Back-on-Track is a European network to support European cross-border passenger train traffic and in particular the night trains.

Some of the participants of the Back-on-Track annual meeting gathered in Hamburg 19.10. 2019.

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This weekends conference gave a picture of new optimism for a major revival of night trains in Europe.

Both the Friday evening public event at the old Altona City Hall (with maybe 150 participants) and the internal meetings during Saturday-Sunday (with around 60 participants) and the various presentations created a picture of initiatives and development.

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We will publish a report in the public, and internally in our mailing list we will discuss immediate activities, which results from the facts and discussions, we processed during the weekend.

We think there is a fresh tale wind for our course, and that there is a need for our contributions with the raising climate initiatives.

Picture in low resolution: Some of our participants gathered in front of the meeting room Saturday afternoon.
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16 thoughts on “”

  1. Thomas Rasmussen says:

    You have my full support!

  2. Irene stilling says:

    I heard about your organisation in the Danish Radio.
    I love travelling by train – not nessacerely night-train – but still.
    I do’nt have any further comment until I get an impression of how to communicate with somebody.

  3. Hugon says:

    Le train de nuit Paris Nice, reste le seul moyen de faire ce trajet de manière supportable, les temps de parcours TGV ayant rien d’attractif

    1. Hugon says:

      Le train de nuit est le seul moyen de rallier Nice avec un horaire supportable

  4. Nell says:

    Why are connections to longdistance travelling in EU shut down? Very climate contraproductive. Earlier I could easily go from STOCKHOLM to Paris,now it seems almost impossible no direct connections no night trains! What are the politicians really do? They fly themselves!?

  5. Pedro says:

    Hi! I am from Spain, and here the “Trenhotel” runs good, but 7 years ago there were about 11 services of night trains and now, in 2018, only four… You have to advance in the spanish night trains… Not only in Germany, France,…
    Please, put endeavor in Spain too.
    The AVE, TGV… are not unique trains…
    Vote in this petition please!
    Cheer up!

  6. Steve Collins says:

    It is right that train travel is subsidised so that people can a) get to work; b) get to education; c) to to hospital etc. All are vital for a country’s economy.

    Why should I, as a taxpayer, pay for someone else to go on holiday?

    Long-distance travel (of any mode) is for a) leisure and b) business.

    Leisure travellers can generally travel at any time, so can occupy spare seats. If a company cannot afford to send someone on a business trip then it is not a viable business. So inter-city journeys should not need subsidies.

    Just because Night Trains are not viable compared to aeroplanes that is not a valid argument for justifying subsidy for Night Trains.

    Why does such a leisure journey need to be made at all?

    If you are promoting a green agenda then you should be promoting local holidays, say, within 250 km of home. Night trains are unnecessary.

    1. Elke Verhaeghe says:

      I get your point, but you should know that you are already paying for other people’s leisure and business trips. Kerosine for airplanes is currently not taxed, meaning that planes effectively get financial advantage over other, more environmentally alternatives like night trains. So this firstly needs to be set straight, which will never happen without proper political prioritization of trains as useful and necessary mode of transport. If you’re paying for other people’s holidays anyway, you might as well be paying for a more ecological mode of transport.

      Additionally, it is good to realize that people will keep on travelling for leisure or business and will often choose the cheapest option. So, yes, it is the government’s responsibility to make the most environmentally friendly option also the cheapest option. Because if climate warming really breaks through, it will also be the ordinary citizen and tax payer (you) who has to deal and cough up the (by then much more expensive) crisis measures (like building dams against rising sea levels or investing in all kinds of complex infrastructures for combatting droughts etc.). So why not just think ahead?

      Finally, shouldn’t climate policies be socially just? Just taxing kerosine without providing affordable alternatives really just entrenches existing inequalities, allowing the rich to travel and forcing the poor to stay home. That will only fuel the anger of people who’ve never really had anything and now see their only chance of exploring the world a little taken away from them as well. Result? Even more polarization and stronger rise of populist extreme right. Climate change will already hit the poorest the hardest; climate change policies really shouldn’t do that too.

  7. Poul S. Kjærsgaard says:

    I’m strongly in favour of reintroducing night trains and upgrading public transportation in Europe

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  9. Bonassi Martine says:

    Gage de désenclavement, les trains de nuit avec couchettes ont longtemps relié la Hollande à l’Italie via Bruxelles, Luxembourg, des villes de l’est de la France, Bâle, Berne et d’autres villes suisses. Après une nuit réparatrice, travailleurs émigrés, vacanciers, professionnels ou familles débarquaient (presque) frais et dispos en centre ville. Dans les années 80, ces liaisons internationales de nuit furent abandonnées et au début des années 2000, les trains de jour se raréfièrent.
    A Berne par exemple, la situation ne cesse de se détériorer … fin 2019, il n’y aura plus aucun train direct pour Paris et … de Berne à Bruxelles, aujourd’hui déjà, on doit passer par Paris et changer de gare! Perte de temps, de confort et prix plus élevés, restent la route ou les airs! Et la transition écologique dans tout ça?

  10. anton says:

    A real pain ! decision to get rid of night trains was/is all but a clever decision. It’s time to come back to wiser paths.

  11. Peter Vonck says:

    Dear ,
    Go on with Back on track please !!!! It was Great fun to go on holiday by train in the eighties. The eighties ! The system worked very good.
    Cheap, direct train from Belgium to Spain. Special youth pass.

    Dancing all night long in the disco – waggon . Special effects while dancing when the train makes small movements. And sleeping for the rest of distance.
    Ecological the best choice anyway and in that way recommandable nowadays and then
    too !!
    No hours checking in at an airport. No craze suicide pilots or very surely wrong built planes like Boeing. No jetlags, more comfortable anyway.

    Question of Train Line Design and very good promotion, must work anyway !!!! Cheaper is not always the best !! The way you make it very attractive is what counts.
    Greets, Peter

  12. Siegfried raes says:

    I wrote the Belgian Railcompany (NMBS) a few months ago about cartrains from Brussels to Narbonne (F) as there were in the past. Their answer: we sold all our cartrainwagons !!!
    Bring back the night/car train to Southern Europe !

  13. Benoit crombez says:

    From Belgium,
    I use the night train Paris Gap (Briançon ) every year . Train + bicycle (10€extra).
    Best and easiest way to go there with my bicycle.
    Just love it.

  14. Petr says:

    I have heard about your organization/movement recently and must say I do support you! Hope night train international connection accross Europe will be reestablished during next years! Nice to see that some operators already reconsider the option to get such trains back on tracks!;) Wish you the best from Prague. Go to Prague by train!)

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