Guides for Vienna: Don't take the fast train from the airport to the city; it's too expensive.
Reality: I took the fast train from the airport to the city because it was €25 return. Not only do I appreciate fast and simple travel, but I am conditioned to the absurd cost of public transport in the UK.
Of the countries I have used trains, here is my ranking:
- Germany/Netherlands. Cologne to Amsterdam, €30 in first class. Free sausage.
- France. TGV is fast, smooth, and has the best food on rails.
- Austria. See above.
- Canada. Expensive, but fast and smooth.
- UK. Expensive, crowded, uncomfortable, delayed. Built on victorian-era infrastructure. Run for profit.
- USA. Amtrak is dire. 'Technical issues' meant I was on a train from Washington DC to New York for 6 hours. Miserable.