1-2-3 Ticket: Austria’s nationwide rail pass to be further delayed

The wait for the 1-2-3 Ticket - Austria's rail pass which allows for nationwide travel - is set to go on longer, due to resistance from one Austrian state.

1-2-3 Ticket: Austria's nationwide rail pass to be further delayed
A train bridge over the river Kamp in Austria. Photo by Raphael Cruz on Unsplash

The third stage of the “1-2-3 ticket”, or a ticket which would be valid on all public transport in the whole of Austria, is no nearer to completion.

Authorities had hoped to release the ticket at some point in 2021, however a new series of disputes may push back the release date further. 

Broadcaster ORF says the fact that no solution has yet been found is also due to the resistance of the federal state of Burgenland.

The complaint relates to the fact that the ticket would dramatically increase the cost of travelling from Burgenland to Vienna. 

As travelling from Burgenland to Vienna involves crossing Lower Austria, the price of a season ticket from Neudörfl to Vienna, for example, which currently costs 730 euros, would increase to 1,095 euros per year under the new scheme.

The idea behind the 1-2-3 ticket is that Austrian residents can choose to pay one euro per day for unlimited public transport in their own state, two euros per day for travel in two neighbouring states or three euros per day to travel throughout Austria. 

This thereby builds upon the annual 365 Ticket, which gives access to public transport all across Vienna for €365 per year. 

While this may improve the situation for people who travel in their own state or travel regularly to a neighbouring state, those who cross three or more states are set to feel the brunt. 

Politicians in Burgenland are pushing for a compromise, which would keep costs closer to their current level. 

An estimated 25,000 people commute regularly from Burgenland to Vienna, based on pre-pandemic numbers

The Eastern Region Transport Association (Verkehrsverbund Ostregion), which manages transport networks in Burgenland, Lower Austria and Vienna, also wants more money for implementation of the scheme.

Transport Provincial Councilor Heinrich Dorner said the “minister must set up the budgetary resources accordingly”. 

READ MORE: What is the 1-2-3-ticket? Everything you need to know about the new ticket planned to give unlimited public transport across Austria

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Vienna tour aims to demystify ‘Hitler balcony’ after far-right clip

A guided tour is seeking to demystify the so-called "Hitler balcony" in Vienna after the notorious landmark appeared in a video promoting Austria's far-right party.

Vienna tour aims to demystify 'Hitler balcony' after far-right clip

The balcony — where Adolf Hitler spoke after the Nazis annexed his homeland Austria in 1938 — is currently not in use and closed to the public.

But images of it were included in a promotional video in August from the youth wing of the Freedom Party — which is expected to win next year’s election in Austria.

Amid loaded imagery, including Paris’s Notre Dame in flames, the video shows the party’s youth wing taking part in torchlight processions and standing below the balcony.

The clip sparked outrage in Austria, prompting the House of Austrian History — which today is housed in the building with the balcony — to offer the visits.

“We noticed there is a societal need, a curiosity. And we also see that education is needed, because especially if you look at (online) forums now, there is a lot of incorrect information and misinterpretations,” museum director Monika Sommer told AFP.

She said the tours focusing on the balcony, a vast terrace flanked by neoclassic columns in Vienna’s historic centre, came in response to the far-right video.

‘Dare for new approach’

Thursday’s first of five tours scheduled so far was fully booked out with 35 people listening to Sommer, in front of the closed wood-frame glass doors leading onto the balcony.

Several of those attending were disappointed not to be able to step outside.

“It should be stripped of its taboos,” Markus Mitterhuber, 56, a theatre actor who took the tour, told AFP.

The balcony has only been opened on very select occasions, such as a speech by Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel in 1992 and a private New Year’s party in 1999-2000.

The House of Austrian History has long been pushing to have the balcony opened up, launching an online collection of ideas in 2019 for its future.

“We should dare to approach this place in a new way. Making the place publicly accessible, for example in the form of registered tours, could be a way of demystifying it,” Sommer said.

So far the authorities have refused to open the balcony, citing safety fears, for example, because of its low balustrade.

Austria long cast itself as a victim after being annexed by Nazi Germany.

Only since the 1980s has the country begun to seriously examine its role in the Holocaust when more than 65,000 Austrian Jews were killed.