Train or Drive from Provence-Paris?

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Feb 11th, 2006, 03:54 PM
  #1
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Train or Drive from Provence-Paris?

Hi all--
I've been doing a lot of research here, and can't decide what to do. Here's the tentative "plan" (if you can call it that) so far:

We are planning on spending 6 nights in Provence with a rental car, before spending 4 nights in Paris. My travel partner and I have both been to Paris before.

17 April is when we had planned to travel to Paris. However, I am researching train tickets, and the cheapest I've found so far is 118 Euro. Is this the usual price, or just due to the Easter Holiday, or, am I doing something wrong (very likely)? Thanks to the poster (I forget who, at the moment--sorry) who posted those GREAT directions for purchasing tickets!

Because of the price, I'm wondering if we should instead, spend 5 nights in Provence, and then drive halfway to Paris for our 6th night. Then, drive the rest of the way towards Paris, to turn in our rental car. What would you suggest?
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Feb 11th, 2006, 05:59 PM
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Duh--Figured out my problem. It was my error, just as I assumed. I forgot I had entered 2 persons. So the fare is 59 Euro per person. So..I guess we'll take the train?

If we do decide to drive, any rec's for where a good "halfway there" point is to stay the night? My concern is that if we do drive, we are doing so on Easter Sunday. Would it be more difficult to find a place to stay?
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Feb 11th, 2006, 06:04 PM
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YOu can probably do even better than 59 €, though that's not a bad fare. Look for PREM fares on the www.sncf.com site.

I wouldn't drive. It takes forever, and gas and tolls are very expensive. Plus, wastes a day of a vacation - the train only takes 3 hours.
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Feb 11th, 2006, 07:16 PM
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I would take the train, without question. I don't like driving that much in foreign countries when the purpose is just to get from A to B. Then, you'd have the issues and problems of where you are going to leave this car in Paris, and attendant traffic and driving problems, most likely, in a large city like that.
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Feb 11th, 2006, 07:23 PM
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Thanks St. Cirg. That is the PREMS price. And it's at 7 am. Ugh!! The fares jump at least 20 Euro for anything later. Am I missing something?
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Feb 12th, 2006, 07:44 AM
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If you're driving on Easter Sunday, won't all the car rental return places be clsoed - except at CDG perhaps? Usually, if I'm returning a car anyplace other than Paris, it's not a problem if the return office is closed. However, in Paris I don't think I would do that - mainly because the places I've returned cars to in Paris don't have a large parking lot I can drive into.

I'de take the train no matter what day/time it was - 3 hrs of relaxation & watching the countryside go by outside the train window is more fun that 140K/hr on the Freeway. Also don't think your options for an overnight would be that great on Easter Sunday - I think almost every site/store will be closed, and many restaurants also.

Stu Dudley
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Feb 12th, 2006, 08:20 AM
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I agree Stu. I think we'll take the train. Seems a better option, rather than cutting our time short in Provence. Do you mind if I email you for your itinerary/drives?

Since we'll be departing probably from Avignon TGV to Paris on Monday 17 April, do you think we are best off spending the Easter weekend in Avignon?
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Feb 12th, 2006, 09:12 AM
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ira
 
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Hi B,

I find PREMS fares Paris/Avignon on a Sunday on the 10:20 from Gare Lyon for 39E 1cl.

Lowest price is 35Ein 2cl.

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Feb 12th, 2006, 09:31 AM
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>>Do you mind if I email you for your itinerary/drives?<<

Sure - e-mail me at [email protected]

>>Since we'll be departing probably from Avignon TGV to Paris on Monday 17 April, do you think we are best off spending the Easter weekend in Avignon?<<

Definatly. The market in l'Isle sur la Sorgue will be up-&-running on Easter Sunday. Follow the market by a drive in the countryside - through the Luberon or take my Lavender Route in the Sault area. The countryside will be open at Easter.

Stu Dudley

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Feb 12th, 2006, 10:25 AM
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Thanks for the advice. I was thinking of staying a couple nights in Bonnieux before Avignon. Does that seem like a good idea? We'd like to do some hiking. I hadn't thought of visiting Isle that Easter Sunday. For some reason, I figured the market wouldn't be happening that weekend.

Ira--I think your search was Paris to Avignon? I'm looking at Avignon to Paris, which appears more expensive, espcially since I don't want to take the 7am train, which has the PREMS price. Oh well. It's only money, right?

BTW..what's the difference between Avignon Center, and Avignon TGV? I think I read that TGV is outside of Avignon? Is this correct?
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Feb 12th, 2006, 10:36 AM
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Yes, the Avignon TGV station is a bit outside the city - maybe a 10-minute drive. But there are TGVs that run from the Avignon Center station to Paris - I took one last year.
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