Report on TGV from CDG Paris

Aug 9th, 2002, 09:53 AM
  #21  
melissa
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Hi

If I just wanted to go from Paris to Nice then London I'm sure flying would be cheaper. What I want is to travel thru France stopping at Lyon, Avignon, AixenProvence and Nice for several days then get to London. I still think individual tickets would cost more than a pass except for Avignon to Aix since it is such a short trip. I agree that a ticket from Nice to Paris and then a Eurostar ticket would be expensive and take a lot longer but as I said with the pass Eurostar is only $20 more.

Melissa
 
Aug 9th, 2002, 11:15 AM
  #22  
Andre
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OK Melissa,

I went and did what you should have and plugged some dates in the SNCF and EasyJet sites.

From what I understand, your itinerary should look like this:

- flight from your Canada to Paris and stay in the city
- TGV to Lyon ("J30" discount fare EUR 31) and stay
- TGV onward to Avignon (EUR 28.60 full fare)and stay
- TGV onward to Aix (EUR 21.90 full fare) and stay
- TGV onward to Nice (EUR 27.60 full fare) and stay
- Flight to London (price example for October 9 on Easyjet to Gatwick: varies from EUR 24.90 to EUR 87.40 depending on time of day!) and stay
- Flight from London to Canada

So, let's do our math:
Train tickets @ EUR 109.10 + flight at 24.90 = EUR 134 (approx. CAD 205) grand total!!! Plus you save a day of travel by flying from Nice to London instead of taking the train...

Sure you can buy the rail pass if you feel it's a better deal - in that case, I have some great timeshare developments in the Everglades you might be interested in

Andre
 
Aug 9th, 2002, 11:37 AM
  #23  
Andre
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Melissa,

Just to clarify one more point:

You can book and tickets on SNCF.com from anywhere in the world - they simply won't mail them to Canada (who cares?)!

Just PREPAY and select pickup in France and your tickets will be waiting for you at any train station or "boutique SNCF" in the country when you arrive. Plus, you can cancel/modify your booking online at any time until you the tickets are issued.

Why are you so worried about this???

Andre
 
Aug 9th, 2002, 07:09 PM
  #24  
john
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A lot of confusion here over a few simple things. You can travel like Europeans and buy your train tickets and reservations in Europe. Go to the train station or any travel agent. Travel agents are everywhere. The internet is great for many things but it won't butter your bread, and may not be the best way to buy a train ticket.

My page www.enjoy-europe.com/hte/chap17/rail.htm would help many newbees understand the rudiments of travel by train in Europe. It is full of photos that show you what it's like in the stations and on the trains. It explains how to find your train, your car, and your reserved seat in words and pictures.
 
Aug 15th, 2002, 07:41 PM
  #25  
melissa
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Andre,

I'm worried because I've never done this before. I don't want to get to France and then not be able to get the tickets for some reason. I don't know what that reason would be, I just like to feel prepared. I didn't know I could book the tickets on sncf from here and pick them up in France. I realize you think I'm an idiot but that's why I'm asking the questions. If I didn't want help I'd have just bought the pass and been none the wiser. I sincerely appreciate your help but not your condescention. I hope you will continue to help other travellers, but keep that in mind.

Thanks again,
melissa
 
Aug 15th, 2002, 10:07 PM
  #26  
Sue
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I agree, Melissa, the SNCF site is very confusing; you can purchase from North America and pick up in France, you just cannot reserve and pay later. However, in your case, since you intend to make reservations only, I think you need to call the number Bob Brown gave above. I think I helped someone do this once before who had a pass and that's what worked. I think you need to have your pass in hand to do that.

You can also wait until you get to France to make your reservations--you can actually do it right at the airport for all your trips either in the train station near Terminal 2 or at a booth in Terminal 1. I like that because they are more likely to speak English and understand your travel requirements.

