Engineering works

As you might have noticed, this year will see plenty of engineering works and disruptions, including on major railways. Here is a (non-exhaustive) list, it will be updated regularly [last edit : 6th April 2024] :

GERMANY

Riedbahn (Mannheim – Frankfurt)

The mainline between Mannheim and Frankfurt will be fully closed from 15th July to 13rd December 2024. Trains will be diverted. All details on DB Navigator app and here : https://www.riedbahn.de/verkehrskonzept.html 

Rheinbahn (Frankfurt/Switzerland/France)

Rastatt – Baden-Baden will be closed to rail traffic between 9th and 30th August (with further disruption between 31st August and 9th September). There will be hourly buses from Baden-Baden to alternatively Rastatt or Karlsruhe where you’ll be able to connect to an ICE. Plan accordingly with a good margin. Some trains will be diverted :

  • TGV/ICE Paris – Frankfurt/Stuttgart via Saarbrücken. Some services will start/terminate at Mannheim or Heidelberg too.
  • TGV Marseille – Frankfurt : this daily train will instead start/terminate in Stuttgart and run via Mannheim and Saarbrücken.
  • The Zurich – Amsterdam night train will instead run from/to Basel through the deep German countryside. Early Basel departure at 19:41. Late arrival in Basel too at 08:10 or 08:40.
  • The Zurich – Berlin/Hamburg night trains will run via Schaffhausen and the Gäubahn
  • The Zurich – Prague night train via Leipzig will not run. Remains the alternative via Austria.

Schedules are partially available on DB Navigator app.

https://www.bahn.de/service/fahrplaene/baustellen/karlsruhe-freiburg

https://www.sbb.ch/en/travel-information/rail-traffic-information/timetable-change/europe.html

You could consider alternatives such as Zurich – St. Margrethen SG – Munich (mandatory reservation on the ECs), Schaffhausen – Friedrichshafen – Ulm or Strasbourg – Lauterbourg.

Gäubahn (Zurich – Stuttgart)

There will be no Zurich-bound trains from/to Stuttgart Hbf from 3rd August to 6th September. Instead those trains will start from/terminate in Stuttgart-Vaihingen. There will be S-Bahn trains (Interrail/Eurail valid), U-Bahn (subways, Interrail/Eurail not valid). Check the full details closer to travel.

https://www.sbb.ch/en/travel-information/rail-traffic-information/timetable-change/europe.html

Cologne – Frankfurt High-speed line (KRM)

Fully shut from 16th July to 12th August. Trains will be diverted along the Rhine. Expect longer journeys and less frequent services.

Other important works in Germany :

https://www.bahn.de/service/fahrplaene/baustellen

Use DB Navigator app. Times are correct or at least there’s a notice saying that they will be soon.

GERMANY/AUSTRIA

Deutsches Eck (Rosenheim – Salzburg)

Between 8th and 13th May some Munich – Vienna trains are diverted via Passau and do not stop in Salzburg. Night trains are redirected either via Passau or via Zell am See. More details hopefully soon (depends on DB).

AUSTRIA

Semmering total closure (6th-28th April)

Part of this important mainline between Vienna and Graz, Italy, Slovenia is fully closed for 3 weeks in April. Regional and long-distance trains are replaced by buses.

Exceptions : night trains and a daily service from/to Vienna are diverted via Linz and Selzthal.

https://www.oebb.at/de/fahrplan/baustelleninformation/semmering-neunkirchen-muerzzuschlag

Tauerntunnel (Schwarzach – Villach)

18.11.2024 – 13.07.2025 : the Tauern Tunnel will be fully closed during this time. Long-distance buses will run between Bischofshofen and Spittal-Millstättersee.

AUSTRIA/SLOVAKIA

(Vienna -) Marchegg – Bratislava

One of the 2 railways linking Vienna and Bratislava is closed until the end of 2024 for maintenance and electrification. Trains are running via Kittsee.

https://www.oebb.at/de/fahrplan/baustelleninformation/wien-marchegg-bratislava

AUSTRIA/SLOVENIA

Villach – Jesenice

Some long-distance trains will be replaced by buses between 10th and 23th August. Night trains are redirected via Spielfeld-Straß.

AUSTRIA/SWITZERLAND

Feldkirch – Buchs (Zurich – Austria)

The line between Feldkirch (Austria) and Buchs SG (Switzerland) through Liechtenstein will be closed from 10th August to 9th September. More information to follow, short notice on OBB’s website. Night trains will be diverted via St. Margrethen SG.

https://www.sbb.ch/en/travel-information/rail-traffic-information/timetable-change/europe.html

AUSTRIA/ITALY

Tarvisio (Villach – Italy)

Part of this important link will be closed from 12th to 27th July due to works on both Italian and Austrian sides. Rail replacement buses will run during the day. Night trains will be diverted whenever possible, expect earlier departures and later arrivals. All details not known yet. From OBB’s website :

Due to construction work the trains RJ 130, RJ 131, RJ 132 and RJ 133 cannot operate between Tarvisio Boscoverde and Villach Hbf from 12/07/2024 through 27/07/2024. A rail replacement bus service is being arranged. The trains RJ 130 and RJ 132 will be running at different times between Villach Hbf and Wien Hbf. The night-trains are redirected.

ITALY

Florence – Rome classic line (not high-speed)

Like last summer this route will be closed to traffic between 8th June and 7th September. Night trains won’t be able to run unfortunately (lack of drivers with route knowledge in Italy). Here is an official statement from Nightjet (https://www.nightjet.com/de/reiseziele/italien/rom):

Wegen einer Streckensperre in Italien können die Nightjets NJ 40233/40294 (ab/bis Wien) und NJ 295/294 (ab/bis München) von 8. Juni bis 7. September 2024 leider nicht fahren und entfallen daher im gesamten Streckenverlauf.

