Overnight train from Paris to Venice....

Dec 27th, 2006, 09:41 PM
  #1  
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Overnight train from Paris to Venice....

We noticed that the overnight train from Paris to Venice is a 'sleeper only' train.

The pictures of the T6 Couchette on the raileurope site show beds only. What if you want to sit? What have you done to pass the time if you are not ready to sleep?

Thank you for your help.
donnae_b is offline  
Dec 28th, 2006, 12:45 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Author: donnae_b
Date: 12/28/2006, 01:41 am
We noticed that the overnight train from Paris to Venice is a 'sleeper only' train.

The pictures of the T6 Couchette on the raileurope site show beds only. What if you want to sit? What have you done to pass the time if you are not ready to sleep?

Thank you for your help.


The train leaves Paris Gare de Bercy at 2028, stops to pick up passengers at Dijon at 2320, runs non-stop to Milan at 0545, and stops at Brescia at 0725, at Verona, Padua, and Venice Mestre before the terminus at 0928. It is true that the conductor can fold up your berths after you leave Paris, but in fact he or she is too busy to do so. If you order dinner you can sit in the restaurant car part or all of the time from departure to about 2130. If you are sure you will not want to sleep until 2320 you can book the TGV fast train from Paris Gare de Lyon at 2030 Mon to Fri or 2114 Fri or Sun, sup in the buffet, stay seated, reach Dijon at 2209 or 2254, and board your couchette there at 2320.

If you move your booking up from the crowded 6 berth couchettes to the 2 -berth sleepers you can ask your conductor to fold your berths up into seats until you need them.

The same is true in 2-berth sleepers in Italy: you ask your conductor to fold up the berths when you choose. He or she may do the same in a couchette compartment (in case of that, the best couchette berths are the uppermost: you stay snoozing while others below you fold up the middle berth to make a seat with space, start washing And breakfast, and so. Most people do this too early. If not you could walk to the restaurant car for breakfast, or could leave the train between Brescia and Padua, wait ten to twenty minutes, take a Eurostar Italia day train, breakfast on it, and reach Venice Santa Lucia at 0938

If I read the Man in Seat 61 aright, you paid from 26 English pounds upwards for your berth in a 6 berth couchette. A berth in a 2 berth sleeper would cost you 100 pounds. I think the sleeper is the better buy: you stay on one train, choose when to have berths, when seats, eat a packed supper or walk along to the (expensive) restaurant car.

What people do from 2030 to bedtime is look at the view, sup, take a bottle of wine, corkscrew, and paper cups on board so they can offer a glass to neighbours in other compartments, talk with them (quietly), and wash and change. From waking to Santa Lucia at 0928 people eat the (rather thin) free coffee and bun, wash, read a book, play cards, and talk with neighbours.

I have on disc a note on enjoying night trains: please e-mail me if you would like a copy.

Ben Haines, London
[email protected]
ben_haines is offline  
Dec 28th, 2006, 04:13 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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A T4 couchette is more spacious and comfortable than a T6. Booked at sncf.com, PREM'S (discount) fares are E35 for a T6 and E60 for a T4. Of course, a T3 or T2 cabin is still more comfortable.

Rail Europe's prices are inflated. Book at sncf.com up to 90 days in advance. Discount tickets sell out quickly so book as soon as the 90-day window opens.
TimS is offline  
Dec 28th, 2006, 06:45 AM
  #5  
 
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Posts: 91,597
I would really recommend a two-person private cabin if you can afford the bit more money. No way could I sleep with a bunch of strangers in a crowded 6-person couchette!! In the cabin, the bottom bed is left as a couch until you are ready to go to sleep. I really liked taking the overnight train Venice to Paris, but we had our own cabin, took on a picnic dinner with us, a bottle of wine, etc.
suze is offline  
Dec 28th, 2006, 06:53 AM
  #6  
 
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From my memory of this train, the restaurant car also has a bar area where you can sit and drink or have a snack. As others have explained, both sleeper and couchette compartments convert from seats to bunks. Each carriage has an attendant who will set up the bunks when you need them. The big disadvantage of couchettes is that you'll probably be sharing with strangers so you have to agree to go to bed at the same time, though there are usually folding seats in the corridor of the carriage if someone wants to stay up while the others in the compartment are in their bunks.
GeoffHamer is offline  

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