Rail Europe (formerly Loco2) is set up to build the cheapest, friendliest and most convenient platform for booking train tickets. The company culture of the Rail Europe UK team, with an office in London, is something that has been evolving for years.
Rail Europe’s team in London developed from a much smaller company that was launched in 2012, then called Loco2 (standing for Low CO2). It was founded by a team of avid travellers committed to the purpose of making train booking as easy as booking a flight. In July 2017 Loco2 was acquired by Oui.SNCF group, giving us all the resources we need to make booking travel as beautiful and simple as possible, from any device. In November 2019, Loco2 website and apps were rebranded to Rail Europe. You can read more about our history here.
Beyond our business model and international offices, Rail Europe’s UK hub is in many ways a family. Historically we have always supported the idea that open communication, trust, empathy, shared knowledge and responsibility are critical to creating a great company.
Find out how life is at Rail Europe
If you create a great user experience, customers will come back to you again and again and will tell their friends about it. In other words, at Rail Europe we believe product is marketing. Our UK team is organised into six main departments - Engineering, Product Management, Global Marketing, Finance, Human Resources and Customer Support (our Travel Geeks) - all working constantly to improve the Rail Europe experience.
We’re an international bunch at Rail Europe’s UK hub: current team members come from and/or work in several different countries including Germany, Italy, Czech Republic and Ukraine, benefiting from our remote-friendly working culture. At Rail Europe’s UK hub we love remote working: many of our employees save loads of time and energy every day by not commuting and, for many roles, we benefit from location-agnostic hiring. This has some great advantages, the best of which is that we tend to hire the best person for the job, regardless of geography. We have an office near Old Street station in London, and many team members also work here regularly. It’s in a great location, above a yoga studio and beside the historic Ironmonger Row swimming pool.
“Remote working has allowed my wife & I to share nursery pickup & drop-offs for our son – this has allowed her to resume work after maternity leave and I have the privilege of spending time playing with my son every morning. I also get to do the gardening at lunch times ” - Paul Sturgess, Software Engineer
We have an office near Old Street station in London, and many team members also work here regularly. It’s in a great location, above a yoga studio and beside the historic Ironmonger Row swimming pool.
We believe freedom of execution creates happier team members and improves not just productivity but also creativity and proactive decision making. To us, each person’s autonomy over their work-life balance is critical: we offer flexible hours, encouraging the team to work when they’re most productive. Some start early so they have more time in the afternoon for their children. Others come to the office regularly, but like to avoid the peak hour congestion, so come in later. Others like to work weekends, with more freedom during the week. Please check our Careers page for regular updates on all vacancies at our ever-growing team.
"I don't think I could ever pick just one reason I love remote working. When I try to think of one, 20 different ones pop up in my mind” - Kaitlyn Tierney, Tech Lead
When it comes to getting the job done, we believe in our employees and are all about achieving a sense of flow and focus. Flow being a state of mind, of complete immersion in an activity, and focus being clarity of thought expressed through mindful communication. Allowing others to achieve flow and focus is a big part of how we support each other.
In order to maintain this remote and flexible culture, we use different tools and processes to ensure that everyone - no matter where he or she is based - feels supported and part of the company. To best achieve this we have well-documented communication processes, and we use Basecamp and Trello to share information, plan and organise projects. But mostly we just like each other, so naturally find ways to communicate that keep us all in constant touch.
Our days aren’t full of meetings. We aim to keep them to a minimum and make sure they’re short and effective. Everyone uses Slack to communicate on a regular basis, and the #general channel is a central water cooler where we all say hello and spend a little time hanging out each working day, chatting about news stories, daily frustrations and just connect with our colleagues. Our CEO, Dâu-Khôi Nguyên, based in Paris, is even on Slack and he also opens his door to all employees at all levels within the company for one to one chats on a monthly basis. That door being on Skype or Slack if needs be, of course. In addition, Khôi hosts a company-wide video conference call every quarter with people dialling in from around the globe for company updates, inspiration and questions from the floor of course.
We have a company-wide daily ‘stand-up’ policy on Slack, where people say what they’ve got planned for the day ahead and how things are going in general. This gives us a feel for what everyone’s working on and allows us to support and stay connected. Many people post about what they did at the weekends and, with a pretty diverse team, this ranges from cheering young ones on from the sidelines of a rugby or football pitch, cooking incredible Indian food, wild swimming in some remote spot or hiking up to a mountain hut in the Swiss Alps.
We love trains
We are committed to our mission of simplifying the booking process for trains throughout Europe to give customers a better experience and offer viable alternatives to flying. Many on our team choose to travel by train wherever possible. Some recent employee train trips included travelling around the UK on six different carriers in a single 24 hour period, travelling to and around Italy by rail, and exploring the Swiss Alps all from a seatside window. To get a flavour about some of the places that make us happy, read our Happy Place blog.
Company retreats and get togethers
We have hosted some wonderful company retreats, from the South of France to the rolling hills of Berkshire. As our tech team works remotely, members get together for conferences and workshops throughout the year to foster closer collaboration and team-building. We also have a monthly Lunch & Learn in the London office. This is a great opportunity to get together and keep updated on how things are going within different parts of the business. Team members who can’t make them dial in from their garden, mountainside or favourite wild swimming spot. Or even from on board a train.
Rail Europe is a growing company and a thriving one, and we work closely with our offices in France, US, Australia, India, Japan, South Korea, etc. We’re constantly working to improve on our own internal culture, while keeping our core values close at hand. We are always learning from other Rail Europe teams’ practices and share ours with them. If you’re like-minded, please get in touch. We might just love to have you as part of the team.
Image credits top to bottom: All images ©Rail Europe except Girl by lake istock ©LawrenceSawyer