The Connecting Europe Express train reached Pilsen on 26 September

04. October 2021 17:28, Mgr. Milada Soukupová
Since 23 September, the Czech Republic had hosted the Connecting Europe Express, a train presenting the importance and future of railway travel in the EU. On Sunday 26 September in the morning it arrived in Pilsen along with the representative of the European Commission, Director for Investment and Innovative and Sustainable Transport, Herald Ruijters, who was welcomed by the Vice President of the Pilsen Region for Transportation, Pavel Čížek, and the Vice President of the Pilsen Region for Social Affairs, Rudolf Špoták.
Those interested had the opportunity to see the express train at several stations while passing through the Czech Republic. It stopped in Ostrava, Brno and Prague. During its ride to and from Prague, negotiations took place with representatives of the European Commission on the development of transport infrastructure. In Prague, with the participation of representatives of the federal state of Saxony, the topics of high-speed rail between Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Brno and Vienna in the context of fast and efficient travel across Europe and the inclusion of Czech VRT lines in the TEN-T network were also addressed.
Due to the different track gauges in Europe, the "Connecting Europe Express" actually consisted of three trains - an Iberian train, a standard train and a Baltic train -which will meet en route. This project recalled the lack of interoperability between some parts of the European rail network, but at the same time served as a proof of great cooperation between railway enterprises and railway infrastructure operators.
Individual cars were provided by various European railway companies. The car by MAV (Hungary) hosts a mobile exhibition open to the public, prepared by the European Climate, Infrastructure and the Environment Executive Agency (CINEA) and Shift2Rail joint venture focusing on railway development and research application. The standard train consists of a conference car (provided by the French company SNCF), two standard cars with seats (DB, Germany, and SBB, Switzerland), a dining car (FS, Italy) and a sleeping car (ÖBB, Austria). The Iberian train, which runs between Portugal and Spain, was provided by the Spanish carrier Renfe, and the Baltic train is operated by Lithuanian company LTG.
The aim of the European Year of Railways is to highlight the significance, benefits and importance of rail transport and the whole railway sector, including career opportunities. The information campaign related to the CEE riding across Europe became the main tool for promoting the topic.
The train's journey began symbolically on 2 September in Lisbon, Portugal, as part of the ending Portuguese presidency, and will, among other places, pass through Slovenia, which will take over the presidency in the second half of 2021. The train will complete its pan-European route in Paris on 7 October. More information about the route and other interesting facts can be found at
The European Union decided to designate 2021 as the European Year of Railways. It wishes to promote the use of trains as a safe and sustainable mode of transport and motivate individuals and companies to make better use of rail transport.