Country info: Slovakia (Slovensko)
Rail companies: ZSSK (Železničná spoločnosť Slovensko)
Train travel in Slovakia: train types, tickets, fares, discounts & other useful info
National Train Service:
Train types in Slovakia: Local, Accelerated, Regional, Express, Fast, InterCity, SuperCity, RegioJet, Leo Express & EuroCity/EuroNight trains
- Local or Osobný (marked as 'Os' and 'Zr' on ZSSK website): mainly serve short distance routes, no seat reservation required
- Accelerated or Zrýchlený (marked as 'Zr' on ZSSK website): short distance service, no seat reservaiton required
- Regional (marked as 'REX' on ZSSK website): domestic & international (e.g. Bratislava to Vienna connection) trains serving regional routes, no seat reservation required
- Fast or Rýchlik (marked as 'R' on ZSSK website): long-distance service between major Slovak destinations, seat reservation not required, but can be made (1 euro)
- Express (marked as 'Ex' on ZSSK website): express service on domestic & international (mainly to Czech Republic) connections, seat reservation not compulsory, but can be made (1 euro)
- InterCity (marked as 'IC' on ZSSK website): intercity service (between Bratislava & Kosice and between Bratislava, Presov & Humenne), seat reservation required + special tariff supplement applies
- SuperCity (marked as 'SC' on ZSSK website): high-speed pendolino trains connecting Kosice with Prague (via Poprad, Zilina)
- EuroCity / EuroNight (marked 'EC' and 'EN' on ZSSK website): international daytime & overnight trains, seat reservation not compulsory, but can be made & special tariff supplement (1 euro) applies when traveling within Slovakia
- RegioJet (marked as 'RJ'): private company rail operator, serving both domestic (Bratislava to Kosice via Zilina, Poprad and Bratislava to Komarno) & international routes (Kosice to Prague via Poprad, Zilina)
- Leo Express (marked as 'LE'): private company rail operator serving Presov/Kosice-Poprad-Zilina-Ostrava-Pardubice-Prague route
Seat Reservation on domestic journeys within Slovakia cost only 1,00 euro (possible on 'R', 'Ex', 'IC', 'EC' or 'EN' trains)
Sleeper Reservations on ZSSK domestic connections:
Couchette reservations on Slovak trains within Slovakia:
- 6 berth - 5 euro
- 4 berth - 6 euro
Sleeper reservation on Slovak trains within Slovakia:
- 3 bed (Tourist) - 8 euro
- 2 bed (Double) - 12 euro (with 1st class ticket required)
- Single - 25 euro (with 1st class ticket required)
Validity of Trains Tickets in Slovakia: tickets (one way & return) for routes <100 km are valid on the day shown on them and on the next day till 4 a.m. Tickets for routes >100 km are valid on the day shown on them and on the next day till 12 p.m. Return tickets for routes >100 km are valid until the 24th hour of 3rd day of their validity
Discounts, special offers & ways to save money for passengers traveling by train in Slovakia (ZSSK):
- Purchase of train ticket online via Slovak Railways website gives additional 5% discount compared to the price you'll pay when buying via ticket counter
- For the overnight cross-Slovakian trains (Zemplín from Humenne to Bratislava & Poľana from Presov to Bratislava) ZSSK offers special relational fares (offer 'Slovak Expres': ticket+seat reservation for 14,90 euro, ticket+6 berth couchette for 17 euro, ticket+4 berth couchette for 19 euro, ticket+3 bed sleeper reservation for 21 euro, ticket+double bed for 29 euro & ticket+single bed reservation for 39 euro.
- Passengers planning trips with ZSSK InterCity trains can enjoy a better price when buying train tickets in advance (e.g. on relation Bratislava-Kosice 2nd class ticket bought 60 to 9 days in advance will cost only 19,90 euro, same ticket bought 8 to 1 day in advance already 21,90 euro, while on the day of the journey passenger will have to pay 23,90 euro)
- Passengers planning short trips (< 60 km) within Slovakia can take advantage of the special ZSSK offer for regional journeys - by traveling with a help of local & regional trains (Os, Zr, REX) passengers receive 15% discount from the standard fare on any domestic tickets <60 km
- For passengers planning to visit couple destinations it is advisable to buy one through ticket (instead of more expensive combination of two separate ones). The trick here is really simple and totally legit - Slovak Railways allow one stopover during the validity period of the ticket, so passenger can actually purchase one through ticket from destination A to destination C via B, but de-facto make two journeys (first A to B and then B to C) on different trains and even days. For instance, you travel from Kosice to Bratislava and make a day long stopover in Poprad or Zilina.
