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Use a rail or air pass for in-country transportation

SmarterTravel

When I was studying abroad in Rome, I knew I wanted to see as much of Italy as possible (without missing too many classes, that is). After doing some research, my friends and I purchased in-country rail passes from Trenitalia, giving us multiple rides in-country (purchased in bulk) within a specific time period. Because we had figured out which cities we wanted to visit over the course of the semester, we were able to gauge how much individual tickets would cost versus the pass price. For us, the pass was a money saver. Similar passes can be purchased for a wide variety of countries, including the Czech Republic, France, Greece, Ireland, and the U.K.

In addition to rail passes, an air pass may save you money (and a lot of time). EuropeByAir.com sells flight passes between specific cities (one-way, round-trip, or multi-city); this ticket class enables travelers to change destinations or travel dates with no fees, unlike standard air tickets. Sample routes include Athens to Thessaloniki, London to Manchester, and Milan to Palermo.

Passes can be great if you’re visiting one country or region for an extended amount of time (two weeks or more, for example) or if you want a flexible itinerary that doesn’t lock you in to specific dates, routes, or destinations. Just remember: To make sure you’ll save, compare individual route fares against a pass price before making a reservation. That way, you’ll truly know you’re getting the best price for your trip.

Have a great travel tip you’d like to share? Send your insider travel strategies to editor@smartertravel.com.

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