Due to a route closure in Italy, the Nightjets NJ 40233/40294 (from/to Vienna) and NJ 295/294 (from/to Munich) will unfortunately not be able to operate from 8 June to 7 September 2024 and will therefore be cancelled on the entire route.

Consider alternatives such as the Munich/Vienna – La Spezia or Venice night trains. There will be multiple daytime options to reach Florence and Vienna.

Simplon (Domodossola – Milan)

The Stresa – Arona part of the Domodossola – Milan railway will be fully closed between 9th June and 8th September.

Direct buses will travel on the highway and are timed to connect to the ECs. 2h20 journey including margin.

Departures from Domodossola at 08:30, 09:30, 12:30, 15:30, 16:30 and 20:30.
Departures from Milano Centrale at 06:00, 07:00, 09:00, 14:00, 17:00 and 18:00.

Tickets cost 10€, reservations required. No details on Interrail/Eurail yet.

There will be regional buses between Stresa and Arona. No details yet.

https://news.sbb.ch/medien/artikel/124073/gotthard-basistunnel-mehr-zuege-an-ostern-und-ein-fruehzug-aus-dem-tessin-unter-der-woche (little notice)

https://www.sbb.ch/en/travel-information/rail-traffic-information/timetable-change/europe.html

In addition, the Iselle – Domodossola railway will be closed between 9th and 30th August. Trains will go through the Simplon tunnel and then passengers will have to switch to buses. This part is operated by SBB so expect plenty of buses and no seat reservations.

SWITZERLAND

Gotthard (Zurich – Milan)

A freight train derailed in the base tunnel on 10th August 2023. Since then most trains use the old line taking about an hour longer, planners have been updated. On Saturday morning southbound services use the base tunnel, same pattern on Sunday afternoon northbound.

SBB expects to run more trains through the base tunnel this summer. In any case the old (scenic) line remains open with plenty of services. Follow the SBB app.

https://news.sbb.ch/artikel/124161/entgleisung-im-gotthard-basistunnel-alles-was-sie-fuer-ihre-reise-wissen-muessen (German)

https://news.sbb.ch/medien/artikel/124073/gotthard-basistunnel-mehr-zuege-an-ostern-und-ein-fruehzug-aus-dem-tessin-unter-der-woche (German)

French and Italian are also available.

FRANCE/ITALY

Fréjus Rail Tunnel/Vallée de la Maurienne (Lyon – Turin)

Rail traffic is totally interrupted until further notice between Saint-Michel-Valloire (France) and Bardonecchia (Italy) due to a landslide in France and works in the rail tunnel. There is a daily TGV high-speed train between Paris and Milan with a bus replacement in the middle :

  • TGV Paris Gare de Lyon – Milano Porta Garibaldi 14:48 – 23:20
  • TGV Milano Porta Garibaldi – Paris Gare de Lyon 14:10 – 23:14

Some replacement buses run between Saint-Michel-Valloire and Modane. The only other link crossing the border is this bus : https://www.valfrejus.com/commerce-et-service/navette-modane-bardonecchia-modane/ (PDF).

As alternatives consider the route via Nice, Geneva (subject to the above Simplon disruptions) or even Zurich/Gotthard. Flixbus also runs multiple services a day between Lyon and Turin (sometimes stopping in Chambéry).

FRANCE

Lunel – Perpignan Ascension closure (8th-12th May)

That section will be closed over the Ascension weekend. TGVs will terminate in Montpellier Sud de France, stopping in Nîmes Pont du Gard along the way.

Right now there is only a short notice on the regional trains website (liO) :

https://www.ter.sncf.com/occitanie/se-deplacer/fiches-horaires (under Fiches horaires -> Port-Bou – Avignon)

Some rail replacement buses will run but it’s hard to know the extent yet. Flixbus or similar might be a good option for once as the situation was quite badly handled the previous times.

Intercités replacement buses times can be found on DB (but not SNCF!) :
3 departures a day between Marseille and Bordeaux with stops in Montpellier, Narbonne and Toulouse (9h15 journey).

It’s quite annoying. We hope to provide more details ASAP.

For long-distance trips it might be worth considering the alternatives via La Tour de Carol or even Hendaye/San Sebastian with Euskotren in-between.

LGV Sud-Est closure (9-12th November)

To install a new signaling system on the high-speed line no trains will be able to run on the Paris – Lyon – Marseille LGV. A limited service (30% of the usual offer) will run via the conventional lines. TGVs to the south will terminate either in Montpellier, Marseille or Toulon. Travel times will be severely increased. For example Paris – Marseille will take 7h20 (instead of 3h), Paris – Lyon 4h30 (instead of 2h).

https://www.sncf.com/sites/default/files/press_release/CP_NR_SNCF%20Voyageurs_Fermeture_de_la_ligne_a_grande_vitesse_Paris_Lyon_du_9_au_12_novembre_2024_SNCF_Voyageurs_adapte_son_plan_de_transport_TGV_29022024_0.pdf

BELGIUM

LGV1 Lille – Brussels

The high-speed line will be closed for necessary maintenance from 12th to 30th August. Eurostar services and TGV from/to Brussels will take the classic lines. It should take 30 min longer, planners have been updated. There is no service reduction.

TURKEY

Mersin – Yenice Branch Line

The line between Mersin and Yenice is being shut down starting from April 22, 2024 for a minimum of 24 months as part of HSR construction. During this time, the Mersin – Adana regionals will not run. The Mersin – İskenderun regionals will probably terminate at Yenice, but this is not confirmed as of April 5, 2024. No sleeper or mainline services seem to be affected at this time. TCDD will not offer any rail replacement services. Travelers wishing to visit or otherwise go to Mersin should take a bus to/from Yenice or Adana