Perhaps you saw the link over the weekend: “Eurail to offer People & Pet packages.” As someone who likes to travel with her dog as much as possible I clicked on it right away to find out more. The press release was posted in numerous online news outlets, such as the Boston Globe, the International Business Times and my own Denver Post.
I was treated to an interesting article from PR News Wire. It focused on how people with pets tend to take shorter vacations, if any at all, because they worry about pet care while they are gone. It even quoted pet psychologist Faros Ipoll, PhD.
Pet owners know they can’t bring their animals with them to Europe, but both pets and owners can feel traumatized by long separations…The key is to have as much fun planned for the pet as a European holiday will offer the human.
Eurail Sales & Marketing Director Jeroen de Bruin says after Eurail did a survey on pet owners and travel they are announcing a new program called People & Pet Packages. The packages are in conjunction with 728 European pet care facilities to offer a local spa holiday for pets while their owners travel around Europe. To jump start the program, Eurail is asking people to send them photos of themselves with their pets to the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Eurail will pick the 10 best photos and those people will be offered a free spa stay for their dogs if they purchase a Eurail Pass.
I found this article interesting because I will be traveling to Europe this summer and still have not made any plans for the care of my own dogs. Imagine my dismay when I found the following disclaimer on the Eurail website:
You’ve been April Fooled! Our article about Eurail’s People & Pets Package was in fact an April Fools Day joke! We’d like to thank you for all the messages on Twitter! We’re really interested to hear your thoughts about pet accommodation and taking your pets on holiday with you. Feel free to let us know your experience on email@example.com! If you’re interested in taking your pet traveling with you, read more about traveling with your pets with Eurail.
Bummer! Eurail then provides a link to their pet travel policies. The rules for pets on trains differ from country to country and even from train to train. However, they do inform that most countries allow people to bring small animals on board in cages or boxes for free as long as they don’t take up a passenger seat. Those who have larger dogs may have to pay half the adult fare for that journey. All passengers with pets must supervise their animals and may even take them out of the cage or box if they are on a lead and muzzled. As always special provisions are allowed for those with guide dogs. To view train pet policies by country, use this Eurail link.