(CNN) – Austria’s flagship airline is replacing one of its flights with a more frequent train service to meet the criteria for protecting the environment from its recent government bailout.
The company will no longer fly between the capital Vienna and Salzburg, but will instead use a railway service.
From July 20, there will be up to 31 direct train journeys a day between Vienna International Airport and Salzburg Central Station and up to three rail links a day, the airline said.
“Vienna Airport can be reached by train from Salzburg in much less than three hours and without changing trains,” Alexis von Hohensbroich, the airline’s executive director, said in a statement. That’s why our AIRail offer is a good and greener alternative to flying. “
Vienna and Salzburg are 184 miles apart, and the flight between them took only 45 minutes. But when taking into account the time spent at each airport, the total travel time would often be longer than 2 hours and 49 minutes by train.
Vacancies in a United Airlines flight during a coronavirus pandemic.
Justin Sullivan / Getty Image
Passengers will retain their rights to compensation, reimbursement and diversion. If a connecting train or plane is missed due to delays, customers will be automatically rewritten to an alternative travel link, the company said.
The railway service was tested in 2019, while the Salzburg airport was closed for a month to upgrade the runway and was well received, the company said.
But before the outbreak, there was a trend toward unnecessarily short air travel, which some companies had already tried to use.
Last year, KLM partnered with Dutch and Belgian railway companies to replace one Amsterdam-Brussels flight a day with a train service, similar to Austrian Airlines’ deal with ÖOB. In Germany, Lufthansa cooperates with the Deutsche Bahn train network.