Sleeper Trains

If your travels involve taking a long train journey, you may want to research the possibility of taking a sleeper train; traveling during night.  Depending on your origin and destination, there may be sleeper trains available that fit your schedule and budget.

In some cases, taking a sleeper train can save you an entire day of travel.  Rather than spending the night somewhere and waking up to catch an early train the next morning where you will spend hours sitting, a better use of your time may be to travel during the night while you sleep.  This will essentially give you an extra day of tourist time at your next destination.  You will also arrive rested and relaxed after a good nights sleep.

  A sleeper compartment will cost you more than a regular ticket for a seat but all or a large part of the cost will be offset by what you would have paid for a night in a hotel and the cost of the day train ticket you would be paying for anyway.

On this page, we go through our experience with the Caledonian Sleeper Train.  You can also find a list of other sleeper train possibilities on the Eurail website: Eurail Night Trains in Europe.

Caledonian Sleeper Train

Our experience on the Caledonian Sleeper Train between Glasgow Scotland and London England

After driving through Scotland for several days, we arrived in Glasgow in the early evening.  Our original plans were to have dinner then stay the night in a hotel before departing early the next morning via train to London.  A day train to London takes over 5 hours, eating up half a day of your trip.  On one hand, it can be nice to sit and enjoy the scenery passing by, talk with your fellow travelers and just relax.  On the other hand, to make better use of your time and to give us an extra day in London, we decided to take a sleeper train.

After arriving in Glasgow, we had time to walk around a while then have a late dinner before our train departed at 11:40p.  We could begin boarding at 10p which gave us plenty of time to get settled before the train departed.  Just to note, when you arrive in London, you have 30 minutes to wake up and exit the train so there is no rush.

The journey is much slower than a regular train.  It takes about 7.5 hours, arriving in London about 7a.  The individual bunk beds had plenty of room and were very comfortable.  In fact, we were already asleep when the train departed.  We slept great with the sound of the train and the rocking motion as it traveled along.

The Classic Room

We purchased the Twin Flexi ticket for a Classic Room.  This is for two people traveling together sharing the same cabin.  The total cost for this ticket is about 195 GBP or about $250.  Compare this to a night in a hotel costing around $100, plus about $200 for two typical day train tickets and you would have spent close to $300.  There are several different ticket options available depending on room size, schedule flexibility and refundability.

 Be sure to make your reservations well in advance as compartments can fill up quickly.

The Classic Room is very small, but once you are in bed, there is plenty of room.  There is room under the bottom bunk bed to store your backpack of whatever else you may be traveling with.  The room's washbasin is for washing only as the water is non-potable.  They do provide 2 complimentary bottles of water.  The bathrooms are normal shared at the ends of the train car.

Classic Room with Twin Bunk Beds / Corridor Showing Passenger Compartments

Classic Room

  • Twin bunk beds with Glencraft mattresses
  • Breakfast available for purchase
  • In-room washbasin
  • Complimentary toiletries
  • Wi-Fi Charging points
  • Room Service Keycard entry
  • Temperature control
  • Dimmable lights
 We could have stayed an extra day in Glasgow, taking the train the next night arriving in London the day of our flight home.  To be safe, we decided to arrive in London the day before our flight.  By doing this, we removed the possibility of missing our flight should the train be delayed for any reason.  The tip is to think about your schedule and do your best scheduling to remove possibilities that may disrupt your itinerary.