Rail operators are affected by uncertainty as much as airlines.
Spain’s Renfe and France’s SNCF had intended to launch high-speed services within Spain last year. But it never happened owing to the pandemic.
Previously SNCF had said it had postponed the launch of Ouigo Spain to May 10, 2021.
Details of Ouigo Spain can be seen below. SNCF will operate a duplex TGV with 509 seats.
Renfe is says its launch will take place on June 23 according to local media.
The above report is in Spanish. However UK’s Railway Gazette (registration required) has published a short piece.
— Railway Gazette International (@railwaygazette) January 26, 2021
Renfe says its initial route will be Madrid-Barcelona. Others will follow.
Initially it will operate four 438-seat Avlo services daily and a video released this week boasts at the number of seat sales it has already made.
As readers will have guessed by now Avlo is a low-cost high-speed train.
As with SNCF’s Spanish Ouigo it is the rail equivalent of a low-cost airline.
In other words tickets are sold online at a low headline price, with the fare itself inflated by extra charges which you may or may not wish to purchase.
These extra fees cover things like wifi, seat selection, extra luggage and so on.
Onboard service is limited. Avlo says it will have auto sales machines, while Ouigo Spain will have a bar area.
Which will offer the best ride? Personally I would opt for Ouigo’s duplex TGV. Smooth and quiet and especially if seated upstairs where you gain the best views.
Avlo uses low centre of gravity Talgo trains. I have never had the opportunity to travel by Talgo but when it comes to high-speed would it be as polished a performer as a TGV?