Forget the plane, skip the car, and don’t even think about the bus. Trains are the most romantic way to travel. According to research from East Coast Trains, one in 10 people admit to falling in love on the train. Over a third of those surveyed said rail travel is synonymous with finding love. This gem of an insight is something the rail industry should embrace wholeheartedly.
What makes trains so much more romantic than other modes of transport? One could say that buses are cheaper, but they have the long-held reputation as being unfriendly, uncomfortable and unhygienic. Air travel offers convenience and speed, but hardly offers a glimpse of what’s in between. A train ride, however, can be a destination in itself. The Orient Express, the Ghan, Seven Stars, The Danube Express. My local steam engines on the Windermere Lakeside and Haverthwaite run, and the magical Ravenglass and Eskdale run also offer a very enjoyable journey. Train journeys now offer a modernized take on old-fashioned charm. Japan has some of the most luxurious trains in the world, with upcoming models even being designed by the likes of Ferrari.
When it comes down to it, what I think trains offer are the luxury of time and space for intimate conversation. The Glacier Express in Switzerland is one of the most famous train journeys in Europe, with a leisurely 7-hour ride taking travellers through stunning alpine views. Although it has the reputation of being the “slowest express train in the world”, their tagline shows they know what people want: “A train to fall in love with”.