Planning to travel thru France and Italy for 3 weeks and was going to hire a car but the tolls on the motorways look expensive. Are trains better?
The European train system is superb. My recommendation is to use that over a car - you will cover more ground and wont have the hassles of long drives (Which can be very scenic, but then, so can train trips). Obviously you wont have the convenience of a car once you get to your destination, but the efficiency and relative inexpensiveness of European trains are their greatest selling points.
Jesse - World Nomads about 8 years ago
One important factor to consider is the price of gasoline. These days it is around 1.60€ per litre on the motorway (that's about $8.50 per U.S. gallon).
For example, if you want to drive from Paris to Marseille (780km - 484 miles), it'll cost you about 100€ in gas and 60€ in tolls, and it'll take 8 hours. In contrast, the same trip by train costs about 90€ per person and takes 3 hours.
So if I were you, I'd definitely pick the high-speed train option. (Plus, if you never rode a train that does 200mph, that's definitely something to experience)
Cheers ! about 8 years ago