Need a free holiday? Irish teens can apply for golden ticket to travel Europe by rail
Need a holiday after the Leaving Cert? Irish teenagers can next week apply for a golden ticket to travel around Europe by train - for free.
The proposal was launched by the leader of the European People’s Party (EPP) Manfred Weber and the pilot scheme begins this month.
A total of 15,000 tickets will be available for 18-year-olds across Europe, with 140 tickets available in Ireland.
Teenagers can apply for the tickets between June 12 and June 26 and they will find out in July if they are one of the lucky ones.
The scheme will be expanded if it is successful this year.
Speaking on RTE Radio One's Morning Ireland, MEP Brian Hayes said the objective is to give young people a chance to discover Europe.
"It is a small scheme, but it is incremental," he said.
"It is an opportunity to travel Europe. You simply have to apply next Tuesday.
"You say where you want to travel to, you can come as a group or as an individual."
He continued; "It is important to note that a lot of the European-wide programmes like Erasmus are focused on university students.
"There is very little for people who aren't in university of college.
"It is a pilot scheme this year, but I think it will be extended."
You can only apply if you:
- are 18 years old on 1 July 2018 (born between 2 July 1999 and 1 July 2000 included);
- have the nationality of one of the 28 Member States of the European Union;
- fill in your passport number on the online application form;
- start your journey in one of the EU 28 Member States;
- plan to start your travel between 9 July and 30 September 2018;
- plan to travel between 1 day and up to 30 days inclusive;
- plan to travel to at least 1 and up to 4 foreign country destinations within the EU;