TripAdvisor now offers the choice of train or plane

TripAdvisor has announced that its users are now able to search for rail connections on its website, claiming to become the first meta-search site to offer such a service.

The travel review giant, which already allows users to search for hotels and flights via its website and apps, now offers travelers the option of booking their entire trip by rail in European countries.

When conducting flight searches on the site, users can now see rail itineraries alongside the available flight choices for the journey they are looking to take.

As TripAdvisor points out, in some cases a rail journey will be cheaper than an air fare, giving travelers easy visibility of all of their options - and potentially making journeys booked through the site much greener.

A search for a journey from Zurich to Paris in August, for instance, yields flight options from €154 and a train journey from €135 using French rail provider SNCF (which itself signed a codeshare deal with Etihad this week, allowing passengers to book onward rail journeys after their flight).

With high-speed routes linking many European capitals and a growing awareness of the carbon footprint of flying, more and more travelers are opting to take the train for journeys which may previously have been flown.

No surprise then, that TripAdvisor is keen to attract part of a market which it believes is hundred of millions strong.

Journeys within Europe can now be booked from TripAdvisor sites in the US, the UK, Canada, Ireland, France, Italy, Germany and Spain, with additional countries set to launch the service in the future.