New low-cost Ouigo train routes between France and Spain

by Deborah Cater
Ouigo train
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SNCF’s Ouigo is extending its train routes within Spain. The low-cost network has proved popular in Spain since launching its Barcelona-Madrid line.

After introducing a line between Barcelona and Madrid, which has proved popular, SNCF is also set to expand its Spanish Ouigo network. So far, 500,000 passengers have used Ouigo since the line started in May 2021.

Future expansion of train routes

In spring 2022, the existing line will extend to Valencia and Alicante, From 2023, the Andalucian destinations of Seville, Malaga, and Cordoba will follow.

The number of train carriages operating on the network will rise from 38 to 50, with the new carriages holding extra passengers.

Existing carriages will be renovated with new seats, plug points for each passenger. Spaces for bikes will also be introduced between 2025-2027.

Renfe changes

At the end of this year, Spanish company Renfe will introduce five daily return trains between Lyon and Marseille.

This year, in July, Renfe made changes to their Spanish fares and classes on their long-distance trains. In addition, terms and conditions also changed with Turista & Preferente making way for Standard & Comfort class.

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Standard & Comfort class

Standard is 2nd class (Estándar) formerly  Turista.  Seats is normally 2+2 across the car width.

Comfort is 1st class (Confort) formerly Turista Plus or Preferente.  Seats is normally 2+1 across the car width.

On the AVE & EuroMed trains there’s a premium 1st class service. This includes at-seat meal and wine in the price.

Básico, Elige & Premium fares

Básico (Basic)- The cheapest fare, only for travel in Standard class.  These tickets are non-refundable and non-changeable unless you pay a hefty extra fee to make them so.

Elige (Choice) is a semi-flexible fare. You can choose between Elige to get a 2nd Class seat or for a higher price, Elige Confort to get a 1st class seat.  Elige & Elige Confort tickets are refundable & changeable for a fee. 

Premium is the most flexible fare. For this you get a 1st class Comfort seat and access to Sala Club lounges at major stations.  Changeable without any fee, refundable for a minimal fee.

Renfe collaboration with Fundela

In other news, on Friday Renfe announced its continuing collaboration with Fundela.  Through the company Renfe Viajeros, it signed a collaboration agreement with the Foundation for the Promotion of Research on Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Fundela). This will facilitate train mobility for patients and companions of the Foundation.

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