- On certain domestic routes ZSSK offers special fares (relačné zľavy): from Zvolen to Banská Bystrica (1,00 euro), from Banská Bystrica & Zvolen to Bratislava (9,20 euro), from Presov to Bratislava via Kosice & Zvolen (18,76 euro)
- Passengers traveling on the main Slovak line (Bratislava-Trnava-Trencin-Zilina-Poprad-Kosice) might consider taking RegioJet trains instead of ZSSK trains, simply because RegioJet offers a better deal (e.g. Bratislava to Kosice for as low as 9 euro)
International Train Service:
a) Regular discounts
- 60% discount on Slovakia-Hungary return tickets
- 60% discount on Slovak & 50% on Czech part for return tickets between Slovakia and Czech Republic (also available special tariff for one way tickets)
- 60% discount on Slovak part & 40% on Polish part on return tickets between Slovakia and Poland
Though at the same time potential passengers need to be careful and also consider possible bilateral agreements between Slovak Railways (ZSSK) and rail companies in other countries (those might be cheaper at the end). In case of Slovakia it's cheaper to purchase tickets to Hungary, Poland and Czech Republic with a help of other discounts (Bilateral agreements for Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland and Citystar to Serbia)
b) Special offers (SparSchiene)
- SparDay (discounted 'Europa Express' tickets for daytime direct trains between Slovakia & Czech Republic): from Zilina to Prague (seats from 12 euro), Kosice to Prague (from 18 euro), Bratislava to Prague (from 15 euro), Bratislava to Brno (from 6 euro), Bratislava to Usti nad Labem (from 19 euro), Zvolen, Nove Zamky or Banská Bystrica to Prague (from 19 euro), from Bratislava to Ostrave (from 12 euro), etc. SparDay tickets are sold in limited number per each departure & should be purchased at least three days in advance
- SparNight offer (discounted 'Europa Express' tickets for the overnight direct trains between Slovakia & Czech Republic): from Kosice, Humenne, Poprad-Tatry, Žilina to Prague (seats from 19 euro, 6 berth couchettes for 24 euro, 4 berth couchettes for 27 euro, 3 bed sleepers for 29 euro, double sleepers from 37 euro & single sleepers from 59 euro); from Zilina to Prague (seats from 16 euro, 6 berth couchettes for 22 euro, 4 berth couchettes for 25 euro, 3 bed sleepers for 28 euro, double sleepers from 34 euro & single sleepers from 57 euro); from Kosice to Cheb (3 bed sleeper 29 euro, double sleeper 37 euro & single sleeper 59 euro); Banská Bystrica & Zvolen to Prague (3 bed sleepers for 29 euro, double sleeper 37 euro & single sleeper 59 euro). SparNight tickets are sold in limited number per each departure & should be purchased at least three days in advance
- EURegio 'Wien Ticket': special return tickets offered for connections between Slovakia & Austria - from Bratislava to Vienna (14 euro), from Leopoldov/Trnava to Vienna (19 euro), from Nove Zamky to Vienna (23,60 euro), from Zvolen/Banska Bystrica to Vienna (32 euro), etc. EURegio 'Wien Ticket' are sold in unlimited number per departure + in advance purchase is not required. Also available EURegio 'Wien Ticket' with Z 100 (pass for Vienna city transport within first zone), for instance 'Wien Ticket'+Z 100 for Bratislava to Vienna (18,80 euro), for Zvolen to Vienna (36,80 euro), etc.
- Austria: ZSSK<100km & OeBB>400km (e.g. from Bratislava to Innsbruck) 55,40 euro, ZSSK<100km & OeBB<400km & >100km (e.g. Bratislava to Linz/Graz/Salzburg) 46,40 euro
- Czech Republic: from Bratislava to Prague: 38,10 euro, from Kosice to Prague - 60,70 euro, from Prague to Ostrava - 26,10 euro, etc.
