Can I depart from any train station in a city or do I have to choose a specific one?

We are frequently asked whether it is possible to pick the departure train station if there are several in one city. So we thought it was wise to give a brief example of how trains and stations work in Europe.

Can I pick my train station?

Generally speaking, you cannot choose from several train stations in one city. For example, if your train to Amsterdam departs from Paris Gare du Nord, it will not stop at any other station. Every train departs from a designated station. The stations are usually designated by which direction the train is travelling in or by the train types (TGV vs TER). So of course all trains departing from Gare du Nord travel to … yes, you guessed right! They travel north. This is the rule for trains throughout the majority of European countries, such as France and Germany.

The station rule also applies to arrival stations. For example, if your train arrives in Avignon Centre, it will not stop at Avignon TGV. This is because Avignon TGV only receives high-speed TGV trains, whereas Avignon Centre receives the slower regional TER trains. So the general rule is: trains are like planes in Europe. The departure and arrival station on your ticket is where you must be to catch your train.

If you would like to know more about transferring from one train station to another in Paris, please click here for a route guide.

How do I know what station I will depart from?

When searching for tickets, just enter your departure and arrival city and our search engine will do the rest of the work for you. So there’s no hard work or research required!