I have booked a ticket from Munich to Venice on nightjet for two adults. While booking on Nightjet's website, they asked only for name of one passenger. Since I am not a citizen of either Germany or Italy (and so is the co-passenger), I am a bit wary of this situation.

Is it okay, that they have asked only for 'name' and no details of any ID card? I have also made a terrible mistake of putting down wrong email id (although after booking I got the PDF of the ticket).

Any suggestions/information in this regard would be greatly appreciated.

2 Answers 2


The railways do not care who is travelling. Trains do not have passenger manifests, there are no pre-boarding ID checks. If you had bought this ticket at a ticket office at the station there would have been no names at all on it. Trains operate on a "proof of payment" principle. The railways are only interested whether you paid.

Tickets bought at the station will be printed on special ticket paper, which allows the conductor to see that it is indeed genuine, and that you paid the price that entitles you to be on that train. But tickets bought over the internet, and printed out by yourself are not printed on special ticket paper. So the railways need something else to protect themselves against people just whipping up a ticket in photoshop, or buying one ticket and handing out copies to friends. And that they do by asking for a name, and encoding that name in the QR code on the ticket. This on the theory that we cannot yet copy people. The conductor scans the QR code and looks at the name that will appear on his terminal. The ticket is then valid if the person with that name is part of the group travelling.

There is an official TSI electronic ticket standard, which is what DB, ÖBB, SBB, and many others use (and which should be eventually be used Europe wide). Thanks to this standard DB can sell e-tickets that for example an SBB conductor can verify. In this standard they even have a name for the person mentioned on the ticket: The "head of the party". And his or her name is only on the ticket for fraud prevention purposes. A ticket will thus have "John Doe" on it, and for example the mention "2 adults", which basically means that two adults can travel on that ticket, and that one of them must be called "John Doe", for the ticket to be valid.

  • Thanks a lot! That clears things up. I do have a QR code on my pdf ticket so that should do the job. It also has masked credit card number which I will be traveling with. So no worries now I guess. Thanks again.
    – Dayne
    Nov 4, 2019 at 7:36
  • Might be worth noting that although the travellers will be crossing two international borders on their trip these Schengen borders are meant to be no more than a line on the ground and thus there are no systematic additional checks required (in theory).
    – Jan
    Nov 6, 2019 at 5:30

On the German train website it is/used to be normal to buy a ticket for several people on the name (and ID) of one of them.
The person named on the ticket have to travel, the other(s) may be replaced by other people, as long as they meet the same age group and other restrictions (if any.)
There were no restrictions on the nationality or location of living for any of the people, only on having an acceptable ID. (In the past it had to be credit card sized but by now also passports are acceptable.)

The Austrian site you booked from looks to have the same rules. One name needed and this person also needs to be able to show an acceptable ID. Other people on the same reservation are not named. (And in fact you can take others if the ones intended can not go.)

The fact that you got the e-mail with the ticket shows that your e-mail address was acceptable.

  • Thanks so much for your reply. Actually, I did not get the email as I entered it wrong. I got the pdf of the ticket on the page that appears immediately after booking. So as such I have the ticket and based on the info you have provided it seems okay now. It's just that the concern remains that I entered the wrong email.
    – Dayne
    Nov 3, 2019 at 13:46
  • Them not having your email address means they can not reach you if there is important information about your travel. Most of the time they do not need that mail address but it might be useful to reach out to them and see if it is possible to correct the information. You can try the telephone number given in the FAQ, problems with your bookings, nightjet.com/en/buchung/faq/buchung-im-nightjet.html
    – Willeke
    Nov 3, 2019 at 14:05
  • Or use the contact form: oebb.at/en/reiseplanung-services/kundenservice/kontakt.html Maybe first to ask how to update the information.
    – Willeke
    Nov 3, 2019 at 14:07
  • Yeah I think that's the only way left. Thanks for your help.
    – Dayne
    Nov 3, 2019 at 14:14

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