- Greece: from Bratislava to Athens (via Hungary & Serbia) 168 euro, from Bratislava to Thessaloniki (via Hungary & Serbia) 131 euro
- Croatia: from Bratislava to Zagreb (via Hungary) 80 euro, from Bratislava to Split (via Hungary) 132,40 euro, from Bratislava to Rijeka (via Austria) 112,40 euro
- Denmark: from Bratislava to Copenhagen (via Austria): 332,50 euro
- Serbia: from Bratislava to Belgrade (via Hungary) 64 euro, from Bratislava to Novi Sad/Belgrade 84 euro, etc.
- FYR Macedonia: from Bratislava to Skopje (via Hungary & Serbia) 109 euro
- Slovenia: from Bratislava to Ljubljana (via Austria): 86,40 euro
- Romania: from Bratislava to Oradea/Cluj-Napoca 92 euro, from Bratislava to Bucharest 122 euro, etc.
- Bulgaria: from Bratislava to Varna 154 euro
- Switzerland*: from Bratislava to Zurich (104 euro), from Bratislava to Bern (155,60 euro), from Bratislava to Geneva (202,10 euro), etc.
- Germany*: from Bratislava to Dresden via Czech Republic (107,60 euro), from Bratislava to Frankfurt via Austria (181,40 euro), etc.
- Ukraine: ZSSK>300km & UZ<500km (e.g. Bratislava to Lviv): 94,80 euro for 2 adult passengers; ZSSK>300km & UZ<500km (e.g. Bratislava to Kyiv): 132,60 euro for 2 adult passengers, etc.
- Belarus: from Bratislava to Minsk (via Ukraine) 171,20 euro
- Russia (via Ukraine): less than 1500km in Russia (e.g Moscow or St.Petersburg): 98.40 euro (one adult passenger), 147.6 EUR (two passengers) etc; >1500km in Russia (Siberia, Irkutsk, Vladivostok etc.): 134.4 euro (one adult passenger), 201.6 EUR (two passengers) etc. (CityStar fares for 2014/2015 need to be rechecked)
- Russia (via Belarus): more than 1500km in Russia - 245,5 euro (currently available only Global Price tickets, e.g. Bratislava to Moscow 159 euro (T4) or Bratislava to Minsk 120 euro (T4), etc.
* N.B. ZSSK-SBB and ZSSK-DB CityStars must be purchased at least 3 days before the first day of travel
Cross-border fares to neighboring countries:
- Czech Republic: for short cross-border journeys (<45km in Slovakia & <50km in Czech Republic) ZSSK offers special fares, so for maximum allowed journey (45km on ZSSK & 50km on CD) passengers will pay only 4 euro
- Poland: from Čadca to Zwardoň (3,20 euro for return tickets valid for 3 days), from Skalite to Zwardoň (2 euro for return tickets valid for 3 days)
- Hungary: from Štúrovo to Szob (1,80 euro for return tickets valid for 2 days), from Štúrovo to Vác (3,80 euro for return tickets valid for 2 days)
- Austria: from Bratislava to Marchegg (4 euro for return ticket), from Bratislava to Kittsee (3,20 euro for return ticket), from Bratislava to Gänserndorf (5,50 euro for return ticket), from Bratislava to Parndorf Ort (6,60 euro for return ticket), from Bratislava to Bruck a.d. Leitha (7,30 euro for return ticket), etc.
- Ukraine: for international cross-border tickets ZSSK uses special hybrid tariff (i.e. ZSSK leg is counted under "domestic" Slovak fare, while UZ leg is counted using 50% discount from the regular East-West tariff), e.g. Bratislava-Chop when bought in Slovakia will cost you 25,20 euro, Kosice-Chop 6,9 euro, Cierna-nad-Tisou-Chop 2 euro, etc.
How to Buy Train Tickets in Slovakia:
National (domestic) & discounted international tickets (SparDay/SparNight) can be purchased online via Slovak Railways website - www.slovakrail.sk
For a good choice of hotels with discount prices visit Hotel in Bratislava for more information
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