Avlo: Renfe’s high speed low cost trains

avlo

Avlo is the low-cost subsidiary of Renfe – Spain’s public rail provider.

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Avlo is an acronym for Alta Velocidad Low Cost, which literally means “high speed low cost”.

It’s currently one of the country’s 3 budget high-speed train operators (the others being OUIGO and iryo), making Spain currently the most competitive European market for this service. So far, that has translated into excellent prices and options for travelers.

Avlo’s long distance routes

Avlo currently operates the following long distance routes:

  • Madrid Atocha – Guadalajara – Calatayud – Zaragoza – Lleida – Tarragona – Barcelona – Girona – Figueres
  • Madrid Chamartín – Cuenca – Requena – Valencia
  • Madrid Chamartín – Cuenca – Albacete – Villena – Alicante
  • Madrid Atocha – Ciudad Real – Puertollano – Villanueva de Córdoba – Córdoba – Sevilla
  • Madrid Atocha – Ciudad Real – Puertollano – Villanueva de Córdoba – Córdoba – Puente Genil – Antequera Santa Ana – Málaga

Renfe plans to expand even further its Avlo network and connect other destinations with a high speed services’ station.

Avlo fare system

There is no class-system onboard Avlo trains, but rather a similar system to that of low-cost airlines where no-frills tickets are cheaper but adding extra services such as choice of seat, cancelling tickets or additional luggage costs more.

The prices could be higher or lower, depending on the departure time of the train, the day of the week, the occupancy rate of the trains and how much in advance the purchase was made.

Fares are obviously cheaper than those you pay for regular high-speed AVE services. So all tickets are in Economy Class (no First Class) with assigned seats:

  • The only ticket offered for Avlo services is called Básica (or Basic), which is a 2nd class seating 2+2 across the car width.
  • Children under 14 can travel at a discounted fixed price but they must travel with an adult holding a Basic fare ticket, with a maximum of 2 child tickets per Basic fare.

However, there’s a catch for the price. In the style of low-cost airlines, Avlo provides extra services at a cost in order to offer the most competitive basic prices possible.

Oh, and Avlo tickets don’t include the Combinado Cercanías ticket.

You cannot choose your seat

The Basic fare doesn’t allow you to choose your seat. But you can add this option as an extra for a fixed amount when purchasing your ticket.

Unfortunately, you can only choose your seat when buying return tickets.

You cannot change or cancel your ticket

The Basic fare doesn’t allow you to change or cancel your ticket. However, you have 2 hours after your purchase to cancel your tickets at no cost.

Alternatively, you can add this option as an extra for a fixed amount when purchasing your ticket. If you do so, you’ll be entitled to make changes on the date and/or time of the trip, or to cancel it if you need to do so.

However, changes to the origin-destination of the ticket or the holder are not allowed. And you’ll only be able to make changes once up to 30 minutes before departure of the train.

If the changed or cancelled ticket has a child ticket associated with it, the same changes will apply free of charge.

If you change your ticket for another train with a different fare, you’ll be refunded or charged the difference of the new ticket.

You cannot change or cancel any of the extra options added to your ticket during the purchase

The independent cancellation of extra options or add-ons is not allowed.

If you cancel a ticket with ant extra option associated, 100% of the amount of the add-ons (except the change and cancellation costs) will be refunded.

You’re entitled to compensation if your train is delayed

Just like Renfe’s punctuality commitment, if your Avlo train is delayed, you’re entitled to claim compensation.

However, you’ll receive a discount voucher for your next trip. No cash will be reimbursed into your credit or debit card.

The conditions are as follows:

  • A delay over 60 minutes entitles you to a 50% refund of your ticket price.
  • A delay over 90 minutes entitles you to a 100% refund of your ticket price.

Avlo luggage allowance

The Basic fare includes the following luggage in the ticket price, free of charge:

  • 1 piece of hand luggage (bag, rucksack, etc.) subject to the following size limitations: 27x36x25 cm. No weight limit.
  • 1 suitcase, subject to the following size limitations: 55x35x25 cm. No weight limit.

If you need to add 1 additional piece of luggage of larger dimensions, up to a maximum of 85x60x35 cm (or one that doesn’t exceed 180 cm in total), you can do so at the time of purchase of your ticket for an additional cost.

You can also add extra luggage after purchasing your ticket or directly at the station, at the boarding control point, up to 30 minutes before the departure of your train. The later you add your extra luggage, the higher the cost.

There’s a maximum number of suitcases allowed per train per date, so if you need an extra suitcase, I suggest you book it when purchasing your ticket.

Avlo’s onboard services

Onboard you can enjoy free WiFi access through the PlayRenfe platform, and power sockets at each seat to charge your devices.

Avlo trains don’t have a cafe-car and no food and drinks are served onboard, but they do have automatic vending machines for hot and cold drinks and a variety of snacks. Please note that these machines only accept payment by credit or debit card.

Contrary to Renfe’s AVE, Avlo trains don’t have a Quiet car (a specific car where you’re not allowed to talk, especially over the phone, or make noise).

Currently, no pets are allowed on Avlo trains. Only guide and assistance dogs are allowed on the train.

However, you can request the Assistance service for people with disabilities or reduced mobility if you travel on an Avlo train.

This request implies no additional charge, and you can select this option while you purchase your ticket.

Moreover, Avlo trains are fully accessible, have H seats for passengers travelling with their own wheelchair and toilets adapted for people with reduced mobility.

This article is part of a complete tutorial about train travel in Spain where you can read all the information you need to organize your train journeys around the country.

Here is a complete summary of all the guide:

1. Spain trains: everything you need to know
2. How to purchase Renfe train tickets online
3. 7 tricks to get cheap train tickets in Spain
4. Renfe: Spain’s state-owned railway company
5. AVE trains: Renfe high-speed trains in Spain
6. The Combinado Cercanías ticket
7. The Renfe Spain Pass
8. Avlo: Renfe’s high speed low cost trains
9. OUIGO trains: SNCF’s high speed low cost company
10. iryo: Spain’s low cost high-speed rail operator
11. 7 packing tips to comply with your train baggage allowance

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