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Paris - Chartres Train Tickets

We're spending a few days in Paris before heading to Chartres to spend a few days before joining the Loire Valley to the South of France tour. Do we need to buy Paris - Chartres train tickets ahead of time, or can we just show up at the station.

Thanks.

Posted by
9736 posts

For the Chartres tickets you can buy ahead or you can buy easily at a kiosk in the station. I think those kiosks are by the tracks on the far right side if you come in thru the middle of the station.

Posted by
2335 posts

We just showed up. It's a regular train with several departures a day. The train station is huge. I'm glad we got there early because it took us about half an hour to find the proper kiosk to buy tickets.

Posted by
3846 posts

The tickets do not sell out, and they are not expensive (I am not aware of advance discounts), so I would buy at the station.

Posted by
7618 posts

They are regional trains (TER). Normally there's no price advantage in buying ahead with TER, but I see that if I look at a dummy March booking and a dummy tomorrow booking, by booking ahead I could get a 10€ ticket instead of paying €18.40 — but booking ahead locks me into a specific time and date and is not reimbursable. For €8.40 a ticket, I would just buy one when I got to the station.

There are trains from Montparnasse just about every hour; it takes one hour or an hour 15 minutes for the journey. (I have a colleague who lives in Chartres and commutes to Paris, so do be mindful of rush hour.)

Posted by
29 posts

We did this trip in November, and booked ahead on the SNCF app (which apparently has changed recently). We had to fix the date but did not have to lock into specific times. I felt it was simpler to work through the ticket purchase process ahead of time and have the tickets on my phone (QR codes), which were scanned on the train. Then we could just show up at the station.

Posted by
1822 posts

If you sit on the right hand side facing the direction of travel to Chartres, you can just make out Versailles in the distance.

Posted by
5061 posts

Thanks, everyone. I do like the idea of having a ticket for a specific day in my pocket, but no particular time locked in. We know what date we're going, and have hotels booked in both places accordingly. If we have to select a time, though, I'll probably just wait and get the tickets at the station.

Thanks again.

Posted by
5061 posts

I just checked their website; I would have to lock in a time, at least on the screen I saw. And the price was €18.40 each for an April departure, so no discount. I'll poke around a bit later, but it looks like we'll just buy our tickets at the station.