Rail Europe North America Inc. has suspended selling tour packages after a “change in its business model,” and, as a result, is no longer a USTOA Active Member effective January 31, 2021.
“Our company has refocused its activity to selling European rail tickets and passes to the B2B and B2C markets and is no longer selling tour packages. As a result, the company no longer qualifies as a tour operator member,” said Laurent Tonnellier, general manager for business in North and South America at Rail Europe.
Rail Europe, Inc. began in 1932 as a North American distributor of European rail products, providing point-to-point tickets and rail passes for European rail travel. Now, it’s owned by the Paris-based entity Rail Europe SAS, part of the French National Railroads (SNCF). The company offers rail passes including the Eurail Pass, train tickets, and sightseeing passes.
Accordingly, Rail Europe North America Inc. no longer participates in the USTOA $1 Million Travelers Assistance Program.
“Travel agents should be aware that purchases of Rail Europe North America Inc. products made prior to Jan. 31, 2021, shall continue to be protected under the USTOA $1 Million Travelers Assistance Program. Client deposits and payments thereafter will not be covered by the USTOA program,” advises USTOA President & CEO Terry Dale.
Laurent also cited, “Rail Europe’s office in North America is fully committed to serve its customers: tour operators, travel agencies, consortia, partners and consumers. Rail Europe provides a full range of technologies to connect to the largest European railroad inventories.”
Rail Europe North America Inc. has been a partner since 1994 and is pleased the company remains in the association as an Associate Member.
“While the new business model changes our current affiliation status with USTOA, we are pleased to continue the relationship as an Associate Member,” Tonnellier said.