Train photography is a common activity of railfans. (Bill) Stewart (1898–1976); or in Germany with Carl Bellingrodt (1897–1971).
The definition of 'complete' riding may change from person to person, and non-passenger routes may be included by travelling on locomotives, freight trains or special excursion trains, others may attempt to ride on each individual track and curve, rather than the route as a whole, some may not include riding during night, and others may require visiting each station rather than just passing through.
Radio scanners are common equipment for listening to railroad frequencies in the US to follow rail traffic.
It is a misconception that all railfans are trainspotters.
The term metrophile is used by some to identify a railfan with a particular interest in metro (subway, underground) systems.
The study of railways, or a general interest in them as a hobby, is sometimes jokingly known as "ferroequinology" (literally, "study of iron horses").