Woman falls asleep on train, can’t believe where her phone says she is

A woman on a solo European trip found herself in a surprising situation when she fell asleep on a train and woke to her phone indicating she was in Ukraine.

Talia Sexton, a resident of Virginia, told Newsweek: “When I woke up and checked my phone location, I had thought it would just say I was still in Germany or possibly in Austria, but seeing it say Ukraine had me completely shocked! I instantly texted my boyfriend and sister who had my location. I had them check to see what it said, and it said a Ukraine address for them also.”

Sexton was trying to get to Switzerland, and was initially panicked to see the location after her nap on the train. “I was a bit nervous trying to figure out how this would even logically be possible and tried to calm myself down with the logic of it probably being a mistake,” she said.

“I ended up just waiting it out and checking my location over and over again until it finally showed my true location. I also asked people around me on the train if they knew where we were, and no one said ‘Ukraine’… so that made me feel better.”

Switzerland and Ukraine are around 1,300 miles apart, and have several countries between them.

Talia Sexton’s viral TikTok video shows the moment she woke on the train and thought she was in Ukraine. She told Newsweek she was trying to get to Switzerland.


Thankfully, after asking around and holding out a little, Sexton learned she was not in fact in Ukraine, and her journey continued smoothly as she reached Switzerland.

Later, Sexton decided to share the situation on her TikTok page, @talstravels_, where it has been viewed 5 million times.

“I never guessed it would hit 5 million views. I’ve been blown away by all of the views, comments, and likes! I am glad I posted it. However, I wish I would have been more careful with the wording of ‘Ukraine,'” Sexton said.

The use of the definite article “the” before “Ukraine” stems from the time when Ukraine was a region within the Soviet Union, not a separate country. Many find it offensive to refer to the country as “the Ukraine” as this implies that it is a region or territory, rather than an independent sovereign nation.

“I didn’t even think about it not being OK but now realize it is offensive,” said Sexton. “Using that wording was truly ignorance on my part and I meant no harm whatsoever. I love people from all countries and never meant to put anyone down; definitely a learning experience as a whole.”

In the comments, people shared their reactions and stories of their own travel mishaps.

One user, Hei en Lion, commented: “I once accidentally took a train to London instead of Rotterdam (it should’ve been an hour but it started becoming clear I was going to England).”

Another commenter, Elena V., wrote: “This is fascinating to me because I couldn’t fall asleep in the U.S. for long enough to leave the STATE, let alone the country.”

“This is why I refuse to sleep on trains. I don’t want to miss my stop,” posted a third.

Viewer Courtney recalled a similar moment of her own: “Happened to me, woke me up before stop, they told me I had one minute to switch trains at a stop. Platform was so packed I could get to the train, stuck 6 hours in a tiny village!”