Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Canterbury to Waterloo Station - hire a car or take a cab?

Canterbury to Waterloo Station - hire a car or take a cab?

Old Feb 18th, 2004, 06:38 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 202
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Canterbury to Waterloo Station - hire a car or take a cab?

My husband and I have tickets for Eurostar going from Waterloo Station to Paris. We leave on a Tuesday at 8:12 am (June 1, to be exact). The night before, we will be staying in Canterbury. I'm wondering if it would be wiser to hire a car (Ray Skinner?) to take us from Canterbury to Waterloo Station, than it would be to rely on a cab or the tube?

What are your thoughts?
Katiebug is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 06:52 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,873
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Well - my question is -- Why don't you catch the EuroStar at Ashford? It is only about 15 miles from Canterbury to Ashford Eurostar terminal.

janis is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 06:55 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 17,263
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
None of the above.

Take the train from Canterbury West to Ashford International (about 25 mins) and pick up the train when it gets to Ashford around 9.00. You don't need to re-ticket your Eurostar: your seat reservations are good for the whole journey.

The system is quite used to people booking from Waterloo, but getting on at Ashford. It's what Mrs F and I do.
flanneruk is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:01 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 17,263
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
janis:

My post reads as if it's dissing you. It's not, of course. You just pipped me to it.
flanneruk is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:01 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,129
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You need to check the Eurostar schedule as not all trains stop at Ashford. It really would be silly to spend any money getting from Kent to London in order to catch a train which goes through Kent. In case you didn't realise, Canterbury is in Kent, not far from the rail line from London to the Channel tunnel. If there is no alternative, there are trains from Canterbury to Waterloo East which is linked by escalator with the main Waterloo station.
GeoffHamer is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:03 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 202
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
To be honest... because I suppose I didn't research enough to realize that there was a station closer to Canterbury. God, and let me tell you, I have reasearched and researched this trip! I must be researched out.

Already have the tickets, so I'm glad it won't be a problem to "hop on" at the Ashford station. By the way, how far would the Waterloo station be, anyway?

Might there likely be delays, strikes or other obsticles during morning rush hour in London? That's the main reason I didn't think it would be wise to rely on taxi's or trains. The second reason would be schlepping around our luggage from train to train.
Katiebug is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:07 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,873
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
flanneruk: of course no offense taken, plus you provided more complete info re them not having to re-ticket . . . .
janis is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:13 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 202
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
flanneruk: No problem. I didn't take it that way. I'm actually embarrassed that I didn't catch that one myself. Like I said, I think I may be researched out! I appreciate your enlightenment.

GeoffHamer: Yes, I did realize that Canterbury is in Kent. But... I blew it. What can I say. Oh well, if that's the only mistake I make, I'm in good shape.

Sincere thanks for the help. Glad I asked. Now I just have to figure out if this is a train that's scheduled to stop in Kent.
Katiebug is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:28 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 17,263
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
As always, never trust a local.

You'll have found out by now that you've chosen one of the few trains that doesn't stop at Ashford.

So do take Geoff's suggestion about getting the train to Waterloo East. Getting a cab or private car into central London at that time of the morning is seriously unpleasant

It's roughly 55 miles from memory. But the last 20 can be hell by road.

However mistrustful people are of our trains, we'd all be a lot more mistrustful of driving into London at that time of day. Even though you've got to be there by 7.30, rush hour really gets under way from 6.30
flanneruk is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:41 AM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 202
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Eewww. So, we should probably catch a train by, say, 6:00? Another silly question... I take it we should buy our train tickets there, as opposed to before hand (if that's even possible)?

Shoot, I was hoping for a nice, leisurly, comfortable ride to the Eurostar in a car. I tried for a later trip into Paris, but didn't want to arrive too much after lunch.

I guess I should just remind myself that we're going to end up in PARIS, so it really doesn't matter, does it?
Katiebug is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:48 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,129
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
To get to Waterloo in time, you'll need to get the train from Canterbury at 0540. It would be best to get the tickets the day before as the ticket office is unlikely to be open that early, but there is no need to book in advance and no price advantage from buying ahead. Better still, try to exchange the Eurostar tickets for a journey from Ashford to Paris - you'll save over two hours totally unnecessary train travel, and gain extra time in bed.
GeoffHamer is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:57 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 42
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If your Eurostar booking is unchangeable then perhaps you'd be better off spending the night in London rather than in Canterbury.
orleans is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:57 AM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 202
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Another option, and another request for your advise... what about skipping Canterbury (one night) and staying closer to Waterloo?
Katiebug is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 07:58 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 42
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
snap
orleans is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 08:18 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,682
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts

As Mr Hammer says, if you can still change your booking, you might like to leave Ashford at 0829 or 0959 and reach Paris at 1123 or 1253.
A taxi from your Canterbury hotel will take you to Canterbury West station, where you want to leave good time to take your bags to the departure platform. From Canterbury to Ashford is 23 kilometers or 13 miles or 18 minutes by train. You could take a taxi the whole way, or take a train from Canterbury West at 0718 or 0856. The change at Ashford is convenient: you take a luggage trolley or trolleys, pass the passport check, use the luggage lift, and board for Paris. All in all it is a simpler journey, shorter and with less waiting for your train, than that via Waterloo.

Please write if I can help further. Welcome to Europe.

[email protected]
ben_haines_london is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 10:59 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,873
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Before making ANY more decisions, I would first check if the tickets could be changed with no fee - or even for a small fee. It would be soooooo much more convenient to take the Eurostar from Ashford.
janis is offline  
Old Feb 26th, 2004, 03:00 PM
  #17  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 202
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
OK, I was finally able to get a chance to check on exchanging my tickets. I can't. I bought non-exchangeable/non-refundable (for about 1/2 the price). So, I guess we'll be skipping Canterbury, unless anyone else can come up with a brilliant resolution that would make my day.

Thanks for the help, all.

Katiebug is offline  
Old Feb 26th, 2004, 03:33 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,873
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If you have always wanted to see Canterbury - you can still do it. Just do a day-trip from London the day before your Eurostar trip. Take the train to Canterbury and then back to London that same afternoon/evening.

You will have no problem getting to Waterloo from any London hotel in time for your train.
janis is offline  
Old Feb 26th, 2004, 07:34 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 23,124
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Exactly, Janis: the trip down to Canterbury is easy, and you will find the time there very well spent.
Underhill is online now  
Old Feb 26th, 2004, 07:35 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 23,124
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Oops! The comment was aimed at Katiebug in response to what Janis had to say.
Underhill is online now  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
avalon
Europe
24
Dec 12th, 2009 03:18 AM
tod
Europe
18
Dec 17th, 2007 08:07 AM
jewela
Europe
6
Jul 29th, 2007 02:34 PM
Necie
Europe
5
May 18th, 2006 04:52 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:27 AM.