Train Tix: How Far in Advance

Old Apr 22nd, 2010, 07:24 PM
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Train Tix: How Far in Advance

Family of 4 taking TGVs from Paris to St Pierre des Corps on 5/24, and St Pierre to Avignon on 5/26. Paris-based daughter not in France til 5/3 to actually puchase the that too late? Do these trains sell out? SHe can get a discount so I am tempted to wait, but the worrier in me wants to buy them ASAP. WHat do you think?
Thank you.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2010, 06:03 AM
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I guess it would depend on the discount amount. Have you priced tickets purchased now vs. what the discount may be? I've already booked my tickets from Paris to Brussels at the end of June through Rail Europe. It was $72 for the two of us, and now I see the least expensive option is now $86, and that is a less-desirable travel time, too.

So, I would book now. Any discount you have, unless it is significant, will most likely be offset by increases in ticket prices as the date grows closer. Not to mention the peace of mind factor...
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Old Apr 23rd, 2010, 08:29 AM
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To get the very best prices, you would have had to have bought tickets at the beginning of March, when the PREM fares came out. All you can do now is go online at and price the tickets and see what, if any discounts, you might be eligible for. You'll likely pay the highest prices buying on the spot. What kind of discount is your daughter eligible for? She's probably eligible for a student discount if you buy the tickets online, so unless she has something better than that, I'd get the tickets now.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2010, 08:35 AM
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Sometimes they do sell out, but not usually. They can be sold out for very popular times around holidays (ie, the direction people are going on holiday at the beginning, or returning at the end) -- eg, I was on a train from Tours back to Paris once on a Sunday late afternoon, and it was totally sold out.
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Old Apr 24th, 2010, 01:48 AM
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Old Apr 24th, 2010, 12:54 PM
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If you book NOW, you can still get discount fares for both routes. The fares vary widely for different departure times because more of the allotted number of discount fare tickets have been sold for some times than for others.

If you can handle French, book at To book in English and get the same fare choices, go to which is a multi-language SNCF site. To keep the site in English and to avoid being bumped to the Rail Europe site which doesn't offer discount fares, choose Great Britain as your country of residence. Pick up your tickets in Paris.
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