Why Book With Us?

Reason #1: World’s Oldest, Most-Trusted Luxury Rail Travel Agency

A family-owned and operated business for over 33 years, the Society of International Railway Travelers® is the world’s first and most respected luxury rail travel agency.

We publish the “Bible” of world luxury rail travel: “The IRT Society’s Best-Loved Railway Journeys®,” backed up by a website and blog providing the latest luxury rail news. Our list of The World’s Top 25 Trains®, updated annually, is the go-to source for the latest in luxury rail travel worldwide.

We know what we sell. IRT Society owners, staff and writers have traveled hundreds of thousands of miles to experience the world’s luxury trains first-hand.

And because we’ve actually ridden these trains — in most cases multiple times — we can suggest just the right luxury rail trip for you:

  • best sleeping compartments
  • best dining cars
  • best time to travel
  • how and what to pack
  • what to know about luxury rail etiquette
  • how to deal with visas, currency, health issues, and more

Reason #2: The Virtuoso Advantage

We are members of Virtuoso, the invitation-only — and largest — consortium of luxury travel advisors and suppliers in the world.

What does that mean to you?

  • $9.6 billion in buying power of worldwide luxury cruises, tours, safaris and specialty travel
  • Personal relationships with and fabulous access to senior luxury travel personnel
  • More luxury travel options — hotels, restaurants, cruises, safaris, tours, expeditions — to add to your luxury rail trip, or to be undertaken on their own.

“Eleanor touted the potential of possible Virtuoso upgrades, which I dismissed as hype… Totally stunned by my balcony view of Table Mountain at the Mt. Nelson, and my upgraded Safari Suite at The Milestone, and the Illyria House was stunning in every aspect…

“This was my first trip with IRT and I am a dazzled believer!”

— P. Gournay, excerpted from her review of her Rovos Rail trip to Namibia

Reason #3: Unparalleled Human-to Human Service

Emergency service: Flight cancelled? Baggage lost? Train delayed? You have access to our worldwide, emergencency phone number service 24/7. Call us.Our personal service is renowned. With IRT you actually communicate with a human who cares about your vacation. We’re your trusted travel advocate.

We’re accessible: We answer the phone. If we’re busy, we get back to you ASAP.

Information: We provide everything you need to know, from visas to what to wear, from books to read and immunizations to obtain to the best time of year to travel

VIP treatment: We reconfirm all of your services. We unabashedly beg for complimentary extras and upgrades on your behalf. We personally call each hotel or safari camp before you arrive. In short, we do everything in our power to ensure your or your group’s VIP treatment.

“ I’m so positive on IRT I can’t stand it anymore! Now that you’re with Virtuoso, it’s expanded even further.

On the cruise Sharon and I were on, we got tons of Virtuoso amenities; at the Intercontinental (in Rome) our meals discounted, special dinners there, breakfast every day.

Aboard the ship, the same thing…And the guides: It makes a world of difference! Eleanor set all this up for us.”

E. Fitzpatrick, veteran of 19 IRT journeys

Eleanor & Owen Hardy on train

Society of IRT owners Owen and Eleanor Hardy on The Danube Express

Reason #4: We’re VAST

We joined this exclusive “club” to get special access and training for the best in adventure travel.

Besides luxury and deluxe trains, that includes:

  • walking, biking & hiking tours
  • expedition cruises
  • safaris
  • “off-the-beaten track” tours to places like Mongolia, the Arctic, Borneo and more

Just a few of our partners:

  • Abercrombie & Kent
  • Tauck Tours
  • Backroads
  • Micato Safaris
  • Big Five Tours & Expeditions
  • Four Seasons Hotels
  • Mandarin Oriental Hotels
  • Belmond Trains & Cruises
  • Belmond Hotels

We’re also members of Belmond’s invitation-only Bellini Club, giving our clients access to exclusive amenities, perks, and upgrades at Belmond’s luxury properties worldwideperks, and upgrades at Belmond’s luxury properties worldwide.

Reason #5: We’re Tolerant

The Society of International Railway Travelers® is committed to fostering a sense of tolerance, understanding and mutual respect among our travelers, train staff and all others we may encounter. We welcome travelers regardless of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or age. To this end, the Society of IRT reserves the right to deny services to anyone incapable of maintaining a courteous and tolerant attitude with respect to IRT staff, fellow passengers and crew, and all other persons with whom we may come in contact













The Society of IRT is proud to be recognized 17 times by the prestigious Magellan Awards. The latest Gold & Silver awards came in 2016.