To check to see if the pass you have in mind is the best, try http://www.railsaver.com/
You just put in your planned itinerary and it decides which pass is the best.

You can also buy the pass from www.ricksteves.com and he has a ton of good information about rail passes on his site.

Hope this helps.
 
Aug 15th, 2002, 10:28 PM
  #27  
BillyB
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Hi Melissa. With 5+ cities on your train itinerary, I would definitly get a pass. Relax, you'll handle it just fine, the French do trains really well - unless of course they're on strike
 
Aug 16th, 2002, 12:03 AM
  #28  
Andre
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Melissa,

I read and reread your latest post and still can't understand your reaction.

No, I DON'T think you're an idiot!!! However I do think you should follow up on the excellent suggestions you received (not just from myself BTW) on this thread - why ask questions if you don't want to hear the answers?

You asked me the following: "My trip will be originating in France and I want to take the Eurostar from Paris to London. raileurope has Francepass + Eurostar 2nd class for $367CDN Is this not a good deal?"

My answer to you was NO, it's a rip-off. Additionally, Vincent made the excellent suggestion that you fly on one of the low-fare carriers from Nice to London, thus saving you money AND unnecessary hours of train travel.

Your response to both of these suggestions was to price a stopover on your transatlantic flight (not at all what was suggested by Vincent) - I don't see anywhere from your posts that you actually plugged in your train itinerary on the SNCF site either.

So, I did the homework for you - and showed you the considerable savings in time and money you could achieve. I'm not complaining about this - after all, I wouldn't be addicted to this forum if I didn't enjoy researching itineraries. BUT to the receive that reply from you instead of a thank you is taking it a little far!

Regarding your accusation of condescension on my part, I quote from your latest post:
"I hope you will continue to help other travellers, but keep that in mind."
Now THAT'S condescending!

Enjoy your train trips, regardless of how you purchase your tickets - I will make my own decisions regarding my posts on this forum.

Andre
 
Aug 16th, 2002, 01:42 AM
  #29  
Vincent
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Melissa, I think you are a bit tough with Andre, who went to great lengths to calculate all your fares one by one, which demonstrated that your pass is actually a rip off. He has repeatedly told you the different safe ways to book a ticket, and all you can repeat is "I don't want not to be able to buy the tickets for some reason" and " I want to be prepared". Well, talk about super deluxe personal preparation, here you are ! Granted, Andre (and others such as myself ! ) can sometimes lose their patience when, after haver repeated the same thing and proven our point with hard figures, you obviously don't trust us 100 % and seem to be asking for more evidence. Actually, if somebody should be offended, it's Andre, since you don't seem to ever take his point !
 
Aug 16th, 2002, 03:56 AM
  #30  
Gretchen
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Andre, you did a wonderful job. I have been following this thread and you and others REALLY went out of your way to answer. I too do not understand Melissa's reaction. I read NO condescension in your replies--just information.
 
Aug 17th, 2002, 06:55 PM
  #31  
melissa
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Andre,

If you read and reread my message you would see that I sincerely appreciate your help and thank you again at the end. I'm sorry if you think I overreacted but when you ask why I'm so worried with ??? and let's do our math, and want to sell swampland I get the impression you think I am an idiot. Maybe I'm just too touchy.

I did plug in my itinerary on sncf and yes the prices were cheaper. I didn't manage to do it first because I tried to input Canada as the receiver, then sent an email to them asking why I couldn't get the tickets from Canada, to which they replied I had to use raileurope. It wasn't until I read your email that I understood I could pick up the tickets in France.

This is my first time using this site and I didn't (probably still don't) know all the in's and out's. I tried a search using TGV and found an old "thread" which outlined some of this information. Now that I know how things work I'll do that in future before I ask questions.

My thanks to everyone who has contributed.
melissa
 
Aug 18th, 2002, 07:12 AM
  #32  
Betsy
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Melissa, glad you got it all worked out. For your next trip, plug your itinerary into www.railsaver.com for a comparison between using a pass and buying point-to-point tickets.
 
