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-   -   train from paris gare de nord to brugge (through Liile) bypass brussels (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/train-from-paris-gare-de-nord-to-brugge-through-liile-bypass-brussels-934635/)

JackGlasser May 9th, 2012 12:33 PM

train from paris gare de nord to brugge (through Liile) bypass brussels
 
I know there are a lot of trains Thalys from Paris to Brussels. I beleive I see two trains which can bypass Brussels: Also called Thalys which I believe travel through Lille, France. One is at 18:25 from Paris. The time would be good for me. Has anyone used this? It would be nice not to schlep and change trains in Brussels as well as an arrival is at 20:53. When looking at schedules from Brussels Midi to Brugge (St. Pieters) I do get confused: there are trains leaving every two hours such as 14:05, 16:05, etc. I know there are at least two trains every hour leaving: I am looking at flying back to USA from Brussels. The trains leave Brugge like 8:35 and 8:58; then 9:35, 9:58 etc to first Midi then Nord in Brussels. The schedule does not say anything about stopping at Central-- which I would be interested in doing so as to spend a day in the Grand Plaza prior to flying back to the USA. So question is do these trains from Brugge stop at all three stations? or one must do a transfer from Midi to Central? Thank you

Cowboy1968 May 9th, 2012 02:35 PM

I posted something to hopefully answer some of your questions on the other, older thread.

TimS May 9th, 2012 03:30 PM

Thalys trains do not go to Lille.

Some TGVs going from Paris to Lille stop at Lille Europe and others stop at Lille Flandres. Trains to Brugge depart from Lille Flandres. Some are direct and others require a connection in Kortrijk.

1. Leave Gare du Nord at 16:46 and arrive at Lille Europe at 17:45. Walk to Lille Flandres. Leave Lille Flandres at 18:08, connect in Kortrijk, and arrive in Brugge at 19:30.

2. Leave Gare du Nord at 17:46 and arrive at Lille Europe at 18:45. Walk to Lille Flandres. Leave Lille Flandres at 19:08, connect in Kortrijk, and arrive in Brugge at 20:28.

3. Leave Gare du Nord at 18:46 and arrive at Lille Europe at 19:45. Walk to Lille Flandres. Leave Lille Flandres at 20:08, connect in Kortrijk, and arrive in Brugge at 21:28.

TimS May 9th, 2012 06:06 PM

Iforgot to mention that Lille Europe and Lille Flandres are 0.7 km apart and viamichelin.com gives a walking time of 10 minutes.

kerouac May 9th, 2012 11:11 PM

Yes, it's all quite easy.

The Belgian trains are on the very first tracks of Lille Flandres, the ones that are the closest to Lille Europe.

JackGlasser May 10th, 2012 06:47 PM

Tim and Cowboy. The one piece of a schedule I found on the Thalys site: www.thalys.com/be/en/timetables/Paris/Burges showed this 18:25 leaving Paris Nord arriving in Burge 20:53 which is great time. How do I find out where this goes and how the changes of trains are? You were most helpful in alerting me to the folly of going through Lille if I am going to schlep .7km etc.etc. Still do you guys know how/ where this 18:25 train goes/ Jack

Cowboy1968 May 10th, 2012 08:54 PM

The 18:25 is a direct Thalys from Paris to Brugge. No changes.
If you had asked me I would said that the were no direct trains.
But that one only seems to run during summer so it will work if you checked it with your actual dates of travel and did not just put im dummy dates.

TimS May 12th, 2012 05:33 AM

If bought at the last minute in Paris, you'll pay €89.00 for a 2nd class ticket for the direct Paris-Brugge Thalys train. If you book well in advance (up to 90 days allowed) on thalys.com, you can get a discount fare as low as 29.00. Book ASAP. There is an allotted number of discount fare tickets and they sell out fast.

luvtotravel May 12th, 2012 08:56 PM

I recently booked a Thalys train Paris to Brussels in first class for 59 euros where I may change or cancel at no charge. First class includes a snack and free wi-fi. I had been looking at the senior fare that allows changes/cancellations, but it turned out to be quite a bit more expensive and only allowed travel in second class. Check out all your options carefully.

JackGlasser May 13th, 2012 07:11 AM

Can I book on their web site using a USA address? I know for other trains, a USA address brings you to another expensive site. The other thing I am toying with is getting the Thalys Card which would allow me stay in a special lounge if I arrive early to Gare Nord. I cant make reservations for about 90 days prior. Since it would be mid Sept., I have some time to play with this.

PalenQ May 13th, 2012 07:59 AM

For the route via Lille do not go to Lille Europea - simply take the trains that leave at most hours at :16 after the hour - like 18:16 direct to Lille Flandres and then switch at that station for hourly trains to Bruges, sometimes involving a simple change of train at Kortrijk - one platform to another. I have done this route a few times.

No reason to take a train to Lille Europe then walk the half mile or so other to Flandres.

The route via Lille Flandres involves TGVs and not Thalys trains - Thalys trains typically are more expensive unless you book really early and can nail down one of the deep discounted ticketes - both route take about exactly the same time - 2.5 hours I think and if not pre-booking far in advance even the walk-up fare on the Lille route will not be much more than advance fares from www.voyages-sncf.com for the French portion - Belgian portion to Bruges is flat fare I believe on a regional or IC train.

Thalys fares however can be bought with an ABS fares - or All Belgian Stations fare where you can take any train from Brussels to Bruges within 24 hours I believe - could stay a night in Brussels if you wish. check out these fab IMo sties for more on Thalys trains and trains in France and Belgium - www.seat61.com; www.ricksteves.com and www.budgeteuropetravel.com.

kerouac May 13th, 2012 08:18 AM

If you are not in a rush, you should give Lille at least a few hours of your time.

TimS May 14th, 2012 04:36 AM

Yes, you can book tckets on the Thalys site using a US address. Choose "paper ticket" and print it yourself.

TimS May 14th, 2012 04:38 AM

One more thing. Before booking tickets, call your credit card provider and tell customer service that you will be making an international transaction. If you don't, a computer may block your card for suspected fraudulent activity.

luvtotravel May 14th, 2012 10:53 AM

TimS gives good advice on calling your credit card company. Five minutes after booking my Thayls ticket online I received a phone call from the cc company asking if I had made the purchase.


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