Train travel - 1st class or 2nd?

Old Apr 6th, 2000, 05:39 AM
  #1  
Debra
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Train travel - 1st class or 2nd?

My husband & I will be traveling in France in June & plan to travel by train from Paris to Toulouse & from Marseilles to Annecy. Is it worth it to buy 1st class tickets, or is 2nd class just as satisfactory? I'd appreciate your advice!
 
Old Apr 6th, 2000, 06:09 AM
  #2  
Carol
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I haven't done either trip, but because they're both long trips I'd definitely buy 1st class tickets. The seats are more comfortable and the service is better. I don't think these things matter on short trips (under 3 hours), but they do matter for me on longer trips.
 
Old Apr 6th, 2000, 07:35 AM
  #3  
Bob Brown
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Last year in France, we rode second class to Vernon (for Giverny and Monet's estate). When we took the 4-hour trip from Paris to Lausanne, we rode first class on the TGV to "see how the other half lives."
First class was fun, but it is not a necessity. The seats were marginally more comfortable -- a little plusher and a little more leg room. There was no service to speak of in the sense that someone brought refreshments around. The refreshment car was about two cars ahead of us, so we walked up there for a drink of something or other. (Had to pay for it.)
Would I do it again? Probably. But at my age, I have the urge to travel 1st class just to be doing it, after traveling second and third class for the first 65 years of my life.
 
Old Apr 6th, 2000, 08:08 AM
  #4  
greg
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Unlike planes, the difference between 1st and 2nd classes are small in terms of space and prices. There are more subtle differences that may be of interest to you.

While we found French trains to be more heavily used, there are still more empty seats in the 1st class. Because there are wee bit less seats per car and less of them are occupied, you have wee bit more space above your seat to put your luggages. Since student travellers usually travel in the 2nd class, you have less chance of having to share spaces with those huge backpacks.

Local students usually travel in the 2nd class, so 1st classes are usually occupied by business people, seniors on discount, and yes tourists. If you want to see what locals yak about, 2nd class is better while if you want tranquility, 1st class is better bet.
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 05:22 PM
  #5  
ttt
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