Next-generation night trains aspire to replace airlines.

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Next year, European rail travelers may enjoy new night trains with sleeping pods, sliding doors, ambient lighting, and curved seats for safety and privacy.

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NightJet, run by Austria's BB, is a pioneer in overnight rail travel, and it showcased the interior of its new wagons this week.

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Journalists and rail lovers invited to Vienna to see them said they could bolster the sector in the face of the energy crisis and climate disaster.

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Next-generation night trains in Europe are meant to replace aircraft. The NightJet train, designed by the Austrian state railway, will launch in summer 2019.

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Europe's night trains will soon have sleeping pods, sliding doors, ambient lighting, and curved seating.

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This week, NightJet, the sleeper subsidiary of Austria's national railway, BB, showed off its fresh new carriages.

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Journalists covering travel and rail aficionados who were invited to Vienna to see them felt they could help the sector in the face of the energy crisis and climate disaster.

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The carriages contain cocoon-like chambers for solo travelers and sliding shutters to foster interaction. Wi-Fi, plugs, adjustable lights, and comfortable chairs are provided.

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Each train has seven cars: two passenger coaches, two sleeping cars with two-person compartments, three sleeper cars with four-person suites, and single accommodations.

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These trains will travel at 230 km/h and carry 254 passengers, more than most short-haul planes (143mph).

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NightJet claims its sleeping vehicle tickets will cost between €50 and €100, cheaper than airline tickets. Carriages promise wheelchair access.

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Pandemic-related supply chain issues and staffing shortages have delayed train service.

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Train lovers and lobbyists warn that unless national and European authorities encourage night train travel, its romantic appeal and potential to replace planes would diminish.

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They point to increasing energy prices, a continuous staff deficit, and a summer of disastrous rail delays.

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Passenger traffic, especially at night, must give place to coal and military equipment trains during the energy crisis and Ukraine war.

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This is anticipated to worsen the issues that could damage the movement's development.

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Germany's Green Party wants to establish a night rail network connecting Warsaw, Amsterdam, Vienna, Bordeaux, Munich, Barcelona, and London.

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