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YOUTH BEAT

British Rail Offers Travelers Special Price on New Flexible Pass

April 30, 1989|LUCY IZON | Izon is a Canadian travel journalist covering youth budget routes.

Travelers 16 to 25 years are being offered special youth rates on a new British Rail travel pass.

The BritRail Flexipass offer does not require travel every day. For example, the Flexipass that is valid for four-day travel can be used on any four days over an eight-day period. Youth price for this ticket is $129.

Youth rates are valid only on economy-class services.

A Youth Flexipass for eight days of travel during a 15-day period costs $189.

BritRail continues to offer its regular Youth Passes, which can be used on any number of days during a set period, using economy services, throughout England, Scotland and Wales. The rate for eight days travel is $149, 15 days $219, 22 days $289 and for one month $329.

Tickets are available through travel agents, and must be bought before arrival in Britain.

Contact BritRail Travel International, 800 S. Hope St., Suite 603, Los Angeles 90017, or call (213) 624-8787, for more information.

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Each year the British Tourist Authority publishes a free booklet, "Young Travelers' Guide to Britain." The 32-page 1989 edition includes information on accommodations, entertainment, transportation, exchanges, employment, tour companies, student and youth discounts and how to establish pen pals.

Also, it has a variety of listings for low-cost accommodations, from hotels and youth hostels to university residences, YMCAs and travel clubs.

For a copy, contact the British Tourist Authority, 350 S. Figueroa St., Suite 450, Los Angeles 90071, or call (213) 628-3525.

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One of the biggest additions to the youth travel scene in Britain is the new youth accommodations facility in Bristol.

Bristol, 105 miles west of London, was once a major seaport. The new hostel/study center is a 1.2-million (about $2.1 million U.S.) renovation of a Victorian warehouse in the heart of the historic harbor area.

The building offers budget accommodations for 125 in two- to six-bed rooms. It also has a visitors' kitchen and a laundry, plus a cycle store, a tourist information office, a cafeteria and a display area for local arts and crafts.

Because the building is also being used as a study center, space is shared with school groups, especially during non-holiday periods. Some beds are always available for individual travelers, but it would be wise to try to get there as early in the morning as possible.

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Travelers under 26 can get special rates on transportation fares between Britain and Europe. Companies such as Transalpino and Eurotrain offer point-to-point fares for second-class rail travel in 22 countries, mostly in Europe, but also linking key cities in Morocco and Turkey.

You can make stops (along a direct route) and you have two months to reach your destination. If you are traveling to Turkey or Morocco, your ticket is valid for six months.

You can buy these tickets at student and youth travel agencies in Europe. Sample Eurotrain fares for travel from London: to Amsterdam, about $60; Athens, $175; Casablanca, $145; Rome, $115, and Istanbul, $196. Prices may increase slightly in summer.

Eurotrain fares may be bought in London at Travel CUTS, 295-A Regent St., London W1R 7YA.

Eurail offers a free 160-page, pocket-size booklet listing the popular inter-city rail links in Europe.

Although the rail network covered by the Eurailpass does not include England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland or Turkey, the booklet does include timetables for key services linking Cardiff, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Birmingham, London and Istanbul to the Eurail system.

For a free copy, write to Eurailpass Distribution Center, Box 325, Old Greenwich, Conn. 06870-03255.

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