Rail beats air in European fare comparison

railway-gazette-uicGemeinsam mit dem Hamburger Büro Quotas GmbH hat mobilecular für den internationalen Eisenbahnverband UIC im vergangenen Jahr die Reisekosten auf ausgewählten europäischen Städteverbindungen analysiert. Verglichen wurden Bahn- und Flugticketpreise für drei Reisetypen auf Relationen, auf denen die beiden Verkehrsoptionen im Hinblick auf die Gesamtreisezeit tatsächlich im Wettbewerb stehen. Eine Zusammenfassung der Ergebnisse wurde nun in der Railway Gazette publiziert:

Train travel in Europe, in the public’s view, suffers from extraordinarily high fares. This contrasts strongly with air travel, where liberalisation of the European passenger aviation market has led to cut-throat price competition on many domestic and international routes. As a result, the airlines offer extremely low fares that are heavily promoted and advertised.

Despite the fact that only small numbers of tickets are available at these low prices, these airline marketing activities have had a strong influence on the public perception of inter-city rail fares. The airlines’ advertised starting prices have become an important reference point for consumers’ price assessments of competing travel modes, and the assumed price advantage of air travel affects their booking behaviour. Expecting to find the best travel prices at airlines, consumers tend to narrow their search to online flight-booking engines such as Kayak, ebookers and eDreams. As most of these online tools do not offer any price comparison between modes, the majority of travellers do not even bother to check rail fares. To make matters worse, travellers usually compare the journey times of air and rail without taking into account the additional access and processing times at airports — which is likely to increase further as a result of recent events.

This is the background to a 2014-15 study commissioned by the International Union of Railways entitled European Air-Rail-Bus Price Comparison. The purpose of this study was to review current ticket prices for rail, air and coach travel on selected domestic and cross-border routes, where air and rail are comparable thanks to similar overall travel times. Do travellers really obtain the best price by going with a so-called low-cost airline? Or could they save significant amounts of money by choosing rail over air?

Den kompletten Artikel finden Sie in der Januar-Ausgabe der Railway Gazette ab Seite 49.

Weitere Presseartikel zu diesem Forschungsbericht:


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