Lumo, Ouigo, Avlo: These budget European rail providers are competing with cheap airlines

Plenty of eco-conscious travellers feel the pangs of flight shame – but still struggle to resist ultra cheap flights.

According to a 2021 study by UK consumer group Which?, trains emit six times fewer emissions than planes on popular routes, but are 49 per cent more expensive.

This pricing edge – sustained by billions of euros in government subsidies – keeps planes in the sky.

But the tide is turning. Across Europe, low cost train companies are opening new routes. And it’s just in time, with the French government having banned short-haul flights in 2022 – making low-cost trains are all the more necessary.

Like budget airlines, they offer cheap, no-frills fares. Unlike

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