Aug 18th, 2002, 08:57 AM
  #33  
Billyb
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Melissa: Have used both point-to-point and a pass, and there is a convenience factor with a pass (depending on your itinerary and travel savvy) that usually makes it worthwhile with 3-4+ legs. Price is certainly important, but money should not be the only criteria you use to determine which travel option is right for you...bb
 
Aug 19th, 2002, 08:34 PM
  #34  
melissa
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Betsy, I tried railsaver.com and found that they didn't have the new Francepass + Eurostar option so I emailed them about it. But looking at the Francepass portion it did seem cheaper than raileurope even converting to Canadian $, thanks! Don't know if they send to Canada yet (also checked in my email) Only option given in country was USA. Still weighing all options. m
 
Sep 15th, 2002, 09:16 AM
  #35  
jeanne
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Can someone please tell me about the discount one gets for advanced ticket purchase on SNCF? We're going in October, but want to wait and buy tickets in Paris...either Paris/Limoges or Paris/Rennes.

Also, which trains depart and arrive from CDG? I never see CDG as a point of departure or arrival.
 
Sep 15th, 2002, 11:19 AM
  #36  
Gail
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We're leaving from Quimper & want to take the TGV to Paris. This will be the end of Oct. Is it possible to just walk up to the ticket window that morning & buy a ticket or I could also go one or two mornings before for the tickets if necessary.
 
Sep 15th, 2002, 02:10 PM
  #37  
clairobscur
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BillyB,

The number of legs is essentially irrelevant. A pass is only worth it when you make a lot of long trips in a short time, usually. I understand that your concern is convenience, but at some point, this convenience becomes costly. And the inconvenience is limited to possibly having to queue, or figure out how to buy a ticket from a machine (in english). I wouldn't pay much to avoid that.

Melissa,

If you buy your tickets on the SNCF site, make sure to bring the credit card you used to pay when you pick your tickets at the train station. I don't know what happens if you fail to show the CC you used to pay (I'm sure it must happens quite often), but the SNCF insists a lot on this.

Jeanne,

The discount is usually 25% if you buy your tickets at least 8 days in advance, and 50% if you buy them at least 30 days in advance. The drawback : these tickets are only partially refundable, so you should make sure you won't miss your train. Also, there's only a limited number of discounted tickets for each train, and sometimes they're sold out. So, don't wait until the last moment if you already know when you will travel, buy them as soon as possible. Also, don't assume that any ticket bought in advance will be discounted. Make sure to ask for it (they're likely to mention them, though)

Finally, it's a well established fact that buying tickets from raileurope is a rip-off.
 
Sep 16th, 2002, 01:43 AM
  #38  
Sue
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Jeanne, underneath the boxes where you type your departure and arrival cities is a line that says "select here." Click on that and a box pops up. Airport CDG 2 TGV is the first on the list.

I've also found on the SNCF site that IF the early purchase discounts are available, they come up automatically.
 
Sep 19th, 2002, 07:13 AM
  #39  
Tina
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Hi,
From the original post, I guess I am a little confused about purchasing vs. having a reservation. I just purchased a couple of trips for my trip in October thru the sncf site (no problems for me in Chicago - although I had to use MS Explorer as my browser) and am confused as to whether I have to book seats too?
Can we just show up at the station and just get on in 2nd class? How does this work?
Thanks for your help everyone!
Tina
 
Sep 19th, 2002, 11:08 AM
  #40  
Joe G
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Message to Tina:
I booked TGV tickets on the SNCF site 2 weeks ago for travel in Oct. I mistakenly checked the box to have the tix mailed to my house rather than collected in France. I received a prompt reply in English from this email address - [email protected] - They will answer all your concerns. Hey guess what! The tickets actually were delivered to my house in five days by regular mail.
Joe G.
 

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