Eurail Group GIE: Marketing Rail Travel in Europe

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTG158
Case Length : 14 Pages
Period : 2001-2006
Pub Date : 2007
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Eurail Group GIE
Industry : Travel and Tourism
Countries : Worldwide

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Excerpts Contd...

Promoting Eurail

Individual companies in the Eurail community advertised their rail networks through authorized sales agencies. Eurail Passes were extensively advertised on the websites of major and minor travel agents. One such ad said - "All of Europe is at your fingertips when you're a Eurailpass ticket holder." Each year, Eurail and its agents spent US$ 5-6 million on marketing and advertising the Eurail Passes and Eurailtickets (See Exhibit VIII for online advertisements of Eurail Passes)...

Challenges for Eurail

It was generally believed that Eurail Passes were a better option only on railway lines in Western Europe. This was because much of the railway network in Eastern Europe was old and, therefore, considered unsafe. The trains on these networks were not always punctual either. A travel blog had this to say - "Some of the regional services (in Eastern Europe) can be quite bad. I encountered old beat-up diesel trains that chugged loudly down the tracks and offered bumpy rides without air conditioning. Timeliness was not a guarantee." Also, the point-to-point ticket costs were quite low on these railways, making the purchase of any rail pass unnecessary...

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The Track Ahead

Europe's trains were perceived to be virtually inseparable from European culture and were just as much a part of the travel experience as sightseeing and dining. On May 22, 2006, Eurail reported a positive 9% growth in sales for the first quarter of 2006 over the corresponding quarter of the previous year...


Exhibit I: Other Rail Passes in Europe
Exhibit II: Eurail Logo
Exhibit III: Eurail Network Map
Exhibit IV: Share of Modes of Travel (Inbound World Tourism in 2004)
Exhibit V: The Eurail Network
Exhibit VI: A Photo of the Inter City Express (ICE)
Exhibit VII: The Dining Facilities on a Eurail (Renfe-Operated) Train in Spain
Exhibit VIII: Online Advertisements for Eurail Pass
Exhibit IX: The Interior of a Eurail (Sbb-Operated) Train in Switzerland
Exhibit X: International Tourist Arrivals in Europe
Exhibit XI: Evolution of International Eurail Travellers by Month

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