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The Railway Option

By Tim Fray

The holiday season is upon us and many of us are considering jetting off somewhere. But instead of jetting off, why not consider the railway option?

Whilst you can fly to foreign climes in a few hours and be sipping a drink in a square in Rome in a matter of hours, there are other options which have benefits you might not have considered.

I recently had reason to travel to the south of France for a two week period of work secondment. I opted to go by train for the following reasons.

• Our Firm’s policy is to consider the environment, and the Eurostar, and probably most other high speed trains, emit 90% less greenhouse gas emissions than the equivalent short-haul flight (

• I wanted to enjoy the journey and experience the country rather than focus on the destination.

• I didn’t want to be treated like a sardine in a can.

• I didn’t want to have to travel to arrive at the airport two hours early, to then get fed onto a plane which sits on the tarmac for two hours and which is then cancelled.

• I wanted some room to stretch out, maybe walk about when I liked, and dine in a dining carriage.

• I wanted high speed Wi-Fi on all stages of the trip to catch up on any work related matters.

• I wanted to be “Fit for Work” on arrival at my destination and not feel as though I needed a holiday to recover from the trauma of the journey.

Some, if not all of these reasons may also apply to you.

For companies requiring that their employees travel abroad, they could easily meet their carbon targets by specifying that they go by train and not by car….Yes it may take a few extra days, but in today’s world you can travel in great comfort on trains over long distances, and have access to a work infra structure throughout the entire journey. As more and more people are working from home, working on the train is just an extension of this. So working during travel is not a problem.

Therefore the only difference really is cost. Easy jet costs £139 to fly to Montpellier. Whereas the train from London costs around 3 times that. But does that have to be the bottom line? Ultimately it’s about choice. The choice to save the air around us, save the climate and concern ourselves with the Journey and not the Destination.

Lille Station

So if you have to travel, why not take the train?

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