-yourself trick for an even more fun trip!
More information on Renfe’s travelling with children page.
Children under 12 travel for free provided that they are accompanied by a person 12 years of age and over with a valid ticket. Moreover, free transportation applies to up to 4 children under 12 for a single accompanying person aged 12 and over who holds a valid ticket.
Large families benefit from a « Large Families » discount card which grants parents of 3 children under 25 a 50% discount for their children over 12 years old as well as for themselves and free transportation for their children under 12 years old.
Pregnant women of more than 5 months travel in 1st class without supplement on presentation of a valid 2nd class pass and a medical certificate indicating the expected date of delivery.
The company of the Kingdom of Belgium also offers offers « B-Excursions » for fans of theme parks, festivals or exhibitions. The traveller benefits from an attractive discount on the purchase of a train ticket to the excursion of his choice. The price of the activity is reduced and the entrance ticket is included in the price indicated.
More information on SNCB’S child reductions page.
As a general rule, in TER trains, children under 4 years of age travel for free on their parents’ lap or they receive a 50% discount on the adult fare for their own seat. Children from 4 to 12 years of age receive a 25% discount on adult rates.
Thanks to the Child’s Card+, children under 4 years old who prefer to travel in their own seat travel free of charge and their brother and sister from 4 to 12 years old siblings receive a 50% discount on an adult ticket. The accompanying adult (parent, friend, grandparent, etc.) receives a 25%-50% discount on the ticket price.
SNCF also offers a Avantage famille Card to families. Thanks to this card, the family benefits from a reduction of 30% to 75% (according to the number of children) on its train tickets.
Another great card for families is the Child-Family Card. With this card, children under 4 years old travel free with a separate seat, children from 4 to 12 years old get a half-price fare on an adult ticket and parents receive a 25-50% discount each on their tickets.
More information on the travelling with families page of SNCF TER
Children under 4 travel for free on their parents’ lap. To benefit from a seat, baby opts for the toddler’s rate at only 9€ (not available on night trains).
Children from 4 to 12 years old pay half the price of an adult ticket child’s rate and must take a seat.
The TGV Family offer allows families to travel at reduced prices during school holidays to a selection of destinations. During these trips, your children can enjoy activities and animations.
More information on SNCF’s offers for children and families page
Children under 4 travel for free on their parents’ lap on the Thalys. If they insist on travelling like Mom and Dad on their own seat, children under 12 get an attractive discount thanks to KID’s Tariff: unique prices of 15€ in Standard, 20€ in Comfort and 30€ in Premium.
More information on Thalys’s children’s rates page.
Children 0 to 4 years old travelling on their parents’ lap board for free aboard national trains. More autonomous people who prefer to reserve a seat benefit from a 50% discount on the base rate, as children from 4 to 14 years old.
Children aged 0 to 4 accompanied by an adult travelling on their companion’s lap board free on regional trains. Children from 4 to 12 years old receive a 50% discount on the basic fare, while children over 12 pay the full fare. Unfortunately, these reductions do not apply in some parts of the country.
The Italian company takes children under 15 free from large families of 2 to 5 people with its offer Bimbi Gratis. The group must be composed of at least one adult and one child under 15 years old. The other members of the family pay the basic fare. This offer does not apply for overnight train travel and the « Executive » level of service.
Family Child is a second offer of Trenitalia entirely dedicated to children. With it, children accompanied by an adult with an adult or Card fare ticket receive ultra-cheap discounts on trains between Italy and Austria, the night train for Germany and Eurocity trains between Italy and Switzerland.
More information on the Family Reductions Trenitalia page.
Sarah, aged 27, journalism and travel addict, from Brussels